When The Dealer Has Called One Spade And The Second Hand Passed

In the old days, when the Dealer's "one Spade" was without significance,

the Third Hand was always obliged to declare, in order to give the

Dealer the opportunity to get back into the game, as it was possible

that he had great strength. Now the Third Hand recognizes that there is

not the least obligation upon him to bid, and that it is inadvisable

for him to do so unless his hand be so strong that, even with a weak

partner, game is in sight, or unless it be important for him to

indicate to the Dealer what to lead if the Fourth Hand make the final


Should the Third Hand pass, and the Fourth Hand also pass, allowing the

one Spade declaration to stand, the liability of the Declarer cannot

exceed 100 points, but if the Third Hand bid, the liability becomes

unlimited. While the Dealer and Second Hand both have the right to

assume that their partners have an average percentage of the remaining

cards, the Third Hand is not justified in any such presumption, after

the Dealer, by bidding one Spade, has virtually waved the red flag.

True it is, a similar warning has appeared on the right, but if both

danger signals are to be believed, the only inference is that the

strength is massed on the left. The bidding by the Third Hand must,

therefore, be of a very different character from that of the Dealer or

Second Hand. He should not venture a No-trump unless he have four sure

tricks with the probability of more and at least three suits stopped.

When in doubt whether to declare No-trump or a suit, it is generally

wise for him to select the latter.

Third Hand suit declarations should be made under either of two


(a) When the hand is so strong that there appears to be at

least a fair chance for game with the suit he names as Trump.

(b) When he expects a No-trump from the Fourth Hand and

wishes to indicate to his partner the lead he desires.

In the former case, it is often good policy for the Third Hand to start

with a bid of two. This serves a double purpose, as it shows the Dealer

the character of the hand and helps to shut out an adverse declaration.

If the main idea of the bid be to indicate a lead, it is advisable to

make it on the first round, when one can be called, rather than wait

until it becomes necessary to bid two, which, against a No-trump, may

prove dangerous. If the Third Hand have any such combination as King,

Queen, Knave, with one or more others of that suit, and a reentry, a

declaration at this stage is most important, as unless the partner open

that suit, it will probably never be established against a No-trump.

Even if the long suit be headed by Queen, Knave, it may be important to

show it, as the partner may hold an honor, in which case the suit may

be quickly established. When the long suit is headed by a Knave, it

should not be shown unless the hand contain more than one reentry. It

may be so necessary for the Third Hand, in the position under

consideration, to indicate a lead that no absolute strength

requirement, such as a fixed number of tricks, is essential for a bid.

It frequently keeps the adverse No-trumper from going game to have the

right suit called originally--otherwise, the Dealer has to lead his own

suit, and when the Third Hand is without strength in it, such a lead

greatly facilitates the Declarer.

When The Dealer And Third Hand Have Made Offensive Declarations And The Second Hand Passed When The Dealer Has Made A Defensive And Both The Second And Third Hands Offensive Declarations facebooktwittergoogle_plusredditpinterestlinkedinmail