Unit 149 (WUMBA) - District 13
Interesting Hands: How Many Can You Make?
Subject: Line of Play?
Event: La Crosse, WI; Swiss Teams; August 1, 1999
Board: ??
Dealer: East
Vul: ??
S 9 4
H K 8
D 10 7 6 2
C A Q J 10 9
Art is North
S K 6 5
H Q 9 6 5
D Q 9 5 4 3
C 3
  S 7 2
H J 7 3
C K 8 6 4 2
Lee is South S A Q J 10 8 3
H A 10 4 2
D 8
C 7 5
The auction
    1 C 1 S
X (1) 2 NT P 4 S
P P P  
(1) Negative

Here is an interesting hand where declarer chooses a 2nd best line of play, but goes unpunished. As reported by the declarer, Lee Prellwitz

East opened one club. I overcalled one spade, followed by a negative double. Art bid two notrump (you will have to ask him), and I bid four spades. I won the ace, and took the trump finesse. West won and led a heart so the rest was easy. Win in hand, pull trumps, and lead your second club. I thought I was protected against a diamond return. After they cash the club king, I ruff the third round high, and pull trumps with two pitches still available.

George (teammate) pointed out that if East returned a small club without cashing the king, and West returns a trump after ruffing, I am two tricks short, because I had wasted the nine of spades at trick two. [ed: this assumes that West wins K of S, returns a diamond, East wins and returns a small club.] This is true, but there is a way to combat that also as long as hearts are four- three, and spades three-two in either direction. Something involving a scissors. If I lead a diamond at trick two I have cut defensive communications. They must get the small club out of my hand, or the rest is easy. After ruffing the club, West cannot get out in trumps without giving up the King. Now I can ruff two hearts in dummy, not caring if the nine is overruffed on the fourth round. An interesting hand.