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Bridge in Paradise: by Neil Robinson

This rather fun hand was reported by Andrew Robson. With North dealing and no one vulnerable, this was the bidding:

North opened a gambling 3N, showing a running seven card minor suit. South knew the suit had to be clubs, because he held the aces of the other suits. With stoppers in three suits and a void in clubs, you might expect South to bid a no trump slam. But this would go down badly, because of South’s void. North would be stuck in dummy and never able to get into hand, unless the opponents were kind enough to lead clubs. With clubs as trumps, South could count twelve tricks: seven club tricks and the five outside kings and aces. Hoping for a thirteenth trick somewhere, maybe a major suit queen, South therefore bid grand slam in his void suit. The full deal is shown below:

West led the diamond king, taken in hand by the ace. South was disappointed by dummy, because there was no obvious thirteenth trick. The only chance was to set up a long heart in hand. This would only work if hearts split no worse than 4-2, so that South’s fifth heart would be good. Hoping for a good split, South led out the top two hearts and gave a sigh of relief when all followed. The third heart was ruffed in dummy with the ten. Now, finally, the lead was in dummy and declarer could pull trumps (breathing another sigh of relief when these also split 4-2). A spade led to the king put South back in hand to ruff a fourth round of hearts. Another spade led to the ace let South lead a fifth, now good, heart and throw away the losing diamond from board, leaving board with only a winning trump. Grand slam in clubs made, in spite of declarer having a void in trumps!
I would like to hear from readers about their favourite hands—please do contact me at [email protected] Bridge Club of Chiang Mai welcomes all players. We have members from seventeen different countries already. For information on the Club go to the web site

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Bridge in Paradise