Women s crossruff -- one ruff, one cross by Alan Truscott

A dramatic deal from the Women’s Knockout Team final produced interest for the RAMA audience.

N/S Vul. Dealer East.
                  NORTH
                  S J 3
                  H 10 7 3
                  D 9 6 5 2
  WEST            C K Q 8 6   EAST
  S A K 9 8                  S 6 5 4 2
  H 6                        H A Q 9 8 4 2
  D 10 4 3                   D K Q 7
  C J 7 4 3 2                C -
                  SOUTH
                  S Q 10 7
                  H K J 5
                  D A J 8
                  C A 10 9 5

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

Marinesa Letizia as West found herself in an aggressive 4S contract and received the lead of the club king. She ruffed, cashed the heart ace, and took four ruffs in hearts and clubs. She then took her top spades and reached this ending:
     
                  NORTH
                  S -
                  H -
                  D 9 6 5 2
                  C Q
      WEST                    EAST
      S -                     S -
      H -                     H Q 9
      D 10 4 3                D K Q 7
      C J 7                   C -
                  SOUTH
                  S Q
                  H -
                  D A J 8
                  C A
     
A diamond was led to the queen, and South was helpless whether she won or not. She discovered too late that she should have unblocked the club ace to keep a line of communication to the North hand. And she would have done even better by  overcalling 1NT in the first place. When that happened in the replay the bidding ended and South scored 120. That was 11 IMPs for the Letizia team, far more than the eventual margin of victory.