Both sides vulnerable

NORTH

{spade} Q 3

{heart} K 4 3

{diam} Q 6 5 2

{club} A Q 6 5

WEST (D)

{spade} K J 7

{heart} Q J 8

{diam} A J 9 4

{club} K J 10

EAST

{spade} 4

{heart} A 10 9 7 5 2

{diam} 7 3

{club} 9 7 3 2

SOUTH

{spade} A 10 9 8 6 5 2

{heart} 6

{diam} K 10 8

{club} 8 4

The bidding:

West

North

East

South1 NT

Pass

2 {diam}

Pass2 {heart}

Pass

Pass

2 {spade} Pass

3 NT

Pass

4 {spade} All Pass

Opening lead: {heart} Q

Nowadays, it's "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us some e-mail."

"East's bid of two diamonds was a 'transfer' to two hearts," a fan's e-mail reads. "When he passed next, I backed in with two spades -- and wound up playing four spades after partner's leap to 3NT.

"I ruffed the second heart and led a trump. West took the king and led another heart, and I ruffed again. I led a club to the queen, took the queen of trumps and cashed the ace of clubs. West didn't drop his king, so I could ruff a club safely and draw trumps.

"So far, so good. But when I led a diamond to the king and a diamond back to my ten, West got the jack and ace, and I went down.

"I think partner's 3NT was wrong. He punished me for balancing. He admits his bid was aggressive but thinks I should make the contract somehow. What do you think?"

Since South didn't bid two spades directly, his balancing bid suggested a weak hand. To prevent East-West from buying the contract cheaply, South bid on the values North was sure to hold. So North's action was questionable.

Still, South can make four spades. After East shows the ace of hearts, West needs every missing point for his 1NT. After South draws the last trump, he leads the king of diamonds. West must take the ace and, with only diamonds left, must lead from his jack.

The e-mail address for "Daily Bridge Club" is franks@fayette.net. I'll reply to as many e-mails as I can.

(c)2002, Tribune Media Services