Paul Lukacs

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Paul Lukacs (1915–1982) was a Hungarian-born Israeli analyst and composer of problems in the "play of the hand" at contract bridge. Some consider him "the best bridge player ever away from the table", as defined by Victor Mollo. He specialized in single dummy problems.

Singe dummy problems simulate the task that declarer faces in playing a bridge hand. Besides his hand he sees only dummy and has to make the best plan to make the contract, based on inferences from the bidding and from the opponents play. The single dummy problem reflects the challenges encountered by a declarer when dummy is tabled. In some single dummy problems the solver is required to look for a line of play which works for all possible distributions, while in others he has to find the plan which has the maximum success probability. Top players are often excellent single dummy problem solvers.

Lukacs was born in Hungary in 1915 and lived in Israel since 1939. He contributed regularly to the leading journal The Bridge World and wrote several problem books well known in bridge literature. His most lasting contribution to bridge literature was as co-author of Spotlight on Card Play (with Robert Darvas), the first post-war problem collection to highlight expert thought processes.


  • Darvas, Robert; Lukacs, Paul (1960). Spotlight on Card Play (1st ed.). New York: Barclay. 
  • Improve Your Dummy Play, Eric Charles Milnes and Lukacs (London: Kaye & Ward, 1969)
  • Bridge Hands for the Connoisseur: the fourth collection of interesting bridge problems, Milnes and Lukacs (Kaye & Ward, 1974)
  • Test Your Play as Declarer, Lukacs and Jeff Rubens (Hart, 1977)
  • Learn to Play Bridge, Milnes and Lukacs (Kaye & Ward, 1977)

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