Deception, Sowter style by Mark Horton, Great Britain


When Great Britain met France in the Rosenblum, Tony Sowter found a spectacular defensive play.


N/S Vul. Dealer South.


NORTH
S 5
H A1062
D Q1065
WEST C Q973 EAST
S 742 S K63
H KJ7 H 95
D A87 D 9432
C AJ106 C K532
SOUTH
S AQJ1098
H Q843
D KJ
C 8


The bidding was identical in both rooms:


WEST NORTH EAST SOUTH
1S
Pass 1NT Pass 2H
Pass 3H Pass 4H
All Pass


In the Closed Room West elected to lead the CA and continued with the CJ. Georgia Ray ruffed and played the DK. East took the ace and returned a diamond. She won with the jack and played a heart to the 10. When it held she was able to crossruff her way to 10 tricks for plus 620.
In the Open Room David Kendrick started with the DA on which Sowter played a discouraging 2. Kendrick switched to the CA and drew the 3, 5 and 8. The next trick went CJ, 7, K (!) and declarer ruffed.
Now Philippe Cronier, the declarer, is no slouch. It was possible that West might not have overcalled with CAJ10xxx and the DA, but for sure he couldn't have either major suit king. It was therefore routine for him to play a trump to the ace, finesse in spades, ruff a spade and play a heart.
As East-West were recording plus 100, Cronier nodded his approval of Sowter's brilliant falsecard -- and East was inquiring whether the contract would have gone down if Tony hadn't played the CK!
Following the system