Aces on Bridge — Daily Columns

The Aces on Bridge: Saturday, November 7, 2009

Dealer: East

Vul: None

8 5 2
10 6
10 4
10 8 7 6 3 2
West East
Q 10 7 6 3 J 9 4
9 5 3 2 4
Q J 8 7 6 5 3
K Q J 5 9 4
A K Q J 8 7
A K 9 2


South West North East
Dbl. Pass 4 Pass
6 All Pass    

Opening Lead:K

“Hope tells a flattering tale,

Delusive, vain, and hollow.

Ah! Let not hope prevail,

Lest disappointment follow.”

— Miss Wrother

West leads the club king against your heart slam. Can you see any way of making 12 tricks?


Curiously, your best chance is that East has no more than two clubs. After winning the club ace, you should cash the ace of trumps, then lead a low trump to dummy’s 10. Next you ruff a club and play two more rounds of trump.


When you play your last trump, throwing a club from table, East is in trouble. You know he began with seven diamonds, a trump and, hopefully, two clubs. If East reduces to three diamonds, you will play the ace, king and another diamond. East wins the trick and has to return a spade, allowing you to take the last three tricks with the spade ace-king and the diamond nine. Whenever East keeps four diamonds, and so only two spades, you will counter by cashing the spade ace-king, reducing East to his four top diamonds. This allows you to make three of the last four tricks by leading the diamond two to dummy’s 10. When East takes it with the jack or queen, he will be forced to lead a diamond, allowing your nine to take a trick, and you will have the rest.


It was vital to ruff a club; otherwise, East would defeat you by coming down to two spades, three diamonds and a club on the last trump. After winning his diamond, he would be able to play a club to his partner.

ANSWER: You may hate the idea of putting down a void in trumps in dummy, but any further action you take now would likely make matters worse. You are playing in partner’s long suit (he has at least six). Making a call in a new suit is forcing and shows at least invitational values. So pass, and let partner suffer undoubled!


South Holds:

Q 10 7 6 3
9 5 3 2
K Q J 5


South West North East
    1 Pass
1 Pass 2 Pass


For details of Bobby Wolff’s autobiography, The Lone Wolff, contact If you would like to contact Bobby Wolff, please leave a comment at this blog. Reproduced with permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc., Copyright 2009. If you are interested in reprinting The Aces on Bridge column, contact