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Ostracize an Opponent

Monday, July 17, 2017
By Anant Bhagwat

Avoidance is an art in Bridge. If you are walking on the road and you see an undesirable person, you try to avoid him by shielding your face. Similarly you have to avoid an opponent in Bridge. Watch south perform this delicate operation in the following hand
                S- K J 10 8 4
                H- J 7
                D- 4
               C- 9 8 5 4 3
S- 6 3 2             S- VOID
H- K Q 9 8        H- K J 7 5 3
D- Q 8 6 2        D- K J 7 5 3
C- K 2               C- Q J 10 7 6
         S- A Q 9 7 5
         H- A 5 4 2
         D- A 10 9
         C- A

South opened the bidding with 1 spade    and north bid 4 spades keeping, in mind the principle of bidding  “To the level of total trumps” with a weak hand. Without much ado south bid 6 spades.

West found the deadly lead of a trump.

 Declarer could see that he would not be able to set up the club suit for lack of entries to dummy. The only way was to ruff 4 times in dummy, but west would play a trump every his hand is entered. So he had to avoid west’s hand. With this in mind he won the 1st trick in hand, cashed the Ace of diamonds and slyly played the 9 of diamonds. Had west played small he would have discarded a heart from dummy. But west was awake. He put up the Queen. Declarer had to ruff in dummy. Then he came with club Ace and played the 10 of diamonds. Now west was helpless. He had to play small. So south discarded the small heart from table. East won the trick but was unable to return a trump and south made the rest of the tricks on a high cross ruff.

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