Main   Exercise 4W29 by Richard Pavlicek  

When To Cover an Honor

Do you know when to cover an honor with an honor? If you learn the rules stated here, you will be a strong defender, and no one will steal tricks from you. Rules apply in general to all contracts, notrump or suit.

Holding One Honor

If the honor led is accompanied by a touching card, do not cover. Cover an unsupported honor.

J 10 3
K 9 2TableQ 8 4
A 7 6 5

Assume the jack is led. Since the jack is supported by the 10, East should not cover and play low. If North instead held J-5-3, East should cover because the jack would then be unsupported.

Nines Are Important

The nine is an important card in many situations and should be treated as an honor for the purpose of this study.


Holding Two Honors

If you have two honors above the honor led, always cover and do so with your highest card.

10 9 6
A 8 2TableK J 3
Q 7 5 4

Assume the 10 is led. East should cover with the king, winning the trick. If North later leads the nine, East covers with the jack and the defenders get three tricks. Any other plays by East lose a trick.

Exceptions

If the bidding indicates that partner has a singleton or void in the suit led by declarer (such as trumps), do not cover unless it will benefit your own hand.

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1. J 4 3
North leadsTableK 7 2

Your play as East?

2. Q J 3
North leadsTableK 6 5

Your play as East?

3. 10 6
North leadsTableQ 9 7 5

Your play as East?

4. J 10 8
North leadsTableA Q 4

Your play as East?

5. 9 2
North leadsTableJ 7 3

Your play as East?

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6. 10 9 2
North leadsTableQ 8 4

Your play as East?

7. 10 8 2
North leadsTableK 7 4

Your play as East?

8. 9 8 3
North leadsTableK 10 4

Your play as East?

9. J 10 3
North leadsTableK 9 8

Your play as East?

10. A 10 9 7
North leadsTableJ 4

Your play as East?

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© 1997 Richard Pavlicek