The Crocodile Coup is a play in the game contract bridge. It is executed by the defense: specifically by the second hand to play to a trick. It is the play of a higher card than might seem necessary, to keep a run of honors from being blocked by a singleton honor being in the other hand with either no entry back to the remaining tricks, or having to return the lead to declarer who can promptly dispose of his losers.
In the following example, West executes the Crocodile Coup:
|South in spades;
needs 4 tricks
|♣||A 9 4|
|♣||Q J 8||♣||6 3|
|West to lead||♠||9|
With spades trump, South hopes to win four of the remaining five tricks. South leads the ♦4. Now:
Note that if the East-West hands were reversed, it would take no special acumen for East to overtake West's ♦K and cash the ♦Q.
- West was Augie Boehm. The hand was played in New York in 1980 and reported in the July 1, 1990 issue of the New York Times.