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A 5-Card Fit

From Bert Beentjes

Both Vul
J 9 7
A 10 8
10 6 3
K J 9 6
A 10 6 5 4
K 5
K J 7
7 5 2
 
K 3 2
Q J 6 4 3
4 3
Q 8 3
Q 8
9 7 2
A Q 9 8 5
A 10 4
In this example, theoretical par is 1 , making, by South.
If East/West play 1 , the defense starts with the A, followed by a club to the ten, finessing East's queen, then the A, A, K and a fourth club at this position:
J 9 7
10 8
10 6
J
A 10 6 5 4
K
K J
 
K 3 2
Q J 6 4
4
Q 8
9 7
Q 9 8 5
North/South have taken three clubs and two red aces. They have a natural trump trick, and this fourth club promotes a second trump trick.
If South plays 1 , then, the defense must play two rounds of trumps before letting declarer in, or else declarer can again set up a seventh trick. [If they play only one round, South still has the trump queen, and therefore can still execute the trump promotion above.]
Say they start with the A-K, then East plays a diamond. South finesses the queen, and West wins the K leading to this position:
J
A 10 8
10 6
K J 9 6
10 6 5
K 5
J 7
7 5 2
 
3
Q J 6 4 3
3
Q 8 3
9 7 2
A 9 8 5
A 10 4
West gives the declarer an extra diamond trick if he continues the suit. If West exits a black suit, declarer takes his remaining trump and three clubs, then plays a low heart from hand at this position.
A 10 8
10 6
J
10 6
K 5
J 7
 
Q J 6 4 3
3
9 7 2
A 9 8
Declarer ducks if West plays the K, and West can safely exit his low heart or a trump.
Dummy wins the A and leads the last club, and we get to our favorite position:
10
10 6
J
10 6
J 7
 
Q J 6
3
9
A 9 8
West can either ruff this and be forced to lead a diamond, or let it win and give declarer his seventh trick.
So, when in with the K, West has to lead a heart. If he leads a low heart, declarer wins the ace and immediately exits a heart, which West must win with the king.
Basically, the trick to this hand is that West can be stripped without allowing East in a second time to lead diamonds again.
<< An Awful Suit
Thomas Andrews (bridge@thomasoandrews.com), © 1999-2014.
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