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Merrimac Coup (Entry Killing Play) - A tactical play which prevents transportation between the declarer (Scissors Coup) or the defenders' (Merrimac Coup).

  4 3
5 4 2
A 3
K Q J 10 5 4
 
J 10 9 8 7
K 7 6
10 9 8 4
2


South: 3 NT

A 5 2
Q 10 9 8
K 6 5
A 9 3
  K Q 6
A J 3
Q J 7 2
8 7 6
 

West leads SJ, won by East's SA.

Aware of declarer's obvious strategy to win 5 Club tricks, East switches to DK to knock out North's DA.  While E/W sacrifice a Diamond, the Merrimac Coup prevents South from establishing dummy's Clubs.  East loses 2 Club tricks, winning the third Club, limiting Dummy to 2 Club winners, stranding 3 Club winners.  Thus, declarer is limited to 2 Spades, 1 Heart, 3 Diamonds, and 2 Clubs - one trick short of 3 Notrump game; this assumes partner West cooperates by pitching Spades on second and third Club play - saving the setting Diamond winner.

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