A winkle


A winkle is defined as "a secondary squeeze that forces the opponents to choose between a throw-in or an unblock, each

of which costs a trick."


Wafik Abdou found a winkle in the next deal:


Dlr: South               S  QT732

Vul: Both                H  6

                         D  K842

                         C  Q83

          S  AK4                       S  J86

          H  JT94                      H  AK75

          D  A96                       D  QJ53

          C  AJ7                       C  65

                         S  95

                         H  Q832

                         D  T7

                         C  KT942


Abdou (West), playing 4H, received a low spade lead and played dummy's jack, which held. "I could have made things

easier on myself if I had ducked a club at trick two," he noted. "Then I could ruff a club in dummy. But it all worked out."

At trick two, he led the DQ -- low, low, king. North led another spade and Abdou won his ace. He led the HJ, as North showed out, and ducked to South's queen.

South now shifted to a low club and Abdou couldn't afford to duck -- if North won the club, he could give South a

spade ruff.

Abdou went up with the CA and cashed two rounds of hearts and the DA.

This was the four-card ending:


                         S  --

                         H  --

                         D  84

                         C  Q8


             S  K                   S  8

             H  --                  H  --

             D  9                   D  J5

             C  J7                  C  6


                         S  --

                         H  --

                         D  --

                         C  KT94


When Abdou cashed the SK, North was truly winkled: if he pitched a diamond, the suit would run. If he threw a low

club, Abdou would cash the D9 and throw North in with the CQ to collect a diamond on the end. (Note that South can't

overtake the CQ without setting up Abdou's jack.)

Finally, if North discards the CQ, Abdou would overtake the D9 with the jack and lead up to his CJ.