Sunday, May 23, 2004


FINLAND faced Sweden in European Championship. We will ignore the (highly artificial) bidding. How would you play 6NT on the South cards when West leads the two of hearts to Eastís 10? A normal line would be to guess which defender holds a doubleton honour in diamonds. You would then lead a low diamond from the South hand (if you though that West held a doubleton honour), or the jack of diamonds f m dummy (if you thought that East held a doubleton honour). Koistinen, the Finnish South, tr ed smething different. He won the heart lead and cashed all his blac winners, ending in the dummy. West had to keep K-Q-x in diamonds, so was forced to reduce to just one heart. Declarer cashed the ace of hearts, removing Westís last non-diamond, the ran th ejack of diamonds. Poor West had to win with one diamond honour and lead away from the other. It looks a strange line to me but it gained a big swing.

Bidding quiz

What would you say now on the West cards?


In a recent match both Wests overcalled 4C, attempting to shut out the spade suit. This was not a sound bid and might have gone for a large penalty. Partner passed, on a 15-count with a void club and ten tricks resulted. 5D or 3NT could have been made, however, and I like best a simple overcall of 2C.

Awards: 2C - 10, 3C (intermediate) -7, 4C - 5, Pass -3.

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