How To Return Partner's Lead

When the original Third Hand returns a suit opened by his partner, he

should lead the winning card, if he hold it. If without the best card,

when the lead is against a No-trump declaration, it is far more

important that a high card should be led through strength, and also

that the holder of the length should be accurately advised as to his

partner's high cards, than that he should be told the exact number of

small ones. Therefore, when playing a No-trumper, the highest card

should be returned from either three or two remaining. With four

remaining (five originally), the holding may be longer than that of the

original leader, and, therefore, the lowest should be led. If the

partner be a keen counter of small cards, the next to the lowest is

doubtless more informatory and just as advantageous as the lowest. When

the original Third Hand returns a suit opened by his partner against a

suit declaration, there is some difference of opinion among good

players as to whether he should follow the Whist rule, which is the

most informatory as to number, and lead the lowest of three remaining,

the higher of two; or whether it is unwise to complicate matters by

distinguishing between this case and the return when a No-trump is

being played. The question is not very important as long as partners

understand which convention is being used.

None of these rules applies in the case, readily distinguishable, in

which the adverse strength in the suit is in the Dummy, and it is

necessary to hold a high card over that hand; the play must then be

made to fit the situation, and not according to any hard-and-fast


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