Source: Herald-Journal – 2 Abr 1982

Alan Sontag
Alan Sontag

Here is another hand from “International Popular Bridge” to show an unlucky expert at his worst, South’s four club cue bid was a distinct overbid. Still he happened to be showing off for the benefit of audience. North was either an underbidder or he had seen South at work before and wanted to get the rubber over with so he just signed off at four hearts.

Neither Vul. Dealer South.

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

Openning Lead Q

As soon as dummy hit the table, South remarked : “Surely you could have made some sort of slam try after I made the club cue bid. We probably have not bid enough.”

The queen of spades held the first trick and the jack was continued South ruffed and to show his partner how a slam might have been missed South led a club to dummy, returned a heart and carefully finessed his 10 spot. West took his queen and led another spade. South had to use a high trump to ruff that one. South played his ace of trumps. East showed out and all of a sudden the potentIal slam had been reduced to a doubtful game.

South gave the hand a final try. He led out three diamonds. If the third diamond had gone through he could have discarded dummy’s last spade and made the contract. But West ruffed that third diamond and led another spade to force South to ruff with his last high trump.

The principle involved here is an old one. South should simply have played the ace and king of hearts and then played minor suit winners to guard against any and all 4-1 trump splits.