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Bridge 4/23
Where to win the first trick?
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    This week, we are looking at dummy's rights and what declarer should do at trick one.
    First, may the dummy ask declarer if he has reneged (revoked)? May a defender ask his partner the same question?
    Second, you are South, in four spades. West leads the heart queen. How would you plan the play?
    After you open one no-trump, North uses Stayman to try to find a 4-4 major-suit fit. When you show four spades, North jumps to game in that suit. Note that three no-trump would fail after West leads the heart queen. It is usually a tall order to make three no-trump when you lack three aces and do not have a long suit to run.
    In four spades, you have four potential losers, one in each suit. You cannot avoid conceding tricks to the aces, so must do something about that heart loser — and do it now. You can establish two diamond tricks, on which you can pitch two hearts from the board. Then you can ruff your last heart on the board. But since you are establishing winners in your hand, you need a fast entry to your hand. You must take the first trick on the board with the heart king. Then play a diamond. No other line works against best defense.
    Yes, dummy may ask his partner if he has reneged. And in this country a defender may also ask his partner. Under World Bridge Federation regulations, though, a defender may not ask. It is thought that a sudden, "What? No spades, partner?" would advertise that declarer has unexpected spade length.
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