The Courier – Sep 21, 1983 by Omar Sharif y Charles Goren
If partner doesn’t do the expected, there must be a reason. Faith in partner is a cornerstone of good defense. Consider this hand from the Epson Invitation Team Tournament in Japan, won by Canada.
East’s three spade opening is typical of tournament bridge. South can do little other than bid four hearts.
Sitting East West were Canadians Eric Kokish and Sammy Kehela.
Kehela led the king of clubs, and it was no mystery to Kokish, who was looking at four spades in the dummy, why his partner had not led a spade — he could not have any.
Kokish rose with the ace of clubs and returned the three of spades. That was clearly a suit preference signal, so Kehela ruffed the spade and returned a low club.
A nasty part ner would now play the nine and make you sweat it out until declarer followed with a low club. Thoughtful partners do what Kokish did—they play the ten of clubs to save partner a few moment’s anxiety.
Another spade ruff and declarer was down one before he had really started to play. Note the implicit faith that the Canadians displayed in each other. East did not for a moment think that his partner was leading a club from an honor sequence «to take a look at dummy, partner.»
And West did not hesitate to return a club away from his honors when partner requested that suit by leading the three of spades at trick two.