Play and Defense Practice for Beginners #3

Play and Defense Practice for Beginners #3

Hand 1

You're defending, sitting West.

Declarer plays J, what will you play?

Correct Answer: Low


Play low .

South 1 bid means that south has 5 cards in Heart and opponents fit at least 5-4 in Hearts. So, when declarer plays the Jack they could be just testing the water, and they will most likely take it with the A. Playing the Jack here could be just to agitate the defender to cover it with Q or not. With a 5-4 fit, Declarer is most likely going to cash Ace and King.

Also, if South holds 5 cards in Hearts, this means that partner could have singleton, and with the possibility that the singleton could be a K. So, no need to cover it with the Q.

Hand 2

You're defending, sitting East.

Partner leads Q (because you opened 2).

Dummy plays 3.

What will you play?

Click "NEXT" to see the play

Correct Answer: A


Partner leads the Q, so the K is clearly not with partner; if partner had KQxx they'd lead the highest card. So K is clearly with Declarer.

On top of this, given South bids 3NT, they should have a balanced distribution and at least Kx or Kxx. So when partner leads the Q you should know that it could be singleton. Given this knowledge you need to over take with the A, continue with J and 10 until the K drops. There’s no harm doing this if partner holds Qx too.

If you'd played a low heart instead, and partner took the hand they wouldn't be able to continue hearts and would have to switch to another suit, which declarer might win. They'd then be able to play diamond, which you could win with K, but even though your hearts would be promoted, you wouldn't be able to get back to your hand, as your only stopper, the K has already dropped.

Hand 3

Contract is 4♠ by South, You're defending, sitting East.

West leads the A and follows with KQ.

Declarer ruffs the third with ♠J from dummy.

What will you play?

Click "NEXT" to see the play

Correct Answer: Discard


No need to overruff with K.

If you overruff with the K and play other suit, there's a good chance Declarer will win it. They'll then play trump, of which you'll only be able to win 1 trick.

However, if you discard a heart or a club, you'll get 2 tricks. After declarer wins with the J trump, they will play A and you'll follow with low ♠. Then you'll be able to catch dummy's ♠Q with your ♠K and you'll still have the ♠10

Hand 4

You're declarer, sitting South.

West leads J.

What will you play from dummy?

Correct Answer: Small


In order to get 2 tricks from this lead, you should play small . If East follows with low , you can win with the Q. If East takes with the K then your Q is promoted.

Hand 5

Sitting South how do you play this suit combination for most tricks?

Correct Answer: Run the 8


First, let's hope that West holds the KJ as that would give the best opportunity to win all the tricks.

Before playing, you should pay attention to the number, and make a plan to avoid wasting too many entries.

Here's how to maximize your chances; play 8 first, and play low if West plays low as this gives you the chance to play again from hand without using an entry if the 8 wins the trick.

If you play 10 then opponents play low, the next trick you can play from hand once again, in the knowledge that the second time you play you'll always win in dummy either with 9 or Q. But if you play 8 and it wins, you'll still be able to play from hand with 10 and if that wins too, you can play from hand again, without using another entry.

If East holds one of the KJ then you'll only ever win 3 heart tricks. Unless, in the unlikely event that East has singleton K whereby you'd be best off cashing the A. But given the low probability, you should finesse rather than cash the A.

Hand 6

Sitting South how do you play this suit combination for most tricks?

Correct Answer: Small to A then small to 9

You'll get at least 3 tricks here if you play safely. The safest play is to play small to A then play small again to hand.

If East plays low, then take with the 9. If East plays Q then take with the K and in so doing promote your Jack. If East shows 10, you should still take with K. Yes, you'll lose to the Q, but you still get 3 tricks.

When East plays low, you take with the 9, and even if West wins with the Q or 10, it'll be okay because the other 2 tricks are still yours.

If East shows out at the second round, then take with the K. Play low again, and West will take the Q now or later. If West plays Q now then take small on dummy, making Jack top. But if West plays 10, then take with the Jack now, and you'll have 3 tricks.

Hand 7

What's your lead?

Correct Answer: 4


Lead 4 as hearts are partner's suit; leading 4th best for counting, lets partner know that you have even (4) cards allowing partner to decide whether to continue or not.

If you lead another suit, opponents might win it and then discard their heart losers on their winning tricks.

Also, you don't need to lead trump (Spades). Look at the numbers, it's better to wait for opponents to play it first.

Hand 8

What's your lead?

Correct Answer: J


Here you've got 2 sequence suits, but which one you should lead?

Choose the major as opponents jump to 3NT means they don't have interest in major. So, lead the ♠J, the highest honor of the sequence.

Hand 9

What's your lead?

Correct Answer: K


There's no reason to lead anything other than partner's suit. As you don't have shortness and as leading 4th best from ♣Qxxx doesn't seem good enough. Also, leading trump whilst having AQx isn't a good idea, it's better to wait than play by yourself. So, lead the K.

Hand 10

What's your lead?

Correct Answer: A


As you don't have any information from partner, you need to check the situation first. Lead the A, then after you see the dummy's cards you can decide what's the best to play on the next round.