Source: IBPA Column Service OCT 2020

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

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

West led the Q.

East won with the ace and returned the three of spades, which in declarer’s mind marked the suit as originally 5=2. East would have carded differently with three or four spades. Declarer took trick two with the king of spades.

Declarer counted only six top tricks. One thought was to cash the ace and king of diamonds, hoping for a singleton or doubleton queen. As the chance of that happening was a little less than one in three, declarer looked for a better option. If the spades were 5=2 as supposed, the chance that East had the queen of diamonds was, on a vacant places argument, an eleven to eight favourite (nearly a 60% chance).

So, declarer continued by cashing the ace and king of hearts and led his nine of diamonds to dummy’s ten. East took his queen of diamonds and shifted to a low club. Declarer rose with the ace of clubs then led the four of diamonds to dummy’s seven to cash the queen of hearts for his sixth trick.

The ace, king and jack of diamonds made nine. A point of interest is that it would have been wrong to cash a high diamond before leading the nine of diamonds to dummy’s ten. That would have tangled the entries.

The complete deal:

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

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