DeLynn Colvert - Tip #9
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The End Game
Offensive pegging: you need pegs to beat Jake, the "snake". This
situation takes guile to beat the good player. Leading from a small
pair may not be the effective lead. Even leading from a small card
may not be the best lead. Entice the play, control the cards that
Jake can play safely. Lead your "sleeper" card. Camouflage your
hand. Work the traps. Keep two cards for last that will count for
you (a pair or two cards that add to fifteen). If counters can't be
held for last, keep two cards that could combine into a run (with
Know your opponent's habits. If you know Jake plays a 9,
if possible (and most players do), on 4 leads when
you are playing desperation offense, and you have a 4
and a 9, then, of course, play the 4
and pair the 9!
If you need six or more pegging points to win the game, you need the
luck of the deal. The best way to peg six or more is with a pair of
small cards -- As or 2s preferably.
Try to work a trap with the count past 21. For example, you are
dealt A-A-8-9-J-Q. Keep the A-A-8-9.
You must hope for a "ten" card lead and, depending on whether you
need four pegs or six, play your 9 (you need four
pegs) or your 8 (you need six pegs). A good player
like Jake will be extremely hard to trap, but an average player can
be nailed from time to time. If you are not fortunate to be dealt a
small pair in this situation, then concentrate on trapping your
opponent into long runs, or keeping any pairs for your last two
cards in a desperate try for a trap for pairs royal. Js
work best for this trap.
Also, when six or more pegs are needed to win the game, try to keep
a 4-5-6 combination for your last two cards (4-6,
4-5, 5-6) and hope for a run of three
trap (and 15-2) with your last cards for a nifty six pegs. What a
shocker when you can pull if off!
Need ten or more pegs? You must keep a pair of 7s or
smaller for the last desperate four of a kind on the peg. I have
seen many, many players throw away their chances to win by leading
from a small pair (7s or smaller) when their only
chance to win is to score four of a kind for twelve pegs. You must
hold the pair for last for a chance to win.
In offensive pegging, never lead a card that will cut off your
chances to score. Example: You need three pegs and hold
8-9-10-J. Never lead the 9 or 10.
They cut your chances to peg dramatically. Leading the 9
forces all your winners off the play. But by leading from the end of
this run you have a slight chance to score. You lead the 8,
get a pair of Js, Leading the J, you
may score a pair of 8s. Keep you chances alive.
Another example: You hold 2-6-7-K and need at least
two pegs to win. The sleeper 2 is an excellent card
to draw a 6 or 7 response.
And count the cards that will score for you. I lost a very important
game needing but two points to win, holding 4-5-10-J.
I led the 4 and lost the game! I didn't count the
winners before playing. Leading the 4 with my
opponent playing desperation defense, gave me but six logical
winners...three 10s and three Js. The
correct lead was the 10 (the 10 is
held slightly less than the J, and I didn't want this
lead paired!). The 10 could draw a 5
(three winners), but more likely an A (four winners)
or a 4 (three winners) for a total of ten likely
winners. Leading the 4 gave me only six likely
winners. A very bad play, indeed! My opponent did hold a 4
and would most likely have played it on my 10 lead
for a winner! Don't play impulsively -- count the winners. And don't
play hunches. Control the peg with some old fashioned logic. Keep
- Republished from Play Winning Cribbage by permission.
Text copyright © 2002 by DeLynn Colvert. All rights reserved.
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