Theory about discarding non-spade suits

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uncommonb
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Theory about discarding non-spade suits

Post by uncommonb » Fri Nov 27, 2009 11:37 am

I have a theoretical question and I am curious to what type of responses is gets. Your hand is especially important except that you are void in 1 plain suit and have 3 cards in another plain suit and 2 cards in another plain suit. And no aces in any of the plain suits.


S: everything else
H:void
D:xxx
C:xx

Also, assume you are playing for a set and that it is the first deal, first hand, so you have no previous knowledge of anything at the table except that you are aiming to maximize the amount of tricks taken.

If your partner has the lead and is running the suit you are void in, what is the proper way to discard your plain suits. Is is better to reduce (diamonds in this case) to make your holding short or completely void yourself in the suit you are shortest in (clubs)?

Basically, are you looking to shorten your holding in the longest plain suit or empty the suit that you have fewer of..Also, what if diamonds has 4 or more cards, does that make a difference?

I hope this was a clear question, albeit with an extremely vague example...

Much thanks to any input!

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Galt
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Re: Theory about discarding non-spade suits

Post by Galt » Fri Nov 27, 2009 1:24 pm

Unfortunately, it is a little to vague, but in general...

You want to be unloading losers. A loser is defined by the cards held by the partnership, not just the cards in your hand.

For example, with the two Clubs that you have, your team could have anywhere from 0 to 2 Club losers.. with the Diaminds, 0 to 3 Diamond Losers.

First hand, with no real decent guess as to who holds what, I would be sluffing my shortest suit. It yields a greater opportunity to get in early and pull Spades.

Once Clubs are clear, you can always sluff Diamonds on a Club lead if that appears to be a good line of play.
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Re: Theory about discarding non-spade suits

Post by Nigella » Sun Nov 29, 2009 7:15 am

The question is: Is it in your best interest to ruff?

Looking at the example given, you dont have a sidesuit of interest, there is no direct concern for control of spades.
So sluffing the short suit, (clubs) would not appear to be foolish. It will call on partner to lead diamonds at the next opportunity though. Is that what you really want?
If you want spades broken asap, then a diamond discard invokes a suit preference of clubs, and there may be an earlier break; just as long as you are not overtrumped in doing so.

However if your diamonds were lengthened to four then there is a potential to promote a fourth diamond into a trick.
Here it may be useful to sluff the clubs, demand a suit preference in diamonds, which doesnt force you to trump and weaken your control of the trump suit.

Albeit all of this, it does come down to your partnership agreement for discards.
"Defusion is the disruptive infusion of new ideas"

TrashCanCharlie
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Re: Theory about discarding non-spade suits

Post by TrashCanCharlie » Tue Dec 15, 2009 1:18 pm

What has been already posted on this subject is basically true. However, the very best answer to your question involves the (Bidding). It is impossible to give you the best answer until we know what bid your partner made and what each opponent bid. The reason being.................what you discard will be based on that info.

Clubs is by far the best choice...........even if diamonds are three or more clubs is still the most useless suit. Even that discard fails when partner hold King empty in clubs, but a diamond suit shift might be a disaster if he holds King empty in diamonds............So, you are faced with a guess as to where to start and the shortest suit is usually best.

In the case most partners would easily deduce when you show out of hearts that you must hold four or more spades..........At least you are an odds on favorite to hold length in spades. Simply base it on the (Law of Vacancy.)

So.............if and this is a big IF here, partner is good enough to reason this way, in otherwords you have a partner that is going to assume you have spades length and are not interested in cutting anything!!!! Typically with four or more spades we set up our long suit then pull spades. In this case we do not have such a suit...........even with four diamonds, grunts, most likely we will not enjoy that small fourth diamond.

Sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo, we would like OUR PARTNER to be intelligent enough to read the bids, and understand that we are really long in spades here and DO NOT WANT TO RUFF< CUT< or TRUMP ANYTHING we don't have to........If partners hearts are decent we can set that suit up!!!!!

Nobody has yet to mention this point and since we are discussing which suit to toss away on hearts here I'd assume partners hearts are pretty fair!!!
Another huge point to make here is this: If partners hearts are promotional, does partner have an entry back to his hand or multiple trips via ACEs and KINGs to make the effort worthwhile.

Soooooooooooooooooooooooo, to answer your question.....I'd weigh my partners ability and skills first. If I think he is savy enough to understand the finer points of spades, spades control, timing, suit promotions, etc.....................then and only then would I consider any real thought to my first discard.

It's going to always be a club first! Now the question is..................which club? The higher one or the lower one? Since I do not want a diamond shift unless partner held the ace I think I am going to fool him..............rather than risk a potential diamond shift I am going to toss my bigger club first, then the small one next..............If I have a good partner he is going to stay with his heart suit when he has the entries to make it work, and he is going to find the club shift now that he has seen me high low in clubs.

NOW: When the club most likely hits the table, depending on whether partner leads the ace or which club he leads...........if he leads the king and it is not covered I am going to toss a small diamond............

Tossing both clubs loses when partners entry is the king of clubs.................with enough partnership sophistication and agreements we would already know if partner had an entry in another suit simply by the order in which he played the heart honors...........I like to play them top down to show something in a higher ranking side suit and bottom upwards to show something in the lower ranking suits, but again, all this depends on the level of your partner and agreements about signalling, suit preference, and spade length.

If I do high-low in clubs and partner leads a low club I am cutting it and watching the size of the club led closely! It should give me some info about the rest of partners hand if he is savy enough!

This hand really looks more like the kind of hand where ya want to cut asap and lead spades mainly to keep the opps from using spades one at a time.

Considering you do not appear to have any of the bigger spade controls the last thing ya want is the opps to hold two spades each and make four spades tricks via the ace, king, queen, jack separate.

Hope this helps some.......................

Regards,
Jay

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Galt
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Re: Theory about discarding non-spade suits

Post by Galt » Tue Dec 15, 2009 11:28 pm

NIce to see ya Jay.

Hope things are going well.

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Re: Theory about discarding non-spade suits

Post by TrashCanCharlie » Wed Dec 16, 2009 1:50 pm

I pop in from time to time, thanks!

On this thread suppose partner held..........

S.A
D.Kxx
H.AKxxxx
C.xxx

His heart spots are 9742 and he also hold the ace and king..............suppose he leads either the ace or king, whichever way you have agreed on, then after seeing you discard two clubs, he sees that he has the ace of spades as one entry back to his hand and he also has the king of diamonds as another.........my point is.....................he has four choices in hearts that are basically the same size to lead.........

As I said earlier, depending on your partner and the time spent on signals, discards, suit preference, etc..........Personally I would see my partners bid, take note of his club discards and then I would lead my top heart, the nine............partner should have noted that a lot of smaller hearts have not been played and that I must have one smaller than the nine to lead and thus..................a subtle message is born..............the message being........had I wanted a club returned after the the heart cut I would have led my smallest heart, so I must have an entry in some higher suit than clubs,,,,,,,,,,,,,those that play bridge find this easy enough because of learned suit preference signals.........the suits are ranked with spades being the highest, then hearts, then diamonds, then clubs............using that we use the same signal when we know partner is out of some suit. We use it with the lead we make to inform partner which suit to return after he cuts the hearts or to imply some strength in another suit.

Regards,
Jay

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