It’s late, and you’re still awake. Allow us to help with Sleep Aid, a series devoted to curing insomnia with the dullest, most soporific texts available in the public domain. Tonight’s prescription: a chapter from The Decline and Fall of Whist, an 1884 book by John Petch Hewby.
Though Mathews (circa A.D. 1800) in two short sentences laid down the true and only principle of discarding: “If weak in trumps, keep guard on your adversaries’ suits; if strong, throw away from them,” fifty years afterwards it was discovered by the “little school” that “the old system of discarding was just this—when not able to follow suit, let your first discard be from your weakest suit.” Rough on poor Mathews! but the absent are always wrong.
However, by a process of evolution, to the first step of which no exception can be taken, we are next told—(a) “When you see from the fall of the cards that there is no probability of bringing in your own or your partner’s long suit discard originally from your best protected suit.” “You must play a defensive game.”—Cavendish. Read More