Dealer South. E/W Vul

A 4
J 8 6 4 2
9 3
K 6 5 3
Q J 8 3
10 5
J 7 4
Q J 10 2
9 6
K Q 9
Q 10 8 2
A 9 8 7
K 10 7 5 2
A 7 3
A K 6 5
West North East South
Pass 1NT Pass 2
Pass 2 Pass Pass

Opening lead: Q

Edwin Kantar
Edwin Kantar

Bidding commentary: As South, partner’s bidding shows two spades, not three. Partner usually supports directly with three trumps. To bid on in this sequence requires 16+ HCP.
But if you are strong enough to bid again with this distribution, try 3to show a singleton club as well three hearts (your 2rebid has denied four hearts) catering to a possible five hearts in partner’s hand.

As North, holding two spades, a 2rebid after partner bids 2shows six hearts, exceptionally, five headed by three of the top four honor cards. Opener can pass 2with a singleton heart.

Defensive commentary: As East, if declarer plays low at trick one, signal encouragement with the 9, your highest equal spot card. Signaling with the 8 denies the 9!

Play commentary: With the A marked on your right, duck the first club, ruff the club honor return and try to make as many low trumps as you can.

Play the A and K, ruff a diamond low, ruff a club, ruff a diamond with the A and lead dummy’s last club. If West still has a club, you can ruff, your seventh trick.

The K and A bring your trick total to nine. Don’t worry about ruffing a diamond with the A, it’s a loser in any case and it provides you with a dummy entry to ruff a club.

Defensive commentary: Defenders often give count when declarer initiates a suit (diamonds). However, when the count in the suit is known (diamonds is declarer’s second-bid suit), giving count is counter- productive.

As West, if declarer plays a fourth diamond, intending to ruff with dummy’s A, , discard your last club. Now declarer cannot enjoy a third club ruff and is held to eight tricks.