Monday, September 12, 2011

Jennbridge: First Trick Decision

I had an interesting decision to make at trick one last Friday when I found myself in six spades after some vigorous preempting in clubs by the opponents. A club was led and neither I nor my partner had any!
♠ K 10 4
A K 9 5
A K Q 10 6 2
♣ —
♠ A J 9 5 2
8 6 4 3
J 9 7 5
♣ —
6 ♠ by South

What a great looking dummy!  The contract should be an easy make, but it is matchpoints so what is my best play for all 13 tricks?

It is important to think about the various possible divisions of spades.  If they divided 3-2, the hand would be easy.  If RHO had all 5 spades I would have some problems.  I decided that it was quite possible that spades were 4-1 with 4 spades on my right.  If that were the actual holding, I still needed to play carefully.

If I ruffed in dummy I couldn't pick up 4 to the queen on my right.  I therefore made what seemed like an unusual play--discarding a heart from dummy and ruffing in my hand!

When I led a spade toward the king, LHO did indeed turn up with one spade--the Queen!  I finished drawing trumps and scored up 1010 for a tie for top.

See you at the table!

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