Details for bridge - 8-24-2019

BRIDGE

Sometimes a
finesse is not
so obvious
By Phillip Alder

Stacy Keach said, “I can’t
think of anything that requires
more finesse than comedy, both
from a verbal and visual point
of view.” Obviously he wasn’t a
bridge player.

queen. What happens after that?

Today’s deal contains an
unusual finesse. South is in four
spades. West leads the diamond
ace: four, 10, three. West cashes
the diamond king: six, two, nine.
West continues with a third
diamond, declarer ruffing East’s

North used a Texas transfer to get his partner to be the declarer in
four spades. Note that four spades by North will fail after East leads
the heart five. West takes the trick as cheaply as possible, cashes
his top diamonds and exits with a diamond or a trump. He must
score the club king later.
Things look equally grim for South since West probably holds the
heart ace and club king. But there is a clever line of play. Declarer
draws trumps ending in the dummy, then finesses (runs) the heart
10. West wins with the jack, but what can he do?
If he leads a club, South wins in hand and plays the heart king,
taking a ruffing finesse to establish a discard for dummy’s third club.
If instead West leads the heart ace, South ruffs on the board and has
two discards available. Finally, if West leads a low heart, declarer can
establish two heart tricks, thanks to his eight.
No doubt you noticed West’s error. He should have trusted his
partner’s encouraging diamond 10 at trick one and underled his
diamond king at trick two. East would then have shifted to a heart (or
a club) to defeat the contract.
© 2019 UFS, Dist. by Andrews McMeel for UFS

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