East west vulnerable

East west vulnerable

Play Bridge: How to manage reversing the dummy

This week there is competition to responder's limit raise.

Last week, we saw responder make a limit raise with an invitational hand. This week, there is competition. A jump to three or four of partner’s major is weak, and a cuebid is a limit raise or better.

The dummy reversal is another case, in addition to last week’s cross-ruff, where it is correct for the declarer to ruff in the long-trump hand.

The bidding: South with 17 high card points, opens one heart. It is overcalled in clubs and North cuebids clubs showing a limit raise or better. West made a vulnerable overcall so it is very likely that North does not have wasted points in clubs.

Declarer uses keycard Blackwood, and partner shows zero or three keycards. Therefore, seven is not there, and declarer bids six.

The Lead: The Ace of clubs is a natural lead and it might prevent an overtrick. A trump lead may catch partner with Queen third, so a club lead and continuation are done.

The play: Declarer ruffs the club at trick two with the Ace of trump. He crosses to dummy with a trump and ruffs another club with the King of trump. He crosses again with another trump and ruffs the last club with the last trump in his hand.

He crosses to dummy’s King of spades and draws trump with the last heart. He pitches a diamond from his hand and claims.

As the cards lie, a squeeze (which will be discussed in a later column) would have been possible but trump splitting three-two is more likely than West having four diamonds and all the club honours.

Result: Six hearts making for +980.


-The dummy reversal fails if the trump are not three-two.

-Furthermore, for the dummy reversal to work, declarer needs all the high trump and an entry in dummy to draw the last trump.