January 10, 2021

*** This hand was suggested by Jazzselke
40*-38  ?
Total votes: 221
1789 votes

Joined: March 2016

Sunday 3:12 AM
Holding 7 points to start with a possible maximum of 16 points with 12 cuts (QQQ; 444, 666; 555.)
554 votes

Joined: February 2009

Sunday 3:22 AM
The 4567 pegging combination as dealer is just too powerful to break up-never thrilled about throwing ace7 to my own crib-too many zero and 2 results-also this hold opens us up to the bingo cut of a 4
2741 votes

Joined: June 2013

Sunday 3:24 AM
I'll go with A7, although I think there's a case to be made for both of AQ and A4.
5 reply to a led X. Hopefully I'll get 15/2 and 31/2.
Andy (muesli64)
1898 votes

Joined: August 2009

Sunday 4:35 AM
Statistics favour the A-7 throw.
5135 votes

Joined: April 2008

Sunday 5:08 AM
I play to my strength, pegging with the hand I keep and seeing what position I am at I would like to peg offensive here. Yes I have more faith the Q-A might get some points compared to that hit or miss A-7. Like the more sixteen pointers possible with this keep in the main hand. dec
4522 votes

Joined: March 2008

Sunday 5:28 AM
The 456 stays together, so its a question of what gets put in the crib. Neither A7 or AQ excite me, but I like 4567 more than 456Q. With this cluster, its offense to the lead.
230 votes

Joined: June 2020

Sunday 6:24 AM
First..about yesterday’s comments from Hal & Coeurdelion ..Hal..Like wasa, i am not sure how a keep can be BOTH best for win and worst for loss. I also do not have enough “evidence” to grasp how a keep, as Pone , can produce an expected 3.2 pegging points while playing SAFE. As to Coeurdelion ...I do not understand this ... “We're 9pts short of where we would like to be while pone is 4pts short of 3rd street positional hole so I'll play Defense and try to extend the game. “....i am not familiar with a par hole of 101 and I am on 4th street once I cross 90...correct? Also I am Pone in this puzzle. Ras..or others ...a brief explanation to straighten me out would be appreciated. ..Now for today’s puzzle. Jazz summits another...the 4-5-6 & “ ten” is usually the best answer until it isn’t. Rob, dec & Gougie00 explain why it isn’t ...as for me... A-7 is not a great toss to my own crib....but I am staying with my 4-5-6-“ten” with 36 cuts to improve. AND..i do not like this board position ..while I am ahead...my opponent will deal first from above 44...so work to be done for me. Thanks for the puzzle challenge Jazz.. I wait to see if my keep is or is not the answer.
741 votes

Joined: February 2009

Sunday 6:43 AM
I like A-7 to my crib a bit more than A-Q. We have the 4-5-6 which can get us some needed pegs. Will peg aggressively here to try to get to at least 44 before the hand counts. Nice puzzle Dan as this combo seems to appear quite often.
828 votes

Joined: August 2018

Sunday 6:47 AM
My thoughts align with Gougie’s.
251 votes

Joined: March 2020

Sunday 7:33 AM
JUst seems to be more cut combos with this hand, but wondered about the pegging power of the 4-5-6-7. Just hated that Q-7 to my crib
3319 votes

Joined: April 2011

Sunday 8:10 AM
I like middle one and little one in the crib. Being short on 2nd street and my opponent approaching idea position it’s offense to the lead
749 votes

Joined: January 2018

Sunday 9:19 AM
Very interesting. Having '456' should be kept together espoused so often 456Q was my first choice sine A7 is better than AQ in the crib and you get one more starting point. But A4 in the crib gives same starting points, plus upside potential in the crib, and still have magic 11 in hand. So, I tried this. Looking forward to numbers and discussion.
1888 votes

Joined: April 2015

Sunday 12:15 PM
While I'm typing, I want to give you a heads up on tomorrow's puzzle. I don't know what it will be because it was submitted by my 11-year-old son. He was playing the CPU on his phone app. He decided to put it out to the group to see what everyone thinks.

I expect that it might be a puzzle that will get complete agreement among the posters here who are among the very best. However, I wouldn't want to completely overlook other users of this site. The voters who do not post are often not at that master level.

I took up cribbage about 10 years ago and I can definitely remember that the first couple years of using this site before I even made an account here. My goal might be to just identify any of the top three hands or later to identify all of the top three hands.

My son is in that stage of development. When he is dealt a hand, he will still completely miss some of the tosses that should be considered. Or, other times, he will focus on a single card that might be the starter card. He'll pick a single rank and decide that if that card comes up, which hand would it benefit the most.

So in conclusion, please be gentle tomorrow. He's looking forward to reading the comments.
3046 votes

Joined: October 2007

Sunday 12:33 PM
Did anyone find out about JTQ?
1693 votes

Joined: March 2009

Sunday 1:45 PM
As Mike mentions, this hand seems to come up quite often. Over the years I have asked several top-notch players their opinion, and the top 3 choices have all received support. My summary: 4567 great pegging, but not crazy about AX; 567X great to throw A4, but 567X only a maximum of 12 or 13,instead of 16 or 17; and 456X a reliable,versatile hold but A7 not as valuable as A4. So a tough call that could depend on whether offense or defense is the chosen strategy.
4441 votes

Joined: October 2007

Sunday 3:36 PM
I think it's between 4-5-6-Q (A-7), A-4-5-6 (7-Q), 5-6-7-Q (A-4) and 4-5-6-7 (A-Q):

4-5-6-Q: 7pts + 3¾pts (Schell: 3.85) = 10¾pts

A-4-5-6: 5pts + 3¼pts (Schell: 3.23) = 8¼pts

5-6-7-Q: 5pts + 5¼pts (Schell: 5.43) = 10¼pts

4-5-6-7: 6pts + 3½pts (Schell: 3.42) = 9½pts


4-5-6-Q: Improves with AAA, 3333, 444, 555, 666, 777, 9999 + 15xXs = 38 cuts = 38/46 = 82.6% up to 11/14/16pts with 444, 555, 666, QQQ = 12 cuts.

A-4-5-6: Improves with AAA, 3333, 444, 555, 666, 777, 8888, 9999 + 15xXs = 42 cuts = 42/46 = 91.3% up to 8/9/12/14pts with 3333, 444, 555, 666, 9999 + 15xXs = 32 cuts.

5-6-7-Q: Improves with 2222, 3333, 444, 555, 666, 777, 8888, 9999 + 15xXs = 43 cuts = 43/46 = 93.5% up to 8/9/10/12pts with 444, 555, 666, 777, 8888, QQQ = 19 cuts.

4-5-6-7: Improves with 2222, 3333, 444, 555, 666, 777, 8888, 9999 + 15xXs = 43 cuts = 43/46 = 93.5% up to 9/12/14/16pts with 3333, 444, 555, 666, 777, 8888 = 20 cuts.


We're 4pts short of 2nd street positional hole but Pone is 22pts short of where they would like to be so I'll play Defense.


A-4-5-6 will peg very well with low cards and a 3-card magic eleven plus the 5 and a broken 5. 4-5-6-7, 5-6-7-Q and A-4-5-6 have more cuts for improvement


4-5-6-Q is best for starting value by 1¼pt over 4-5-6-7, ½pt over 5-6-7-Q and 2½pts over A-4-5-6. However, A-4-5-6, 5-6-7-Q and 4-5-6-7 have more cuts for improvement and many more for an average/very good hand. So I think it may be close but I think the better potential of 5-6-7-Q will catch up the ½pt so I'll select A-4 to discard.
4193 votes

Joined: February 2008

Sunday 4:26 PM
At 40*-38 playing an Optimal strategy for the pegging (cautious offense):

Optimal____Hand_Pegs_Crib_Total____W6 %____W7 %

Optimal________L6 %____L7 %

5-6-7-Q is best for expected averages by 0.10pt but in this board position approaching a positional hole and with the difference in expected averages being so slight perhaps the Win/Loss %s must be the deciding factor. For 4-5-6-Q the Win %s and Loss %s are both slightly more favorable so I'll select A-7 to discard.

After the 2 cut I'll play Offense to the lead.
3979 votes

Joined: November 2008

Sunday 5:25 PM
Am choosing an offense strategy as am 3 holes short of 2nd Street CPZ (43-47). Will play on the lead which means would score 15-2 with the five on a X-lead. Won't pair the opening lead although would take 15-2 in any form offered. If pegging does not emerge, will try to hang on to the 5-Q, if opponent playing smaller cards might be able to score 15-2 and last card for three pegs after n/d plays out. That's the plan. Often when dealing three holes short on 2nd street will need to play offense for the next three hands to gain positional advantage.