A Killing Duck
Playing in the finals of a national pair event, we
sit down against some seeded opposition.
LHO deals and they have an uninterrupted
auction to 4. I lead a high club (attitude) and see
I don't think I'd've bid North's hand as he did, but
that's not my problem.
Declarer ducks the opening lead to partner's K.
He continues with the Q, won in dummy. That's
obviously a singleton, but even so seems like a bad
plan to me. Declarer probably is going to need the
diamonds, since hearts are not breaking, so it's probably
right to let declarer deal with them himself.
Anyway, declarer wins the diamond in dummy and leads a
trump to his Q. I duck in tempo. I see no reason
to give partner a ruff, as one diamond pitch won't do
declarer much good, so I plan to win the next diamond.
Since entries to dummy seem scarce, painting a false
picture of the hand for declarer seems best.
The chance to win the K comes soon; declarer leads a diamond from
hand. I win and exit with a club. Declarer is worried
about a 4-2 trump break, so he tries the winning J
from dummy. Partner ruffs and is overruffed. Declarer
crosses back to the K and takes another trump finesse.
This time it loses and I tap him with another club. He's
now stuck in his hand, and after drawing the last trump
and cashing the A, must concede the last two tricks
to partner's Q and long club.
The full hand was
I didn't have a clear idea of where I was going when I
ducked the trump, but it worked wonders. +200 produced
62 out of 64 matchpoints.
Copyright © 2001 Jeff Goldsmith