If you bid, even if you do not get the contract

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If you bid, even if you do not get the contract, sometimes it pushes the opposition too high and sometimes it helps formulate an accurate defence.  Sometimes, on the other hand, it helps the opposition avoid an unmakeable contract.  This is definitely not what you want!

Here is a tricky deal to bid for NS.  East-West were vulnerable and North dealt.  Plan how you would bid the NS hands.

S: J108

H: A97

D: A109

C: AK84

S: AQ942 S: K7653

H: Q65 H: J82

D: 42 D: Q8

C: J63 C: Q52

S: –

H: K1043

D: KJ7653

C: 1097

Standard American bidding would probably go as below:

North East South West

1N P 3D P

3N P P ?

Three diamonds by South shows a six card diamond suit and is invitational.  North, with a very flat hand and help in diamonds, likely would bid 3N.  Now what is West to do?  With a void West will be uneasy about no trumps, but knowing that nine tricks are much easier to take than eleven tricks for a game in diamonds, he may well eventually pass.  Half the tables ended up in 3N, going down as the opponents rattled off the first five tricks in spades.

So how else can NS bid the hands?  At the table where my partner and I were playing EW, South bid a 2S response to 1N, as minor suit stayman, asking partner to bid a four card minor if he had one.  This allowed my partner to double to show a spade suit.  North bid his club suit.  I raised my partner’s spades and South now bid 4D to end the auction, as below:

North East South West

1N P 2S Dbl

3C 3S 4D All pass

Unfortunately, our bidding had done a good job of warning NS to stay out of no trumps!  Four diamonds made an overtrick for a poor result for us.

If you have bridge questions, or to send me your interesting hands, please contact me at: [email protected]