Hand of the day #73

The Aces On Bridge by Bobby Wolff

In the round robin match between Denmark and Italy in the 1999 World Junior Teams, a textbook hand in suit-preference signaling came along, with the hand on lead making the suit-preference signal, rather than the hand following suit.

Opening Lead: ♠Q

Morten Madsen of Denmark as East thought long and hard before pushing his opponents with his call of two spades, and rightly so. The defense had seven tricks against that contract, but when North doubled a second time just to show cards, South rather illogically decided against trying to take the penalty. With such a balanced hand he might well have trusted his partner, since the delayed spade raise sounded as if it was based on only two trumps.

The opening lead of the spade queen held the trick. Now Kaspar Konow (West) deliberately set up dummy’s spade 10 by leading a suit-preference jack at the second trick, since he could infer that his partner’s delayed support was based on holding the doubleton ace. Hence, he had to prepare the way for a spade ruff. Madsen (East) won his ace perforce and duly led a diamond (the higher of the minor suits) in to ensure he got his ruff. The diamond queen was the setting trick.

Notice that if East plays a club after winning his spade ace, declarer is able to draw trumps at once, and the defense loses their ruff.


Bid with the Aces

This Hand of the Day was originally published on aces.bridgeblogging.com.

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