A Basic Example
10 9 8
Q 5 4
A J 8 7 4
J 7 6 4 3 2
A 4 3
9 8 7 2
J 9 7 2
Q 10 5
K J 10 5
K 10 6 3
K 6 2
In 3 NT
, spade leads and West's two aces hold declarer to
In 5 ♣
, the defense gets a club, a heart, and a diamond.
Can 4 ♥
make? If the defense tries to force declarer to lose
control, by leading spades, declarer wins the ♠ Q
first round, leads trumps until West wins, and wins a second spade.
Declarer draws a third round of trumps, leaving East with a trump, then leads
a diamond. West should duck, declarer wins the ♦ Q
ducks a diamond to West. West can now force declarer to ruff a spade at
What should East pitch? If East pitches a club, declarer ruffs, cashes two
clubs and leads the diamond off dummy, finessing with the ♦ 10
. East gets the last trick with the outstanding trump.
If, instead, East ruffs the spade, South overruffs and only has a club loser
remaining, again taking the diamond finesse.
So, East must pitch a diamond, leading to this position:
Declarer now plays two top diamonds. If East ruffs, he is forced
to lead from his clubs, while if East pitches a club, East only
gets his trump trick at the end.
Any defense which does not force in spades will allow declarer to
lose just the two red aces and a club.
The five-card end position above is quite common in 4-2 fits in the collection.
It's an odd sort of trump strip-squeeze, almost. East is endplayed
if he ruffs, but he loses his "natural" club trick if he pitches a