California Dolphin: statewide California news

Bridge: March 12, 2018

Tribune Content Agency
One regular at my club is a retired high school football coach who approaches a hand of bridge as if he’s afraid of being penalized for delay of the game.
When my friend was declarer at five clubs — a good contract to reach — he won the first spade and started a hasty crossruff: ace of hearts, heart ruff, ace of diamonds, diamond ruff. He then ruffed another heart with the eight of trumps.
Alas, West overruffed with the nine and led a trump. That left South with three diamond losers and dummy with two trumps, so South lost a diamond plus a spade.
South played as if the clock were about to run out. He should ruff the third heart with a high trump and next ruff two more diamonds and hearts high. With three tricks to go — declarer having won the first 10 — dummy has the seven of trumps and South has the eight. Then South ruffs a diamond and is sure of one more trick.
Be deliberate as declarer. Nobody should mind if you take your time on a demanding deal.
You hold: S A 9 H 10 D A J 7 4 3 C K Q J 8 3. Your partner opens one spade, you bid two diamonds, he rebids two spades and you try three clubs. Partner then rebids three spades. What do you say?
ANSWER: Partner has minimum high-card values, but slam is possible. He might hold K Q J 8 7 6 2, J 7 6, 9, A 9 or K Q J 8 7 6 2, A J 3, 9, 7 6. To consult him, bid four hearts. He should treat that as a cue bid in support of spades. If you had hearts, you would bid 3NT or maybe four spades.
South dealer
Both sides vulnerable
S 6 4 3
H A 8 7 5 2
D 9
C A 10 7 5
S Q J 10 7
H J 6
D K Q 8 6 2
C 9 2
S K 8 5 2
H K Q 9 4 3
D 10 5
C 6 4
S A 9
H 10
D A J 7 4 3
C K Q J 8 3
South West North East
1 D Pass 1 H Pass
2 C Pass 3 C Pass
5 C All Pass
Opening lead — S Q
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BC-stewart-bridge 03/12 TCA

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