DeLynn Colvert - Tip #5

Trapping the J

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Trapping The Jack

The second easiest card to trap is the J. Regardless of who is the dealer, save a pair of jacks for last, and it will amaze you how often the trap works. If you have a J-J-Q-K, for example, lead the K. Most players will respond with the safer 5 here, rather than pairing the K, risking a six-peg. If you lead one of your Js, and Jake holds a 5-J, the 5 is usually played, and the opportunity for trapping the J is lost. The "ten" card lead will usually draw a 5 response. Keep your Js for your last two cards to spring this trap.

On the other hand, if you have a single J, dump it at the first safe opportunity (with the count 12 or higher). The lone J is a liability. This is one of the most common errors that beginning, or even average, players make. Remember, dump the lone J when the count is at least 12, making a retaliatory pairing impossible.

- Republished from Play Winning Cribbage by permission. Text copyright © 2002 by DeLynn Colvert. All rights reserved.

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