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Deal of the Week (Jun 01, 2007) Click here for Archives

The Auction:
West   North   East   South
            1       pass    1♠
2       3       pass    4♠
all pass

You reach 4♠ as South after West overcalls in hearts. West leads the ace and king of hearts, East echoes by playing high-low. West continues with the Q. What are your thoughts?
You have ten tricks in the form of six spades, three diamonds and one club. You need to be careful, though. The obvious play of ruffing the Q with the ♠7 has danger written all over it. If East overruffs with the ♠8 and plays back a club, your entry situation becomes precarious as you cannot draw trumps without killing the diamond suit. You are reduced to hoping that the diamond suit divides 3-3, which is not the case on this hand.

Let us rewind back to trick three. The correct play on this deal is to discard a club on the Q, preserving the valuable ♠7. Say a club is switched, you can win in dummy, play the ♠7 to hand and draw trumps, and score your ten tricks.

 652 Deal  843
 AKQJ54  92
  32   J754
 K7  QJ104

Even at matchpoints, the recommended line of play is likely to be a winner. In isolation, East will hold the ♠8 50% of the time. Considering that West holds length in hearts, East is probable to have more spades than West, which in turn makes it highly probable that East has the ♠8.

The double dummy solver agrees that discarding to the third heart is necessary to make the contract.

Bridge Baron's Line of Play
Bridge Baron did not earn full credit on this deal. When West continued with the Q at trick three, Baron correctly discarded a club. However, if West played a low heart instead of the Q at trick three, Baron got lulled into ruffing with the ♠7.
Par Contract Analysis:
The par contract on this deal is 4♠ by North-South.

Bridge Baron deal No : N2297-63626-55488-25696-34130-08972

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