Hand of the Week
This deal took place in the Cap Gemini World Invitational Pairs in The Hague, Netherlands, in 2000. The deal was reported by Patrick Jourdain of Wales. Declarer was Poland’s Krzysztof Jassem, playing with Piotr Tuszynski playing against England’s Jason and Justin Hackett.
This deal turned into the most interesting deal of the tournament. Three pairs made game, two showing a familiar theme of avoiding the major suit fit, opting for 3NT. The other was the auction above.
Jason led his singleton club. Jassem won with the ace and led a diamond. Jason won the ♦A and had to do what to do next. When Jason somewhat casually played the ♠J, Jassem found the brilliant move of playing low in dummy. Justin gave this a long look, but there was no solution. If he overtook the ♠J to give his brother a club ruff, he would lose the second trump trick. He had to let the ♠J win and the defense never obtain the club ruff. Plus 620 for Jassem.
The play went exactly the same way when Andrew Robson held the West cards, but on the lead at trick three he switched to the nine of spades. Declarer might still have made it the contract had he played low – it is not obvious that East must play the ♠10. In practice, however, declarer rose with the ♠K and contract was one down. It’s worth noting that Robson and Zia Mahmood won the event.
The full deal: