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Bridge 2/13

A pass that does not deny power

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Oscar Wilde wrote, "The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on. It is never any use to oneself."
    Some no doubt feel that that ought to read: The only thing to do with good advice is pass it on to one's bridge partner. It is never any use to oneself.
    So, cut out this column and mail it to your partner, asking him how he would plan the play in three no-trump after West leads the heart jack.
    Over East's takeout double, South's redouble shows 10-plus points (and not very good diamond support). West is allowed to jump in a long suit in this situation, because he is known to have few values. (There's been an opening bid, a takeout double and a redouble; how can fourth hand have much?) North's pass over two hearts is forcing -- it denies a weak, distributional opening (he would rebid immediately), and four decent hearts (he would make a penalty double).
    If your partner immediately leads a club to dummy's queen or takes the diamond finesse, he goes down here. Since East is highly likely to hold both the club ace and diamond king, your partner should play a spade to dummy's king, then call for a low club. East has no defense. If he wins with his club ace, South has nine tricks via two spades, two hearts, one diamond and four clubs. And if East plays low, declarer wins with his club jack, then takes the diamond finesse, getting home with two spades, two hearts, four diamonds and one club.
    If your partner got that right, keep him.
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