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Bridge Deal of the Week (Feb 23 2007)

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West   North   East   South
                       1      1♠1
dbl2     33      dbl4    4♠(!!)
all pass

1 - Ill-advised action, not recommended
2 - Negative Double, showing 4 hearts and some values (around 6 or more points)
3 - Mixed Raise, showing 7-9 points and 4+ spades
4 - "I really have diamonds"

This hand came up in a team-of-four knockout match, where the scoring is IMPs. East opened 1, at the table South chose to overcall 1♠. This is a poor call that provides an incorrect description of the South hand. If South had a better spade suit along the lines of AKJ10, AQJ9, AKQ9, the 1♠ overcall would have some merit, as the hand also contains length in the opponent suit (diamonds). Even then, overcalling is likely to make partner misjudge the auction.

In any case, West made a Negative Double, and North bid 3, which is a "mixed raise" showing 7-9 points and 4 or more spades. East doubled this, showing a real diamond suit, given that the 1 could be made on a three-card suit. South was not finished bidding, and he jumped to 4♠! If it is any consolation, the Deal of the Week is a column on card play, and not bidding!

South did not deserve the five trumps that dummy produced. West led the J, East won this with the Ace and returned a low diamond. South rose with the King, West following with the Ten. Think about your next move before you read further.

The right play is a club. Plan the play when

1. West plays the Ace and returns a club (East plays the Queen when you win with dummy's King).
2. West plays the Queen, you cover with the King, East plays the Ace and returns a low diamond.

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Bridge Baron deal No: N1991-85001-86522-95081-57347-15824 , N3588-18919-55522-94121-81676-90269

You can download this deal in PPL format, and view it with Bridge Baron here :
Deal Of The Week