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A fan writes that she's created a monster.

"I taught my husband bridge so we'd have something to do together -- and now he's become a fanatic. He wants to go to every tournament within a 500-mile radius. Last weekend he defended this deal and kept me awake most of the night talking about how brilliant he'd been.

"I led the jack of diamonds, and declarer took the ace and led a trump to his ace. When I showed out, he led a heart to the queen and played low from his hand on the next heart. My husband was in -- and led the queen of trumps!

"South took the king but couldn't make the contract: if he drew trumps, he'd lose two more hearts; if instead he ruffed a heart with the jack, my hubby's nine would be high, and South would lose a trump, a club and two hearts.

"Now my husband's making plans for the North American Championships. I told him he'd miss my funeral for a bridge tournament, and he said, 'What makes you think I'd schedule your funeral on the day of a tournament?'"


It's not unusual for someone to be captivated by tournament bridge, and no cure is known. Maybe after he attains Life Master ranking, he'll slow down a bit.

I can't help my reader rein in her husband, but South erred by leading an early round of trumps. He should ruff a diamond at Trick Two, lead a heart to the queen and duck the next heart. No matter what East does next, South loses only three tricks.

South dealer

Both sides vulnerable
J 10 3
Q 4
A Q 7
Q 10 9 3 2
A 10 8 2
J 10 9 6 3 2
8 6 4
Q 9 2
J 9 6
K 8 4
A K J 5
A K 8 7 6 5 4
K 7 5 3
1 Pass 2 Pass
2 Pass 3 Pass
4 All Pass
Opening lead -- J

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