Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Three-handed Bridge

The three players cut; the one that cuts the lowest card deals, and takes dummy for one deal: each takes dummy in turn. Dummy's cards are dealt face downwards, and the dealer declares without seeing them. If the dealer declares trumps, both adversaries may look at their hands; doubling and redoubling proceeds as at ordinary bridge, but dummy's hand is not exposed till the first card has been led. If the dealer passes the declaration to dummy, his right-hand adversary, who must not have looked at his own hand, examines dummy's, and declares trumps, not, however, exposing the hand. The declaration is forced: with three or four aces sans atout (no trumps) must be declared: in other cases the longest suit: if suits are equal in length, the strongest, i.e. the suit containing most pips, ace counting eleven, king, queen and knave counting ten each. If suits are equal in both length and strength, the one in which the trick has the higher value must be trumps. On the dummy's declaration the third player can only double before seeing his own cards. When the first card has been led, dummy's hand is exposed, never before the lead. The game is 30: the player wins the rubber who is the first to win two games. Fifty points are scored for each game won, and fifty more for the rubber. Sometimes three games are played without reference to a rubber, fifty points being scored for a game won. No tricks score towards game except those which a player wins in his own deal; the value of tricks won in other deals is scored above the line with honours, slam and chicane. At the end of the rubber the totals are added up, and the points won or lost are adjusted thus. Suppose A is credited with 212, B with 290, and C with 312, then A owes 78 to B and 100 to C; B owes 22 to C.