This deal occurred in a North American Pairs final. East learned to his regret that it’s better not to tell a good declarer too much.
North’s 2♥ transferred to spades. 3NT gave South a choice of games.
West led the ♥3, which went to the king. South ducked. When East returned the ♥2, declarer deduced that the hearts were splitting 4-4, so it appeared safe to take the ace at trick two.
Declarer led a low diamond from hand. West went up with the king, cashed the ♥Q and played a fourth round of hearts to East’s jack. Declarer pitched two spades from dummy on the third and fourth round of hearts, playing a low club from hand on the fourth round.
East exited with the ♦J, which rode to dummy’s queen, and on the third round of diamonds, East discarded the ♣3. The defenders were employing what is known as odd-even discards: the first time either defender cannot follow suit, the discard of an odd card (3, 5, etc.) shows interest in that suit, while an even card (4, 6, etc.) denies interest and can have suit-preference implications.
Without the telling ♣3, declarer most likely would have taken the 50% chance of a club finesse for his ninth trick. After East’s discard, it appeared that strategy would fail. Accordingly, declarer played a club to the ace, returning to hand with a spade to the ace. He then cashed a good diamond. This was the position with three tricks left:
Declarer played the ♦9, tossing the ♣J from dummy – and East had to fold up his cards in surrender. If he pitched his ♣K, declarer’s ♣Q would be good. If he tossed a spade, declarer would play the ♠10 to the ace and cash the ♠9 for his ninth trick.
East might have been falsecarding, of course, but on this deal a spade discard would most likely have worked better for the defenders.
The full deal: