Establishing Long Suits
IN the first deal your four of clubs lead is (ii) If East started with four or more West comes in with the ace of clubs, he
won by East’s king, declarer following with cards in the suit, then he returns his will have no spade left to return. Declarer
the six. East returns a club and South original fourth highest, unless there has two spade tricks whatever you do. You
inserts the ten. How should you defend if is a strong possibility that the remain- can force him to win trick one by playing
the club East returned was: (i) the nine? ing two cards might block the suit. a low spade. You must now hope that
(ii) the five? The return of the five is clearly from declarer tackles clubs before diamonds.
an original four-card holding, indeed West takes his ace of clubs and returns his
you can work out that partner started last spade. As the clubs are played you
Game All. Dealer South. with exactly ® K 9 7 5. You must take discard three diamonds and a heart.
´ A74 your jack and cash the ace. A good
™ KQ2 partner will drop the nine under HHHHH
t K J 10 9 8 4 your ace to avoid blocking the suit.
® 3 In the final deal West leads the queen of
´ 962 HHHHH hearts against 3NT. North plays a low
™ 753 N
heart. You are East. Plan the defence.
t 62 W In the next deal West leads the nine of
® AJ842 spades against 3NT and dummy plays low.
Can you defeat this contract? N/S Game. Dealer South.
North South ™ A95
1NT Love All. Dealer North. t K95
3NT Pass ´ 10 6 2 ® J 10 9 4
™ KJ ´ 8432
This is all about knowing which card you t KQ4 N ™ K2
would expect East to return from any ® Q J 10 7 6 E
t 10 6 2
particular club holding. If East wins West’s ´ KQ754 ® 8632
opening lead and he chooses to return N ™ Q43
West’s suit: E t A732
(i) If East started with three cards in the ® 2 North South
suit, then he returns the higher of his 1NT
remaining two cards. The return of 3NT Pass
the nine is clearly a next highest from West North East South
three. You can win the jack but don’t 1® 1´ 3NT From ™Q-J-8-6-3 West would have led a
delude yourself that if you play the All Pass fourth highest ™6, so West has led from a
ace the queen will fall. Declarer still holding headed by ™Q-J-10 or ™Q-J-9.
has the queen guarded. You should Declarer has: If you allow partner’s queen to hold the
win the jack and switch to a heart. trick, then you will take trick two with
You need East to have an entry to ´ A J 8 ™ A 7 5 t J 10 6 5 ® K 4 3 your king, and will have no heart left to
lead another club through declarer. return. We say that the suit is blocked.
The heart switch is obvious because if If you play the queen, then declarer will You must overtake the queen with your
partner has the ace of diamonds he allow it to win the trick. You can continue king and return your second heart, called
will gain the lead with it later. spades but declarer will win and when unblocking. r
40 English Bridge August 2011 www.ebu.co.uk