The Crocodile Coup is a defense coup, specifically by the second hand that’s playing the trick. The second hand must play a card higher than necessary to win the trick, getting the lead, and so preventing his partner to be endplayed.
After the semifinals of the Brasileiro Pairs Championship, Bahia 2013, a group of players met to discuss the most interesting boards of the session, when this gem appeared: a defense by Joaquin Pacareu (GSM) and his partner Gonzalo Rubio (SM) both from Chile.
Pairs, Dealer: East, All Vunerable
|Q J 5 4 3
7 5 3
J 5 3
A K J
K 8 7 6
J 10 7 4 3
|A 10 9 6
Q 10 9 6
10 9 4
|K 8 7
8 4 2
A Q 2
9 8 5 2
|G. Rubio||J. Pacareu|
Opening Lead 10
After the10 lead, dummy played a little heart and Gonzalo won the trick with hisK to switch to the 3 showing an odd number of cards….
Gonzalo: When I played the3 Joaquin must have thought that I had: 5 clubs, a trump singleton and 7 red cards.
Now declarer, with confidence, decided to try the club finesse, bad news… Joaquin won with hisK and played another club, dummy played a club and Gonzalo played his4, showing diamond interest, declarer won with hisA.
North played theJ, winning the trick and continued with the3, Joaquin played the9, declarer theK and switched to a club, his intention was to ruff with a little trump, but Joaquin overruffed with his10, played theA and switched to a heart.
Gonzalo won with theA and played theJ. Declarer ruffed with his last trump and played the8. WithQ 9, Joaquin played hisQ preventing his partner to be endplayed. The Crocodile Coup!
At the end Joaquin won the9 and returned a diamond. Declarer had to lose theK for three down.