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FEATURED HAND: A Dummy Reversal play
|Hand played on
|14th September 2006
|4, Red Section
There is a nice example of a Dummy Reversal play on this hand. Opposite the 1NT rebid, the 3♦ bid essentially shows a 5-card spade suit, and it is suggesting spades as a possible resting place. Looking at good controls, nice trump support, and a feeble club suit, West opted for game in spades, rather than risking 3NT, despite the perfect balance of the hand.
South chose to lead a small club, whereupon Dummy spread his hand and went off to do 'Director' duties while partner was left to contemplate how 9 tricks could become 10. Given the bad fall of the diamond suit, there appears to be a loser in each suit. Looked at the other way round, Declarer can count 4 spade tricks, 2 hearts, and when the jack of diamonds doesn't drop, only three diamonds. In practice the club lead and club continuation helped Declarer to find the winning line - there are enough entries to trump THREE clubs in Declarer's hand, which of course reduces his own holding to just two trumps, and then to use Dummy's 3-card suit to draw trumps. Now you have two spade winners, two hearts, three diamonds, and three club ruffs - 10 in all! When the club comes back at trick 2, trump it, and play a trump. North can win and return a trump, but it is too late! It is better for North not to take the first trump lead, and now Declarer cannot risk a second round because that gives North the opportunity to clear the third trump.True that the opening lead helped to steer Declarer in the right direction, but it takes sharp defence to thwart the dummy reversal One way of beating it, for example, is as follows. South should start with a trump - not so difficult to find - but when North takes the first trick he / she must resist the temptation to try a top club and instead return a trump. Now when in with the Ace of clubs, North can lead a third trump, and Declarer has to rely on winning four diamond tricks - which do not materialise so long as South is not careless with the discards!
The traveller reveals that only two Declarers made game in spades, while 4♠-1 and making spade part-scores were popular results. Full marks to any Declarers who found the winning play - and even better marks to any astute Defenders who thwarted the line of play.