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Bridge 1/15
Do you watch and interpret cards?
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    English novelist George Eliot wrote, "All meanings, we know, depend on the key of interpretation."
    At the bridge table, you should try to interpret the cards that are played, especially by partner when you are on defense, or by both defenders when you are the declarer.
    In this deal, you are West. Against four spades, you lead the heart ace: four, two, 10. What would you do next?
    In the old days, no one would have bid with that West hand. To overcall at the two-level required the values for an opening bid. Now, though, tournament players are more willing to mix it up. Some would intervene with two hearts. It would be asking for trouble, but might consume sufficient bidding space to disrupt the opponents' auction.
    When East drops the heart two, it tells you that he does not think that a heart continuation would serve much purpose. So, unless East has played an unlikely singleton, he must have at least three hearts (or a very strong desire for a particular shift).
    Playing the percentages, at trick two you should switch to the club eight (high from a weak suit).
    Note that this is the only way to defeat the game. It sets up a club winner for the defense before dummy's heart jack is established for a discard. If you cash the heart king at trick two, declarer makes his contract. He gets into the dummy with a diamond and discards his club loser on the heart jack. The heart king can wait; perhaps the club shift cannot.
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