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Bridge: Oct. 4, 2023

Bridge: Oct. 4, 2023

“Your honor,” the District Attorney stated, “we will prove that South committed a felony. He lost a cold game.”

“Proceed,” the judge instructed, and the court kibitzed the evidence.

“South played at 3NT,” the DA began, “after opening 1NT on a semibalanced hand. North transferred to spades and offered a choice of games. West led a low heart. South put up dummy’s king, but next he led a spade. When West took the ace, the defense cashed four hearts.”

TOO MUCH

“You ask too much of my client,” South’s counsel roared. “He guessed right at Trick One but still had only eight tricks. If he tries a double-finesse in diamonds, he goes down two.”

Was South guilty of an error?

After South wins the first trick, he must run the clubs. West can let go a spade and a diamond but is stuck on the fifth club. He must pitch a heart, letting South force out the ace of spades safely, or unguard his queen of diamonds. Still, South did well to judge the heart position; I would go easy on him.

DAILY QUESTION

You hold: S K J 9 8 4 H K 6 D 5 4 2 C A 10 5. Your partner opens one heart, you bid one spade and he rebids two hearts. What do you say?

ANSWER: Your partner’s rebid promises at least six hearts. If he had only a five-card suit, he could find a more descriptive second bid: 1NT, two of a minor suit or a raise to two spades. Your hand is worth an invitation to game. A bid of 2NT with no diamond strength is unattractive. Raise to three hearts.

South dealer

N-S vulnerable

NORTH

S K J 9 8 4

H K 6

D 5 4 2

C A 10 5

WEST

S A 2

H A 8 5 4 2

D Q 8 6 3

C 6 3

EAST

S 10 7 6 5

H Q 9 7 3

D J 7

C 8 7 2

SOUTH

S Q 3

H J 10

D A K 10 9

C K Q J 9 4

South West North East
1 NT Pass 2 H Pass
2 S Pass 3 NT All Pass
Opening lead — H 4

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