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Neither vulnerable, East deals

NORTH

♠K 10 8 6

♥K J 6 4

♦K 8 2

♣6 4

WEST EAST

♠9 7 ♠A 4

♥9 7 ♥Q 10 8 5

♦J 10 6 3 ♦A 9 7

♣J 10 9 7 2 ♣Q 8 5 3

SOUTH

♠Q J 5 3 2

♥A 3 2

♦Q 5 4

♣A K

The bidding:

EAST SOUTH WEST NORTH

1♣ 1NT Pass 2♣

Pass 2♠ Pass 4♠

All pass

Opening lead: Jack of

South won the opening club lead with his ace and cashed the king of clubs before starting trumps, in case East started with the singleton ace of spades. The queen of spades then lost to East’s ace. Had East started with just that one spade, he would have been end-played right now. East, however, was able to exit with his remaining spade to dummy’s 10.

East was known to hold all the outstanding honor cards, save for perhaps the jack of diamonds, for his opening bid. A low heart was passed to West’s seven, and West continued with the nine of hearts to declarer’s ace. A low spade to the king and a low diamond to the queen was followed by the jack of spades, leaving this position:

NORTH

♠Void

♥K J

♦K 8

♣Void

WEST EAST

♠Void ♠Void

♥Void ♥Q 10

♦J 10 6 ♦A 9

♣10 ♣Void

SOUTH

♠5

♥3

♦5 4

♣Void

South cashed his last trump, shedding the eight of diamonds from dummy, as East discarded the nine of diamonds. Had East bared the queen of hearts or the ace of diamonds? South asked West what the partnership opened with 4-4 in the minors and was told “one diamond”. That settled it. South played a diamond to East’s ace and enjoyed the last two tricks. (02/20/19)

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