Optical illusion

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Step by step declarer play: Optical illusion!

Dealer South, East and West vulnerable

  • Sitting South, you discover the following hand:

You open 1♠ and West doubles for take-out. Now your partner bids 3NT, an artificial raise which shows 13-15 points and at least four-card support in Spade. With this information, you sign off in the Spade game.

  • The full auction:

(*) “Super Truscott”

Now it is up to you to make your contract on the lead of the Diamond 4, keeping in mind that West holds opening strength and Spade shortness.

Contract: 4 Spade.
Lead: ♦4 to the 8 and 10.

  • How many winners do you have at the moment?

Thanks to West’s Diamond lead from under his King, you can already claim eight with six high ♠ and two Diamonds.

  • Where do you plan to establish the two missing tricks?

It’s child play to set up three more by kicking out West’s Ace of Clubs.

  • So can you claim already?

No, unfortunately not because, in reality, you are not in a desirable situation.

  • For what reason?

You are facing the loss of three ♥ in addition to the Club Ace. True, West hasn’t led that suit. But you must expect him to change his weapon of choice at the first opportunity and switch to a Heart.

  • But how can you be convinced of that?

For not having led a Heart, West certainly holds Ace-Queen there.

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