The Pittsburgh Press – 30 Abr 1966

Both vulnerable Dealer South

( two spades strong)

Opening lead—K

One test of a really great bridge player is the ability to link ahead in the play. Here is a hand that helped the famous Four Aces team win the Vanderbilt Cup some 30 odd years ago. The game was team of four and both South players reached six spades on identical bidding and the play for the first three tricks was the same.

The king of hearts was opened and taken by South’s ace. Then South attempted to cash his ace and king of diamonds only to have West ruff the second diamond.

When the late Sherman Steams of the Aces sat West he played a low club at trick four. South won with dummy’s ace, ruffed a club in his hand, ruffed a low diamond, ruffed back to his hand, ruffed his last low diamond with the queen of trumps and eventually lost a trump trick to East ‘s jack to be down one.

At the other table West attempted to cash a heart trick. Mike Gottlieb who sat South ruffed in his hand, ruffed a low diamond with dummy’s deuce of spades, cashed dummy’s queen of spades and led a third heart. East showed out. Mike spread his hand and announced, «Squeeze for balance.»

The opponents made him play the hand out but they had no defense. Mike ran off all his trumps. He discarded down to the ten of hearts and cae, jack of clubs in dummy, before leading his last trump. This forced West to discard down to one club in order to keep a high heart. Mike discarded the ten of hearts from dummy and poor East had to discard down to one club also in order to keep from establishing Mike’s nine of diamonds.

Quite a few players would have recognized the squeeze from the South seat. I wonder how many would have seen it coming from the West seat and ruined it as Sherman did with his club lead at trick four.