David Bird

Today’s deal comes from the Generali World Individual, won by Italy’s Antonio Sementa. North intended his double for penalties but South interpreted it as take-out. It is the sort of misunderstanding that happens frequently in an individual event (where you play a few boards in partnership with every other player). However, De Falco and Ferraro are regular partners! It was lucky indeed to find 6-card spade support in the dummy. West led his heart, to the queen and king, and South ruffed. When D9 was led. West played low and a club was thrown from dummy. East ruffed and returned another heart, ruffed with the 8 and overuffed with the 9. A club to the ace allowed East to play yet another heart. This promoted West’s bare king of trumps and the game was one down. Declarer succeeds if he simply draws trumps. On lead with the king. West has to play a club. East wins with the ace and returns another club won with the jack. South then leads the 10 of diamonds, allowing West’s jack to win. He is endplayed, forced to surrender the contract on any return.

What would you say now?

It is tempting to bid 4D, just in case partner has an ace and can advance to the diamond game. However, if you do this you may find that partner bids the diamond game on the strength of the heart king which is useless to you. Furthermore, when partner has a bust, 4D may go down - you may suffer a spade ruff. Although it may seem a bit wimpish, I would pass 3D. Awards: pass - 10, 4D - 8, 3NT - 6, 5D - 2

— Knight Features