The Dalai Lama said, "If you can, help others; if you cannot do that, at least do not harm them."
On defense, if you can, help partner; if you cannot do that, follow suit and signal accurately so that at least you do not mislead him. In this example, how should East and West play to defeat three no-trump after West has led his fourth-highest heart?
In the modern game, South's response of three no-trump shows a balanced 13 to 15 points without a four-card major. A response of two no-trump is game-invitational, promising a good 10 to 12 points. (If you use inverted minor-suit raises, the auction could go one diamond - two diamonds — two spades — three no-trump — pass.)
The first trick goes heart three, five, jack, king (or ace). West should now know that South also has the heart ace (or king) because East would have played that card (third hand high) if he had had it. Also, South must have the heart 10 because East would have played it (bottom of equally high cards).
Declarer plays a spade to dummy's queen and calls for a diamond.
West wins this trick and should realize that he must find his partner with the club ace. But because West wants East to shift back to hearts, West must lead the club seven, top of nothing, to deny any interest in that suit. Here, East should win with his ace and return the heart eight, the higher of two remaining cards, to establish West's suit. With the diamond ace as an entry, West gets in and runs his hearts for down two.
COPYRIGHT: 2012, UNITED FEATURE SYNDICATE
SPADES A K Q
HEARTS 7 5
DIAMONDS 8 7 5 4 2
CLUBS K J 9
SPADES 6 4 3SPADES 8 7 5 2
HEARTS Q 9 4 3 2HEARTS J 8 6
DIAMONDS A KDIAMONDS 6 3
CLUBS 7 5 2CLUBS A 6 4 3
SPADES J 10 9
HEARTS A K 10
DIAMONDS Q J 10 9
CLUBS Q 10 8
Opening lead: HEARTS 3