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INTERMEDIATE BRIDGE

 

LESSON 13

 

OPENING LEADS AGAINST NO TRUMP CONTRACTS

 

Defense is regarded as the most difficult aspect of bridge.Since the opening lead is the only defensive play made while the dummy is yet concealed, it requires a kind of "detective" reasoning and considerable analysis. The opening lead is frequently the source for either a plus or a minus score, and is, therefore, very important. The essential purpose is to develop tricks out of the small cards in the defense's largest suits.†† Timing is, therefore, essential.

 

1. THE LEAD OF PARTNERíS BID SUIT:The usual choice when possible, but NOT obligatory.

†††††††††† a)Lead the highest card if:

††††††††††††††††††††† (1) only two cards are held in the suit( KX ar 10X or 32 )

††††††††††††††††††††† (2) holding consists, in part, of two honors in sequence ( QJX or J108X or KQXX )

†††††††††† b) Lead the lowest card if:

††††††††††††††††††††† (1) three cards are held to an honor ( Q42 ar J73 ar K64 )

††††††††††††††††††††† (2) four or more cards are held without two honors in sequence ( K532 )

†††† c) Must lead fourth from the highest if more than four cards are held ‑ ( 98643 or K9872 )

d) Lead (MUD) Middle-Up-Down from three unimportant cards ( 963 or 842 )

e) Lead Top of an Internal Sequence ( AQJXorKJ10X)

2. LEADING WHEN PARTNER HAS NOT BID A SUIT:†† Several options are available:

†††††††††† a) Lead of the fourth from the highest of a 5‑Card or longer unbid suit ‑ Is an excellent lead

†††††††††††††† provided the opening leader has at leant one probable entry. Ex.AQXXX ar KXXX or QXXXX

†††††††††† b) Lead the top of a sequence of a solid or nearly solid 4‑card suit ‑ Such a lead will

†††††††††††††† rarely give up a trick.†† Ex.QJ109 or J109X

††††††††††† c) Lead of an unbid Major suit ‑ NT bidders are usually more likely to conceal a long Minor suit.

d) The lead of a short suit ‑ holding is otherwise useless and hope to find partner with an unbid long††††††

†††††† suit.†††† Ex.109X10XXXXXXXXX

e) The lead of a short suit(A passive lead) ‑ where one fears any other lead may lose a trick.

††††††††††††† Ex.††† K1OX††† JXXX††† AQXX†† 109

†††††††††††† f) Against a GANBLING 3NT attempt ‑ Lead an Ace ‑ Declarer is trying to score nine fast tricks

†††††††††††††††† with the aid of a solid minor suit, so losing the lead even once may be fatal to the defenders.

†††††††††††† g) Against a 2NT opening bid ‑ Lead a passive lead ‑ Declarer's hand contains most of his

†††††††††††††††† side's strength, so he may have entry problems if left to his own devices and one is not

†††††††††††††††† desirous of leading into declarer's tenaces.

†††††††††††† h) Against NT partials ‑ Lead a passive lead ‑ The relative strengths between the two sides

††††††††††††††††† is more evenly divided and so there is no hurry to develop tricks.

 

3. LEAD TO BE AVOIDED:

†††††††††††† a) Leading away from a 4‑card "Tenace"(Two cards in the same 4-card suit of which one ranks two

†††††††††††††††† degrees lower than the other). Ex. AQXX or KJXX(Note: leads from a 5‑card tenace are fine)

4.LEADS AGAINST DOUBLED NT CONTRACTS WHEN PARTNER HAS DOUBLED THE

†††††††††††††††††††††† FINAL CCNTRACT:

†††††††††††† a) If the doubler has bid a suit, the leader must absolutely lead that suit, even if it is a singleton and/or

†††††††††††††††† he/she has another good suit of his/her own.

b)     If the opening leader has bid a suit in the absence of partner making any bid, partner's double†††††

††††† requests that the suit of the bidding partner on lead is to be led.

†††††††††††† c) If both partners have bid, use one's judgment.

†††††††††††† d) When neither the doubler nor the leader has bid, the doubler is suggesting, not demanding,

††††††††††††††††† the first bid suit of the opponents unless the leader has a better lead of his/her own.