Source: IBPA Column Service FEB 2021

Tim Bourke
Tim Bourke

**Source: wikipedia: Tim Bourke “is an Australian bridge player and writer. His joint project with Justin Corfield “the Art of Declarer Play” won the International Bridge Press Book of the Year award in 2014.

IMPs Dealer South. Both Vul

Q 6 2
J 8 3
9 7 5 2
J 10 3
A K J 10 9 7 4
A 10
A
A K 5
West North East South
2
Pass 2 Pass 2
Pass 31 Pass 6
Pass Pass Pass

1- Promises values.

The question of what to do after North’s three-spade call depends largely on the player occupying the South seat. The conservative player would raise to game, being content to take a sure-fire plus score. On this occasion, South was a dasher and bid the slam in the hope that partner would have a useful card or two.

West led the Q and North tabled what was a moderately favourable dummy. After winning the first trick with his bare ace of diamonds, declarer realized that a twelfth trick would be there on a simple finesse in clubs if East had started with the queen.

Declarer cashed the ace of trumps at trick two and, noting the 2-1 break, saw that there was an additional chance – trying to develop a second heart trick before touching clubs. So, declarer played his jack of trumps to dummy’s queen, saving the four of trumps to cross to dummy’s six of spades later in the play.

Declarer then led a heart from dummy, planning to insert the ten if East followed low. As it happened, East held both missing heart honors, a 24% chance, and he played the queen of hearts. Declarer won with the ace and returned the ten of hearts.

After winning with the king of hearts, East led the king of diamonds. Declarer ruffed high, crossed to dummy with the four of trumps to dummy’s six then threw his low club on the established jack of hearts and claimed the rest of the tricks.

If West had taken the ten of hearts with the king or queen and the hearts had not provided an extra trick, nothing would have been lost. Declarer would have cashed the heart ace – just in case East had begun with a doubleton high honor. Then, after taking the ace of clubs, declarer would have crossed to dummy with the six of trumps to take the club finesse for the contract.

The complete deal:

Q 6 2
J 8 3
9 7 5 2
J 10 3
8
7 6 4 2
Q J 10 8
Q 9 8 2
5 3
K Q 9 5
K 6 4 3
7 6 4
A K J 10 9 7 4
A 10
A
A K 5

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