Source: The Evening Independent – Mar 18, 1970
Dealer North None Vul
|A K Q J
K Q 9 4
10 7 2
|9 4 2
A J 10 5 3 2
|8 6 5
J 10 6 2
Q 8 5 3
|10 7 3
Q 9 7
A 8 5
J 9 6 4
South, the declarer of the day, found a way to end-play both of his opponents. The double throw-in enabled him to score an extra trick at his contract of three notrump for a top duplicate result.
THE BIDDING: North looked forward in the bidding in order to plan how to handle the various responses partner might make. He chose the diamond opening because his hand was clearly strong enough to bid the higher rank suit secondarily over any response by South.
South responded one notrump over which West, whose side was vulnerable, inserted an over- call of two hearts. North’s bid of two spades indicated values in excess of a minimum opening bid while at the same time marking his higher ranking spades as a four card suit.
South had the choice of passing with minimum values for his one no trump response, of raising spades with four-card support and extra values; or, of rebidding notrump with extra values and a stopper in hearts. South therefore bid two notrump and North raised to three notrump.
THE PLAY: West led the jack of hearts which was taken with North’s king. Since the contract appeared to hinge upon a 3 and 3 split in diamonds, a low diamond was played from the board to South’s ace. East played the diamond 10 to prevent declarer from trying a deep finesse and South’s ace won the trick.
But, East’s revealing play had given declarer a valuable clue as to the diamond distribution. Another diamond was played to dummy’s king and when both opponents followed with small diamond cards, South was convinced that East had started with four diamonds headed by the Jack and 10.
The four top spades were run, East and South each discarding a small club. West made the startling discard of the club ace. This play was dead give-away to South as it made it clear that West was desperately trying to avoid being end played. Had declarer then cashed his diamond queen, West would have discarded the king of clubs.
This would have enabled East to gain the lead with the club queen, or a diamond to lead a heart through South’s queen and defeat the contract. Declarer had a perfect count on West’s distribution, though, because it was certain he must have a six-card heart suit for his vulnerable overcall at the level of two.
Instead of cashing the diamond queen, declarer played a club to force West on lead. All West could do was to win with the club king, cash his heart ace and return a small heart to South’s queen. Another club play put East an lead with the queen. East then had to play from his J 6 of diamonds to dummy’s Q 9 to give declarer his ninth and tenth tricks.