Sunday, July 28, 2013

A Search For All The Cards

* Good hand with spade support

Note: This is an intermediate level problem.

West leads the ♣4 and East plays the ♣K.
  1. Where is the A?
  2. Where is the ♣Q?
  3. Where is the ♣J?
  4. Where is the Q?
  5. Where is the ♠K?
  6. Should you win the first trick, duck, or it doesn't matter?

  1. Where is the A?
    With East. Otherwise he will not have enough to open.
  2. Where is the ♣Q?
    With West. If East had the ♣Q he would have played it: 3rd hand is playing a low card from a sequence.
  3. Where is the ♣J?
    With East. If the ♣J was with West, he would have lead the ♣Q and not a low club.
  4. Where is the Q?
    With East, otherwise he wouldn't have enough to open.
  5. Where is the ♠K?
    With East, otherwise he wouldn't have enough to open.
  6. Should you win the first trick, duck, or it doesn't matter?
    Don't win the ♣A! As the cards lay open in front of you, should you win it and play the spade finesse (you must draw trumps first to enjoy your long heart suit later), East will take the ♠K, play a club to West's ♣Q and West will continue with a diamond to East's AQ for 1 down. If you duck the first club, West will no longer be able to win the hand to play a diamond. Say East wins and plays another club. Win your ♣A and lose a spade to East's ♠K. East has no defense. Whatever he does, you will be able to draw the rest of the trumps and throw 2 diamond losers on the good hearts.

Things to remember:
  • Sometimes you should refuse winning a trick to cut communication between your opponents.
  • As a declarer, when you have a good side suit, you must draw trumps first.
  • 3rd hand plays high? Not always: when dummy has a high card but you, after dummy, hold a higher card, you should consider saving it in order to not establish dummy's high card.
    Also, when the player on 3rd hand holds a sequence in a suit, he must play the lowest card of the sequence.


    1. 543 543
      K8762 J KT762 Q
      A A

      You lead the 6, your partner plays the J and declarer wins with the Ace. Now you know that the Q is with your partner (else declarer could have won with the Q), and you will play a low card to his Q next .

      If your partner is playing the Q , you realize he doesn't have the J (else he should play it) . You will try to put your partner on lead to capture declarer's J.

    2. AJT AJT
      972 Q 972 K
      3 3

      When your partner wins with the Q, you realize he also has the K so if you regain the lead you will play that suit again. If your partner plays the K, he denies holding the Q.

    3. 43
      AJ652 8

      After the first trick you can place all the cards! Declarer has the K (else partner must play it), Partner has T98 (else declarer could win cheep with the 9 or 10) and declarer has the 7 (else partner plays it as lowest from sequence).

    4. 543 Q43
      X KJT X KJT

      As East, play the K if dummy holds only low cards. 3rd hand plays high.
      But if dummy has the Q and plays low – then you must play the 10. Dummy's Q completes the sequence in your hand and as 3rd you should play a low from the sequence. Your 10 is high enough to win the trick if the Ace is with your partner and it's high enough to pull out the Ace if declarer has it.

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