when the chips are down

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

From the game of poker.

PronunciationEdit

  • (file)

PhraseEdit

when the chips are down

  1. (idiomatic) When the pressure is on; when the situation is urgent or critical
    He wasn't a very talented musician but, when the chips were down, he played well.
    When the chips are down, you need to make tough decisions.

See alsoEdit

Last modified on 30 March 2014, at 21:07