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Endplays


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"Endplay" is a fancy name for a simple idea: sometimes it's better for one of your opponents to play a suit than for you to have to play it yourself. In order to endplay an opponent you need certain conditions to be met.

1) There is a suit (or suits) that you want your opponents to play. We can call this the "opportunity suit." Some examples of suits: AJ10 opposite K98, Kxx opposite Jxx, or even Kx opposite xx (if you can get the player behind the K to lead the suit, you can guarantee a trick).

2) You can lose a trick to the opponent you want to lead the opportunity suit. AJ10 opposite Kxx can be led by either opponent and you will take three tricks. If you have AQ in dummy and xx in hand, only your RHO can lead this suit for you to guarantee two tricks.

3) You can eliminate all other options for the opponents. Usually this is done by running off winners in side suits and drawing trump. Sometimes there are multiple opportunity suits so you don't have to eliminate all of the suits.

 

In this quiz, see if you can identify situations where an endplay is possible.

West leads the ♠Q against 6♠. Trump are 3-2.

  ♠ AQ84
♥ A73
♦ KQ10
♣ K42
 
♠ West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ KJ76
♥ K94
♦ AJ3
♣ AJ10
 

Is there an endplay?

Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit.

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.

West leads the ♠Q against 4♠. Trump split 3-1.

  ♠ K10543
♥ AK6
♦ 92
♣ Q73
 
♠West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ AQ62
♥ 753
♦ AK8
♣ J84
 

 

Is there an endplay available?

Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit.

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.

Playing imps. The ♠J is led by West against 6♠. Trump are 3-1. Is there an endplay?

 

  ♠ AJ10843
♥ 95
♦ A6
♣ KJ10
 
♠ West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ KQ6
♥ A7
♦ K82
♣ A8742
 
Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit.

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.

The ♠K is led against 5♠. Trumps are 2-2. Diamonds are 4-2 with East holding 4 of them. Is there an endplay?

 

  ♠ 43
♥ J10
♦ Q832
♣ AJ742
 
♠ West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ K752
♥ A2
♦ AK5
♣ KQ105
 






Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit,

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.

West leads the ♠5 against 6♠. Trumps are 2-1. Is there an endplay available?

 

  ♠ 9862
♥ 764
♦ AJ2
♣ A76
 
♠ West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ AKQJ107
♥ AK2
♦ K108
♣ 8
 
Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit.

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.

  ♠ J7632
♥ 108
♦ A65
♣ A72
 
♠ West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ AKQ5
♥ A6
♦ 982
♣ KJ65
 

West leads the ♠4 against 4♠. Is there an endplay available?

 

 

Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit.

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.

West leads the ♠K against 3NT. Is there an endplay?

 

  ♠ 632
♥ A109
♦ AK764
♣ 84
 
♠ West
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ East
♥ 
♦ 
♣ 
  ♠ AJ5
♥ KJ6
♦ J109
♣ AQ107
 
Choose One:

Yes, endplay either opponent.

Yes, endplay West.

Yes, endplay East.

No, no opportunity suit.

No, can't lose to the correct opponent.

No, can't eliminate other options.