N-S vulnerable

NORTH

{spade} K 10 7 5 3

{heart} A 4

{diam} 3

{club} K J 8 5 3

WEST

{spade} 8

{heart} J 9 7 5 2

{diam} 9 8 7 5 4

{club} 9 7

EAST

{spade} J 6

{heart} K 8 6 3

{diam} K 10 6 2

{club} Q 6 4

SOUTH (D)

{spade} A Q 9 4 2

{heart} Q 10

{diam} A Q J

{club} A 10 2

The bidding:SouthWestNorthEast 1 {spade}Pass4 {diam} Pass5 {club} Pass6 {spade} All Pass Opening lead: {heart} 5

Cy the Cynic says you should never put off until tomorrow what you can get somebody to do for you today. That may explain why Cy made today's slam in a team match.

Both Souths played at six spades; North's bid of four diamonds showed a big spade fit and a singleton diamond. Both Wests led a heart.

At one table, South took the ace, drew trumps, cashed the ace of diamonds and led the queen for a ruffing finesse, pitching dummy's last heart. East took the king and led the king of hearts, and South ruffed in dummy and had to find the queen of clubs. Alas, he finessed against West.

At the other table, Cy got the defenders to do his work for him. Cy also won the first heart but next took the ace of diamonds, ruffed the queen in dummy, drew trumps and ruffed the jack of diamonds. Cy then led a heart.

East won and was end-played. If he led a club, he'd guess the queen for Cy. If East led a red card, Cy would discard a club and ruff with dummy's last trump.

Daily Question

You hold:

{spade} A Q 9 4 2 {heart} Q 10 {diam} A Q J {club} A 10 2.

With both sides vulnerable, the dealer, at your right, opens three clubs. What do you say?

Answer: Since your opponent's preempt has crowded the auction, you must take a calculated risk by assigning your partner a few values. Bid 3NT. The alternative, to double for takeout despite your inadequate heart support, might work, but then your partner might commit to a poor heart contract.

(c)2005, Tribune Media Services