Contact usAbout usAffiliates
Deal of the Week (Nov 16, 2007) Click here for Archives
The Auction:
West   North   East   South
2♠       3        pass   3♠1
pass    4♣1      pass   4NT2
pass    5♠3       pass   5NT4
pass    7NT     all pass

1 - Cue-bid
2 - RKC Blackwood
3 - Two keycards with the Q
4 - Confirming all keycards and asking for kings

The auction might raise a few eyebrows, particularly the 7NT call, but the scoring was matchpoints and North decided to go for all the marbles. South noted that 7 was laydown, but the task at hand was to make 7NT. Your thoughts? (West has one diamond and East has two)

If hearts divide 3-2, you have 15 tricks. But if hearts are 4-1, you seem to have only 12 tricks. You have the option of finessing either player for the J, but that is undoubtedly inferior to playing for a 3-2 break in hearts.

The ♠10 in the North hand raises the possibility of a squeeze. Since West has already shown up with a singleton diamond, it is very unlikely that he has a singleton heart as well. Therefore, if anyone has heart length, it is likely to be West. If West holds length in hearts along with the KQJ of spades, he could be squeezed in the major suits. To do so, you have to be careful to cash all your minor suit winners before testing hearts. It is fine to cash the K, but playing a second round of heart kills communication channels to the South hand. This is the position when you play the last diamond from dummy:

 Q Deal  6
 J86  -
 -  -
 -  J107
West clearly has no good card to play. All you have to do is keep track of the queen and jack of spades; if they have been discarded, you cash the ♠10; if not, you play off hearts.
 KQJ987 Deal  652
 J865  4
 8  97
 98  J1075432

In retrospect, since reaching any grand slam is a tricky prospect, North-South should have been content to settle for a 7 contract.

Bridge Baron's double dummy solver confirms that playing two rounds of hearts before finishing off the minors is fatal.
Par Contract Analysis:
The par contract on this deal is 7NT by North-South.

Bridge Baron deal No : N3172-15976-52357-64792-13328-83632

You can download this deal in PPL format, and view it with Bridge Baron here :
Deal Of The Week
(Please note : To avoid spammers and abusive language this board is moderated.)