Speaker Sue Hickey could have a deciding vote on who becomes Tasmania's next Premier.
Ms Hickey was uncharacteristically silent on Wednesday about next week's Parliamentary Liberal Party meeting and vote to decide on Will Hodgman's replacement - as were the three men tipped to run to replace him.
Braddon Liberal member Joan Rylah was the only Liberal to confirm that Deputy Premier Jeremy Rockliff, Treasurer Peter Gutwein and Infrastructure Minister Michael Ferguson will throw their hat in the ring.
"Jeremy and Will were such a terrific team, they worked really well together, they collaborated," Ms Rylah said.
"Clearly Jeremy, Peter and Michael, but there's any number of possibilities.
"The next step forward is a really important one."
The likely contenders for the Liberal leadership are believe to have started reaching out to their colleagues to determine their chances for the top job.
Mr Rockliff, Mr Gutwein and Mr Ferguson did not return calls on Wednesday.
Ms Hickey has not attended any meetings of the Parliamentary Liberal Party since she became speaker in controversial circumstances after accepting the nomination from Labor and the Greens.
Political analyst Professor Richard Herr said Ms Hickey might not go to PLP meetings but she was a party member.
It is uncertain whether she will try again for a place in the cabinet after being overlooked in previous reshuffles.
"I think whether she gets a ministry will very much depend on the temperament of who becomes leader," Professor Herr said.
He also did not rule out a fourth leadership contender.
"Elise Archer may well be a candidate for the leadership because with Will gone she is the only southern minister and the strength in the south," Professor Herr said.
"I wouldn't exclude her."
Professor Herr suggested former Labor member for Clark turned independent, Madeleine Ogilvie, could be an outside chance as speaker if Ms Hickey was to get a ministry.
"Again with a reshuffle we're confined by the poverty of a parliament that is too small," he said.
"The range of talent is limited and Will's shock resignation means reshuffling people with limited experience around difficult issues."
Liberal senator Eric Abetz conceded Mr Hodgman's departure would make it harder for the party to win a third term.
"Will was popular around the state and most popular in Braddon," Senator Abetz said.
"Nothing lasts forever but his departure will make it more difficult for us."
Unlike Labor, there are no formal factions in the Liberal Party so the end result could be difficult to determine until the ballot takes place.
Mr Rockliff, a moderate, is likely to benefit from votes from his fellow moderates if he decides he wants to be Premier.
If he wishes to remain Deputy Premier, it is likely to come down to a contest between Mr Gutwein and Mr Ferguson as leader.
There is a chance that there could be a spill called for the Deputy Premier role if any member of the parliamentary party member believes they have the numbers to remove Mr Rockliff.
Southern-based Ms Archer could be a contender if Mr Rockliff becomes Premier to ensure regional balance.
However, sources say northern members are unhappy with her over the proposed Northern prison proposed for Westbury.
If one member overwhelmingly has the numbers for leader, there will not be a ballot and the new leader would be elected unopposed.
This was the case when Labor leader Rebecca White ascended into the role in 2017 when Bryan Green retired from politics.
The Parliamentary Liberal Party is made up of 15 members which includes 12 lower house members, two from the upper house and Ms Hickey.
Mr Hodgman will participate in the party room vote before resigning to Governor Kate Warner.
The ballot is secret and overseen by two scrutineers.
There is no limit on the number of candidates that can stand in the ballot.
It is uncertain whether Mr Hodgman will remain in Tasmania after next week.
He said he had no job to go to but rumours abounded that he would move to London to be nearer his wife's family.