~Play This Hand

H AK43
C K9642

S AT87642
H —
D J73
C A53

N-S reach a 7S contract in South (6S is the best bid). How will you play and make the contract after the lead of the J of hearts by West? Assume a trump split no worse than 3-1.

You can take 12 tricks off the top by drawing trumps and playing As and Ks. There is no reasonable play for 13 tricks without establishing the club suit for one discard. You can discard two losers in the South hand on the A & K of hearts. What two cards do you discard?

You should discard a low diamond and a low club; you may need the other low club to get back to the dummy to set up the clubs.

There is a 40% chance that the four missing spades are split 2-2 and a 50% chance that they will split 3-1. There is a 68% chance that clubs will split 3-2 and a 28% chance that the split will be 4-1.

After winning the top two hearts, play the K & Q of trumps. If the split is 2-2, you can easily handle a 3-2 club split. You would return to the South hand by leading a low club to the ace, lead the last club in the South hand to the king, and trump a club. You can then return to the North hand with a diamond and discard your last loser on a club.

What if trumps split 3-1 (likely)? You can ruff a heart to get to the South hand and pull the last trump with the ace. Then the contract rests on a 3-2 club split.

Alternately, you could take the chance that if there is a 4-1 club split; if so, the missing J of trumps must lie in the hand with the long clubs so that a second ruff of a club will be successful and would make the 5th club good for the discard of the diamond ten. The best mathematical chance is to find a 3-2 club split and to play as described above.




One Response to “~Play This Hand”

  1. neil crawford Says:

    How do u get rid of losing diamond?

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