Secondhand Rose
It had been a while since the player we call Secondhand Rose had darkened the door of my club. When the lesson about “second hand low” on defense was taught, Rose must have been out on a date with Jiggs the plumber.

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

Opening lead Q
Rose was today’s East, and South played at 4♠ after West doubled his 1♠ bid for takeout. West led the Q. After dummy’s ace won, South led the 10 of trumps, pretending he was about to try a finesse. And Secondhand Rose … with the ace!
Rose then led a diamond, and West took the queen and ace and also got his ace of clubs.

Diamond Loser

South makes game if Rose plays “second hand low” on the first trump. South will win in his hand and pitch a diamond from dummy on the K, avoiding a second diamond loser.
Rose’s play was clear enough in retrospect. West’s opening lead marked South with the K, and a discard was impending. But many Easts would have feared that West had a singleton king or queen in trumps.

Daily Question

You hold: ♠9   Q J 10 8 6   A Q 7 2    ♣A Q 2.
You open 1, and your partner raises to 2. What do you say?

Your hand isn’t promising enough to bid 4, but since a well-fitting hand for your partner will make game, you must try to get there. Bid 3, asking him to judge based primarily on whether he has help for your second suit. If he holds a hand such as ♠7 6 5   K 9 7   K J 6   ♣J 6 5 4, he will jump to 4 .

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