DECLARER PLAY PROBLEM #46

Rubber bridge
West dealer
East-West vulnerable

 NORTH ♠ 10 4 ♥ A 7 5 3 2 ♦ A Q 4 3 ♣ A K SOUTH ♠ K 6 ♥ K Q 9 4 ♦ K 10 8 7 5 ♣ Q 3
SOUTHWESTNORTHEAST
Pass1 Pass
2 NT*Pass4 Pass
4 Pass5 Pass
5 Pass5 Pass
5 NTPass6 NT(All Pass)

*strong raise

Plan the play.

### Solution

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

BACK AND FORTH. The contract will be easy if neither red-suit splits four-zero. When East holds a heart void, the contract is doomed. Therefore, South should cash the heart ace first, catering to East's holding all four missing hearts. When West's heart void is revealed, it becomes much more likely that West, rather than East, will hold four diamonds. Therefore, declarer, who can pick up a four-zero diamond split in either hand, should begin diamonds by playing the king. After discovering the red-suit lies, declarer can make the contract by using his entries carefully, establishing the long diamond before using the last heart entry to the closed hand, then using a high club to return to dummy to cash the long heart.

(Based on a deal and analysis from the 1964 National Intercollegiate Bridge Tournament by William S. Root and Lawrence Rosler.)

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