M J Bridge

Theory and Conventions



Jacoby 2NT

You should incorporate a 2NT high-card raise into your system at an early stage.

You have a choice between the Jacoby 2NT on this page and the 2NT ‘limit or better’ high-card raise.

There is little to choose between them, although the ‘Jacoby’ game-raise on this page is possibly the more common (by a small margin) in club play at the present time.

This bid is commonplace in the tournament world.  It shows a genuine raise to game in a major suit based on a good high-card holding. The hand will not contain a void or singleton (as you did not splinter) and so will be balanced or semi-balanced.

Use this route whenever you have thirteen (twelve) points or a LTC of seven together with four cards in partner’s major.

The bid is a direct jump to 2NT.

It promises at least four-card support for partner’s major, a good holding in high cards, and is forcing to game.

A Q 8 6

T 5

K Q 8 5

A 8 3

Partner opened 1.

Four-card spade support and fifteen high-card points in a balanced hand (add one for the doubleton if you like).

Bid 2NT.

The bidding cannot stop below game level.

Note that this bid is never needed in a natural sense.  Natural 2NT hands can always travel by way of a simple forcing change of suit.

The great strength of the Jacoby 2NT bid lies in the space it creates for a possible slam investigation.  Because it forces to game the intervening bids can be used to make low-level enquiries.

As and when you incorporate this bid I would recommend most strongly that you also adopt a system of specialist responses along the lines discussed in the section on opener’s rebids.

When you adopt this or any other support bid you may need to modify your use of the direct raises as shown earlier.

Various possibilities are outlined on the page on ‘direct raises again’.

A 6

J T 5

Q 9 8 5

A 8 7 3

Partner opened 1.

Eleven points in a balanced hand without spade support.

You would like to bid a natural 2NT, but this would be Jacoby.

Bid 2, and follow with 2NT.

Post-beginner and above

Opener’s first bid

Opener’s rebid

Context  -  Responder’s first bid - partner opened one major in first or second seat - improvers’ methods - support bids.

This page last revised 10th Aug 2019