THE HOLD UP

 
  Playing in No Trump is often a battle of long suits.  Since the Defenders lead first they have the advantage: they can set up their  long suit before the Declarer can set up hers.

 
  EXAMPLE 1. West  leads the S K. Declarer can play the S A but  when the Defenders get the lead again it will be curtains (even drapes) for the Declarer. The Defenders will take their Spade tricks. 
      What is Declarer to do? Cry, leave the room, accept defeat?
      No, she can execute a Hold Up play. (A gun and a mask are not needed for this but just some patience and courage.) If Declarer wins the first Spade trick and when East later gets the lead he can return a Spade and West will take the rest of the Spade tricks. If Declarer wins the second Spade trick and East later gets the lead he will still have one Spade left to play and West will win the rest of the Spade tricks. But if  Declarer Holds Up  for three rounds and wins the third Spade trick then when East gets the lead he will not have any Spades. He will not be able to get to West’s hand. 
      By executing the Hold Up play, that is by not winning the first two tricks, Declarer has in effect severed the link between the Defenders. NOTE: The Defenders will always get Spade tricks. The Hold Up play gives them only two Spade tricks immediately.  But with out the Hold Up play they will get four Spade tricks.

EXAMPLE 2. West leads the H 5 and East plays the H K. It is very tempting to win with the H A, but if  you do there’s trouble. When East gets the lead he will play the H 9 and West will take the next four Heart tricks. Do not be tempted; Hold Up. Win the third round with the H A. East then has no Hearts left and can not  reach his partner’s hand. You cut defenders’ link.

EXAMPLES

 
 
1. 
              DUMMY
S4 3




WEST                            EAST
SK Q J 9 8 X         XS 10 7 2
 
 

DECLARER
SA 6 5


 
 
 
 
 
2.
                    DUMMY
H7 6 3


LHO                                  RHO
HQ 10 8 5 2 XXXX H K 9
 
 

DECLARER
HA J 4


 
 
 
 
 
 

 

THE BATH COUP
The Coup is named after the famous Bath Whist Club in England. It is essentially a peculiar form of Hold Up play. The Declarer’s LHO leads the King in a suit that Declarer has the A J x . If the Declarer holds up (does not win) the first trick and the LHO now plays the Queen, then the Declarer wins this trick with the Ace and the Jack becomes a winner. 

EXAMPLE 3.  The LHO leads the C K; the C 4 is  played from Dummy; the C 8 from RHO; and the Declarer plays the C 7 concealing  the C 2. If LHO thinks that  partner’s C 8 is an Attitude signal and plays the C Q then Declarer’s Ace captures  this trick and the C J is now a winner. LHO has just been Bath Couped! To prevent the C J from becoming a winner, LHO has to lead a different suit and hope that Declarer or RHO will lead .Clubs so the Queen will capture the Jack. The Bath Coup works even if the Ace and Jack are split.
 

EXAMPLE 4.  East leads the D K; the D 2 from Dummy; D 4 by West; and the Declarer plays the D 7. If West continues with the D Q the Ace will win and the D J is a winner. If West plays a small Heart Declarer plays small from Dummy and the Jack wins. The Bath Coup can be used in a suit or No Trump contract.


 
 

 
3.
DUMMY
C6 5 4




LHOXXXXX                  XRHO
CK Q 10 3XXXXXXXXC 9 8 
 
 

 DECLARER
CA J 7 2


 
4.
DUMMY
DA 6 2


WESTXXXXX       X     EAST
DK Q 10 9XX D 8 5 4
  

DECLARER
DJ 7 3

QUIZ 24

 
    1.  THIS IS A HOLD UP!
SOUTH DEALS.  BID AND PLAN THE PLAY.
 
NORTH
 
S10 5
 
HJ 9 
 
DA J 10 7 
 
CA 10 9 7 3 
 


 
WEST

EAST
  SK Q J 9 8
S6 4 2 
  HQ 8 7
H6 5 3 2 
  D4 3 2
DQ 6 5
  C6 2
CK 8 5 
 


 
SOUTH
 
SA 7 3
 
HA K 10 4
 
DK 9 8 
 
CQ J 4

 
 
 
    2.  DROP THE CARDS. THIS IS HOLD UP!
SOUTH DEALS.  BID AND PLAN THE PLAY.
  
NORTH
  
SA K 7 6 3
   
H9 5 
   
DJ 5 4
   
C8 6 2 
   


   
WEST

EAST
    S10 8
SJ 9 5 4 
    H7 4 3
HA 6 2 
   DQ 8 7
D10 6 3 2
     CK Q J 10 9
C4 3 
  


  
SOUTH
  
SQ 2
  
HK Q J 10 8
  
DA K 9 
  
CA 7 5

ANSWERS to Quiz 24

 

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