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Simple, or not.... Finesse or drop against the 9

Poll: Simple, or not.... (12 member(s) have cast votes)

Finesse or drop?

  1. Finesse (6 votes [50.00%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 50.00%

  2. Drop (6 votes [50.00%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 50.00%

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#1 User is offline   manudude03 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 13:27

One of my opps had this play problem earlier today.



You get the 3 lead (playing 2nd/4th). Plan the play.

If you test diamonds
Spoiler


If you ever decide to play the queen of hearts on the first round of hearts, RHO will drop the jack.

Bonus question:
Spoiler

Wayne Somerville
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#2 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 14:19

Do we know anything about the bidding or final contract?
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#3 User is offline   manudude03 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 14:25

View Postsfi, on 2017-October-22, 14:19, said:

Do we know anything about the bidding or final contract?


Sorry, thought I had included it, the contract was 6NT (2NT-4NT-6NT) OP edited.
Wayne Somerville
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#4 User is offline   broze 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 14:50

Playing against any semi-competent opponent playing for the drop is clear since it picks up J9x and J9

And as for the bonus question surely the answer is "always" as it is the only play that gives declarer a losing option.
'In an infinite universe, the one thing sentient life cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion.' - Douglas Adams
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#5 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 14:52

Next question - what happens on the clubs? If RHO ducks, I'm playing a second club and I'll watch the spots to try and work out the distribution.
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#6 User is offline   JanisW 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 15:04

I'd play for the drop, too.

And by the way 4NT directly is terrible.
But unfortunately one never sees the Opps missing their 9 card Heart-Fit, does one?

regards
JW
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#7 User is offline   manudude03 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 15:11

View Postsfi, on 2017-October-22, 14:52, said:

Next question - what happens on the clubs? If RHO ducks, I'm playing a second club and I'll watch the spots to try and work out the distribution.


3-4-T-J
Q-A-T-6
8-5*-7-K

*or whatever you pitch
Wayne Somerville
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#8 User is offline   manudude03 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 15:20

View Postbroze, on 2017-October-22, 14:50, said:

And as for the bonus question surely the answer is "always" as it is the only play that gives declarer a losing option.


I don't know the answer, but if you always play the J from J9(x), then if you ever play the 9 from whatever holding, then declarer would know to finesse as either the jack is onside or the contract is hopeless.
Wayne Somerville
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#9 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 15:27

If the Jack is a singleton, LHO has chosen to lead a low club from something like:

Jx
9xxxx
xx
Axxx

Two issues with taking the finesse:

1 - I would expect them to lead a heart with this hand.
2 - The double squeeze works if LHO is guarding hearts.

So drop it is.
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#10 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 16:48

View Postmanudude03, on 2017-October-22, 15:11, said:

3-4-T-J
Q-A-T-6
8-5*-7-K

*or whatever you pitch



??? Q-A-T-6

Did West really underlead A, and there are 2 10 played.
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#11 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 17:02

View Postbroze, on 2017-October-22, 14:50, said:

Playing against any semi-competent opponent playing for the drop is clear since it picks up J9x and J9

And as for the bonus question surely the answer is "always" as it is the only play that gives declarer a losing option.

Also with diamonds not breaking we only have tricks if we successfully finesse...


Are you sure there isn't a squeeze available?
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#12 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 17:07

View Postsfi, on 2017-October-22, 15:27, said:

If the Jack is a singleton, LHO has chosen to lead a low club from something like:

Jx
9xxxx
xx
Axxx

Two issues with taking the finesse:

1 - I would expect them to lead a heart with this hand.
2 - The double squeeze works if LHO is guarding hearts.

So drop it is.


If West holds that hand, there is no double squeeze if you play another high heart but there is a simple spade-diamond squeeze against East.
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#13 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 17:14

View Postjohnu, on 2017-October-22, 17:07, said:

If West holds that hand, there is no double squeeze if you play another high heart but there is a simple spade-diamond squeeze against East.


True, but my second point wasn't really related to the hand I put together. There is a double squeeze no matter what the distribution of spades and clubs, although if West holds that hand then it's really a simple squeeze played as a double. It functions exactly the same way if West holds

Jxx
9xxxx
xx
Axx

where West will have already been squeezed on the third diamond. If the hearts aren't running, East will have to give up the 12th trick when the top hearts are cashed.

The point is, once the opponents win one of the first two clubs, you're cold when you play for the drop unless East started with 5 hearts.
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#14 User is offline   nige1 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 19:02

View Postmanudude03, on 2017-October-22, 13:27, said:

One of my opps had this play problem earlier today.
You get the 3 lead (playing 2nd/4th). Plan the play.
If you test diamonds
Spoiler

If you ever decide to play the queen of hearts on the first round of hearts, RHO will drop the jack.
Bonus question:
Spoiler
Depending on your reading of the distribution and your intuition, you might finesse T, without defender's J false-card, so the false-card rarely helps the defence, unless you are naive.
The 9 falsecard from J9x makes sense.
Here, the J false-card gives you a near cinch, with no need to finesse s.
Start with 3 s, 1 , and 3 s
(Hit Next in the diagram on the left).
Now, as the cards lie, 3 s squeeze RHO in the pointed suits.
If LHO had 4s, 2 s would squeeze LHO in the red suits.
Better defence might be for LHO to duck 2 rounds of s.

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#15 User is offline   dsLawsd 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 23:44

View Postsfi, on 2017-October-22, 15:27, said:

If the Jack is a singleton, LHO has chosen to lead a low club from something like:

Jx
9xxxx
xx
Axxx

Two issues with taking the finesse:

1 - I would expect them to lead a heart with this hand.
2 - The double squeeze works if LHO is guarding hearts.

So drop it is.

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#16 User is offline   dsLawsd 

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Posted 2017-October-22, 23:49

What expertise level? I think a club lead is wrong as partner cannot really have help. A diamond lead might be best and often the underlead of the spade honor will avoid problems later. Clearing clubs could be forcing declarer into the winning heart play, so what happens if the 2nd club is won and then shift to another suit?

Excellent problem for partners to go over I would say!
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#17 User is offline   msjennifer 

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Posted 2017-October-24, 00:20

The declarer has only 10 top tricks.He has to find 2 extra tricks.In order to think of a three suit simple or double squeeze he will have to rectify the count unless he is thinking of something like a squeeze without count.As it is ,expert defenders are not going to let him do it.They will duck the second club and he is back to square one. So he has to take it on from there.Not at all easy ! My answer to your second question is:ALWAYS.
Against ordinary opponents I might consider the finesse in hearts ,but as I said that will be ,with some trepidation.( if they duck the second club)
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#18 User is offline   johnu 

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Posted 2017-October-24, 02:04

View Postmsjennifer, on 2017-October-24, 00:20, said:

The declarer has only 10 top tricks.


When the J is played on the 1st heart trick, there are 2 spades, 4 hearts, 3 diamonds, and 2 clubs, which is 11 top tricks.
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#19 User is offline   msjennifer 

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Posted 2017-October-24, 03:58

View Postjohnu, on 2017-October-24, 02:04, said:

When the J is played on the 1st heart trick, there are 2 spades, 4 hearts, 3 diamonds, and 2 clubs, which is 11 top tricks.

Before playing any card to the first trick there are only 10 tricks.They become 11 only As and when the declarer plays the HQ and the Jack appears. The plan thought of with 10 tricks originally changes and before that the count needs to be rectified.It can happen ONLY if opponents take the club Acs on the second round of clubs.Declarer does not KNOW that the HJ will fall on the first round of hearts and has to plan accordingly.
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#20 User is offline   miamijd 

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Posted 2017-October-24, 14:29

View Postmsjennifer, on 2017-October-24, 00:20, said:

The declarer has only 10 top tricks.He has to find 2 extra tricks.In order to think of a three suit simple or double squeeze he will have to rectify the count unless he is thinking of something like a squeeze without count.As it is ,expert defenders are not going to let him do it.They will duck the second club and he is back to square one. So he has to take it on from there.Not at all easy ! My answer to your second question is:ALWAYS.
Against ordinary opponents I might consider the finesse in hearts ,but as I said that will be ,with some trepidation.( if they duck the second club)


Ducking the second club isn't so easy, especially at MPs.

You are really going to play the J from J9x? Two problems with that. First off, declarer may be able to get a count on the hand sufficient to tell that you don't have a stiff J. Second, you don't know whether declarer needs 4 H tricks or 5; if it's only 4, you've just handed him the contract. The 9 makes more sense to me.
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