Competition Problem 33
by Steve Bloom
South to make four spades. West leads the ♣2.
Successful solvers: Only three: Vincent Labbé (suggesting DR3-4), Rajeswar Tewari, and Wim van der Zijden (DR8). I have opted for a DR closer to van der Zijden's suggestion in view of the paucity of solutions. Both solvers express their admiration for the problem. Labbé's rating surprised me but he remarked on the originality of the problem. I, too, was struck by that.
There is only one defence to create any real difficulty and that is to duck the first rounds of spades, hearts and diamonds! So, North wins and plays a trump to the queen and king. The ♠5 loses to East's ♠A and best defence is for East to shift to the ♥5, West allowing the ♥K to hold as North discards a club. South runs the ♦Q, but East lets it win. Now a diamond to the ♦A and two more rounds of spades leave this:
♠ none ♠ none
♥ AJ1087 ♥ 9
♦ none ♦ K
♣ none ♣ J98
South leads the ♥2 and whoever wins this trick can take only one more.
See the solution to Competition Problem #4 for the recommended tabular format if you prefer not to write in English prose.
© Hugh Darwen, 2007
Date last modified: 15 April, 2017