Mad Bridge Party
“It’s a lost cause,” the Queen of Diamonds told Alice as the players at the Mad Hatter’s took a tea break. “My cousin the Queen of Hearts will never abide being captured.”
“But Your Majesty knows that losing a trick can be better than winning one,” Alice sighed.
“Deal and you’ll see,” the Queen said. So Alice dealt and opened 1. The Dormouse and the Hatter, North-South, then bid to 4♠.

Dlr: West ♠ A K 9 3
Vul: N-S 9
K 7 2
♣ K 10 7 4
♠ 7 ♠ Q 6 4
A K Q 7 3 J 10 6 4 2
A Q 9 4 10 6 3
♣ 8 5 2 ♣ 9 6
♠ J 10 6 4 2
8 5
J 8 5
♣ A Q 3
West North East South
1 Dbl 3 3♠
4 4♠ All Pass

Alice carefully led the Q, winning. When dummy hit, Alice saw that the March Hare, East, would have to produce a trick for the defense to have a chance, but they would also need two diamonds.


Giving the Queen of Diamonds a nod, Alice shifted to the Q. The Hatter took dummy’s king, cashed the A-K of trumps and started the clubs. The Hare ruffed the third club to return a diamond, and Alice took the nine and ace. Down one.

“See what I mean?” the Queen of Diamonds murmured.

Only the queen-of-diamonds shift beats 4♠.


You hold: ♠A K 9 3   9   K 7 2    ♣K J 10 7 4.
You open 1♣, your partner bids 1♠, you raise to 3♠ and he tries 4. What do you say?

Partner’s 4 is an ace-showing cue bid to invite slam. For you to cue-bid 4 or 5. would be defensible, but since this hand is a minimum for a raise to 3♠, I would sign off at 4♠. If there is a slam, partner may make another move.

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