Well done to Stephen Ashforth who wins this weeks competition.
Given that this is Cross Imps scoring, the emphasis must be to make the contract which will only require 4 Diamond tricks plus the 5 other top tricks. Just in case South has all 4 Diamonds (and could hold up) we do not cross to dummy’s Heart Ace to take the Diamond finesse. Instead we play off the Diamonds starting with the Ace. We win the return and still have an entry to dummy to enjoy it’s fourth Diamond trick.
With this scoring method, overtricks are not important, making the contract is.
You must run the diamonds from hand from the top. You will lose a trick to KD, unless KD was a singleton. If KD is held back by south until the last diamond from hand (4 diamonds being held in south), you still have AH entry to take the fifth D trick, making your contract (4D, 2S, 2H, 1C).
What you must not do is to cross to AH and finesse diamonds. If south holds back the KD until entry to dummy is barred, the contract goes down.
Play the Diamonds from the top in hand until someone wins the K. You then have 2 Spades, 2 Hearts, 4 diamonds and a Club to make your contract.
6 sure tricks. 3 more tricks from Diamonds planned. Take KS. Lead JD. If KD is played then take next 8 tricks off the top. 1S, 2H, 4D, 1C. Contract made. If K not played, play diamonds until the K falls, starting with the AD, discarding the 3D. When K falls and wins you can win the next trick whatever is played. Then take winning tricks remaining to make contract, ensuring you can get back to dummy to take remaining diamond tricks by taking KH before crossing to AH if diamonds split 4/0.
Lead 5H to KH and then, assuming diamonds split 3-1, and N holds up K, run 7D to 5, 9D to 8, 10D (covered by K) to A, then JD back to Q in dummy, and then play 3D. 7 tricks so far counting KS, KH and 5 diamonds. The AH, AC and AS give another 3 tricks= 10. If N plays K D sooner, take A sooner and come back to dummy for rest of D tricks as above. 10 tricks. If S has KD, then you lose the trick when this is played, but whatever S leads next… Read more »
Whatever you do, do not burn the KH as an entry to the diamonds. After winning the spade, play the diamonds from the top, losing to the KD unless it is singleton.
Win the return and go to table with that valuable KH and then cash the remaining diamonds and the other top tricks for your contract. 2 ♠️, 2 💖, 4 diamonds ♦️ and a club.
This guards against a 4-0 diamond break
The solution to this weekly bridge quiz:
The object in Cross Imp is to ensure you make your contract. To do this you require four tricks from Diamonds. After winning the lead with KS you should lead Diamonds from the top – AD, JD, 8D (across to dummy) and another Diamond if necessary to force out KD while dummy still has AH as an entry.
You have 5 top tricks and stops in all suits. So give up the king of diamonds. Play diamonds from the top, preserving king of hearts as an entry should they split 4-0.