Theory and Conventions


M J Bridge



The Astro Family

Many conventional methods place the emphasis on showing various two-suited combinations.

There is a group of such conventions which have names bearing some similarity to ‘Astro, Aspro, or Asptro’, (but not as a medical acquaintance of mine insists Gastro).

Each features a strong double, conventional bids of 2 and 2 showing some variety of two-suited holding (at least 5-4 shape) including a specified major, and natural overcalls in the majors.

Bear in mind that there are numerous versions of these conventions, differing from each other only in detail, but these detailed differences can be important.  Furthermore, the nomenclature might not be consistent.  Even partnerships playing versions with the same name are quite likely to play them differently in some respect.  Make sure that you agree your version.  If you are playing some such convention with an occasional partner you must agree the precise details - not just the name which you each happen to use.

The following pages describe the best-known versions as I understand them.

The original one of these conventions was


This was followed by


- a British variation on Astro introduced by Terence Reese.

Easily my favourite in this group is


Intermediate and above

Context - Acol bidding - overcaller - opponents opened 1NT - conventional methods.

Advancer’s next bid

This page last revised 9th Apr 2019