NEIL HAYWARD BRIDGE
African News Agency
WEST 9 2 A T 9 4 T 9 8 2 AQ5 Contract: Opening Lead: NORTH 8 4 K Q6 3 K 5 4 8 7 6 3 4♠ by South EAST T 5 3 J 8 7 QJ 3 J T 9 2 SOUTH AK QJ 7 6 5 2 A7 6 K 4 ♦T. What is your plan? Recommended Line: This hand illustrates the importance of seeing top cards not only as winners, but also as entries. You hold two top diamonds, but it is not arbitrary whether you win in dummy or in hand at trick one. Dummy’s ♦K must be preserved for later use. That needs to be clear in your mind. So, win in hand, but do not draw all the trumps yet. One round is all you can afford. Then lead a heart towards dummy, hoping West holds the ♥A. Let’s say West ducks, and you win. Return to hand via a trump (that is why you led just one round earlier), and draw the remaining trumps. Then lead a second heart, which West wins. A further diamond lead is won by the ♦K, allowing you to discard a diamond on a good heart. You now lead a club towards your ♣K, which yields an overtrick if it works. If not, your contract is secure, thanks to your well-timed use of entries.