“Your honor,” the district attorney intoned, “we will prove that South committed a felony. He booted a cold vulnerable game.”
“Proceed,” the judge instructed, and the court heard the evidence.
“Against 3NT,” the DA began, “West led a diamond, and East took the ace and returned the queen. South won and took his three high clubs; West threw a heart, East a spade. South next led the king of hearts, and West won and led a third diamond. South then took the Q-J of hearts and exited with his last heart, but when East won and led a spade, declarer took only eight tricks.”
“My client was unlucky,” South’s counsel bellowed. “If East had held the king of spades, the fourth heart end-plays him.”
Would you convict South of a misplay?
“Guilty,” the judge ruled. “After South unblocks his high clubs, he must lead the queen of spades. If West won, dummy’s jack would be an entry to the good clubs. If West ducked, South could force out the ace of hearts for nine tricks.”
You hold: S 6 5 4 3 2 H 10 9 8 7 D A Q C 5 4. Neither side vulnerable. Your partner opens one spade. The next player passes. What do you say?
ANSWER: On many hands with five-card support for partner’s major-suit opening, you would jump to game. If the contract failed, the opponents might have found a makeable contract if left room. Here, you have no reason to think partner can win 10 tricks or that the opponents can make anything. Bid two spades.
S J 7
H 5 3
D 8 6 5
C J 10 9 8 6 3
S K 10 8
H A 6 4
D 9 7 4 3 2
C 7 2
S 6 5 4 3 2
H 10 9 8 7
D A Q
C 5 4
S A Q 9
H K Q J 2
D K J 10
C A K Q
South West North East
2 C Pass 2 D Pass
3 NT All Pass
Opening lead — D 3
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Source:: The Mercury News – Entertainment