Wednesday, March 25, 2015

A double fit

Playing in a club game, I pick up a good 5-5 hand (hands rotated to make me South):

Dealer: S
Vul: NS
♠ xxx
♥ xxx
♦ AQ9
♣ Qxxx

♠ AK10xx
♥ AK
♦ 10xxxx
♣ 6

 1S           2S
2NT*        3D*

lead of Q♥
HTML Bridge Hand Layout Creator

Partner responds 2S to my opening 1S, showing 6-10 points and 3-4 spades.  My 2NT asks him which suit he'd accept a game try in, and learn that he'd be happy to accept a game try in diamonds.  I bid the spade game, and get the lead of the Queen of hearts.

What are your initial thoughts?

I felt that we were in a good spot, but it does not look like a spot that many people in this club game are going to be in.  I had to make the contract.

I won the heart lead and laid down the Ace of spades. East showed out.  Now what?

Obviously, I need to use the diamond entries to take spade finesses, but also retain trump control.  How though?  What's better? A diamond to the Queen, to the 9 or running the 10?

Running the 10 seems best because the two diamond honors are likely to be split.  Leading to the 9 seems to have the advantage of creating two entries.  But if I lose to a singleton honor with East, he'll find a club switch and get a diamond ruff.  If diamonds are 3-2, I may not have the luxury of 2 entries anyway. What's the right way to play this combination?

I played a diamond to the Queen, which lost to the King.  Two rounds of clubs.  Now, a second diamond to the 9, which lost to the Jack.  With only entry to dummy, I had to also lose a spade.

East turned out to have KJ tight.  Should I have gotten this right?


  1. I would probably lead low to the 9 at trick two. Sometimes bad stuff just happens.

  2. I've been thinking about it more. I agree low diamond to Queen at trick two is best.

    1. Yes, low to the Q and then low to the 9 also caters to a singleton Jack with East.

      Do you agree with the game try? This 5-5 hand would be worth a game try:


      but with 7 points outside my 5-5 on the actual hand, perhaps I should have passed.

    2. Absolutely agree with game try. I would just bid 4S straight out, rather than pass.