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AUG_EB_p34-35 Landy 12/7/07 4:53 pm Page 34




had ♠8-7-3. Declarer won ♠A. I won a usually the best suit to lead – see the table

heart trick and had to decide what to play at the bottom left in this page.

Sandra Landy back. In the end I played a spade and was

amazed to discover partner had started What should you play

with ♠K-Q-J-10-9. She explained she had on partner’s lead?

MOST players find bidding far more led fourth highest – wasn’t that correct?

exciting than card play and failure to reach My answer was no. Our agreement is 1. Partner leads the jack of clubs,

the best contract can lead to lengthy that we lead the top card of a sequence. dummy has two small clubs. You

discussions. But try as I may I cannot get From K-Q-J-10-9 any card will do to drive have ♣K-7-4, what card should you

the same enthusiasm for that other area out the ace of spades. But the king of play?

where the two partners must communicate spades gives information to partner about 2. Partner leads the six of spades,

– defensive card play. the spade holding too; leading the king of dummy has two small spades. You

The only way one defender can pass spades shows a holding that includes the have ♠K-10-8; what card should you

information to their partner is by the cards queen of spades and that makes it likely play?

played. Partners can have agreements that spade tricks can be cashed by the 3. Partner leads the queen of diamonds,

about what it means to play a particular defence, so partner can judge where the dummy has three small diamonds.

card in a particular situation. Of course if defensive tricks are coming from. You have ♦A-6, what card should

they have those agreements, they must you play?

take notice of the cards their partner plays. Honour leads in no-trumps

To check your answers look at the table on

The opening lead The aim of the opening lead to 3NT is to the left to check possible holdings for

win five tricks before declarer can cash partner. It should guide you to selecting

Just last week, I played with a new player. nine. Sometimes we have to give up a trick the best card – don’t read on till you have

She had, correctly, overcalled the oppo- to establish our winners. For that reason decided!

nent’s 1♥ opening bid with 1♠, but the we normally lead our strongest suit. On 1, play the king of clubs. Your side

opponents still reached 4♥. The opening Where the honours held in the suit you are can take the first five club tricks if partner

lead was the ♠10. I held ♠4-2 and dummy leading form a good sequence, that is has ♣A-J-10-9-6 and will always lose two

tricks if partner only has ♣J-10-9-6-5.

On 2, play the king of spades; playing

♠KQ962 Lead ♠6. When suits have two honours, lead a low card. Most the ten of spades will allow declarer to win

♠AQ962 people agree to lead the fourth one down counting from the his jack of spades when partner has

♠KJ962 top. Maybe partner has a useful honour card. Partner will nor- ♠A-Q-9-6-2.

mally return the suit you lead if they win a trick.

On 3, play the ace of diamonds and

return the six of diamonds. Set up

♥AKQ2 Lead ♥A. Play cards from the top down. The ♥2 will become

partner’s suit and hope partner can get on

a winner if neither opponent has four hearts. Do not lead a

lead to cash the diamond winners.

fourth highest ♥2 or declarer may win a trick with ♥J.

When honours are in sequence, lead the top one The lead of a king

♦ Q J 10 9 8 Lead the ♦Q against no-trumps

♦ K J 10 9 8 Lead the ♦J

♦ K Q 10 9 2 Lead the ♦K Suppose you are on lead to 3NT with

♦AQJ92 Lead the ♦Q ♦A-K-J-10-5. Clearly this is the best suit

♦QJ984 Lead the ♦Q to lead, as maybe your side can take the

first five tricks. A fourth highest diamond

♣ A J 10 9 6 Lead ♣J, the top card of an internal sequence. Perhaps declarer

could give an unnecessary trick to the

has ♣K-Q which must make one trick. But if partner gets in and

queen of diamonds, so you try the king of

returns clubs, you may have four winners to cash. Or maybe

partner has ♣K and you can cash five club tricks straightaway. diamonds to have a look. (See table at the

top of the next page.)

34 English Bridge August 2007


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