Details for CITIZEN PROMOS/FILLERS - Ad from 2020-09-10

Bridge

♠
♥
♦
♣

By Phillip Alder

another lead leads to success

Dealer: East
Vulnerable: East-West
North
♠AJ764
♥8
♦98542
♣KJ
West
♠5
♥K963
♦J76
♣97532

09-10-20

East
♠ 10
♥AQ7542
♦ Q 10
♣ A Q 10 8

South
♠KQ9832
♥ J 10
♦AK3
♣64
South

West

North

1♠
4♠

2♥
Pass

4♥
Pass

East
1♥
Pass
Pass

Opening lead: ♥ 3
All beginners’ textbooks
contain an opening-lead table.
This includes the standard “top of
touching honors.” But there are
times when it is better to make an
unorthodox opening salvo. Today’s
deal features a lead that is well
known in expert circles but would
never be found by a near-beginner.
A modern West would have
responded three hearts, a preempCOPYRIGHT: 2020, UNITED FEATURE SYNDICATE

tive jump raise in competition.
North’s four hearts was a splinter
bid, showing a high-card raise to
four spades with at most one heart.
The Losing Trick Count agreed with
this evaluation, but North would
have preferred his side-suit kingjack in diamonds.
West led the heart three. East
won with the ace and shifted to the
diamond queen. What happened
after that? What was West’s more
effective opening lead?
Declarer exhibited excellent
technique, allowing East to win the
second trick. Assuming diamonds
were 3-2, South realized that his
contract was in danger only if West
could regain the lead and push a
club through dummy’s holding. By
ducking now, declarer kept West out
of the deal.
When East continued with the
diamond 10, South won with his
ace, drew trumps, cashed the diamond king, went to the dummy with
a trump and discarded his clubs on
the high diamonds to come home
with an overtrick.
“Sorry, partner,” said West. “If
I had led the heart king, I could have
played a club next.”
If you are short of entries, often
at trick one, it is a good idea to lead
an unsupported high honor in your
side’s bid suit. You might be able to
make the telling switch at trick two.
Thurs., 9/10

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