Thinking Bridge: Dallas NABC 1st Day

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When partner leads an honor card and you can see the next lower honor, partner is leading from shortness.

Eddie Kantar
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Source: Dallas NABC Bulletins

Dealer North, Vul: Both

J 10 6 2
A Q 9
K J 10 3
A K
 
  A
K 10 8 7 4
A 8 2
9 8 7 5 4
West North East South
Pass 1 1 1 (1)
Pass 4 All Pass  
       

 

 

 

1) 5+ spades

Opening lead: J. Declarer plays the queen from dummy and you win the king. Now what?

Eddie Kantar & Alfred Sheinwold
Solution: Return a heart right into the A-9! You can infer from the lead of the jack, looking at the 10, that partner has shortness. With J-x-x, partner would lead low. When in with the A, give partner a heart ruff. The A is the setting trick. If you don’t give partner a heart ruff, you could easily lose your second heart winner on one of dummy’s diamonds.
If partner has a singleton heart (unlikely) you should return the 10, suit preference for diamonds. Might as well give partner two ruffs! Note: As West, when looking for a ruff, play high-low in spades with three, the trump signal that you have another spade in case partner is wondering if you have another trump.
 
When partner leads an honor card and you can see the next lower honor, partner is leading from shortness. Defend accordingly.
 
The full deal:
 
  J 10 6 2
A Q 9
K J 10 3
A K
 
8 7 3
J 6
9 7 4
Q 6 3 2
  A
K 10 8 7 4
A 8 2
9 8 7 5 4
  K Q 9 5 4
5 3 2
Q 6 5
J 10
 

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