DECLARER PLAY PROBLEM #16

Rubber bridge
East dealer
Both sides vulnerable

 NORTH ♠ A Q 5 ♥ Q 8 2 ♦ A K ♣ 8 7 4 3 2 SOUTH ♠ J 2 ♥ A K 10 9 6 5 ♦ 8 7 ♣ K 6 5
SOUTHWESTNORTHEAST
1
1 Pass2 Pass
2 Pass4 Pass
PassPass

West leads the ten of clubs. East wins the club ace and returns the club queen.

Plan the play.

### Solution

 NORTH ♠ A Q 5 ♥ Q 8 2 ♦ A K ♣ 8 7 4 3 2 WEST ♠ 9 8 7 4 3 ♥ 7 3 ♦ 9 5 4 3 2 ♣ 10 EAST ♠ K 10 6 ♥ J 2 ♦ Q J 10 6 ♣ A Q J 9 SOUTH ♠ J 2 ♥ A K 10 9 6 5 ♦ 8 7 ♣ K 6 5

DUCK FOR SAFETY. If declarer releases the king of clubs too early, the contract can be set. In view of the bidding, West is liklely to be able to ruff the king of clubs, and may then shift to a spade, establishing the setting trick before discards are available. If, instead, declarer holds up his club king at trick two, the best the defense can do is take a club ruff at trick three. However, declarer can then win the spade shift in dummy, draw trumps, ruff a club to establish a trick there, and return to dummy in diamonds to cash the club winner for a spade discard.

(Based on a deal and analysis from the 1963 National Intercollegiate Par-Hand Bridge Tournament by William S. Root and Lawrence Rosler.)

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