The concept of the Mole Squeeze is a squeeze play on one opponent that can lead to an endplay against the other defender. Upon initiation of the mole squeeze a trick is lost or surrendered after the squeeze trick.

The squeeze was analyzed and named by Mr. Julian Pottage of Great Britain. Mr. Julian Pottage was born and grew up on the south coast of England. He studied mathematics at Trinity College Cambridge, later gaining election as an Associate and then Fellow of the pensions Management Institute.

     

Mr. Julian Pottage is a qualified bridge teacher and has been writing simultaneous pairs commentaries for many years. He has a regular themed column in the two principal United Kingdom bridge journals, the topics covered being Defence and Opening Leads.

Example 1

The following examples should clarify this particular type of squeeze play.

North
AQ82
West
J10
A
A
East
K954
South
6
K
K
A

The contract is No Trump, played by South. The declarer is on lead and needs three of the remaining four tricks to fulfill the contract. South leads the Ace. As a result West, the next player in rotation, becomes squeezed in all three suits. In the case that West discards either the Ace or Ace, then the corresponding King in the hand of the declarer becomes a winner, which the declarer will then lead next, and West is squeezed again.

In the case that West decides to discard 10, then the declarer leads a 6 on the second trick, West plays the Jack, declarer plays Queen from dummy, and East overtakes with King. East is then forced to lead from 95 into the A8 of the dummy, which provides the declarer with the three needed tricks to fulfill the contract.

Mr. Julian Pottage concluded that there were three key features for the mole squeeze:

1. Before the squeeze card can be played, the holding by West, which becomes the mole squeeze, is strong enough to prevent East from being thrown in for the damaging effect. The Spade cards held by West have no value and will not take a trick, and their only value to the defense lies in the way they may support the Spades held by East.
2. The mole squeeze becomes effective only when East has no exit cards. In the above example, if East had a card in a red suit, then this would become the exit card. The resulting endplay would therefore not function since East would then lead up to one of the Aces held by West.
3. West, after the mole squeeze is initiated, becomes conventionally squeezed in both red suits and indirectly in the Spade suit, and therefore basically in all three suits.

The 2 in the dummy is, by definition, an idle card since it becomes discarded when South plays the Ace. This idle card could also be in any other suit and the mole squeeze is still effective and functions. In addition, the fact that one of the cards in the holding of the dummy is an idle card means that one of the simple threats could sit facing the squeeze card. This is illustrated in the following example:

Example 2

North
AQ8
K
West
J9
A
A
East
K1054
South
63
K
A

The contract is No Trump, played by South. The declarer is on lead and needs three of the remaining four tricks to fulfill the contract. South leads the Ace. If West discards the Ace, then the 8 is discarded from the dummy, the idle card. If West decides to discard the Ace, then the King is discarded from the dummy and the declarer plays the good King.

If West decides to discard the 9, then the King is discarded from the dummy, and the declarer throws West in, who must lead up to A8 in the dummy from 105. Whatever West discards, the declarer will win the three tricks necessary to fulfill the contract.

Mole Threat

Example 3

Mr. Julian Pottage also concluded that the threat lying with the squeeze card can be the mole threat, as illustrated in the following example:

North
85
AJ
K
West
KJ6
4
5
East
109
KQ
A
South
AQ7
3
A

South, the declarer, is on lead and needs three of the remaining four tricks to fulfill the contract. South leads the Ace, which initiates the mole squeeze. This time, East is squeezed in all three suits. If West discards a Spade, then South must first play to the Ace in the dummy before West can be endplayed.

Example 4

The mole squeeze can be employed in various situations, such as when the mole threat is split between two hands as in the following example.

North
AQ4
AJ
West
107
KQ
A
East
KJ853
South
962
K
A

In this example, North has a winner with the simple Heart threat to create space for South, the declarer, to have help in the mole suit. In order for the mole squeeze to function in this situation, it is essential that East is void in Hearts. South, the declarer on lead, plays the Ace and West discards a 7, and the Jack is discarded from the dummy.

South, still on lead, plays a low Spade to the Queen, to which West plays the Ten and which West overtakes with King, which means that East must lead into the declarer's Spade holding of 96 and towards the dummy's holding of A4.

Example 5

The mole squeeze can also be employed if the declarer or even the dummy contains a void in the mole suit, which is illustrated in the following example.

North
AQ8
AJ
West
109
KQ
A
East
KJ53
7
South
4
K76
A

The declarer, South, again leads the Ace, and West discards 9, and South discards the Jack from the dummy. South then plays the 4 to the Ace, after which South plays the Ace, which East wins with the King, and West must throw the last Ten. East is then forced to lead from J5 towards the A8 in the dummy.

 

 

If you wish to include this feature, or any other feature, of the game of bridge in your partnership agreement, then please make certain that the concept is understood by both partners. Be aware whether or not the feature is alertable or not and whether an announcement should or must be made. Check with the governing body and/or the bridge district and/or the bridge unit prior to the game to establish the guidelines applied. Please include the particular feature on your convention card in order that your opponents are also aware of this feature during the bidding process, since this information must be made known to them according to the Laws of Duplicate Contract Bridge. We do not always include the procedure regarding Alerts and/or Announcements, since these regulations are changed and revised during time by the governing body. It is our intention only to present the information as concisely and as accurately as possible.

 


     
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