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Would you rather have a singleton or a doubleton on opening lead?

West
QJ82
Q43
K1065
62
North
AK73
J5
J43
J953
East
1095
A98
9
AKQ1084
South
64
K10762
AQ872
7
W
N
E
S
 
P
P
P
1
1
1
1N
X
2
P
P
3
P
P
P
D
3 East
NS: 0 EW: 0

 

When I'm on lead against a suit contract, a side singleton is very attractive. A doubleton isn't, unless I knew pard had two quick winners and could ruff the third round, particularly with a singleton trump. I think this deal is interesting because:

 

1) After a spade lead, North can set the contract at trick two with a heart shift. If declarer wins HA, draws a trump, and leads a red suit, he loses two spades, a heart, a diamond, and a heart ruff. If he ducks he loses a spade ruff instead of a heart ruff. So North has to eschew giving partner a ruff with his stuff trump.

2) Usually, doubleton leads are derided while singletons are revered. If you swap S4 for C6 (lead a stiff with two trumps instead of a doubleton with one) the contract is impregnable.

3) After SA, SK, ruff, declarer has a passion coup: He needs the remaining trumps to break 4-0.

West
QJ82
Q43
K1065
62
North
AK73
J5
J43
J953
East
1095
A98
9
AKQ1084
South
64
K10762
AQ872
7
W
N
E
S
 
P
P
P
1
1
1
1N
X
2
P
P
3
P
P
P
D
11
3 East
NS: 0 EW: 0
6
2
K
9
1
1
0
A
10
4
8
1
2
0
3
5
7
J
3
3
0
A
5
3
9
3
4
0
2
K
4
9
0
4
1
Q
7
8
2
0
4
2
2
3
10
7
2
4
3
9 tricks claimed
E/W +110
7

 

4) Barry Rigal pointed out that if North hwants a ruff he can win T1 with SA and return his singleton heart.

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