When I studied voice way back in another life, I was taught how to “embellish” notes in the baroque style: add ornamentations to supplement the vocal line and show off the vocalist’s technique. Something similar can happen in dummy play: Declarer can embellish his basic line of play to get an extra chance.

At today’s 3NT, South won the first spade with the jack and led the Q-J of clubs. West played low, of course, so South next tried the ace and a low diamond.

West won and led another spade to the king, and South led another low diamond. He hoped for a 3-3 break, but it wasn’t to be. He took only eight tricks.


South can embellish his play: He leads a low diamond at Trick Two. South wins the spade return and cashes the ace of diamonds, dropping West’s queen. South then leads the queen and jack of clubs, overtaking with dummy’s king.

No ace appears, but South can lead a third diamond toward his jack, winning two diamonds, two clubs, two hearts and three spades.


You hold: S Q 10 9 8 2 H J 9 3 D Q 8 C A 8 4. Your partner opens one diamond, you respond one spade and he next bids two clubs. What do you say?

ANSWER: This problem is awkward. To pass would be timid; partner might have as many as 18 points. But a bid of 2NT would show a bit more strength and something in hearts, a raise to three clubs would promise four-card support and a rebid of two spades would suggest a better suit. Bid two diamonds.

South dealer

N-S vulnerable


S 7 3

H 8 6 4

D 7 6 2

C K 10 9 7 2


S Q 10 9 8 2

H J 9 3

D Q 8

C A 8 4


S 6 5 4

H Q 10 5 2

D K 10 9 5

C 6 3



H A K 7

D A J 4 3

C Q J 5

South West North East
2 C Pass 2 D Pass
2 NT Pass 3 NT All Pass
Opening lead — S 10

©2023 Tribune Content Agency, LLC.

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Source:: The Mercury News


Bridge: March 9, 2023

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