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ON BRIDGE

South can't make today's slam against best defense; but almost any contract is makable if the defenders give declarer enough help.

South ruffed the first spade and saw that if trumps broke 2-2, he could take 12 tricks by drawing trumps, throwing a diamond from dummy on the clubs, and ruffing a diamond in dummy; but if trumps broke 3-1, that line of play was probably doomed.

South therefore tried for some help from the defense; at Trick Two, he led a low diamond. West won with the 10 and cooperated beautifully by leading a second spade.

The lead of any other suit would beat the slam; but the spade lead was all South needed. He ruffed, led to the 10 of clubs, ruffed a spade, got back with the queen of clubs, and ruffed a spade.

South then cashed the ace of trumps, overtook the queen with the king, drew trumps with the 10, and took two more clubs and the ace of diamonds for 12 tricks. West and South had collaborated on a pretty dummy reversal!

You hold: K 6 4 2 K 10 2 7 4 3 Q 10 7. Your partner opens one diamond, you bid one spade, and he next bids two clubs. The opponents pass. What do you say?

A: Partner probably holds more diamonds than clubs; with four of each minor, he'd usually open one club. Bid two diamonds to return to the longer trump suit. If partner has what he needs for game opposite your eight points, he'll bid again.

South dealer

Both sides vulnerable
NORTH
K 6 4 2
K 10 2
7 4 3
Q 10 7
WEST
Q J 10 9 5
7 4 3
K J 10
5 2
EAST
A 8 7 3
5
Q 9 8 5
8 6 4 3
SOUTH
None
A Q J 9 8 6
A 6 2
A K J 9
South West North East
2 Pass 3 Pass
4 Pass 4 Pass
6 All Pass
Opening lead -- Q

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