N-S vulnerable


{spade} K J

{heart} J 10 6 4

{diam} None

{club} Q 10 9 6 5 3 2


{spade} Q 10 8 3

{heart} K Q 8 5 2

{diam} Q 5 2

{club} 7


{spade} 9 6 5 4

{heart} 7

{diam} A J 10 9 6 4 3

{club} 8


{spade} A 7 2

{heart} A 9 3

{diam} K 8 7

{club} A K J 4

The bidding:SouthWestNorthEast1 {club} 1 {heart} 2{club} 3{diam}3 NT Pass5 {club} Pass6 {club} All Pass Opening lead: {club} 7

Today's remarkable deal was named a "Deal of the Year" by an association of journalists. South was Lajos Linesmayer of Hungary. His bid of one club was artificial and forcing.

South would have had it easy if West had led the king of hearts, and if West had led a diamond, South would have had the time and entries to strip out the diamonds and spades and end-play West in hearts. But since West had honors in every side suit, he led a trump.

South won in his hand and ruffed a diamond. He led a trump to his hand, ruffed a diamond, led a heart to his ace and returned a spade to dummy's jack! South next cashed the king of spades, got back with a trump, threw a heart from dummy on the ace of spades, led the king of diamonds and threw another heart.

East took the ace but had to lead a spade or a diamond, and South ruffed in his hand, threw dummy's last heart and claimed. Without that precise sequence of plays, including an "unnecessary" spade finesse, South would fail.

Daily Question

You hold:

{spade} A 7 2 {heart} A 9 3 {diam} K 8 7 {club} A K J 4.

You open one club, your partner responds one spade, you jump to 2NT and he next bids three clubs. The opponents pass. What do you say?

Answer: Although your partner has club support, you want to play at a cheaper game contract if possible. Bid three spades, showing your three-card support for his suit. He can go on to four spades if he has good spades, return to 3NT or insist on a club contract.

(c)2005, Tribune Media Services