Competition Problem 165b
by F. Y. Sing
(a) South to make
six hearts. West leads the ♥6.
Successful solvers: Steve Bloom, Ed Lawhon, Sebastian Nowacki, Zoran Sibinović, Rajeswar Tewari, Wim van der Zijden.
(a) Declarer plays three round of hearts, ending in hand with the ♥10. East discards diamonds on the first two.
A. If East discards a spade, North ruffs a low club and advances the ♦K.
1. If East plays the ♦A, South ruffs. Now East can be thrown in after, ♣A, a club ruff and the ♠A and North gets two diamond tricks.
2. If East ducks, South discards a spade, comes to hand on the ♠A, and leads a middle club. East wins but is endplayed. A club return gives South three club tricks, North discarding a spade, then North gets a spade ruff. On the other hand, a diamond return gives North a diamond trick on which South’s spade loser goes. A club ruff sets up an extra trick in that suit and South can return to hand on a ruff to score it.
B. If East discards a club, it is an easy matter to set up South’s clubs, either ruffing twice in North or ruffing once and conceding a trick in the suit.
C. If East discards a diamond, North discards a spade on the ♣A and South plays the ♠A and another spade, ruffed by North, who advances the ♦K. Whether East ducks or covers, South will get the lead on a diamond ruff and advance the ♣J. East wins but is endplayed in the minor suits and South’s spade loser goes on a diamond winner one way or another.
(b) South captures East’s ♠Q with the ♠A, throws North’s remaining spade on the ♣A, and ruffs a spade high. North plays the ♥A, ♥K, and ♥9, catching East in a seesaw squeeze.
D. If East discards a club, South overtakes with the ♥10 and North ruffs a club to lead the ♦K. East does best to duck (otherwise declarer has a surfeit of tricks by ruffing and throwing East in with a club) but South discards the spade loser, ruffs a diamond to hand and gives up a club. South’s remaining trump and two established club winners takes the last three tricks.
E. If East discards a diamond, the ♥9 holds and North advances the ♦K, ruffing if East covers, otherwise discarding a spade and ruffing the next diamond. In either case South then leads the ♣J to endplay East. Either a diamond ruff, a club ruff and North’s remaining diamonds take the rest or a club ruff, a diamond ruff and South’s remaining clubs do so, the spade loser going on a diamond winner at some stage.
See the solution to Competition Problem #4 for the recommended tabular format if you prefer not to write in English prose.
Hugh Darwen, 2018