Bridge article step by step

Matchpoint Pairs, Dealer South, All Vul.

(1) “Do you stop the Spades?”
(2) “Yes.”

Lead: ♠K. The two from dummy and the seven from East.

Do you win the King of Spades?

No, you have to duck it. The suit could break 6-2 and you can’t take thirteen tricks anyway. West continues with the Queen of Spades for the four, East’s eight and your Ace. It looks like Spades unfortunately split 5-3.

Count your initial winners

You already have nine safe and immediate winners in your possession with four Clubs, three Hearts, Ace of Spades and Ace of Diamonds.

Is this enough for you?

No, certainly not! In a teams match, you would simply make sure you make your contract. In matchpoints, however, this would be a big mistake, because your score for this deal will be directly related to your result. West has made a vulnerable overcall, so you can count on him holding the Diamond King and finesse against him.

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How do you plan to tackle the Diamond suit? How do you decide on the right play? Norbert Lébely answers these questions and much more in the rest of the article.