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A Bad 3-3 Fit

A 8 4
A 10 4 2
J 10
A Q 8 5
K Q J 10
8 6 5
K 6 4
9 4 2
 
9 7 6
K Q J 9 3
9 3
J 10 3
5 3 2
7
A Q 8 6 5 2
K 7 6
This is one of the most perverse examples. 5 and 5 fail due to two spade losers and a diamond loser. 3 NT goes down after two heart leads, which must be ducked, then a shift to spades.
But 4 makes when declared by South, precisely because West's spades are too good.
West leads a high spade, and declarer wins in dummy, plays the A and ruffs a heart, then crosses with the A and ruffs another heart, then plays the K-Q, ending in dummy, and exits a trump, which West must win, leading to this position:
8
10
J 10
8
Q J
K 6 4
 
9
K 9
9 3
A Q 8 7 5
What is West to do? If he exits a low diamond, declarer wins in dummy, and exits in a high trump, forcing West to lead again from diamonds.
If West exits a high diamond, declarer wins in hand, crosses in diamonds, exits with a spade, and West must lead a diamond to declarer's queen.
If West takes two rounds of trumps, then exits in diamonds, declarer gets two diamond tricks and the long club.
And if West takes one round of trumps, then exits in diamonds, we reach our common end position, the one that keeps showing up in this collection:
10
10
8
Q
K 6
 
K 9
9
A Q 8
On the play of the club, West can either ruff and be endplayed, or pitch a diamond. In any event, West only gets one more trick.
<< A So-So 3-3 Fit
Thomas Andrews (bridge@thomasoandrews.com), © 1999-2014.
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