Page 0008

8 English Bridge August 2019 www.ebu.co.uk

South plays 3NT. West leads the ´4

´ Q 6

™ J 8 3

t A K 10 6

® K 7 6 2

´ K 10 8 4 2 ´ J 9 7

™ A 9 6 4 ™ K 10 5 2

t 9 4 t 7 5

® J 3 ® Q 10 8 4

´ A 5 3

™ Q 7

t Q J 8 3 2

® A 9 5

N

W E

S

T

his article focuses on the play to the first

trick, in the suit led by the opponents. A

surprising number of errors are made here -

perhaps these musings will eradicate some of them.

You are at the wheel in 3NT. West fishes out a low

spade lead and this is what you can see:

First Trick Crisis

Basic Cardplay

click

link

A necessary Count and Plan at the beginning of

the hand reveals that you have one spade, five

diamonds and two clubs on top. You can forget

about setting up a heart trick or a long club - by the

time you had done that East-West would have far

too many winners in the bank.

You have to hope to make two spade tricks, and

that can only happen if West has underled the ´K.

Not so unlikely, so you call for dummy's queen. If it

wins you chalk up your game. If East produces the

king you may as well shrug your shoulders and give

up for it is unlikely (not impossible, mind) that the

contract has much chance. Here's the full deal:

South plays in

3NT. West leads

the ´4.

´ Q 6

™ J 8 3

t A K 10 6

® K 7 6 2

´ A 5 3

™ Q 7

t Q J 8 3 2

® A 9 5

N

W E

S

South plays in

3NT. West leads

the ´4.

´ Q 6

™ J 8 3

t A K 10 6

® K 7 6 2

´ A 10 3

™ Q 7

t Q J 8 3 2

® A 9 5

N

W E

S

Flushed with success, you then declare 3NT a few

hands later with this collection:

A clear case of déjà vu, no? Well, no, in point of

fact. What card do you play from dummy? This

hand, with its eight top tricks, may look identical to

the previous one but it is not. Here, it is a 50-50 shot

to play the queen from the dummy, but it is a 100%

shot to play low!

If you work it out you should be able to see that

you are guaranteed two spade tricks by playing low

from dummy, regardless of the location of the ´J

and the ´K. If East produces the jack you have two

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Index

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