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Common Game 2018-10-29 Board 5
West
AQ4
KJ1074
Q85
72
North
103
A9
107432
A986
East
J98752
Q8
AKJ9
5
South
K6
6532
6
KQJ1043
D
5
West
North
East
South
P
1
2
3
X
P
P
4
P
P
P

Analysis by David Loeb

The Bidding: East's hand meets the Rule of 20 and the Suggestion of 22 for a 1st or 2nd seat opener. After East opens 1, South overcalls 2 to suggest a lead if West becomes declarer. West cue bids 3 to show an invitational or better spade raise. North's double shows they would have raised to 3. East's 15 Support Points suggest bidding game. East's Losing Trick Count of 7 suggests declining the invitation. East's club shortness decreases North-South's defensive potential. Driving to game seems best. West's hand is unlimited. There is no reason to jam the auction with a jump to 4. A common expert agreement is that Freely Bidding 3, the level forced by West's cue bid, show a minimum hand. With that understanding, East prefers passing to deny a dead minimum. West, with 13 Support Points, places the contract in 4.

The Play: South leads the King, top of an honor sequence. Declarer cannot avoid losing a heart. With a 9-card spade fit missing the King and 10, declarer always has 5 spade tricks. Leading a low spade towards the Ace-Queen picks up spades without a loser when West has the singleton King, doubleton King, or K63, a 33% chance. Here, the doubleton King is onside. Declarer has 11 tricks.

Analysis by Lynn Berg

Will East open? I think 1 is a defensible bid. Either way, South bids 3 and West will get to the spade game. Vulnerable, will North dare to try the club sacrifice? Not if the opponents are likely to double when it's "red vs. white."

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