# Triumph

### Hand of the Week

Dlr:
South
VUL:
E-W
North
♠ K 7 5 4
A 3
5 3 2
♣ 10 8 4 3

South
♠ A Q J 8 3
K 9 6
A K 8
♣ A K
 West North East South 2♣ Pass 2♦ Pass 2NT Pass 3♣ Pass 3♠ Pass 4♥(1) Pass 4NT Pass 5♦ Pass 6♠ All Pass

West leads the J against your sound small slam in spades. How do you plan to make 12 tricks?

### Solution

It would be easy for you to be careless on this layout:

Dlr:
South
VUL:
E-W
North
♠ K 7 5 4
A 3
5 3 2
♣ 10 8 4 3
West
♠ –
Q 10 7 5 4 2
J 10 9 7
♣ 9 7 6
East
♠ 10 9 6 2
J 8
Q 6 4
♣ Q J 5 2
South
♠ A Q J 8 3
K 9 6
A K 8
♣ A K

Suppose you win the opening lead with the A and play a trump to the king. The upshot is that you can no longer make your contract. There is no way to avoid a diamond loser, and the third round of hearts will be overruffed by East.

While you may rate this as incredibly unlucky, when a contract appears to be certain, you turn you attention to a distribution that might defeat you. As a 2-2 or 3-1 trumps will allow you to draw trumps and ruff a heart safely in dummy, a 4-0 break is the only potential problem.

So, at trick two you should begin playing trumps by cashing the ace. When West discards, you will cross to the A to lead a second round of trumps from the table. When East plays low, you will finesse the 8, and if he inserts the ♠9 or ♠10, you win the trick with queen. Next, you will cash the K and ruff your losing heart with dummy’s ♠K. Now you can pick up East’s remaining trumps, finessing the 8 if necessary. So, despite some bad breaks in the majors, you will score 12 tricks.

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