Is there a chance

You respond 1 to partner’s 1 opening and reluctantly bid 3N when you hear a rebid.

W
West
N
North
E
East
S
South
1
Pass
1
Pass
2
Pass
3NT
All Pass
 
 
 

 They lead the  Q !! and this is what you see

N
North
K9
Q4
KQ9763
Q72
Q
S
South
A7642
A83
54
A63

 After this lead, you can be pretty sure that atleast your suit is not breaking. Partner has opened a dead minimum hand, even the suit is nothing great, and the only sure entry has been attacked on lead.

Have a plan?

Only realistic chance seems to be to find LHO with Ax   (or JT stiff). That will give you 5  tricks to go with two spades and 2 aces. On any other lie of  you will only get 4 tricks from this suit, you’d need to guess to play your LHO for some king, and unless spades are 5-1, you’d surely have setup 5 tricks for defence – 2 spades, 2 diamonds and the king in the suit you play.

So you win your  A (ducking has its own problems, the only entry gets knocked out at tricks 2) and play a diamond to King when LHO plays small. RHO grabs his ace to shoot back a 2nd spade.

What now. 

You can be pretty sure that LHO has 4 spades, RHO 2. Two options suggest themselves – one is that RHO has both kings (  &  ) in which case if you manage to put him in with the diamond, he’ll have to give you access to dummy. Other option is that LHO holds both kings. If kings are divided, you might as well move onto next hand.

Well, what do you play for. If RHO has both kings, that would give him  A,  K,  K plus something out of three unaccounted jacks, and 8 cards in hearts and clubs atleast. Quite close to an action I thought. Either an overcall, or a double of 2 (other 2 suits) . On the other hand if LHO has QJTx  ,  K, K and a couple of jacks, he doesn’t really have an action.

So, seemed more sensible to play LHO for the kings. Catch is – given what little information you have, it seems more likely that LHO wd have two diamonds rather than three (empty spaces and what not). So if he is to be put in, you need to play him for Jx, and to not have unblocked. Does that change anything?

Here’s the full hand:

 
1
None
South
N
North
K9
Q4
KQ9763
Q72
 
W
West
QJ108
K102
J2
K1084
Q
E
East
53
J9765
A108
J95
 
S
South
A7642
A83
54
A63
 

 Great show if you found a small  from dummy at trick 4

3 thoughts on “Is there a chance

  • Profile gravatar of Shamaa Thakral
    September 3, 2017 at 7:12 PM
    Permalink

    Although I don’t understand this level bridge but read it and it does seem like a very well written, well crafted piece on bridge….. reflects your expertise in the game … gud luck …. proud of u …for bringing so many brilliant people together on one platform to put their views forward…. may this site gain momentum and be a huge success in the future and helps in making bridge more popular than ever ….

  • Profile gravatar of Rajeshwar Tewari
    September 4, 2017 at 12:27 PM
    Permalink

    It is not very clear whether you should play for a misdefense or look at your genuine chances – I guess depends on the quality of opponents. There is no reason for east to win the first diamond holding 3 cards like ATx or AJx – so it should suggest more like a doubleton. In which case, playing west for 3 diamonds and both kings is a more plausible option. Same end play works by cashing diamond and exiting a diamond to west…

    • Profile gravatar of Sandeep Thakral
      September 4, 2017 at 2:25 PM
      Permalink

      You are absolutely right, there’s no reason for East to win the first diamond, and if he ducks there’s no way I’m going to make the contract. Playing LHO for two diamonds rather than three was a table call, and decided to back myself on that. It is dependent on misdefense – all I can say is it was a play that worked.

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