Thursday, April 15, 2010

What Signal Are You Expecting?

Defensive signaling quiz today.

You hold: 9, AKQ63, 8, T98764. At imps, the bidding has gone, starting with you: 1H-1S-4H-5D; all pass. You lead the ace and dummy hits with: KQJ76, J7, 94, KQJ5...

What signal do you expect from partner at trick 1? If you continue with another heart at trick 2, what signal do you expect from partner then?
attitude; count
attitude; suit preference
count; suit preference
suit preference; more suit preference
lowest card in suit
what's a signal? free polls
These polls aren't working too well. The html code I was given to paste doesn't have ana ctual vote button, and I don't think people want to be that interactive with this thing anyway.

If partner has 5 hearts, you need suit preference at trick 1, and it partner has only 4 hearts, you need count so that you know you can cash another heart. Yes, most partnerships play that at the 5 level, the K lead from AK asks for count, for just this situation, and an A lead is usually an unsupported A, and asks for attitude. Leading an unsupported A is more common and more frequently the correct play at a high level contract. So, the correct answer is that you should lead the K, partner should signal count, and then when you cash the second heart, partner gives a suit preference signal.


  1. (1) Don't most people lead the K from AK at the 5-level or higher? That's why I picked "attitude" at trick one; partner won't expect that I have the K. If I lead the K on this auction, I think I want partner to give me count.

    (2) I'd probably bid 5H at the table. I don't have much defense.

  2. hmm. your vote didn't seem to register.
    fair enough. yes, K from AK at this level asking for count is a good agreement to have and this was a first-time partnership. but if partner has 5 hearts (which would be expected), what you really want is suit preference at trick one.