M J Bridge

Bidding

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Hand

A5

Context

Staffordshire v Oxfordshire - September 2008

Dealer

North

Methods

Jacoby 2NT, Lucas, Muiderberg, opening 1NT, transfers, 2NT transfer break,

Vulnerability

None


three-level overcall, natural overcall, Lebensohl double, control-showing cue-bid


N

K 5 4

K T 6 5 2

K

K 7 6 2


S

A J T 7

A Q J 8

Q 7

9 5 3


W

9 8 4

4

A J T 9 8 2

Q J 4


E

Q 6 2

9 7 3

6 5 4 3

A T 8

Opening 1NT, overcall at the three-level

3 by West is a matter of personal and partnership style.  A natural overcall of 2 would be automatic but you probably have a conventional meaning for this bid.

3 by North promises a five-card suit.  It is forcing and slightly pushy, but what else?

Note that East resists the temptation to compete in diamonds as he does not wish to encourage a diamond lead.

Once again the raise to four is automatic.

W

N

E

S


-

-

1NT

3

3

4

-

-

-







Opening 1NT, natural overcall, Lebensohl double

If West has a natural 2 bid available then Lebensohl comes into the equation.  North must choose between a game-forcing 3, and a double promising invitational values and in principle for take-out.  East still has misgivings about the quality of his suit, but with no suit agreed by NS there is an argument for the preemptive strike.  With a maximum and both majors South bids his cheaper major.

If instead East chooses to pass then 3 from South would be forcing,promising at least one four-card major, and if East raised to only 3, then 4 from South would promise both majors.

W

N

E

S


-

-

1NT

2

x

4

4

-

-

-






What happens?


All roads lead to 4.

With the spade finesse working, 3NT by North is the surest contract, but only one pair found this, and on another day it might well be a poor choice.

In 4 West must either start with a club, or switch to a club after the A, otherwise ten tricks are assured.

Note that with North as declarer 4 will always make except on a diamond lead and a club switch.


In the match four pairs made ten tricks in hearts, the other seven going one off.

Opening one of a suit, Jacoby 2NT, control-showing cue-bids

I do not love North’s opening bid with its dodgy twelve points and unimpressive suit quality.  Interchange the minor suits and I would at least be guaranteed an honest rebid.  South must force to game - my choice is Jacoby.  I am playing North’s rebid of 3 to show a void or singleton, but other agreements are possible.  3 by South initiates a cue-bidding sequence, but the auction should die at game-level.

W

N

E

S


1

-

2NT

-

3

-

3

-

4

-

4

Post-beginner and above

Intermediate and above

Weak two-suited opening

Some North’s might downgrade their points and open with a weak bid promising 5-4 shape as here.  Personally I do not like this decision with such poor suit quality, particularly when vulnerable, but it is a possibility.

South could raise to 3 based on level of fit, although there is little need to preempt with good points and good spades.  Alternatively, as here, he might have a 3 bid available which is game-invitational in partner’s suit.

North can hardly do less than bid the game.

W

N

E

S


2

-

3

-

4

-

-

-








Post-beginner to intermediate

Opening 1NT, transfers, 2NT transfer break

If North passes then South will open the bidding with 1NT and a transfer by North should be automatic.  With four-card heart support South must break the transfer.  Some pairs will break with 3 as a matter of course - some will bid the control-showing 2 but it gives away valuable information - I like the 2NT break, as shown, promising four-card support in a maximum hand.  Once again, North can hardly do less than bid the game.

W

N

E

S

-

-

-

1NT

-

2

-

2NT

-

4

-

-

Post-beginner and above

Intermediate and above

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