Quiz 7J54   Main

by Richard Pavlicek

On each of these contracts you have no jacks, yet the location of these cards in the enemy hands
may be crucial to your success. Can you find the best plays?

## Problem 1

 3 NT SouthNone Vul K 9 5 3 4 8 7 5 3 K 10 4 3 WestPassPass North3 3 NT EastPassAll Pass SOUTH2 NT3 Lead: 6 East plays K A 10 2 A Q 10 A K Q Q 9 6 5 You capture East’s K with the ace.What next?

 A. Win K; lead 3 to queen B. Win K; lead 3 to nine C. Lead 5 to king D. Lead 5 to 10

### Solution

After capturing the K with the ace, you have seven top tricks, and the club suit will always provide two more. The danger is that if you lose an early club trick to East, a heart return through your A-10 will put the contract in jeopardy.

The proper play is to cross to the K and lead a low club to the nine (assuming East follows low). This way, even if it loses to the jack, you cannot be attacked further in hearts, and it’s an easy matter to force out the A to ensure nine tricks. Any other line of play entails the risk of being defeated.

West held: Q-J-7-6 J-9-8-6-3 4-2 J-2

 Quiz 7J54   Main Top   Jack of All Trades

## Problem 2

 3 NT SouthNone Vul A 10 9 K Q 10 2 6 5 4 3 K 3 WestPass North3 NT EastAll Pass SOUTH1 NT Lead: 2 East wins Kreturns 7 Q 4 3 A 9 K 10 7 2 A Q 10 4 You win the Q on the second round.What next?

 A. Win A; lead 3 to king B. Win A; lead 3 to 10 C. Win K; lead 3 to king D. Win K; lead 3 to 10

### Solution

After losing to the K, you have eight iron-clad tricks but no clear way to establish another. You could always succeed if you knew where the J was, or if East held the J or the A; but these are uncertain. Based on the fourth-best lead, however, there is a foolproof line.

The secret is to win both spades (queen first), then lead a diamond to the 10 (or cover East’s play) to force West on lead. West can cash his fourth spade (pitch a diamond from each hand); but what can he lead next? This neat triple endplay guarantees a ninth trick.

West held: J-8-6-2 8-3 A-Q-J J-7-5-2

 Quiz 7J54   Main Top   Jack of All Trades

## Problem 3

 4 SouthNone Vul Q 9 7 A K 5 K 10 2 A Q 7 2 WestPassPassAll Pass NORTH1 2 NT3 EastPassPassPass South1 3 14 Lead: 10 East plays 6 K 10 8 6 5 8 4 3 A 6 3 6 3 1. new minor forcingAfter winning the K, what next?

 A. Lead 9 to king B. Lead 9 and run it C. Win A; lead 5 to queen D. Win A; lead 3 to queen

### Solution

You may have to guess who has the J, but there is no hurry. Since all your side tricks are quick (off the top), there is little danger of a ruff. This suggests a waiting game.

Win the K, cross to your hand with the A, and lead a club to the queen. This finesse is inevitable, so you may as well take it. It wins (else the contract is probably hopeless). Next cash the A and ruff a club; then win the A and K and lead the last club. When East shows out, you have a lock: Ruff low, and exit with a red suit. Eventually you must win two more trump tricks.

West held: A-J-4 10-9-7 J-8-5 K-9-8-5

 Quiz 7J54   Main Top   Jack of All Trades