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Here's another fine deal from the 2004 Fall Championships in Orlando. South, Bill Pollack, landed a valuable overtrick at his club partial.

West wouldn't have considered (I hope) opening two hearts in first or second seat with a weak suit, side void and four-card spade support, but in third seat he thought he could live a little. Against three clubs he led a heart, and Pollack played low from dummy. East took the ace and led a spade. (A diamond would have been best.) Pollack won a finesse with the queen and lost a trump finesse.

East next led another spade to the ace, and Pollack drew trumps, led a heart to the king and ruffed dummy's last spade. He then knew West had the king of diamonds: East, who hadn't opened the bidding, had shown an ace and two kings. So Pollack led his jack of hearts, and when West's queen covered, Pollack threw a diamond from dummy.

West was end-played: He had to lead a heart, yielding a ruff-sluff, or a diamond from the king. Making four.

You hold: 4 3 2 K 2 A 8 6 A Q 10 8 2. You open one club, and your partner bids one spade. The opponents pass. What do you say?

A: I'm a great believer in raising a response directly even with three-card support (especially when partner responds one spade to an opening bid of one club; he's more likely to have a five-card suit). But this hand has terrible spades and balanced pattern. Bid 1NT. A rebid of two clubs would suggest a six-card suit.

East dealer

E-W vulnerable

4 3 2
K 2
A 8 6
A Q 10 8 2
J 9 8 5
Q 10 8 7 4 3
K 10 4
K 10 7 6
A 9
J 9 3 2
K 6 5
J 6 5
Q 7 5
J 9 7 4 3
East South West North
PassPass2 (!)Dbl
Pass3 All Pass
Opening lead -- 7

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