1. North deals. E_W vulnerable.
♠ Q 96 4
A 6
K Q J
♣ A K 7 4
♠ A 5 3 2
5
A 10 8 6 5 3
♣ Q 6

 West North East South 1♣ 2♣(1) 2♦(2) 4♥ 6♦ All Pass

(1) Majors.
(2) Forcing.
Opening lead: 3. Say you win the A and cash the K, both following. What now?

The idea is to squeeze East in spades without the count. After the A and a high diamond, play four more winning diamonds, discarding a club and a spade from the table, then the ♣Q and a club to dummy’s king, leaving:

 ♠Q 9 6 ♥ 6 ♦ — ♣ A ♠ — ♠ K J 10 ♥ J 8 4 ♥ Q 10 ♦ — ♦ — ♣ J 10 ♣ — ♠ A 5 3 2 ♥ — ♦ 6 ♣ —

2. South deals. None vulnerable.
♠ A Q 9 4
A 6 5
K 9 4
♣ 9 3 2
♠ K J 6 5 3
3
A Q J 8
♣ A K J

 West North East South 1♠ 2♠(1) 3♥(2) Pass 4NT(3) Pass 5♠(4) Pass 5NT(5) Pass 4♦ Pass 4♥ Pass 6♦(6) Pass 7♠ All Pass

(1) Hearts and a minor.
(3) Roman Key Card Blackwood.
(4) Two key cards with the ♠Q.
(5) Any kings?
(6) K.
West leads the K. Plan the play.

 ♠ A Q 9 4 ♥ A 6 5 ♦ K 9 4 ♣ 9 3 2 ♠ — ♠ 10 8 7 2 ♥ K Q J 9 2 ♥ 10 8 74 ♦ 7 6 2 ♦ 10 5 3 ♣ Q 10 7 6 4 ♣ 8 5 ♠ K J 6 5 3 ♥ 3 ♦ A Q J 8 ♣ A K J

The contract is cold if spades break no worse than 3–1. Trumps can be drawn and a club candiscarded from dummy on your fourth diamond allowing for a club ruff in dummy. But if spades are a very possible 4–0, you have to play on reverse dummy lines. You must ruff a heart at trick two and then cash the ♠K.
If both follow, draw trumps and claim. If West shows out, cross to the K and ruff dummy’s last heart. You remain with the ♠J 6 and dummy has the A–Q–9. Draw trumps ending in dummy, discarding the
♣J on dummy’s last trump. Your hand is high with winning diamonds and clubs. As long as East has at least one diamond with his four spades, you have a claimer . . . but you must ruff a heart at trick two.
If you don’t ruff a heart at trick two, you are short a dummy entry to complete the dummy reversal. Of course you can always hope that West has the red suits and that the club fi nesse will work. Or you can hope that West has the 10 and won’t play it when you lead a diamond intending to finesse the 9 for that extra dummy entry you blew by not ruffi ng a heart at trick two. Not this time. All other roads lead to mega‑apologizing in the post mortem.

Thanks to Tim Bourke of Australia for both of these.

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