INTERMEDIATE BRIDGE COURSE
PLAY OF THE HAND
THE DEVELOPMENT OF TRICKS: (Cont.)
C. THE FINESSE : The attempt to gain power for lower ranking cards by taking advantage of a presumed favorable position of higher ranking cards held by the opponents. The process is based upon the idea of leading toward the card(s) you hope will take a trick. It will be successful 50% of the time.
Exercise 1: To avoid losing a trick to an honor missing from a tenace holding.
DUMMY: AQX AKJ KJX AKJXX (8 Ever - 9 Never)
DECLARER: XXX XXX AX XXX
Exercise 2: To gain a trick with lower ranking cards.
DUMMY: XX QXX XXX
DECLARER: KX AXX QXX
Exercise 3: To prepare for a second finesse in the same suit.
DUMMY: AJ10 AK109 AJ9
DECLARER: XXX XXX XXXX
Exercise 4: Repeated finesses. If successful will yield more tricks than via a simple promotion.
DUMMY: KQX AQJ
DECLARER: XXX XXX
Exercise 5: The development of a long suit via a combined promotion of high cards and the
simple finesse. Combining these ideas, how many tricks might be developed in each
of the following combinations, assuming the location of the missing high card(s)
and the division of the missing cards are as favorable as possible.
DUMMY: QXX KQXX KXXXX AQJXX XXXX
DECLARER: AXXXX XXXX XXX XXX AKJXX
4 3 3 5 4
Conclusion: Extra tricks can be developed by combining the finesse with the development of long suits.
Just how many tricks capable of being taken is dependent upon the location of the high
cards and the division of the missing cards of the suit between the opponents.
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Exercise 6: The choice of leading towards the high card or of leading the high card itself. In each of
the following combinations, how would you play each of the following card combinations
so as to achieve the maximum number of tricks?
DUMMY: AXX J109 QX QJXX JX
DECLARER: QJ10 AKXX AXX AXX AQ109
Conclusion: One should lead the high card itself instead of leading toward the high card only when you
have most of the high card strength and when you don't mind if the opponent COVERS your
high card with a higher card. To do so will have the effect of attempting to trap the missing
high card held by the opposition. Otherwise, lead toward the higher card.
Exercise 7: The deep finesse ‑ a finessing technique used when two or more high cards are missing
higher in rank than the card finessed.
DUMMY: AQ10 XXX AJ9
DECLARER: XXX KJ10 XXX
Finesse the 10 Finesse the 10 Finesse the 9
and presume the and presume the and presume the
K or K/J on the left Q or Q/A on the right K/10 or Q/10 on the left
Conclusion: When you are leading towards high cards, two of the honors are missing, and you have a
choice of cards to play, play the lower card first.
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