Spade Heart Hayling Island Bridge Club Diamond Club
Play Problem 005
Play Problem 005 - contributed by Graham Broadbent

You are South.  You open a routine 2NT and, with opponents silent throughout, the auction continues 3clubs* - 3spades – 4spades – what now?

At our table I took the view that, with no five card suit and no extra values, I had bid my hand so passed.

Opening lead was 10 and Partner tabled the following: ♠KQJ8 ♥953 ♦J3 ♣ 9842.  Would your partnership have bid the slam? And would you have made it?

*  3clubs is simple Stayman

The Answer

The full deal (hands rotated)                                                          
Opening lead diamond 10

N/S Vulnerable

KQJ8

953

 J3

 9842

 432

 QJ42

 10987

65

 97

 K10876

 K52

QJ3

 A1065

 A

 AQ64

 AK107

The 10 of diamonds goes to the 3, King and Ace. Draw trumps in 3 rounds, cash the Jack of diamonds and run the 9 of clubs. The club suit now comes in for four winners. Cash the Ace of hearts and the Queen of diamonds, discarding a heart from dummy. Ruff the last diamond with dummy’s final trump, leaving the final trick to the remaining trump in your hand. 13 tricks.

Not a good grand slam you would want to be in!  But how does the partnership find the perfectly reasonable small slam, with only 28 HCP between the hands and no five-card suit? 

Re: Play Problems 005 contributed by Graham Broadbent

Play Problems 005 and 006 were inspired by duplicate boards in play at the club on 29 April.  Graham made the following additional comment when submitting them:

"Last night's boards were full of interesting deals and no less than six slams available.  These two presented partnership tests for N/S."

If you played that evening and want to check what contract your pair played in, use the Results menu to look up the 29 April event data.  Click on your pair names to see your score card.   Play Problem 005 was board 15