Bridge: June 24, 2024

Cy the Cynic is known for dragging his tail at the table, but he denies that he’s lazy; Cy insists that he observes “selective participation.”

Cy is apt to choose the first line of play he sees, sound or not. At today’s six spades, Cy won the first trump with dummy’s ace and led a trump to his queen. When East discarded, Cy tried to unblock his A-K-Q of clubs. Alas, West ruffed the third club, and though the Cynic could discard two hearts on dummy’s last two clubs, he had to rely on a heart finesse with his queen, and West’s king won the setting trick.


“The slam was cold,” North said sourly, “but getting the play over with quickly is the main issue.”

Could Cy do better?

After Cy wins the first trump in dummy, he must lead a diamond — and pitch a club. If East has won and leads a heart, Cy takes the ace, cashes the queen of trumps and then takes his last two high clubs. He draws West’s last trump with dummy’s king and throws his remaining hearts on the clubs.


You hold: S A K 2 H 6 4 3 D Q J C J 10 5 3 2. Your partner opens one diamond, you respond two clubs and he rebids two diamonds. The opponents pass. What do you say?

ANSWER: You have enough strength to invite game. If you held A102,K43,QJ,J10532, to bid 2NT would be clear, but you shouldn’t be eager to bid notrump with no heart strength. Raise to three diamonds. Your doubleton Q-J is adequate support for a suit your partner rebid.

North dealer

N-S vulnerable


S A K 2

H 6 4 3


C J 10 5 3 2


S 7 6 3

H K J 10 7

D K 10 9 2

C 8 4


S 4

H 9 8

D A 8 7 6 5 4 3

C 9 7 6


S Q J 10 9 8 5

H A Q 5 2

D None


North East South West
Pass Pass 1 S Pass
3 S Pass 6 S All Pass
Opening lead — S 7

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