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Bridge 0512
Finesse not once, not twice ...
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    "She runs the gamut of emotions from A to B." About whom was Dorothy Parker speaking?
    In this deal, you have some finesses to take. Finesses come in two forms. You lead up to a tenace, such as playing a low card toward an A-Q. Or you run a card, like the queen from Q-J opposite A-x. This deal features both forms — as long as you run the finesses in the right sequence, if you will excuse the expression.
    How would you play in six spades after West leads the heart king?
North's jump to four spades conveyed a weak hand with lots of spades. (A forcing three-spade rebid would have promised some points.) South should have passed this, but could not resist the lure of a vulnerable slam bonus.
    With a definite heart loser, you must find East with both minor-suit kings. But even being that lucky, you will need to take three finesses, two in clubs and one in diamonds. You have only one dummy entry, though, in the spade seven. You must stay in the dummy while taking those finesses.
    Win with your heart ace, draw two rounds of trumps, then overtake your spade six with dummy's seven. Now comes the key play: Call for the club queen. If East covers with the king, take your ace, lead your low club to dummy's nine, and play a diamond to your queen. If East does not cover the club queen, play your jack under her majesty. Then run the club 10. And finally play a diamond to your queen.
    Dorothy Parker was speaking of Katharine Hepburn.
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