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One diamond overcall

East west vulnerable - Warren Watson
East west vulnerable
— image credit: Warren Watson

The bidding: The one-diamond overcall is a special case of overcalls for the opponents. Normally, bids made in competition are five-card suits, but after East’s overcall, a major bid by South shows only four.

If South is four-four in the majors, he doubles one diamond. If he is four-three, four-two, four-one, et cetera, he simply bids his four-card major.

Normally one can double with three cards in an unbid suit, but not here because North can only have four cards in a major, not five, since he opened one club.

North bids his four-card spade suit, and South bids one notrump with his two diamond stoppers, and it passes out.

The bidding shown is what should happen, but with a six-card diamond suit and a void, a lot of people playing East bid two diamonds. South doubles two diamonds, and North South collect 800 points from a partscore hand.

The Lead: As mentioned in a previous column, when one holds a singleton, a double queen or the ace, one may choose not to lead partner’s suit. West, with a reasonable six-card suit and two possible outside entries, leads the six of hearts. With no outside entries, West would lead his singleton diamond.

The play: Declarer wins the opening lead with the eight of hearts. West discards a spade, delaying the inevitable choice between club and diamond discards.

Declarer  plays a diamond from dummy. East normally should play the ace, but he has no good exit. East ducks and South wins the Jack. South takes the spade finesse twice and cashes four spades.

Now East discards a diamond. If East discards a club, declarer will correctly play West for the queen of clubs.

Declarer exits with a small heart which West ducks. Declarer continues hearts, and West wins the ace. West exits with a heart and lets declarer play clubs on his own. East discards a diamond and a club.

Declarer plays a club to the Jack which forces East’s ace. East has no more entries so he cashes the ace of diamonds and plays the queen. Declarer wins four spades, three hearts, two diamonds and a club for ten tricks.

Result: One notrump making four for +180.

Do You Have The Basics?

This is a new feature. I will have one question a week for several weeks testing your basic knowledge of bridge. Send your answer to warren.t.watson@gmail.com and I will publish the winner’s name at the end of the questions.

Question 1 Answer: 10C

Question 2: You have KQJ1092 of clubs and want to discard a club on a diamond to tell partner to lead a club. Which card do you play? (answer next week)

Notes:

-All the bridge columns may be viewed at http://watsongallery.ca. The index tab is a bridge reference for all to use.

-The Kootenay Jewel Bridge Club is now every Monday at the KP Hall above Shopper’s Drug Mart in Trail. Go up the stairs by the Artisan Shop. Lesson start at 11:30am and game starts at noon.

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