Source: The Day – 29 Nov 1991

“Why do these things happen to me?” Unlucky Louie pleaded.

“What now?” I sighed, knowing I would hear about it whether or not I asked.

Dealer South N/S Vul

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

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

“We got to a good six notrump,” Louie began, displaying today”s deal, “and West”s spade lead was covered by the queen, king, and ace. Of course, I decided to take the safety play by playing low from both hands on the first diamond.”

“Very good,” I nodded. “You guard against West”s holding all four diamonds.”

Plays the Queen

“”Now what do you do,” Louie asked, “when you lead a diamond, and West plays the QUEEN?”

I laughed.

“Admit it,” Louie said. “You”d take the ace, just as I did, expecting an overtrick. And you”d go down, just as I did.”

“West applied a false carding principle.” I said. “Go ahead and play a card you”re known to hold, or will soon be known to hold.”

“Oh no.” Louie growled. “West was a beginner. He said he played the queen to force out the ace.”

“Well,” I said, “he succeeded.”

And Louie stalked away.