Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Reasoning methodology

A slightly lively auction ended with you having to select a lead against a doubled slam.

2H - (2S) - pass - (3H);
pass - (3NT) - pass - (6S);
X all pass

Partner opened 2H showing 9-12 and 6-card suit. After an overcall and ambigous cuebid, LHO jumped to slam, which partner expressed an opinion about. What do you make of this situation?

Partner is likely to have a minor suit void and the ace of hearts (he knows that's cashing from the bidding). It's not obvious to us which minor he's void in, so how should we reason? Are there any clues?

Go about it this way: If I hit the wrong minor, will we have a chance to recover? With this hand a club lead stands out. If partner has a diamond void, our holding in that suit is so strong that it's unlikely that declarer has 12 tricks (at least not without a serious sweat ;).

So it proved this time.


Freddan led a club for the reasons stated. Declarer went 2 down after ruffing in dummy and trying to cash the ace of diamonds..

'Recovery reasoning' (i.e. if my choice is wrong will we still have a chance?) is a helpful tool when deciding what to lead but also when trying to find the right shift when defending.

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