Bridge Puzzle


PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 30 June, 2015, 3:20pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 23 February, 2017, 5:52am

Opening lead: king of diamonds

It was impossible to predict the type of error Sylvia might make next. Sylvia could bid some hands well, play her cards as declarer acceptably, and defend reasonably enough on many an occasion. But the trouble was that you could never tell when some peculiar thought process would suddenly take possession of her, usually with mind-boggling results.

It is therefore no wonder that the members of the club trembled inwardly whenever they cut her as a partner. They knew that anything could, and probably would, happen at any time.

Yet with all that, Sylvia did occasionally produce a genuine gem that would serve for weeks on end as a conversation piece among the members. Today’s hand provides a typical example.

Sylvia was in six notrump, and West led the king of diamonds. She took the ace and cashed six club tricks, West discarding two spades and a heart, while East discarded three spades. Sylvia now played the Q-K-A of hearts, and then, acting under the delusion that her nine was now a trick, she tried to cash it.

This inadvertence had a devastating effect on West. The position when Sylvia played the nine was:

West could not find a satisfactory discard when the heart was led. Whatever he played, dummy would win the last two tricks.


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