The full monty
A GRAND SLAM is worth bidding at Rubber bridge if the odds are two to one in your favour. North, Harry Dalmeny, must have rated his chances as much higher. He held 24 points and his partner had opened the bidding.
Dealer South North-South vulnerable 4 K 4
A Q 7 5 4 • A Q 10 A K 49 8 7 6 5
w E MI +5 9 3 8 6
+3 9 7
6 • 7 2
• 10 9 8 5 3
• K 8 4 2
• J 6 4
South West North East 14 pass 3V pass 3NT pass 7NT double pass pass pass pass redouble pass East's sharp double of the 7NT must have surprised Harry. Out-of-the-blue doubles ask for the lead of dummy's first bid suit, so clearly East held VK. The M finesse was doomed. Meanwhile South, Caroline Dal- meny, should have rebid 43 over 3V. Theo- retically her 3NT rebid showed a balanced hand with too many points to open 1NT, 15 or 16. West led V6 to 7NT redoubled. Car- oline rose with dummy's VA and counted 12 certain tricks. First, she cashed *A and 40Q, in case •J appeared. She followed with 4K and cashed her four remaining 4s. Dummy discarded three Vs and East dis- carded three +s and V10. She led out dummy's three top +s. On the last +, East had to discard from MK and .J9. She had to keep "K to prevent dummy's VQ from winning, so .9 went. Declarer led •10 to East's •J and her •K and she tabled .8 at trick 13. If East had not (fatuously) dou- bled 7NT West would have led a passive and declarer would reach a three-card end- ing in which she holds V3 and •K8 and dummy holds VAQ and .10. East has had to come down to a singleton MK to retain .J9. Declarer cashes llikK and leads V3 towards dummy. She knows East has one V remaining, but why should it be MK? She is quite likely to play VQ from dummy and go two down.