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When The Only Offensive Declaration Has Been Made By The Second Hand








In this situation the Fourth Hand is in much the same position as the
Third Hand when the Dealer has made an offensive declaration, and the
Second Hand passed. The only difference is that the Fourth Hand
knows that both of the adversaries are apparently weak, whereas in the
previous case the Third Hand had that information as to only one. The
Fourth Hand can, therefore, act much more freely, and should, if in any
way possible, increase a declaration which is not apt to result in game
to one of the three game-producing bids. At a love score, a Club or
Diamond declaration should be allowed to stand in two cases only:--

(a) Weakness, which does not make any further declaration
reasonable.

(b) A combination of cards which makes it probable the Club
or Diamond call will result in game.



When the Second Hand has declared No-trump, Royals, or Hearts, his bid
should be accorded exactly the same treatment that a similar call of
the Dealer receives from the Third Hand.


Neither a two nor three Spade declaration made by the partner should
under any circumstances, be passed. In these cases, the Fourth Hand can
have little doubt what course to pursue. His partner's hand is spread
before him almost as clearly as if exposed upon the table. With
weakness, or with a moderate hand, he should bid one Royal, this being
merely a takeout, and not giving any indication of strength. In this
position he is placed in the same situation as the Third Hand when the
Dealer has made a similar declaration, and these two propositions
are the only instances in the modern game of Auction where a player
without strength is required to assume the offensive. No matter how
weak the hand may be, the Fourth Hand must declare one Royal, so as to
reduce the contract, and also to increase the advantage obtained from
its fulfillment. The partner must read "one Royal" to be an indication
of weakness, or, at least, not a showing of strength.



With Spade length or strength, the Fourth Hand, especially in the case
of the three Spade declaration, should bid two Royals. If he declare
anything but Royals, he says to the partner, "I realize perfectly what
you have, but my hand convinces me that the declaration I am making
will be more advantageous than the one you have suggested."

In the event of one Spade doubled coming to the Fourth Hand, he is also
accurately informed as to his partner's holding, and suggestion. In
this case, it is the rare hand which does not warrant an offensive
declaration.


It is not so great an advantage for the Fourth Hand to call two
No-trumps over one No-trump declared by the Second Hand as it is for
the Third Hand to similarly overbid the Dealer. The reason for this
is, that the main purpose of this overbid by the Third Hand is to
prevent the Fourth Hand from indicating the suit he desires his partner
to lead, but the Dealer, having already declared weakness, is not so
likely to be able to make a bid which will in any way interfere with
the success of a No-trumper. It is, however, not at all impossible that
a declaration of the Dealer's long weak suit, especially when the
Second Hand has an honor or two of it, may be awkward for the No-trump
declarer, and therefore, with the holding which justifies it, the bid
of two No-trumps, under these conditions, is distinctly commendable.





Next: When The Only Offensive Declaration Has Been Made By The Third Hand

Previous: When The Only Offensive Declaration Has Been Made By The Dealer



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