Trump Leads

When to Lead Trumps by Marilyn Hemenway

I’m sure you’ve all heard the saying: “When in doubt, lead trumps.” Perhaps the following will be helpful in removing some of the doubt so that your opening leads will be logically thought-out and you can forget you ever heard that maxim.
Most people do not lead trumps enough but then there are those who lead them far too often. A lot of misconceptions surround trump leads. Here are the times when it is most attractive to make an opening lead of a trump:

(1) When the opponents have taken a sacrifice with obviously fewer HCP than your side. Sacrifices are usually bid on distribution; if the opponents don’t have much distribution, they will usually just let you play your contract for fear of
going set a ton of tricks. Therefore when they do sacrifice, it is often vital to lead trumps early to cut down the opponents’ ruffing potential. Remember that each time you lead a trump it takes two of theirs!

(2) When the opponents have bid three or four suits and wind up playing in one of them. If they can’t reach notrumps, and they can’t support each other’s side suits, they usually have distributional hands that need to garner tricks by ruffs. Leading trumps in this situation is often correct.

(3) When partner has…Click Here to continue reading


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