David Bird

Charles Goren played this deal, back in 1964. A diamond lead would have proved lethal but West led the spade king. How would you play the slam? If you ruff two spades, you will find yourself stranded in the dummy, unable to return to hand to draw trumps. You must look for a safe way to set up dummy’s clubs. You can afford a club loser but not at a time when the defenders can cash a spade. Finessing in clubs at Trick 2 would not be safe - you would suffer a club ruff. Goren led the jack of clubs to the ace at Trick 2, return to the trump ace, and led a low club towards dummy. If west had followed low, he would have finessed the 10 — succeeding whether East ruffed or won with the club queen. West had only one club but was powerless. If he ruffed, declarer would win his return and claim the remainder. When he discarded, Goren won with dummy’s ace and conceded a club to East. Even if East dislodged the diamond ace, declarer would be able to draw trumps in three rounds, ending in the dummy.
What would you say now?


Some people lose all sense of judgement when there is an opening pre-empt against them. This hand is strong enough for a IS overall over an opening of IH. It is not worth a three-level overcall, however. If North has a strong hand, sitting over you, a huge penalty might result. You could easily end up scoring just two or three spades and the club ace. If you pass and the next players passes too, partner will have the chance to protect in the fourth seat. Awards: Pass - 10, 3S-4, Double - 3.

— Knight Features