Waterloo for Napoleon, according to Victor Hugo's legend, might have meant glorious victory instead of total defeat if his maps had disclosed the gulley that swallowed the flower of his cavalry—a sunken road meandering across the battlefield. The road broke the charge before it reached Wellington's famous squares.

As I see it, the major "accomplishment" of so-called scientific bidding is to insure that the opponents will know as much as possible about declarer's hand before they are called upon to mount their counterattack.

In the current deal, for example, South furnished a clear warning that should have served as a blueprint for the defense. The reason it failed was that apparently West did not know how to read a road map.

East played the deuce of hearts on the first trick and South's jack warned of his singleton. Nevertheless, West continued by leading the queen of hearts and South ruffed. Declarer played the ace of trumps and when West showed out, the play of the hand became an open book.

Dummy's club 10 was thrown under South's ace. Declarer then led a spade to dummy. After discarding his little diamond on a second round of spades, dummy's club 3 was led through East for a finesse against the jack. Picking up East's trumps, declarer showed his hand, conceding a trick to the ace of diamonds and chalking up the game and rubber.

West's defense was considerably less potent than it might have been though South had furnished West with a complete guide. Clearly, South must have a great club suit, proof against anything but the bad break which West knew about but which South could scarcely foresee until he had led one round of trumps.

A heart continuation was scarcely likely to embarrass the kind of trump suit South must hold. A diamond lead would be into the teeth of his bid suit. The situation cried for a shift to spades.

No matter what spades declarer held, a spade lead could not help him, but it might have the advantage of robbing dummy of a much-needed later entry.

That is exactly what would have happened. Dummy would win two high spades, permitting declarer to discard his little diamond. Then a trump would be led—and South, who had no reason to foresee the 4-0 distribution, would be entirely correct to play for the adverse trumps to fall in three leads.

Once he played a high card on the first trump lead, the contract would be gone beyond recall. With no way to get back to dummy, declarer would have to lose a trump in addition to a heart and a diamond.

That West did not come up with this killing defense was in no way to South's credit. He did everything he could to help the defenders when he bid four diamonds. Prospects of a good fit in that suit were quite remote once North failed to bid diamonds over South's bid of three clubs. Since his bid of four diamonds virtually forced a five-club declaration, South should have jumped directly to that destination, keeping the opponents as much as possible in the dark about his hand.

EXTRA TRICK
A four-card suit will rarely be a better trump suit than a seven-carder unless partner can bid the shorter suit on his own. Furthermore, telling partner as much as possible about your hand can be called good bidding only when partner can make better use of the information than the opponents. So, when you choose your bids, make sure you aren't merely boasting of your strength in a fashion that will reveal your weaknesses.

PHOTO

Both sides vulnerable South dealer

NORTH

[Ace of Spades]
[King of Spades]
[Queen of Spades]
[5 of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[10 of Hearts]
[5 of Hearts]
[3 of Hearts]
[10 of Clubs]
[3 of Clubs]
[9 of Diamonds]
[4 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]

WEST

[Ace of Hearts]
[King of Hearts]
[Queen of Hearts]
[9 of Hearts]
[8 of Hearts]
[6 of Hearts]
[Jack of Spades]
[8 of Spades]
[7 of Spades]
[2 of Spades]
[Ace of Diamonds]
[10 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]

SOUTH

[3 of Spades]
[Jack of Hearts]
[Ace of Clubs]
[King of Clubs]
[Queen of Clubs]
[9 of Clubs]
[6 of Clubs]
[4 of Clubs]
[2 of Clubs]
[King of Diamonds]
[Queen of Diamonds]
[Jack of Diamonds]
[6 of Diamonds]

EAST

[10 of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[6 of Spades]
[7 of Hearts]
[4 of Hearts]
[2 of Hearts]
[Jack of Clubs]
[8 of Clubs]
[7 of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]
[8 of Diamonds]
[7 of Diamonds]
[5 of Diamonds]

SOUTH

1 [Club]
3 [Club]
4 [Diamond]
PASS

WEST

DOUBLE
3 [Spade]
PASS
PASS

NORTH

1 [Spade]
3 [Spade]
5 [Club]

EAST

PASS
PASS
PASS

Opening lead: heart king

HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
OUT
HOLE YARDS PAR R1 R2 R3 R4
IN
Eagle (-2)
Birdie (-1)
Bogey (+1)
Double Bogey (+2)