Who's Wrong? Everyone

When four people argue, they can't all be right; but all four can be wrong.

South took the queen of trumps and the ace of hearts, ruffed a heart, led a club to the ace and ruffed a heart. East overruffed and led the queen of diamonds to dummy. South then took the king of clubs and ruffed a club. West threw his last diamond; and South got only the A-K of trumps. Three down.

Came the argument. South swore he'd been unlucky. North said South had brought it all on himself by opening in a four-card major. East contended that a crossruff was the best shot. West announced that after South ruffed a heart, he'd succeed by drawing trumps and leading four rounds of clubs.


Assuming you like the bidding (I do), how do you play?

South should play a low club from both hands at Trick Two! He wins the next trump, takes the ace of hearts, ruffs a heart, leads a club to the ace and draws trumps. He can then win four trumps, four clubs, two diamonds, a heart and a heart ruff.


You hold: S 10 9 7 6 H K Q 10 9 7 D 9 5 C J 9. Dealer, at your left, opens one spade. Your partner doubles, and the next player bids two spades. What do you say?

ANSWER: Bid three hearts. Since partner promises good heart support, you must act. You don't need many points to compete here, and partner must not bid again without extra strength; he must realize you may have risked your neck to stop the opponents from buying the deal cheaply.

N-S vulnerable


S Q 5 4

H 6

D A K 8 2

C K Q 6 4 3


S 10 9 7 6

H K Q 10 9 7

D 9 5

C J 9


S 8 3

H 8 3

D Q J 10 6 4

C 10 8 7 2


S A K J 2

H A J 5 4 2

D 7 3

C A 5


1 S

2 H

3 NT

6 S





All Pass


2 C

3 D

4 S





Opening lead -- S 10

Copyright 1999, Los Angeles Times Syndicate