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Using The Trump Suit

VIDEO - Part 4 of the "Taking More Tricks" module.
QUIZ - How many tricks can you see?

HINTS AND TIPS - Some more to think about once you’ve grasped this subject,

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Using The Trump Suit

Part 4 of the "Taking More Tricks" module.

If any of this is unclear, go back and watch Module 6.3 again.

Hints And Tips

Here are a couple of things to think about when your plan is to ruff your losers in the short trump hand. The short trump hand is often, but not always, dummy so for ease of explanation here we will assume that dummy has shorter trumps.

In the example in the video we showed why you could not afford to draw even one round of trumps before setting about ruffing your heart losers. If you have extra trumps in the short hand though - say four trumps in the dummy rather than three - and only two losers to ruff, it might be worth drawing one or two rounds of the opponents’ trumps first to avoid the risk of an overruff. Identify how many losers you need to ruff, whether you have enough spare trumps in the dummy beyond that number to allow you to draw some first, and also how likely it is that the opponents will also run out of the suit you are ruffing. There are examples in the quiz to help you practice.

When you plan to ruff losers from your hand in the dummy, think about how you are going to get back to your hand each time to play another loser for dummy to ruff. Sometimes you have a choice of hands in which to win a trick so make sure you consider this before you make that choice.

Another really useful hint when thinking about using your trumps effectively is this: When your opponents are left with a trump winner it is rarely right to draw another round of trumps. Think about it - if they have a trump that is going to win a trick anyhow - say you started with four trumps in each hand and have won two rounds with the ace and king so they still have the queen - now you should try to use your remaining trumps separately to ruff losers. If you draw a third round you will be using two of your valuable trumps whilst they only use one. We will cover the defender’s view of this situation in Module 7 but you may be able to work out what they should do when they get the chance.

Things to remember:

  1. Decide how many, if any, rounds of trumps you can afford to draw before ruffing
  2. Think about entries - how will you get from hand to hand
  3. Leave out the master trump - don’t waste two of yours to draw their winner


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