The typical structure of a trick is a low card led, second card low, third card high, fourth card either higher or lowest. This issue we look at plays by the third-hand. As noted, the third player should normally play high; however they should play the cheaper of touching highest cards.
Exercise:Say Hearts are trumps and partner has led ♠2. Dummy has three small cards and plays low. Which one do you play from these:
|♠ 8 6 4|
|West leads||North||East (you)|
|Leads ♠ 2||(a) ♠ A J 5|
|West East||(b) ♠ A K 5|
|(c) ♠ A K Q J 5|
|(d) ♠ K J 5|
|South||(e) ♠ K Q 5|
(a) ♠A.Third hand high.
(b) ♠K. Cheaper of touching highest cards.
(c) ♠J. When partner sees ♠J win the trick, he can work out you have the higher spades (this is the logic of why you must win with the cheaper card).
(d) ♠K. Third hand high.
(e) ♠Q. Cheaper of the touching highest cards.