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Amazing Ending

 by Richard Pavlicek

This deal occurred on OKbridge, the online bridge server where you play against real people using your personal computer and a modem. I was East, in Fort Lauderdale, and my son Rich was West, in Chicago. Our opponents were both experts.

North dealsS A 10 7 6WestNorthEastSouth
E-W vulH A1 DPass1 H
D K Q 10 7 4Pass2 SPass2 NT
C A K JPass3 NTPassPass
S Q 8 5 3TableS J 9 4Pass
H 10 9 8 7 6H K Q
D J 6 3D A 9 5 2
C 3C Q 8 7 2
S K 2
H J 5 4 3 2
D 8
3 NT SouthC 10 9 6 5 4

North had an awkward hand to bid and correctly chose a simple one-bid. South eked out a response (to his later regret) and the auction snowballed into game. Three notrump is not a terrible contract, and it would make on a good day. This was not a good day.

Rich led from his solid heart sequence, and I played the king (the proper signal from K-Q). Declarer cashed the C A-K and led the C J, which I ducked to hold him to three club tricks (Rich discarded a heart and a spade). Now declarer led the D K which I also ducked since I didn’t want to be on lead.

Getting desperate, declarer next led the D Q to my ace. I shifted to the S 4; two, queen, ace. Hoping to smother the D 9, declarer next led the D 10 and Rich perforce won the jack. Rich returned the S 8 to the six, nine, and South’s king.

At this point there were four cards left, and I held the top card in all four suits (S J, H Q, D 9 and C Q). Amazing! It’s probably not a first, but I can never recall a bridge deal where a defender won the last four tricks in four different suits.

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© 1997 Richard Pavlicek