in mind: Ruffing in the short suit both helps you and your opponents to win additional
Ruffing can help you to win additional
tricks. in trump suit contracts.
Spades are trumps in the hand diagram shown at the left. Normaly declarer can
count the winner tricks as,
5 trump suit (for 3-2 split)
totally eight tricks which is not enough to make the contract. Contract
needs at least ten tricks. So, declarer (South) must seek to establish two
tricks by ruffing. Dummy must ruff the opening lead for the first missing
trick. South crosses to hand (with any suit) and ruffs another heart in
dummy which provides second missing trick...
Opponents also can make tricks
by ruffing. So you must learn trump control. In order to avert a ruff you must collect
opponents' trumps as soon as possible. Since the
number of your trumps
must be more than your opponents, collecting must not be a problem. If you
can not prevent ruffing then you must protect your honors to be ruffed:
Look at the hand diagram at the left. If West's opening lead is 9, this card is probably singleton in West's hand.
with a distribition like QJ109 West wouldn't lead 9. So you must win West's 9 (singleton) lead, from hand, not from
dummy. If you won West's 9 lead from dummy (with your
ace) he will ruff your winner ( K)later. If West opening lead was Q instead of 9, queen is probably the higest card of a distribution like QJ109. So, heart suit can
be singleton at East's hand. So, you must win West's A lead from dummy in order to protect your A to be ruffed later.Ruffing Finesse:
Your (or dummy's) void in a suit can provide extra tricks for you. If your
opponent plays his master card in this suit you can ruff from dummy (or from hand).
Ruffing the opponents master card may promote your non-master cards..
Ruff and Discard:
If you and your partner are void in a suit you can make extra tricks by ruffing and
Spade is trump in hand diagram at the left. If
opponents plays other suits than heart, South can make only 3 tricks:
You can not win any trick in diamond suit.
If West plays a heart, ruff and
discard method works like that: Dummy ruffs heart lead from West with 7, and you discard 2 from hand. At the next round you ruff dummy's 3 with 10 in hand.. In this way you already won two tricks. Trump ace and club ace will also win two
tricks, so, by "ruff and discard" method you obtained 4 tricks.