Deals in Retrospect

“It’s been tough since I decided to start driving without a rearview mirror, but I haven’t looked back.” — graffiti

Dlr: North ♠ 10 2
Vul: N-S A K J
J 6 3
♣ A 10 5 4 3
♠ 8 5 ♠ Q J 9 7 6 3
10 8 7 6 9
K 10 8 2 Q 9
♣ Q J 8 ♣ K 9 6 2
♠ A K 4
Q 5 4 3 2
A 7 5 4
♣ 7
North East South West
1♣ 2♠ 3 Pass
4 All Pass

Opening lead — ♠8

It’s easier to play a deal in retrospect. We all look back with consternation on deals we misplayed. At today’s four hearts, South took the ♠A-K, ruffed his last spade in dummy and cashed the A-K of trumps. When East showed out, South came to his A, took his queen of trumps and led a second diamond: eight, jack, queen.

South ruffed East’s spade return, but West overruffed and took the K-10 of diamonds for down one.

With benefit of retrospect, how would you play four hearts?

Bad Split

South would have been safe if trumps had split 3-2, but East’s bid made a bad split likely. South can lead a club to the ace at Trick Three, ruff a club, take the A-K of trumps and ruff a club.

South can then ruff a spade with the jack of trumps and take his ace of diamonds. He has won the first nine tricks and still has the queen of trumps.

Daily Question

You hold: ♠10 2   A K J J 6 3   ♣A 10 5 4 3.
You open one club, the next player overcalls one spade, your partner makes a negative double and the player at your right passes. What do you say?

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