Friday, September 4, 2009

Unusual right-siding problem

Played in my annual club game recently and noticed something funny in the deep-finesse analysis of the hand records. On the deal below, North can make 5NT, but South cannot. So the question is, what's the killing opening lead for West? Given the siding analysis, that actually shouldn't be that hard (but still took me a while to believe). Once you've got that, then how does that hold it to 10 tricks?

Q 3
K Q J 6 4 2
A 7 6
A 8
K 9 5 J 10 8 7 2
8 7 5A 9 3
K 10 3 2 9 8 4
J 6 3Q 9
A 6 4
Q J 5
K 10 7 5 4 2

Might not publish the answer to this until I see it in comments.

Have a great Labor Day weekend. No new posts until Tuesday.


  1. It's got to be a low club. East, when in with the Ace of Hearts, shifts to a spade. Upon winning the King of Spades, West reverts to clubs and declarer's entries are messed up.

    Doesn't work to lead a club from East because the Nine of Clubs establishes the suit immediately and the Queen of Clubs means West's later club play will establish the suit.

  2. What if:

    a) When East plays a spade through, declarer goes up with SA and plays DQ, eventually winning DA and running hearts?

    b) Declarer sets up clubs before setting up hearts?

  3. a) I guess West had better cover the first diamond to not get squeezed.

    b) The DK shift seems to work.

    In both cases, play the DK at first opportunity :-).