Test Your Defence Column by Julian Pottage
Originally published in, and reproduced here with permission of, Bridge Magazine
Partner leads the seven of diamonds. Can you see how you might make four tricks?
Partner leads the two of hearts. Dummy plays the ten and your jack wins. What do you return? What are your plans for later?
Solutions to Test Your Defence
At the table, East played third hand high, putting up the queen of diamonds, which lost to the ace. Declarer drew two rounds of trumps and ran the ten of spades. East won and, working out that cashing the king of diamonds would lead to only three tricks, tried a low diamond. West won and led a club through the king.
‘Thanks for the low diamond, said West.
‘A pleasure,’ East replied.
North snorted, ‘A comedy of errors if you ask me.’
South nodded. ‘I should have ducked the first trick to cut their communications.’
‘You are not the only one who should have ducked. East should have let the seven run.’
With the club suit wrapped up and correctly expecting declarer to try to ruff red cards in dummy, East switched to a trump.
Taking the trump in dummy, declarer played the ace, king and another diamond ruffing. After that came the queen of hearts. East ducked, allowing West to win and play a second round of trumps. With the ace of clubs offside, the contract failed.
‘It was unlucky to find the king of hearts and the ace of clubs wrong,’ South wailed.
‘Did you have to have to ruff the third round of diamonds?’ North enquired. ‘If you throw my heart, West cannot get in to play a second trump. You make three red ruffs.’
‘I should have thought of that’ South replied.
‘Me too,’ East added. ‘I should unblock the ten and queen to prevent the loser-on-loser play. Then my partner can gain the lead.’