Bridge: Sept. 19, 2023

Bridge: Sept. 19, 2023

“My short-term memory isn’t what it used to be,” one of my club’s seniors said to me.

“Is that your only problem?” I asked.

“Well, my short-term memory isn’t what it once was.”

Today’s declarer forgot the auction from a few minutes earlier. When West’s bid of one diamond came around, South bid a direct four spades, expecting North to hold a few points. West led high diamonds, and South ruffed the third diamond and led a trump. East took the ace and returned a trump.

South next led a heart to dummy’s ace and a heart back to his jack. West’s queen won for down one.


South had a lapse. East had not responded to the opening bid and had shown the ace of trumps. He couldn’t have the queen of hearts. South should cash the ace of clubs and run his trumps.

At the end, dummy has the queen of clubs and A-7 of hearts, and South has his three hearts. West must save his king of clubs so only two hearts. South then takes the A-K of hearts, knowing the queen will fall.


You hold: S 5 3 H Q 10 6 D A K Q 9 6 C K 10 3. You open one diamond, and your partner responds one heart. What do you say?

ANSWER: You have options. A bid of 1NT would show a balanced minimum but has no appeal with two low spades. A rebid of two diamonds is possible but would suggest six or more diamonds. Raise to two hearts. Auctions are easier when a possible trump suit is mentioned early. If partner bids 2NT next, you will bid 3NT or three diamonds.

West dealer

N-S vulnerable


S 6 2

H A 7 5 2

D J 5 4

C Q J 6 2


S 5 3

H Q 10 6

D A K Q 9 6

C K 10 3


S A 8

H 9 8 3

D 10 3 2

C 9 8 7 5 4


S K Q J 10 9 7 4

H K J 4

D 8 7


West North East South
1 D Pass Pass 4 S
All Pass
Opening lead — D K

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