A dummy reversal is a ruffing strategy employed in suit contracts. Normally when a declarer holds a long trump suit in hand, he uses the short trump suit in dummy to ruff losers. A dummy reversal flips this concept around so that declarer's long trumps are used for ruffs, and dummy's suit is used to draw trumps.


Example

Dummy
QJT7
A54
WestJ5East
543AT732
KJ3Q987
AQDeclarerKT963
Q8542SAK986KJ9
HT62
D8742
C6


South lands in 3S. West, holding a motley collection of tenaces, tries a safe trump lead.

South can count 5 trump tricks, 1 heart, and 1 club. Two more tricks must come from ruffs. One line would be to ruff two diamonds in dummy. To do so, South wins the first trick in hand and leads a diamond. West wins the DQ and leads another trump. South wins again and plays another diamond. West wins again and leads his last trump. The layout is now:

Dummy
Q
A54
West--East
--AT73--
KJ3Q987
--DeclarerKT
Q8542S98KJ
HT62
D87
C6


South can only ruff one diamond loser in dummy now, and the contract is defeated.

A better line is a dummy reversal. Instead of ruffing diamonds in dummy, South should ruff clubs in his hand. At trick two, the CA is cashed in dummy and a club ruffed in hand. A spade is led back to dummy, and another club is ruffed. The layout would then be:

Dummy
T7
A54
WestJ5East
5T--
KJ3Q987
AQDeclarerKT96
Q8SA--
HT62
D8742
C--


Declarer now crosses to the HA and ruffs dummy's last club for his seventh trick. Dummy's remaining spades provide the eight and ninth.

See also

  • Coup En Passant
    A trump trick scored by ruffing a card "behind" a defender who holds a higher trump.

  • Crossruff
    A strategy of ruffing losers back and forth between declarer's hand and dummy.

  • Ruff and Sluff
    A play in which declarer ruffs a card in one hand while discarding a loser from the other.

  • Ruffing Finesse
    A finesse of an enemy card (usually an honor) by threat of a ruff.

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