Leading a short suit in hopes of getting a ruff is one of the most prevalent lines of defense and as such is often abused.
“CONDITIONS” FOR CREATING TRUMP TRICKS
- 1. RUFFING DECLARER’S TRICKS
A. YOU ARE SHORT IN ANY UNBID SUIT
B. YOU ARE LONG IN OPP’S SIDE SUIT, BOTH BID AND RAISED
C. YOU HAVE A WEAK HAND AND NO BETTER DEFENSE
- 2. PROMOTING TRUMP TRICKS OF YOUR OWN
A. TRUMP PROMOTION
B. TRUMP UPPERCUT
When conditions 1a and 1c exist then YOUR BEST LEAD IS A SINGLETON
BE ‘CAREFUL’ WITH THIS LINE OF DEFENSE AS YOU ARE OFTEN LEADING INTO ONE OF DECLARER’S BETTER SUITS AND COULD BE SETTING UP THE SUIT FOR HER.
THE BEST DEFENDERS TEND TO GO FOR A RUFF UNDER THREE (3) CONDITIONS:
- When they have no natural trump tricks of their own
- when they can reasonably expect an entry to get their ruff (ie. they have a high trump honor – Ace or King)
- when the situation is desperate and there is no better line of defense
When the conditions of 1b above exist then LEAD THE OPPONENT’S SUIT TO GIVE PARTNER A RUFF
IN a trump promotion play, declarer is put in a position where he must ruff high and in doing so promotes a trump trick for the defenders.
In an uppercut situation, the defender ruffs with his highest trump to weaken declarer’s trump holding hoping that it will create a trump trick for partner.