Playing teams it doesn’t generally matter much whether you defend or declare a part-score – provided you can collect one extra precious morsel to deprive declarer of the requisite number of tricks.
On this deal, eager to collect six defensive tricks, Jaray questioned his partner regarding what he thought was a failure to recognise a singleton when Llama did not return a diamond at trick 3 to give a diamond ruff. East had led the 5 Hearts to the Queen and the 8 diamonds switch was made – declarer played low 3, Q, 4. Llama now led a second heart. Llama, a little bit longer in the tooth experience wise, happily pointed out the five tricks was all the defence was entitled to. Then to add a little to Jaray’s embarrassment, Llama stated, “You might have held the Qx of trumps, in which we would have lost the chance to beat the contract.”
“UNLIKELY retorted Jaray, sheepishly.”
A marvellous feature of BBO is the ability to replay deals card by card. You can even track what might happen next. It turns out double dummy agrees with Jaray – while not beating the contract today, returning a diamond for Jaray to ruff was actually the only way to get a second diamond trick. Returning a heart gave a canny declarer the opening to end play East for an extra diamond trick. Did someone once say that our gut is usually based on knowledge we don’t trust, or cannot articulate?
Maybe someone even wiser said – you can be gracious when you are right – no need for sheep on this deal Jaray!
Play more on bridgebase! It’s fantastic for more than just the cards.