Suddenly, something changes in partner. He's playing faster and less accurately than he has been before. After two disasters, I try to break the losing rhythm by offering to get him a Diet Coke. He declines, and we continue the session.
The bidding is simple and uneventful; we reach the normal spot. I would very much like to be declarer right now to give partner a much-needed rest, but I can't bid notrump; his stopper might be positional. I'm dummy and I'm worried.
The opening lead is the
At trick five or so, I am also thinking that West probably erred. Playing a second heart is pointless. If partner has a singleton spade, a spade shift will break up the double squeeze. Perhaps playing too fast a trick one helped encourage West to err, but the errors more than balanced. Certainly few Wests would find the spade shift; a good portion of the field should find the double squeeze. Oh, well.
The whole hand was
After the hand, I drag partner away from the table and tell him he blew it simply by losing concentration at the key moment. He sees the error and is unhappy. I add, "you've played very well for three sessions, but it seems as if you lost concentration in the final. That's the first time I've seen that from you." He agrees and can't say more, so I add, "we'll do better next time," with a smile and a clap on the back. Maybe we shall.