Tim Bourke

Source: Canberra 2015; SUMMER FESTIVAL OF BRIDGE bulletins


The auction deserves some explanation after the raise to three hearts. Three spades was a cue bid and three notrump was a strong slam try. After your cue bid of four clubs, North used Roman Key Card Blackwood and found that you had three key cards, the queen of trumps but no outside king. West leads the jack of clubs and East follows with a low club.

How do you plan to make twelve tricks?


The auction to six hearts was a strong one, obviously based on power. As a result, this West would always seek a passive lead rather than an aggressive one. Consequently, you should place the jack-ten of clubs on your left and the king of clubs on your right. After winning the first trick with the ace of clubs you should cash the king and ace of trumps in that order. If trumps are 5-0, you will have to rely on a successful spade finesse for your twelfth trick. If trumps are 4-1, you can also try ruffing a low club in to bring down a doubleton king of clubs, probably after taking the spade finesse at trick three. When trumps are 3-2, you should ruff a club at trick four. The layout you must try to overcome is one such as this:Inspirado mano

The winning play here is to cross back to dummy with a diamond and ruff a club. If the king of clubs had appeared by now, you would draw the last trump and cross back dummy with a diamond to cash at least one club winner for your twelfth trick. As the king of clubs has not appeared, you must return to dummy with a diamond to ruff a club with your last trump. Now you intend play the ace and jack of diamonds, discarding spades from the table. If East ruffs with the nine of trumps then dummy will be high. If he discards two spades then you cash the ace of spades and ruff a spade for your twelfth trick. On the assumptions about clubs, then, when the trumps prove to be 3- 2, this line is very close to giving you a 100% chance of success.