There’s a lot of advice on the internet for how to open a trick. I’ve ignored a great deal of what’s out there and come up with some of my own tricks for opening tricks – and hopefully, they’re useful to some other bridge players out there.
Here’s what to think about before placing the next card.
1. Lead the Ace (or Someone Else Will)
I’ve had more than a couple of bridge games where I held back on playing the Ace in the trump suit. (In most cases, this was a terrible idea and I still can’t clarify why I decided to do that – also, the opponents usually took the very same trick with their most powerful card while my Ace just sat there.)
Lead the Ace where appropriate, or someone else will.
It doesn’t work every time, but it helps.
2. Open High (and Get It Over With)
How often do people say, let’s start off with the worst card we have?
When it’s for strategic reasons and you know what you’re going to follow it up with, play a low card. When you’re trying to block a suit or get the lower card out of the way, it’s appropriate to play a low card.
But don’t lead low cards when you know your opponent is going to get the upper-hand.
3. Chase the Ace (and King and Queen and Jack)
Here’s a riddle: why don’t players of ball sports get hit in the face by various balls all the time? Because they keep their eyes on the ball.
Approach bridge games the same way.