Good Reasoning

Goren Bridge


Bob Jones

Dlr: West ♠ Q
Vul: None 5 4
K Q 10 9 3
♣ Q 10 4 3 2
♠ A 4 ♠ K 10 9 7 6 5 2
9 8 6 J
8 7 5 2 J 6 4
♣ A 7 6 5 ♣ K J
♠ J 8 3
A K Q 10 7 3 2
A
♣ 9 8
West North East South
Pass Pass 3♠ 4
All Pass

Opening lead:♠A

West’s ♠A lead found a singleton spade in dummy. This situation creates a suit-preference opportunity for good players, as neither attitude nor count is usually relevant. East followed suit with the ♠2 at trick one, so West shifted to the ♣A followed by another club to East’s king.

East was Norwegian expert Geo Tislevoll, who has lived in New Zealand for many years. Tislevoll had much to think about in deciding how to continue the defense. South probably held the A for his bid. West might have a natural trump winner, but that would take care of itself without any help from East. He didn’t think his partner started with three spades as he might have competed to four spades if he did.

Tislevoll decided that his best chance was to shift back to spades, but which spade? Any spade would do if West had the jack, or if West had started with a singleton. But what if South held the jack? The lead of the ♠K would merely set the jack up as a winner. Tislevoll shifted to the ♠10. Declarer captured this with his jack, but could not make his contract. South would still have a spade loser if he drew trumps, so he cashed one high heart and tried to ruff a spade in dummy. West ruffed in with the 8 for the setting trick. Nice shift.

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