I call this by the above title because there are many who never will develop the necessary strength to the left fin gers to enable them to buckle half or more of a pack especially if the cards are new and stiff. For this reason the following Center Deal, which depends on widening the break by dropping the lower half, should appeal.
1. This time the break at the upper right corner is maintained by the left 2nd finger and the deck is held in a sort of Erdnase Grip. The left thumb extends towards the left 2nd finger and touches its tip. The left forefinger sort of crosses the front end of the deck and lies next to the left 2nd finger. The lower left corner of deck can rest either in the Mechanic's Grip position or Master Grip position.
2. The way the left second finger lies between the halves is important. The tip of left forefinger is directly on the upper right corner of the top half, while the upper right corner of the lower half rests at a point between the first and second joints of the left 2nd finger. The Figure 174 very openly shows the position of left 2nd finger as it lies between the two halves.
3. Of course, with all fingers around the deck and the left thumb pressing on top, the wide breaks are covered from all angles. Figure 175 shows a right side view of the finger positions.
4. To deal the top card the left thumb pushes it off the deck onto the left 3rd and 4 th fingers. The right hand comes over in the same manner as in Figure 166 to take the top card. This is continued for each card until ready to perform the Center Deal.
5. In dealing the Center card the left 3rd and 4th fingers relax to let the break widen. Next, the left 3rd fingertip moves up against the center card and buckles it inwards slightly to free its upper right corner from the left forefinger. Figure 176 shows a right side exposed view.
6. Naturally the right hand is in position on the right side of the deck during this action. Next, the left 3rd finger pushes on the corner of the center card causing it to pivot out of the deck in a manner similar to that seen in Figure 168 of the Exhibition Center Deal. With this Erdnase grip, however, there will be no visible front break during the time the center card is pivoted out of the deck. The pivot point in this grip is against the left 2nd fingertip.
7. The buckling of the center card, with the left 3rd fingertip, insures that only one card comes out of the center. As the center card clears the pack, the left fingers assume their regular position to cover all breaks although a break is retained, by the left second finger, at upper right corner of the deck.
The Strike Center
1. Hold the pack in the Erdnase Grip in a similar position as for the Weakling Center Deal. The break is held by the left 2nd finger; however, the left thumb is at the top end, at center of the deck, its tip touching the second phalange of the left forefinger.
2. The left thumb arcs over the top card, and very slightly past the left fingertips. The right hand takes this card, by its upper right corner, between the right thumb on top and second finger beneath. The right forefinger is on the top edge of the card at the same corner. The right 3rd and 4th fingers are curled into the palm.
3. The top card deal is continued until a Center is required. At this stage the left 3rd and 4th fingers pull down the cards below the break thus making a wide gap on the right side of the deck.
4. Into this gap goes the right second finger and up against the center card as in the exposed view of Figure 177.
5. The right side view will be quite open unless you make sure to hold the hands close to the table. In that case, the view from the right side will be as in Figure 178 while from the front the view will be as in Figure 179.
6. Once the right second finger feels the center card, it is pulled out from the center by a slight inward action of right second fingertip, against the face ofthe card. This causes the center card to come away from under the control of the left second fingertip and thus is easily dealt out.
Immediately as the right fingers take the card, the left fingers close in around the pack to conceal all breaks.
7. Some may find this Strike Center Deal easier if the break is held by the left forefinger instead of left second finger. In this case, move the left hand in towards the right hand. The right hand takes the card as the left hand moves away. This back and forth action of the left hand will cover up the fact that there is a front break during the Center Deal. For this reason this is better as a demonstration method. It can be done rapidly and smoothly.
With proper attention to angles there isn't any reason why either of these Strike techniques shouldn't prove deceptive and effective.
Side Steal Center Deal
Anyone who knows the mechanics of the Side Steal can easily do this Center Deal.
1. Hold the pack with all four left fingers at the side of the deck. Left thumb is across the middle of the deck. The left 4th finger holds a break.
2. The right hand comes over the deck from above. The left thumb pushes the top card off to the right about a quarter of an inch. The right hand takes this card from above Dy the ends, then snaps it face up by pressing the right forefinger on top of the card and releasing the front end from the right 2nd, 3rd and 4 th fingers, causing the card to turn face up. As a result it is held with the thumb on the face and fingers below.
3. When ready to deal a Center, the right hand again comes above the deck as before. This time the left fingers lower the cards below the break so that left second finger can move in and push out the Center card, at a slight angle, so that its upper right corner contacts the right 4th fingertip and the lower left corner contacts tip of the rightthumb.
4. With the center card thus gripped by the right hand it is moved out of the deck and at the same time snapped face up as the top cards were. As the center card starts to clear the deck the left 4th finger moves in to retain the break at lower right corner of the pack.
The deal can then be resumed with the top card until another center card is needed. The method is easy and for a more detailed description of the actual technique involved refer to Chapter
Four, The Side Steal under the heading Deliberate Steal. Remember that the left thumb in the Center Deal is across the top of the deck, touching the tip of the left second finger. The left thumb is actually an aid in keeping more than one card from corning out, as it practically holds the right side of the upper packet while the center card is being pulled out by the right hand.
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