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Common Game 2017-12-30 Board 1
West
1097
A97532
8
K62
North
K
KQJ6
AQ962
1084
East
32
104
K743
QJ975
South
AQJ8654
8
J105
A3
D
1
West
North
East
South
1NT
P
2
P
2
P
4
P
P
P

Analysis by Craig Hemphill

Other than opening 1NT with a singleton K, North's hand is a terrible challenge to describe: 1 - 1 and then what? 2 would be a huge overbid and 1NT a significant underbid. 1-1; 2? A huge underbid. Instead, opening 1NT fairly well describes the point count and distributional evaluation of the hand and a singleton K may be at least as valuable as xx -- indeed, on this layout, more valuable!

South's problem is to establish spades, force game, and suggest slam. It seems impossible simultaneously to pinpoint the singleton heart and diamond "fragment."

It is very well established in the literature that a Jacoby Transfer and then a game bid is a "mild slam try," and that works well enough here, for North's values are rather distant from slam interest and the 4 bid will end the conversation safely. Eleven tricks are easily available. On a club lead declarer wins, draws trumps, and sets up hearts for two diamond pitches. However, greed may induce a losing diamond finesse, which will lead to only ten tricks. Greed is prevalent at matchpoints, and many will take the diamond finesse for a poor score.

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