Perceiving the Truth
“It seems to me that spelling ‘rules’ are often broken,” I remarked to my friend the English professor. “What about ‘i before e except after c’?”
“That rule has been disproved by science,” the prof growled.

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

Opening lead — ♠J
Some bridge rules are no more reliable. At today’s 3NT, South won the first spade with the queen and let the ♣8 ride. When East took the queen, he swiftly led another spade, but declarer won and forced out the ♣A. West shifted to the 10, but after East took the queen and ace, South claimed, scoring game.
“I would need to be prescient to find the winning defense,” East shrugged.


A conscientious East would reason that the deck didn’t have enough points for West to hold A-J-10-x-x in spades plus an entry. Moreover, if South had the ♣A, he would have cashed it before finessing.
At trick three, East must lead a low diamond. When West takes the ♣A, he leads his last diamond, and East runs the diamonds.

Daily Question

You hold:
♠ K 4 2
Q 5
K 5 4
♣ K 10 9 7 3
Your partner opens 1, you respond 2♣, he bids 2 and you try 2NT. Partner then rebids 3. What do you say?

Partner suggests five cards in each red suit and minimum values. If he had
♠A 3  K J 10 7 6  A Q 9 7 6  ♣J, he would have raised your 2NT to 3NT. Pass. No game should succeed. At matchpoint duplicate, you might risk a return to three hearts to play at the higher-scoring partial.