Thursday, October 19, 2006

Development squeeze

This one I played yesterday (rotated for convenience). It's very easy to squeeze your opponents on this hand, but it just doesn't come up very often. According to a source on the bridgebase forums (= Ben) it's called a "development squeeze". Here's the hand:

Dealer:East
Vul:None
Scoring:imps
3
KQ83
AKT97
JT4
J54
J765
864
983
AQ9762
A2
QJ5
Q6
KT8
T94
32
AK752

The bidding went:
1 - 2 - pass - 2*
pass - 2NT - pass - 3NT
all pass

So I'm in 3NT, and LHO leads 4 to the Q. You can't hold up, so you take K immediately. Now what? You can play on the double finesse, but the odds are against us because of the opener on the right. The only real alternative is to play on first and hope that suit behaves. If that's the case, you have 8 tricks and perhaps some possiblities for a 9th.
You continue a small to the Ace and let the J run. RHO is smart enough not to cover immediatly, but you're still playing the odds. When the J holds, you have only 1 chance of making 5 tricks and that's if they split 3-2. You're lucky and continue to play off all your s.
On those s, RHO gets into "trouble": he has to keep QJ or he gives away 3 tricks, and has to keep A or I get 2 tricks for free. The only thing left to do is discard s, which are high (but he doesn't know that for sure). Because of these discards I can count out the hand, and play to the K without fear, to develop my 9th trick.

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