Deals


Deal No. 1

S 8 5 4 3
H Q J 9 7 5 3
D Q
C 10 9
S A 10TableS K Q J 9 7
H 10 4H K 8
D 10 9 8 6 3 2D A K 7 5
C 5 4 3C 8 2
S 6 2
H A 6 2
D J 4
C A K Q J 7 6

Please, analyze this deal for me. It's from the final of the 2002 Rosenblum Cup. I find it odd that both sides will do better in their second longest suit than in their longest.

'Curious'


Answer

If North-South play in hearts, their nine-card fit, they can only take eight tricks if the defenders start with three rounds of spades (promoting two trump tricks). But if they play in clubs, their eight-card fit, they take ten tricks with the aid of a heart finesse. One less trump, but two more tricks.
   If East-West play in diamonds, their ten-card fit, a double dummy defense holds declarer to eight tricks: a low club to North, two heart tricks, a second club trick and a third club ruffed with the queen of diamonds. If East-West prefer their seven spades, they take nine easy tricks. Three less trumps, but one more trick.
   So if the sides prefer their longest fits, we see that 19 trumps produce 16 total tricks (-3). But if they play in their second longest fits, 15 trumps take 19 total tricks (+4). This is a good illustration to what you should know by now, namely that how many tricks you can take is not related to how many trumps you have.

What would our formula say? Let's see.


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