This deal produced a large swing in a recent team game when 6 was bid at only one table. The 3 NT bid was a forcing spade raise denying a singleton or void; 4 and 4 were control-bids, then South used Blackwood to reach the excellent slam.
West led the K. There were 10 top tricks, and two more would have to come from ruffing. Souths plan was to discard one of dummys hearts on the third diamond, then ruff a heart and a diamond in dummy. On a good day this would work, but diamonds did not lie friendly. East ruffed the third round and returned a heart to take the setting trick. Too bad. It would not have helped to draw Easts trumps either, as this limits dummy to one ruff.
Declarer went about his ruffs in the wrong way. It is awkward to ruff in the dummy, yet very convenient to ruff clubs in hand. It is important to understand that the first club ruff does not gain a trick because it comes in the longer hand, but the second and third ruffs do.
The correct play is to win the A; cash the A; ruff a club (high); spade to the eight; club ruff (high); diamond to king; club ruff (high); spade to dummy and run the trumps. You might even be given an overtrick if West lets go of his diamond stopper.
© 1998 Richard Pavlicek