Bridge - The Scotsman 20/06/12

WHEN declarer cashes winners he forces you to discard. Most players see discarding as an unpleasant chore, but it is more productive to see it as a challenge.

South opened 2NT (20-22) and North had a simple raise to 6NT, but he decided to use Gerber. 4C confirmed that partner had three aces, and 5NT asked for kings. When partner showed two of those North forgot that aces and kings alone do not produce 13 tricks, and bid the Grand Slam.

West led the queen of hearts. Dummy was a disappointment, but declarer soldiered on. He won the ace of hearts and cashed four tricks in each minor, discarding two spades from dummy. West could afford a spade on the fourth diamond, and East threw a heart. What should West discard on the fourth club?

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

He has five cards left: Qxx in spades and J10 in hearts. If he throws a spade declarer may drop his queen, and if he has AKJ he will make three spade tricks and his contract. If he throws a heart declarer will make at least three heart tricks – actually four now that partner has discarded one. Which suit should he abandon? Not too difficult really. He must not throw a heart, since he knows that only he can guard hearts. If declarer has the jack of spades there is nothing to be done, so he must hope that partner has that card. Remember: do not discard from holdings which you know are vital - only you can hold this suit.

Related topics: