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Kantar Shines

Hand of the Week

Dlr:
South
Vul:
None
North
♠ Q J 8 4
J 9 7 5
4 2
♣ Q 6 3
South
♠ A 6 3
A K Q 10 4
10 5
♣ A 4 28
West North East South
1 Dbl
Pass 1♠ 2 2
Pass 3 Pass 4
All Pass

Everyone knows Eddie Kantar is a great writer. Perhaps not everyone knows that in his heyday he was an outstanding player, too, as you can see from this deal, played in the Spingold Knockout Teams. Formulate your own plan before seeing the entire deal.

West led the 6, and East cashed two diamonds before exiting with a trump. Trumps divide 3-1, East having a singleton. Choose your next move before reading on.

Kantar realized that for him to have a chance, both black kings had to be with East. Accordingly, he played the ♠A from hand and a low spade, ducking completely in dummy. That was the key move because this was the full deal.

Dlr:
Vul:
North
♠ Q J 8 4
J 9 7 5
4 2
♣ Q 6 3
West
♠ 10 9 7 5
8 6 2
J 7 6
♣ 10 8 7
East
♠ K 2
3
A K Q 9 8 3
♣ K J 9 5
South
♠ A 6 3
A K Q 10 4
10 5
♣ A 4 2

On winning the ♠K, East had the choice of giving Kantar a ruff-sluff by returning a diamond – or leading away from his ♣K. Either way, Kantar had 10 tricks.

Note that East could have assured defeat of the contract by leading a low diamond to his partner’s jack at trick two for the club switch, but that does not take away from the brilliance of Kantar’s play.