by Bobby Wolff on July 14th, 2012
I have come to the conclusion that one useless man is called a disgrace, that two are called a law firm, and that three or more become a congress. Peter Stone
Today we get three variations on a five-diamond contract from the Scandinavian championships.
Against Runi Mouritzen and, in the other room, Artur Malinowski, both West cashed the club ace and continued the suit. South ruffed, ran the heart jack to East, and got a trump return — best defense. Both declarers ran their seven trumps, and now the defense could choose who would guard clubs. Against Mouritzen both defenders did, forcing West to keep the heart 10 guarded (or declarer could overtake the heart queen). So West pitched all his spades, letting Mouritzen overtake the heart jack and finesse in spades successfully.
Against Malinowski West kept the bare spade queen and the doubleton heart 10, and declarer came down to one spade, one club and the heart ace in dummy. He led a heart to the ace and East was squeezed in the black suits.
Well done, both declarers; but Frederic Wrang had an even tougher task, since he received a low trump lead, won in dummy. Next came a spade to the jack and queen. West now cashed the club ace and continued with a low club (a heart shift would have been fatal).
Wrang ruffed the club return and ran all his trumps, coming down to the spade ace and two heart honors in hand and the 10-9 of spades and the bare heart ace in dummy. East had to bare one of his kings, and Wrang could cash the ace of that suit and cross to the other hand to take tricks 12 and 13: a true criss-cross squeeze.