Think it Over

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

Against your slam, West leads a low trump, killing your chances of a crossruff. After that start, do you have a plan for getting to 12 tricks?

Solution

Rather than relying on hearts or diamonds to be 3-3, declarer decided to play for trumps 3-2 and the red suits no worse than 4-2. After winning the first trick with the ♠J, declarer played a diamond to his ace and ruffed a diamond. Next, he cashed the K and played a heart to his ace. After ruffing a second diamond in dummy, declarer ruffed a heart and ruffed a diamond with dummy’s last trump, setting up two diamond winners in hand. After ruffing another heart, thereby establishing dummy’s 9, declarer drew a second round of trumps with the 10, throwing a low club from dummy. Then he led a good diamond and threw dummy’s remaining club on it as West ruffed. He took the last two tricks with the ♣A and 9. The full deal:

Dlr: South ♠ A K Q J
Vul: E-W K 9 7 5 2
4
♣ A 7 2
♠ 7 3 2 ♠ 6 4
Q 10 6 4 J 8
K J Q10 7 5
♣ Q 10 5 4 ♣ K J 9 8 6
♠ 10 9 8 5
A 3
A 9 8 6 3 2
♣ 3

 

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