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By: Ted Horning

Originally Published in The Toronto Star, August 25, 1997

A Toronto team of Fred Gitelman, Sheri Winestock, Steve Aarons and Peter Schwartz finished second in the recent Maccabiah Games in Israel. They finished second to the Israeli team.

Trust Fred Gitelman to find a marvelous hand. You have to analyze this hand carefully to find a classic play by West - a "Suicide Squeeze."

Opening lead: K

I don't have details of the bidding at the other table but Steve and Peter arrived in a 3NT contract, played be East, with the East-West cards. While perfect defence would defeat that contract - diamond lead to North's A and a club return, that isn't particularly likely.

At the featured table, Sheri's aggressive raise to 2 closed the auction and West started the defence with a high heart. West cashed a second heart as East discarded the 9. West then played a third high heart. East had another easy discard. He threw the 8.

Fred trumped the third heart and played a low spade, won by West with the 10. West then played yet another high heart.

Watch what happened to East now. If East throws another club, Fred can pick the club suit up with one club lead from the dummy. If East discards a diamond, he is pitching an exit card away.

As it happened, East threw a diamond. Fred trumped again and played a diamond to dummy's A. A low club was played and East followed low. Fred's 10 won the trick. Fred now cashed the A, cashed two more diamonds and led a third spade. East, winning the Q, had to play clubs, giving Fred his eighth winner.

A brilliant hand and one that may require a second look. West can defeat the contract by shifting to diamonds instead of playing high hearts. Take your time, look closely. It is true.

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