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The finesse is a basic technique to cash lower honors in spite of opponents holding higher honors.

Simple Finesses Edit

Consider the following:

Dummy:

AQJ93


Declarer:

T76


and you need all 5 tricks in NT, you perform a finesse by leading 6 from declarer. If LHO plays K, dummy then plays A, otherwise, dummy plays Q. Then repeat the process by using outside entries to return to declarer until LHO plays K. Then you can take all 5 tricks and the finesse succeeds.

However, if K is in fact held by RHO, after dummy plays Q, RHO will play K to cover the Q and win the trick. The finesse fails.

Double Finesse Edit

When Not To Finesse Edit

It is important to know when not to try to finesse. Here is a non-exhaustive list of some situations when it's best not to even try.

  • When there are enough sure tricks to make the contract, do not try a finesse.
  • Finessing on the opening lead may be ill-advised if it's possible to wait until more information is available.

See Also Edit

  • Karpin. Bridge Strategy at Trick One. Dover. 1976 (reprinted from Dell, 1964)
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