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It is sometimes possible to reduce the opposition's two certain tricks to one effective trick, the other disappearing because a defender has been forced to ruff while declarer discards a loser. Later the trump honours in the defending hands fall together at the same trick!

The simplest form of this play occurs when there are ten trumps between the declarer and the dummy and the opposition holding is:

Let us take a look at a deal, which came up in a pairs tournament.

West led the club jack. East won with the ace and shifted to the spade jack. Declarer won with the ace, cashed the top hearts, discarding spades from hand as both defenders followed suit. Declarer continued with the fourth heart! East discarded a club and declarer pitched his last spade. West ruffed and exited in spade king. Declarer ruffed and played a trump. Defenders made only one trick, the king and ace falling together at the same trick!

This play is known as honour-crashing play.

The complete hands are:

If east ruffs the fourth heart with the diamond ace, declarer discards a spade as before and loses a trump trick to the king, making the contract.

Supposing west has diamond king and east has ace and small, let us say that east now ruffs the fourth heart with a small trump, declarer must be careful not to overruff, for then west will overruff the declarer and declarer must lose a trump trick to the ace and the spade king. Declarer should still discard his last spade as before and hope the two top trumps crash when trump is played. What if someone has diamond ace and king and the other defender the diamond three. In that case, the defence prevails!

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Keywords: bridgecards

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