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Bridge: Jan. 6, 2023

“We have a lunchtime game at work on Thursdays,” a club player told me, “and yesterday who should sit in but the Big Boss. I was his partner and was declarer at four spades.”

My friend displayed the deal.

“West led the king of diamonds and shifted to a trump. I won in dummy and led a heart, ducking East’s jack. I won his trump return and led another heart, but West won and led a third trump. I lost a third heart for down one.

“I apologized to my boss, and all he said was, `To err is human; to forgive is not company policy.’ What did he mean?”


I hope my friend didn’t get a pink slip in his pay envelope. After South wins Trick Two, he can draw trumps and take the K-Q-J of clubs. He then leads dummy’s queen of diamonds and throws a heart.

West wins and must concede South’s 10th trick. If West takes the ace of hearts, South’s king wins; if instead West leads the jack of diamonds, South ruffs and reaches dummy with the ace of clubs for the good ten of diamonds.


You hold: S 7 3 2 H A Q 6 D A K J 8 C 8 5 4. You open one diamond, your partner responds one spade, you bid 1NT and he tries two hearts. What do you say?

ANSWER: With four cards in each major, partner would respond one heart, showing the suits “up the line.” He will often have five spades and four hearts, maybe five of each major. Bid two spades. Your hearts are stronger, but you must return to what is likely your longer combined holding.

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West dealer

N-S vulnerable


S Q 10 9

H 7 2

D Q 10 9 4

C A J 3 2


S 7 3 2

H A Q 6

D A K J 8

C 8 5 4


S 6 4

H J 10 9 8 3

D 6 5 3 2

C 10 7


S A K J 8 5

H K 5 4

D 7

C K Q 9 6

West North East South
1 D Pass Pass Dbl
Pass 1 NT Pass 3 S
Pass 4 S All Pass
Opening lead — D K

©2022 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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