Good Slam??

Chico Sectional
Pairs Event with Sue Gregory
November, 1986

Dealer:  East
Vul:  None
Bidding: E  S(me)  W  N(Sue)
         P   2C    -   3C    (shows 5 card suit, 2 of top 3 honors)
         -   4H    -   4NT   (intending to show a solid suit & no slam interest)
         -   5H    -   6H
         All Pass

Opening Lead:  6 of Diamonds



Question:  What card do you play from dummy to get there, either now or later
so you can dump a spade on the ace of clubs?


Answer:  On the actual hand, it didn't matter.  West was leading from
         Q 10 8 6, so any card you played will win trick 1.  But, assume
you guess wrong and whatever card you play from dummy gets covered by
East with the next higher spot (9 with the 10 or Jack with the Queen).

The really fascinating thing with this hand is that you still have a good
chance to make this hand.  Play your 8 hearts coming down to four cards.

What are the poor defenders going to discard down to?  Of course,
somebody should keep the Tx of diamonds and throw away all their clubs,
but that is hard to do.  Probably, somebody will keep King doubleton or
third of clubs and spades.  Somebody else may keep their King doubleton
or third of spades and a club.  If you can determine the four card
ending, you can either exit a spade or cash diamonds or do the right
thing and make the hand.

What are the possible endings?? Dummy will keep - - 97 AQ and you will have 96 - K2 - If either opponent keeps A play a spade, pitching a diamond from - dummy, finesse the queen on the forced - club return, cash the ace of clubs, and Kxx play a diamond to your king. If A cash the diamond king before putting him in with a spade. - The reason you don't do this in the above case is that he might x throw his ace of spades on the king of diamonds, ruining your Kx endplay. If A play a spade and endplay him in diamonds, getting an entry - to the board to cash the club ace. Txx - If ?? drop the diamond ten, play to the diamond 9, and play the club ace. - T ?? If - play king and another diamond, winning two clubs at the end. - Tx Kx
If they come down to A opposite K exit a spade, throwing the - - club queen from dummy. Tx x If West exits a diamond, x Kx you have no diamond losers and your hand is good. If he exits his club, you can throw your losing diamond on the club ace and get to your hand with the king of diamonds to cash your last, now good spade. If A opposite Kx exit a spade throwing the small diamond from dummy. - - I don't think I can make it in this situation, but Tx - the defenders have to also do exactly the right x Kx thing.
If East comes down to - play king and out a diamond, winning - two clubs at the end. Tx xx If East comes down to A cash the diamond king and exit a - spade, winning two clubs at the end. x Kx
There's lots of possibilities and the defenders will have a very tough time of it. All in all, this is a decent slam, no?