Legend: Green = Menace Card; Blue = Idle Card; Red = Trump

Ruffing Simple Squeeze

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Squeezed position (North to lead, after East has been forced to discard):

 

spade symbol Q 2
heart symbol A
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol A K
heart symbol K Q
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol --
heart symbol J 2
diamond symbol --
club symbol 2

 

In this position, the squeezer retains a trump (clubs in the diagram) after the squeeze occurs; this trump will be used to ruff out one of the menace suits (spades in the diagram), should that be the suit discarded by the victim. This position is very closely related to the criss-cross simple squeeze, with the trump taking the place of a winner in the suit of the ruffing menace. The squeeze card may be either a trump winner or the last winner in the fourth suit (that is, the plain suit which contains no useful threat). The position is automatic, working against whichever opponent holds the guards, but is not as flexible as its criss-cross cousin, since in the squeezed position illustrated above, the lead must be in the North hand (else East can spare a spade). The key point is thus that there must be two means of access to the ruffing menace; the first allows you to ruff out the suit, while the second allows you to cash the established winner. The second entry must be a winner in the other menace suit (or a ruff in the other menace, but then we are dealing with the cross-ruffing.html simple squeeze), but the first access can be a winner in any of the four suits. If it is a trump winner, or a winner in the free suit, then it will also serve as the squeeze card. If it is a winner in either threat suit, then the squeeze card may lie either in trumps or in the fourth suit. The six basic positions which can lead to the squeezed position above are illustrated in the following endings:

Squeeze card in fourth suit
Squeeze card in trump suit
First access in ruffing threat:

 

spade symbol A 10 2
heart symbol A
diamond symbol 2
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol K Q J
heart symbol K Q
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol 3
heart symbol J 2
diamond symbol A
club symbol 2

 

First access in ruffing threat:

 

spade symbol A 10 2
heart symbol A
diamond symbol 2
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol K Q J
heart symbol K Q
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol 3
heart symbol J 2
diamond symbol --
club symbol A 2

 

First access in other threat suit:

 

spade symbol Q 2
heart symbol A K
diamond symbol 2
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol A K
heart symbol Q J 10
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol --
heart symbol 9 3 2
diamond symbol A
club symbol 2

 

First access in other threat suit:

 

spade symbol Q 2
heart symbol A K
diamond symbol 2
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol A K
heart symbol Q J 10
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol --
heart symbol 9 3 2
diamond symbol --
club symbol A 2

 

First access in side suit (squeeze card):

 

spade symbol Q 2
heart symbol A
diamond symbol A
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol A K
heart symbol K Q
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol --
heart symbol J 2
diamond symbol 2
club symbol 2

 

First access in trump suit (squeeze card):

 

spade symbol Q 2
heart symbol A
diamond symbol --
club symbol A

 

 

 

spade symbol A K
heart symbol K Q
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol --
heart symbol J 2
diamond symbol 2
club symbol 2

 

 

Variations

1) Idle cards: For all six endings shown, if the hand containing the diamond 2 is on lead, then the low diamond is needed to provide access to the squeeze card (in the three endings on the left, the diamond 2 leads to the A; in the three on the right, the diamond 2 is ruffed as the squeeze trick), but if the opposite hand is on lead, then the diamond is an idle card and could be replaced by a low heart, a low spade (except in the last position illustrated) or, in the last example, a low trump (but then the squeeze is unnecessary unless the other opponent has a trump with which to disrupt the potential cross-ruff).

2) Extra winners: Since adding additional winners to a ruffing menace has no great effect on the mechanism of the squeeze, the ruffing squeeze has far fewer significant variants of this sort than the criss-cross squeeze. However, adding winners to the blocked menace can lead to significantly different positions: 

South to lead:

 

spade symbol Q J 2
heart symbol A
diamond symbol A
club symbol --

 

 

 

spade symbol A K
heart symbol Q J 10
diamond symbol --
club symbol --

 

spade symbol --
heart symbol K 9 2
diamond symbol 2
club symbol 2

 

As with the criss-cross squeeze, adding a heart winner to the South hand has forced the addition of a second spade threat to the North hand; otherwise, East could safely abandon spades. In the same way, the South hand can have up to four blocked winners in hearts, providing the spade threat in the North hand is correspondingly extended to develop enough extra winners to compensate.

3) Losing squeeze card: As with the criss-cross squeeze, the losing squeeze card variant of the ruffing squeeze can only occur when the squeezer has two controls in any suit that might be returned after the squeeze trick is lost.