Sunday, March 15th 2015
Using the bidding as a guide to play and defense – part 3
Opening lead: 10
Bidding commentary: East’s original pass followed by a takeout double shows 9-11 highcard points with shortness in the bid suit. With as few as 9 HCP, East is likely to have a singleton
heart. South’s 4 bid is clear.
Defensive commentary: From combinations headed by two adjacent honors, the A-K, K-Q, Q-J, J-10 or 10-9, the higher honor is led at a suit contract. At notrump, three adjacent honors or the third card in the sequence missing by one place – e.g., Q-J-9 – are necessary to lead an honor. As East, cash the first two spades and shift to the J.
Play commentary: After winning the A (higher equal for deceptive purposes), drive out the A. Once East turns up with the A, you have seen 11 HCP come out of the East hand. East passed as dealer, so West has the Q. Draw trumps and play the A and J, intending to finesse if the jack is not covered.
Tip: Assume that a passed hand has fewer than 12 HCP. However, if a passed hand turns up with a six-card suit or two five-card suits, assume fewer than 11 HCP as 11 HCP is enough to open with either of those distributions.