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When a player such a American Jeff Meckstroth - who has won countless World Championships - gives a widely applicable Tip for players of all levels, it is worth absorbing. “Do not introduce a suit in the bidding unless you will ultimately be happy to make the suit trumps”.
♠ 8 6 4
♦ J 8 6 5 4
♣ A Q 6 4
♠ K Q J 7
♥ 10 8 5 2
♣ J 9 8 3
♠ A 10 9 3 2
♥ 9 3
♦ K 10 9
♣ 10 7 2
♥ A K Q J 7 6
♦ A 7 3 2
♣ K 5
|Pass||1 NT||Pass||3 ♦|
South’s heart sank when his partner jumped to 5♦. Why, oh why, had he bothered to mention his second suit? He should simply have jumped to 4♥ over 1NT - he rated to lose no ♥ tricks even if his partner held a void. A 4♥ contract would make easily - six trump tricks, ♦A and ♣AKQ.
South played the 5♦ contract as carelessly as he had bid it. West led ♠K and continued with ♠Q, which he trumped. Needing a favourable trump split, he cashed ♦A, felling West’s ♦Q and East’s ♦9, and led ♦3. West discarded and East beat dummy’s ♦J with ♦K, cashed ♦10 and also ♠A - the contract was two down. South should have crossed to ♣A and trumped dummy’s third ♠ before leading a second round of trumps to restrict himself to one down.
ANDREW’S TIP: Do not bid a suit you do not wish to be trumps.