Source: ACBL Bridge Another letter arrived — via registered mail — from the Society of Finessers, grumbling that finesses never win in my columns. “Sir: We must again protest your contempt for the finesse, an honorable technique that works fully half the time — except in your deals.” Dealer West. Both Vul
J 9 8 7 A 3 Q 2 A Q 9 4 3
K 4 3 K Q J 5 K J 7 3 6 5 5 10 9 8 4 10 9 8 5 K 8 7 2
A Q 10 6 2 7 6 2 A 6 4 J 10
West North East South
1 Pass Pass 1
Pass 3 Pass 4
Pass Pass Pass
Opening Lead: K
Steve Weinstein & Frank Stewart
Steve Weinstein & Frank Stewart
In today’s deal, West led the king of hearts against four spades, and South played low from dummy: He didn’t want East to win a heart trick later and lead a diamond. West then lead a club. DOWN ONE South finessed, and East took the king and shifted to a diamond. West’s king won, and declarer lost to the king of trumps later. Down one. “Every finesse loses, as usual,” the Society complains. Honest, gentlemen, I’m not antifinesse, but South needed no finesses. He should take the ace of clubs at Trick Two and finesse in trumps. If West wins and leads another club, East can win and lead a diamond, but South takes the ace, draws trumps and discards his losing diamonds on dummy’s clubs. You hold: Spade Suit A Q 10 6 2 Heart Suit 7 6 2 Diamond Suit A 6 4 club suit J 10. Your partner opens one heart, you respond one spade and he bids two clubs. The opponents pass. What do you say?

ANSWER: You have the values to invite game. Jump to three hearts, invitational. A preference bid of two hearts would suggest a hand such as: Spade Suit A 10 6 4 2 Heart Suit J 5 Diamond Suit 7 6 5 4 club suit Q 2. Since all your honors look useful, to commit to game would not be far from wrong, but your weak hearts suggest caution. Don’t forget to follow us @