Eddie Kantar
   
 

Bidding Quizzes 

240 Bidding Problems  

#1  HOW DO YOU HANDLE THESE RESPONDING HANDS?

YOUR PARTNER OPENS 1H,
you respond 1S,
partner rebids 2H showing six hearts,
and now it is your turn again.

What action, if any, do you take with the following  six hands?

1.  S. AJ843  H. 4  D. KJ974  C. 95

2.  S. AJ932  H. Q7 D. K743  C. 98

3.  S. AQ87  H. 2  D. Q873  C. K843

4.  S. A10832  H. K104  D. 2  C. AQ93

5.  S. AQJ1074  H. 2  D. A98  C. 874  

6.  S. J95432  H. -  D. A976  C. Q65  

SOLUTIONS 

1.  Pass.  2S on a five card suit is out. 3D showing opening bid values is also out. What's left is the best bid in bridge, PASS!

2.  3H   You have enough to invite. That HQ is a big card. 

3.  Pass 11 HCP is enough to bid 2NT, but the singleton heart reduces the value of your hand a point or two. This could be wrong, but more often than not you will be right.

4.  4D   A slam try splinter showing a singleton diamond, three card heart support, and slam invitational values. Perfect.

5.  3S   Invitational. With one more spade and one less club, you should jump to 4S. 6. Pass    Don't look for trouble with a likely misfit. There's always the next hand.   

6.   Pass. Don't look for trouble with a likely misfit. If your spades were stronger, you would say 2S.

#2  A BIDDING QUIZ TESTING YOU ON OPENER'S THIRD BID  

With both sides vulnerable at IMP scoring the bidding has proceeded:

South (you)         West             North           East
1H                          Pass             1S                 Pass
2H                          Pass             3C                 Pass
?

What rebid would you make with the following South hands?

1.

S. 4
H. AQJ10876
D. A3
C. J43

2.

S. 5
H. KQJ1097
D. K743
C. Q4

3.

S. KQ
H. A76543
D. 85
C. KJ6

4.

S. K7
H. A98654
D. QJ
C. Q106

5.

S. 9
H. AQ9764
D. KJ10
C. K76

6.

S. -
H. A876542
D. A2
C. K1032

SOLUTIONS 

1.  4H Your partner has a strong hand and your independent heart suit must be revealed.    You can play in hearts facing a void if necessary.

2.  3H You have a minimum opening bid with a possibly wasted DK. Your heart suit is independent, always a plus; 3NT is off the wall.

3.  4S Your hand has improved tremendously on the bidding.    Partner figures to have five or six spades.  (If partner had four spades, he would have arranged a different auction).   There is a likely slam here and you should indicate the strength of your spades; a raise in clubs, partner's second suit, would show four clubs.

4.  3S You have already shown partner six hearts so now is the time to give partner a preference.  A raise to 4C shows four card support and rebids of 3H or 3NT are both off the wall.

5.  3NT   Sticks out like a sore thumb.

6.  4D! You have to have talked this one over!  The jump to 4D announces a big fit with partner's last bid suit plus the ace of the jump suit.    It's a neat way of inviting slam showing while staying beneath the level of 4NT.  The leap is called the " an out of the blue cue".

#3  RESPONDER'S REBID AFTER A 1NT RESPONSE

Let's see how familiar you are with responder's follow up rebids after having responded 1NT to a 1S opening bid. 

You are South, neither side is vulnerable, and you are playing matchpoints.

South           West         North         East
Pass             Pass         1S              Pass
1NT              Pass          2D             Pass
?

What is your rebid, if anything, with each of the following seven hands?

1.  S. 72         H. A1098           D. J103                C. KJ108

2.  S. 432       H. QJ98             D. QJ10               C. 1098

3.  S. 43         H. KJ10985       D. Q762               C. 7

4.  S. 4           H. A876            D. QJ876              C. 654

5.  S. 54         H. Q76              D. 109                  C. KQ10943

6.  S. 4           H. J1098           D. Q43                  C. A8765

7.  S. 43         H. 3                  D. K108743          C. A976

SOLUTIONS

1.   2NT.    This normally shows 10 HCP with the unbid suits well stopped.   However, you are allowed to cheat a point holding three tens.

2.  2S.    With three cards in each of partner's suits, return to the first suit if you want to keep your partner; pass if you want to get rid of him.

3.  2H.    Even with four diamonds you simply cannot conceal a six card major of this strength.

4. 3D.    Seems pretty obvious.    If you even thought of bidding something else, don't mention it in public.

5.  3C.    For the same reason you bid 2H on #3, to show your partner a strong six card suit with few HCP.

6.  Pass.    Anything else is playing with fire.

7.  4C.    The "out of the blue cue".    What, you've never heard of it?   This jump from outer space shows a magnificent fit with partner's last bid suit plus an ace in the jump suit.    What else can it mean?    You weren't strong enough to open or respond at the two level after you passed, so you must have been hit big time.    However, take full credit if you jumped to 4D, but raising to only 3D is cowardly to the max.

#4  BIDDING WITH LOUSY HANDS

One doesn't always pick up good hands. Sometimes one has to make do with one like this:

S. 76 
H. K54 
D. J765 
C. 10876 

You are sitting South playing IMPs with both sides vulnerable.  
How would you handle this lovely hand given the following 6 sequences?

1. West         North         East         South
    1S                Dbl.           Pass          ?

2. West         North         East         South
    1S                Dbl.          Rdbl.           ?

3. North         East         South         West
    1S                Dbl.          Pass           2C
    Dbl.              Pass           ?

4. North         East         South         West
    1C               1H             Pass         3H (1)
    3S              Pass           ?
     (1) Preemptive

5. North         East         South         West
    1H             Pass           Pass           1S
    3D             Pass             ?        

6. West         North         East         South
    1NT (1)      Dbl. (2)         Pass         ?
      (1)  15-17     (2) Penalty double

ANSWERS

1.  2C.  It's not for you to reason why, it's for you to do or die. Bid your cheaper four card suit and hope for the best.

2.  Pass.    You are off the hook after the redouble. It is up to partner to rescue himself. Bidding a minor suit at the two level after a redouble suggests a 5 card suit, exceptionally a strong four carder.

3.  2D. Partner's double is for takeout and you are taking it out. Bridge is a simple game.

4.  4C. The other choice is 5C, a bid you might make if your king were in another suit, any other suit. Partner figures to have 10 or 11 black cards with more clubs than spades (possibly 5-5) and there are no words to describe a "pass" at this point.

5.  4H. Having passed partner's 1H opening bid, you could hardly have more. Besides, there is a double fit - always good for taking mucho tricks offensively. Go for it!

6.  Pass. Your partner has announced a hand as strong or stronger than the opening bidder. Believe it or not, you have nothing to be ashamed of.    Your side probably has as many or HCP than they do and partner is on lead.    If you remove partner's penalty double of one notrump, you announce a weak hand with a five or six card suit.

#5  WHAT'S YOUR AMBASSADOR HOTEL BID?

Many years ago I played at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles during the annual Bridge Week tournament.  Some of these "Bridge Weeks" outdrew some of the National Tournaments.   Here are a few hands I had to deal with.  See how your action compared with mine.   You are always South.

1.
East-West Vul.  
You hold: 
S. 10864 
H. 54
D. J9 
C. 87654

South         West         North         East
Pass           Pass           1D             Dbl.
Pass             2D             3H             3S
Pass             4S             Pass         Pass
?
WHAT'S YOUR BID?


2.
East-West Vul.
You hold:
S. A1054 
H. KQ10 
D. 85 
C. Q987

South         West         North         East
Pass             1D             Pass         1H
Dbl.             Pass           1S             Pass
Pass            2H              Pass         Pass
?
WHAT'S YOUR BID?


3.
Both sides Vul. 
You hold: 
S. 1097 
H. 4 
D. KJ4 
C. A97654


North             East         South         West
1D                   1S             2C              3D (1)
4C                   4S               ?  

   (1) Strong spade raise

WHAT'S YOUR BID?


4.
Both sides Vul. 
You hold: 
S. 32 
H Q4 
D. 32 
C. AQJ10876

East             South             West         North
Pass             3C                 Pass             3D (1)
Pass             3H (2)           Pass             3S
Pass             4C                 Pass             4S
Pass              ?

   (1) Forcing
   (2) Trying to show a stopper-sort of!

WHAT'S YOUR BID?


5.
Neither side Vul. 
You hold:
S. 1087
H. AQ94 
D. AJ4 
C. 954

North             East             South          West
1C                 Pass             1H                 Pass
2C                 Pass             2NT              Pass
3D                 Pass              ?

WHAT'S YOUR BID?


 

WHAT WOULD HAVE WORKED

1.
It was right to sacrifice at 5D.  The opponents can make exactly 4S and 5D is down only two. 
Partner's hand:
S. x
H. KQxxx 
D. AKQ10xx 
C. x     
   (I passed)

2.
This time it was right to pass. You have already told your hand and further competition should be up to partner.  In any case, they go down 2, vulnerable.  
Partner's hand: 
S. J9x 
H. J9x 
D. AQxx
C.  Kxx
  (I passed)

3.
I bid 5C which was doubled and beaten 1 trick.  4 Spades  could not make.
Partner's hand: 
S. xx 
H. Kxxx 
D. AQ10x
C.  KQx

4.
I bid 5C which ended the bidding. I went down one with a spade lead. Partner said I might have bid 5D. 
Partner's hand:
S.  AKQxx 
H.  K
D.  AQ98xxx 
C.  -

5.
This time I did something right.  I bid 5C which turned out to be a great contract. Partner's hand:
S.  x 
H.  xx
D. KQxx 
C.  AKJ10xx

#6  WHAT'S YOUR SAN ANTONIO BID?

Here are four bidding decisions from a National Championship in San Antonio. 

Let's see how you would have fared.

Assume you are playing matchpoints. You are always South and since you and partner have most of the high card strength, the opponents pass throughout. I know that in real life this never happens, but in this quiz it does.

1.  You hold: 
S. 543 
H. KJ943 
D. A4 
C. 984

North             South
2C (1)             2H (2)
3H                     ?
   (1) Strong and artificial.
   (2) Positive response; does not promise two of the top three honors.


2.  You hold: 
S. 3  
H. A104 
D. AK4 
C. A97643

South             North
1C                     1H
?


3.  You hold: 
S. 1054 
H. AK43 
D. Q4 
C. AQJ9

North             South
1D                     2C (1)
2D                     2H
3NT                    ?

   (1) Most would respond 1H but a follow up bid of 3C would suggest 5 hearts


4.  You hold:
S. AKQ92 
H. AK1094 
D. 10 
C. A10

North             South
1D                     1S
2S                     4NT (1)
5D (2)              5NT (3)
6H (4)                 ?

   (1) Regular Blackwood (At that time Key Card Blackwood was not as well known).
   (2) 1 ace
   (3) kings?
   (4) 2

WHAT WOULD HAVE WORKED

1.  Cuebid 4D.    You have nothing to be ashamed of and that DA might be just what the Dr. ordered.    In fact it was.
Partner's hand: 
S. AK 
H. AQ10 
D. K75 
C. AQJ107
Partner will check for aces and kings and discover a king is missing.    At this point partner should subside in 6NT which pays 10 points more than hearts.


2.  There are five possible rebids: 2C, 3C, 2H, 3H, and 2D.    Expert opinion varied as to which was best.    However, on this hand the stronger the rebid the more likely you are to get a good result.

 Partner hand: 
S. AQ102 
H. KQ73 
D. 32 
C. KQ10.
The way the cards lie, there is a grand in clubs, hearts or notrump, however just arriving at a small slam would have achieved a superior matchpoint result.


3.  The winning action was to bid on. A possible forward going move is 4NT, quantitative, another possible move is 4D helping partner to visualize that his long diamonds are going to be worth quite a few tricks or simply taking the bull by the horns and bidding 6NT.    
Partner's hand: 
S. AJ9 
H. Q4 
D. AK9832 
C. 74     
A difficult slam to reach.


4.  Only a coward wouldn't gamble a grand on this one.    Partner actually has a minimum and the grand is practically on ice. 
Partner's hand:   I could have made it a little easier on myself by bidding 3H over  2S.  Once partner confirms four card spade support it is much easier to bid the grand. )
S. J1083 
H. 32 
D. AK832 
C. K7

#7  TEST YOUR MATCHPOINT BIDDING 

How would you handle this fairly common sequence in the South seat with neither side vulnerable playing matchpoints?

South (you)    West     North    East
1S                  Pass     Pass    Dbl.
?

You hold:

1.   S. AJ1087   H. KQ876   D. K2  C. 3
2.   S. AQ976    H. AK3   D. AQ3  C. 108 
3.   S. AKJ986   H. 3  D. QJ84  C. K5
4.   S. KQ1096   H. AKJ103  D. A2  C. 3
5.   S. AK109865   H. 2  D. AJ10  C. K5
6.    S. AJ876   H. KQ92  D. 43  C. QJ

SOLUTIONS

1.  2H   You have enough strength and distribution to bid your second suit. If not now, when?

2.  Rdbl.    Letting partner know you have the best hand at the table at the same time encouraging him to join the party. Incidentally this is not a rescue S.O.S redouble.    The S.O.S redouble is used after a takeout double has been left in for penalty:

South (you)   West    North    East
1C                 Dbl.      Pass    Pass
Rdbl. 
   (This one is an S.O.S redouble)

3.  2S    You have the strength and distribution to bid again, but you must have a strong suit to rebid it in this sequence.  

4.  3H    Not forcing but highly invitational.  You don't need much for game facing this monster.

5.  3S    Facing a passed partner this rebid shows a hand that can take about 8-9 tricks and doesn't need much for game.

6.  Pass.  This is not your hand, stay out of trouble.

#8  A  QUIZ FOR THE RESPONDER 

Do you know all the options you have in this sequence?  Let's see.  (Partner's 2C bid promises at least four clubs)

Try your hand at the following 6 responding hands and see how many you can get right!

Opener         Responder (you)
1S                1NT 
2C                ?

You hold:

1.   S. 653   H. Q83   D. 8764   C. KJ9 

2.   S. K4    H. 876     D. A763    C. Q1065

3.   S. J10     H. AJ98   D. K1076  C. 1093

4.   S. K7    H. A543   D. 8743    C. J108

5.   S. 6       H. KJ983  D. KJ987  C. 98

6.    S. 3       H. 76       D. A93     C. K976432 

SOLUTIONS 

1.  2S    Although partner will play you for a doubleton as it is rare to withhold three card major suit support, it is better in the long run to respond 1NT with a balanced 6 count than raise to 2S which is a more encouraging  response.

2.  3C   Forward going. You promise at least four clubs with 8-10 HCP. 

3.  2NT   You usually have 10 HCP for this rebid, but this 9 count is worth 10 any day of the week.    Looks at those intermediates.

4.  2S    You have a forward going hand and by bidding 2S you give your partner another chance to bid in case partner has extras.

5.  2H   As long as you are going to bid a red suit, bid the major.

6.   3D!  Don't count this as wrong if you didn't make this 'obvious' rebid! Just kidding.    Many years ago the British writer, Norman Squire, suggested that in this sequence (and some similar ones ) where a jump in a new suit could not logically be natural, it should show a humongous fit with partner's last bid suit plus a control in the jump suit.    He labeled the bid "The Out of the Blue Cue".  Without that crutch at your disposal, leap to 5C as a jump to 4C would not be forcing.

#9  A QUIZ ON LIMIT BIDS   

In order to better understand bridge bidding, it is important know which bids are limited and which bids are unlimited.  

A limited bid has a specific range of high card strength, usually a three point range. For example, an opening bid of 1NT  can show 12-14, 13-15, 15-17 or 16-18 depending upon agreement. Other bids such as an opening bid of 1H is considered unlimited because the range is so great. One can open 1H with as few as 10 or 11 HCP or as many as 20 HCP in some cases.   

The moment either the opener or the responder makes a limiting bid, the partner becomes the captain, at least for the moment.  In the following quiz you will be shown 8 sequences and your job is to decide which, if any, of the bids are limited — have a range of about 3 HCP.  Assume you are playing a standard system. 

1.  Opener     Responder 
     1H             1S 

2.  1D             1H 
      1S             2C  

3.  1H             1S 
      2C             3C 

4.  1S             2S 
      3C 

5.  1C           1D 
     1H           3NT 

6.  1D            1H 
     2H            2S 

7.  1S            1NT 
      2NT 

8.  1S             2D 
      2H            2NT     

   SOLUTIONS 

1.  Neither hand is limited... yet.   Opener has 11+  HCP  and responder has 6+ HCP.  

2.  Both hands are unlimited. Opener's 1S rebid goes up to a bad 18 and responder's use of the fourth suit is completely unlimited.     

3.  Opener is considered unlimited by bidding two suits (though the practical ragne is typically 12-to a bad 18). Responder is limited.  

4.  Responder is limited but opener is not. Opener can be trying for game or even slam! 

5.  Opener is unlimited (bidding two suits) and responder is limited to about 13-15 HCP. 

Note: Almost all notrump bids are limit bids.

 6.  Opener is limited (most raises are limit bids), but responder is not. 

7.   Both hands are limited. Opener has 17-18 and responder has 6-10 

8.   Opener is considered unlimited having bid two suits, but responder is limited. Playing a system where 2D is not a game force ("two over one"), responder should be in the 11-12 pt. range.

#10  TEST YOUR BLUE RIBBON PAIRS BIDDING

I have gone DEEP into my files and dug up four bidding problems faced by two world class pairs that took place  years ago at the National Championships in Dallas.    Assume you are playing in the Blue Ribbon Pairs and let's see how you stack up.  (You are South)  

1.  You hold:  S. Q97  H. AKQ65  D. QJ73  C. 2 

You are B.J. Becker playing with Dorothy Hayden (now Dorothy Truscott). 

North     East     South     West 
1D         Pass    1H          Pass 
2NT      Pass      3D        Pass 
3NT      Pass      4D       Pass 
4S        Pass      ? 

2.   You are Lew Mathe playing with Bob Hamman. This is your hand: 

S. AQ3   H. K10765   D. 3   H. A1076 

South      West     North    East 
1H           Pass     1NT      Pass 
2C          Pass      3C       Pass 

3.  Back to B.J Becker- still playing with Dorothy. 

You hold:  S. AKJ73  H. 106   D. K4   C. 10432 

South       West     North     East 
1S            Pass     2D         Pass 
2S           Pass      3S*        Pass    * Not forcing 

4.  This time you are Bob Hamman still playing with Lew  Mathe. 

This is your hand:  S. 10  H. 103   D. A104   C. J1098732 

North         East       South       West 
1S             Pass      2C!!          Pass 
3S            Pass       ?  

WHAT WOULD HAVE WORKED 

1.  Becker jumped to 5NT, the Grand Slam Force and Dorothy dutifully  leaped to 7D  holding:  S. AJ43  H. 43  D. AK109  C. AK10   

The hand broke badly and Dorothy went down one trick. 

2.  Lew bid 3S and Hamman leaped to 5C holding:  S. K97  H. A3  D. J92  C. J8543 

Clubs divided 2-2 and the contract was made. They were the only pair to reach and make game on the hand. 

3.  B.J passed and had to play well to land the contract.  Dorothy had:  S. Q9   H. K75  D. A107653   C. K5 

How did you do?      Sorry, I lost what happened on this hand. After bidding 2C I would have passed 3S.

 

 

 11. TO BALANCE OR NOT TO BALANCE? 

When the opponents conk out at the one or two level, it usually means that you and partner have about the same strength as they do. The questions is — should you let them play there, or should you stir up the pot and reopen the bidding? Try this quiz to see how well versed you are at the art of balancing. 

Assume you are playing in a team game, neither side is vulnerable
and you are sitting South holding this hand:  S. AJ76  H. 54  D. K876  C. Q109 

Decide what you would do in the following six sequences: 

1.    East    South    West    North 
       1H       Pass     2H        Pass 
        Pass  ? 

2.    East    South     West    North 
       1H        Pass     1NT      Pass 
        Pass   ? 

3.    West     North     East     South 
        1C        Pass     1H        Pass 
         2H       Pass      Pass   ? 

4.     West    North    East    South 
        1D        Pass    1H       Pass 
         2H       Pass     Pass  ?

5.      West   North    East   South 
          1NT    Pass    Pass   ? 

6.       West   North   East   South 
           1H     Pass    Pass       ? 

MY TAKE 

1.  Dbl. Clear. A reopening double AFTER THE OPPONENTS HAVE FOUND A FIT, can be made with as few as 9 HCP providing you have shortness in the opponents' suit as well as support for the unbids.  

2.  Pass    A double in this sequence shows heart length and strength with opening bid values. Not exactly what you have. Remember, they haven't found a fit in this sequence. 

3.  Double. Just barely. You have four card support for the unbids (mandatory), but you also have a wasted CQ on offense. 

4.  Pass. It would be pushing the pencil a bit to double here. Your DK is misplaced and you don't have four card support for both unbid suits. 

5.  Pass.  You hate to sell out, but on the other hand you don't have enough to bid. 

6.  Double.  A double in this position can be shaded down to 9-10 HCP if you have the right distribution-shortness in their suit plus support for the unbids. 

#12  TEST YOUR BIDDING JUDGEMENT

Here is a bidding area which you won't see dealt with too often. Test your bidding judgement in the South with neither side vulnerable in the following sequence: 

West       North       East     South (you) 
1D           Dbl.          Rdbl.      ? 

1.  S. A1054    H. 43    D. 108765    C. 54 

2.  S. 76   H. 105   D. 1082   C. KQ10832 

3.  S. 765  H. K54   D. J765   C. 984 

4.  S. 5    H. K543   D. 653    C. 108432  

5.  S. A104   H. AJ64  D. 97  C. K976 

6.  S. KJ8432  H. 65  D. 976  C. 43 

SOLUTIONS 

1.  1 SPADE.   Get the major suit in early before things get out of hand.   You aren't promising a rose garden when you bid in this sequence. If everyone is telling the truth, partner knows you can't possibly have a good hand.  

2. 3C    When the bid to your right is strong (rdbl.) a jump by you is weak.    Your jump shows a reasonable six card suit... period. 

3.  Pass    Let partner rescue himself when you have a balanced hand without an unbid four card suit.  

4.  1H      Preparing for partner's inevitable 1S bid in which case you can bid clubs. 

5.   2D    Who's kidding who here?    Somebody must be psyching. Your 2D bid tells partner you have a good hand and not to believe the opponents.    It does not show a bunch of diamonds. With a flock of diamonds you would pass the redouble or bid some number of notrump.    Bidding their suit is a cuebid. It is the strongest response you can make.     Don't hold your breath. 

6.   2S    See answer to #2.     

#13  TEST YOUR BIDDING I.Q 

What is the meaning of the last double in each of the following sequences. Is it a penalty double or is it a takeout dbl?

1.  South  West   North  East
     1NT     Pass     2C*    Dbl?       * Stayman

2.   South    West    North    East
      1NT       Dbl?

3.   South    West     North   East
     1S          Dbl.       2S       Pass
     3S          Dbl?

4.   South    West
      4D         Dbl?

5.   South    West    North     East
      1C         Pass    3D        Dbl?

6.    South   West    North    East
       1S         Dbl.     Rdbl.    2C
       Dbl.

7.   South    West   North    East
      1H          Dbl.     2H        Dbl?

8.   South    West    North    East
      1C         Pass    1H        Pass
      2H        Dbl?

SOLUTIONS

1.  Penalty.  Doubles of artificial bids are both penalty and lead directing doubles.

2.  Penalty.    The double of an opening 1NT bid announces a hand as good or better than the notrump bidder.

3.  Takeout. West had a takeout double of 1S, so his hand couldn't have changed during the bidding.    He still has a takeout double, only a strong one, a very strong one.

4.  Takeout.  Doubles of opening bids of 4C and 4D are for takeout.    Most play that a double of 4H is also for takeout, but  there is no agreement as to what  a double of 4S means. Most play it as a penalty double.   Something to talk over with your partner.

5.  Takeout. East must have the majors.

6.  Penalty. After a redouble, any further double by either the opener or the responder is a penalty double. 

7.  Takeout. After partner makes a takeout double and responder raises, a double by 4th hand shows "two places to play", an effort to land in the right trump suit. East probably has both minors and wants to land in the right one.   For example    S. 84  H. 1087   D. KJ54   C. A1087

8.  Takeout. This double in front of an unlimited responder shows a strong hand with short hearts and good clubs. A typical West hand might be:
S.  AJ103   H. 2    D. KQ84    C. AJ74

#14   TEST YOUR RESPONSES TO PARTNER'S PREEMPT 

With neither side vulnerable, you are sitting South, playing for $$$. How would you handle the following six hands after partner opens 3C and the next hand passes? 

North   East   South   West 
3C       Pass   ? 

1.  S. AQx    H. Axx    D. xxxx   C. AJx 

2.  S. AQ9xxx  H. KQ10xx   D. Kx   C. - 

3.  S. x  H. xxx  D. Axxxx  C. Qxxx 

4.  S. AKxx   H. x   D. AKQxx   C. QJx 

5.  S. AQxx   H. KQxx  D. QJxx  C. x 

6.  S. AKxxx  H. AKJxx   D. -  C. QJx  

SOLUTIONS

1.  3NT and hope they don't run the diamond suit. 

2.  3S followed by 4H.    On a good day partner will have three cards in one of your suit or perhaps even a doubleton honor.  On a bad day, a very bad day, partner will have a singleton in both majors.  

3. 5C   An advance sacrifice as they are sure to get to 4S.   Let them guess what to do.   

4.  4NT   Simple Blackwood.    If partner has one ace, 6C can be no worse than a finesse. 

5.  Pass.  If you can't get yourself to pass this hand (no fit, no suit of your own to run), you are one dangerous partner! 

6.  5NT   The Grand Slam Force asking partner to bid seven with two of the top three honors in the last bid suit.     With one honor, partner bids 6C. With no honors, partner will also bid  6C meaning it is time to shop around for another partner.  

#15   TEST YOUR MONTE CARLO BIDDING

Each year in Monte Carlo on the French Riviera they hold a big money bridge pairs tournament, over 300 teams entering.  Prizes are awarded similar to golf tournaments.  In this particular event they paid down 30 places and the winning pair split $10,000.

The most prestigious event, however, is the knockout team of four.  Here are four problems from this event. The eventual winners were the Lancia team (Belladonna, Garozzo, Vivaldi, Forquet and Omar Sharif). If you make the winning bid on at least three of the following four problems, you might have wound up in the money!    

You are South:

1.   Neither side vulnerable, dealer West

You hold:  S. J8742   H. 7    D. K32   C. AJ86

West    North   East    South
1C        1D      1H        1S
2H         2S      4H        ?


2.    Both sides vulnerable, dealer North

You hold:  S. K83  H. K1093  D. Q743  C. 94

North    East     South     West
1H        1S        2H          2S
3D        3S        4H         4S
Pass    Pass     ?

3.   East-West vulnerable, dealer East

You hold:  S. 43  H. K98754  D. 2   C. KJ94

East    South    West    North
1D       2H*        3H       5H
6D       Pass       6S       Pass
Pass   ?

   *  Weak Jump Overcall

4.   North-South vulnerable, dealer West

You hold:  S. KQJ93  H. A10876  D. 843  C. -

West    North    East    South
1D       Pass     1H        1S
2D       4S         Dbl.      Pass
5D       Pass     Pass     ?

WHAT WOULD HAVE WORKED:

1.  It was right to either pass or double.    You are down one in four spades. Partner's hand:   S. 653  H. K102  D. A8765  C. K4

2.  It's right to bid on.    They can make five or six spades depening upon the lead, and you are down two in five hearts.    Partner's hand:  S. 2  H. QJ643  D. AKJ85  C. Q6

3.  It's right to take the sac.    If partner would have had two defensive tricks he would have doubled.  One opponent appears to have solid diamonds and the other solid spades.    Partner's outside length figures to be in clubs.
Partner's hand: S. 52  H. AQJ2   D. 5  C. Q108765
You are down four or five (five if they find the club ruff) and that is a good save against their 1430.

4.  This one cost us first place.    It is right to bid 5S. One player from our team doubled, and the contract was made.  You can make five spades.    Partner's hand:  S. 10865   H. KQ32  D. -  C. KJ753

#16    RESPONDING TO THE UNUSUAL NOTRUMP  

West     North     East     South (you)
1S         2NT        Pass     ? 

Do you play that partner is showing at least 5-5 in the minors with typically 8-11 HCP?    If your answer is yes, you play the Unusual Two No Trump Overcall. 

Assuming you use the convention or are thinking of using the convention, how would you respond to 2NT in the above sequence with the following six hands.  (Both sides vulnerable) 

1.  S. AJ62   H. Q843  D. J43   C. 73 

2.  S. AK4  H. AK54  D. J94  C. 874 

3.  S.  A874   H. A943  D. QJ104  C. 2 

4.  S.  KQJ9   H. QJ1074  D. 54  C. 42 

5.  S.  K4   H. KQJ1054  D. A43  C. 54 

6.  S. QJ432  H. A432  D. 43  C.  54 

SOLUTIONS:

1.  3D   Preferring diamonds to clubs. 

2.  3NT  Looks like your best shot. 

3.  4D    Invitational.   This is a good hand facing 10 or 11 minor suit cards. 

4.  Pass   You don't have to play it, partner does! 

5.  4H  Bidding what you are looking at. 

6.  You like clubs better than diamonds!  (just barely).     With equal length in the minors, one usually bids the lower ranking minor.   

#17   ONE HAND, SIX QUESTIONS

Vulnerable against not, sitting South you hold this hand:

S. KJ10765   H. Q65   D. 654   C. 7 

How do you handle this hand at IMP scoring given the following sequences?

1.  North   East   South   West
     1H       2C       ?

2.  East    South   West   North
     1H       ?

3.  North   East    South   West
     2C*     Pass    ?
     *  Strong and artificial

4.  North  East   South   West
     1D      Pass   1S        Pass 
     3C      Pass    ?

5.  West  North   East   South
     1S      Dbl.     Pass   ?

6.  East   South   West   North
     1S      Pass    2D       Dbl.
      Pass ?

SOLUTIONS

1.  2H.  Not strong enough to bid 2S 

2.  Pass    Two weak for a weak jump overcall at this vulnerability. The HQ is not a good card offensively.

3.  2S   Unless you play that a positive response in a suit guaranteed two of the top three honors. If you do, respond 2D, waiting.

4.  3S    Rebid your strong six card major-the first priority. 

5.  Pass   What else?

6. 2H    Partner has a club-heart two-suiter possibly with four hearts and five clubs.  If you get doubled, you might decide to run to 3C. Bid 2H confidently to stave off the double.      

#18   THEY MIGHT BE IN TROUBLE!

Are you familiar with the nuances of the responses in this sequence? 

North     East    South (you)   West
1H         1NT      ?

With neither side vulnerable what would you bid, if anything, with each of the following hands at matchpoints?

1.  S. KJ5   H. 32   D. AJ765 C. J43 

2.  S. KQ10943   H. 2   D. 8765  C. 76

3.  S. A4   H. 10765  D. J765  C. 432

4.  S. AJ3  H. K54  D. Q87  C. 10876

5.  S. 2   H  A1065   D. J10765  C. 876

6.  S. AK765  H. 3   D. K1087  C. 765

7.  S. J87  H. 5  D. QJ876  C. Q873

SOLUTIONS

1.  Dbl.  You have more high card points than they do and have the notrump bidder surrounded.

2. 2S   By not doubling you show a long suit with a less than 9 HCP.

3. 2H    Don't let them bully you. Four card support is always worth an extra point or two.

4.  Dbl.   2H is for sissies.

5.  3H. Preemptive.  Showing four or five hearts with more of a distributional hand than a raise to 2H - and maybe even fewer high card points (4-6).    

6.  Dbl. Don't tell me you let them off the hook by bidding 2S which shows a weak hand (see problem #2).

7. Pass    With nothing to say, say nothing. 

#19   RESPONDER'S REBID AFTER A TWO LEVEL RESPONSE 

Assume the bidding has gone: 

North         South
1S              2C (not a game force)
2H               ? 

What is your rebid with each of the following 8 hands? 

1.  S. 543   H. QJ7   D. 54   C. AKJ87
2.  S. KJ3    H. QJ7   D. 54    C. AKJ87 

3.  S. 73  H. Q4   D. 765  C. AKJ1065
4.  S. A2  H. K10  D. 432  C. AQ10765 

5.  S. 63  H. KJ107  D. 75  C. AQ1097
6.  S. 75  H. AJ84    D. 32   C. AK753 

7.  S. 32   H. J2   D. K108  C. AK10932
8.  S. 32   H. J2   D. K108  C. AKJ1087 

SOLUTIONS 

The solutions are given in matched pairs to show the difference between similar distributions with varying strength.       

1.  2S.   Describing a hand with three spades and 10+to 12 HCP. Not forcing. 
2.  3S.   Describing a hand with three spades and 13-15 HCP. A game force. 

3.  3C.  Invitational. Partner is allowed to pass, particularly with a singleton club and a minimum or near minimum opening bid. 
4.  3D.   4th suit forcing. When the responder does not have a convenient way to limit a strong hand, he can fall back on the 4th suit which is considered artificial. It is a game force when made at the three level.   

5.  3H.   This one is played as not forcing by some and forcing by others. It should be discussed by the partnership. If played as not forcing it shows 10+ to 11 HCP with four hearts.
6.  4H.    The jump to game shows an opening bid with four hearts. If 3H is considered forcing then the jump to four shows concentrated strength in the two bid suits. 

7.  2NT. Invitational. Better than 3C which is more regressive. 
8.  3NT. Given that a rebid of 3C is not forcing, there is no real alternative with this hand.        

#20  RESPONDER'S REBID AFTER A ONE LEVEL RESPONSE 

With neither side vulnerable the bidding has proceeded: 

North     South (you)
1D         1H
1S          ? 

You, South, hold the following hands; what, if anything is your rebid? 

1.  S.  J54  H.  AJ654  D. 2  C. 10764 

2.  S.  54    H.  AJ743  D. KQ105  C. J5 

3.  S.  K108  H. AQJ9832  D. J10 C. 5 

4.  S  54  H. QJ97  D. AJ87  C. AQ10

5.  S. 875  H. AJ832  D. 95  C. K108 

6.  S. 7  H. Q109743  D. 7  C. K10976

7.  S. 10983  H. Q1087  D. AK54  C. 3 

8.  S. A76  H. KQ876  D. AJ  C. 865 

SOLUTIONS 

1.  Pass.  Partner's 1S rebid is not forcing and you should pass. 

2.  3D, Invitational. Perfect. 

3.  4H   There really is no second choice; 3H would NOT be forcing. 

4.  3NT   Once in a while you suppress minor suit support to bid notrump. 

5.  1NT   This rebid shows 7-10 HCP. Don't even think about rebidding an unsupported five card suit unless it headed by three or four honor cards.

6.  2H.  Bidding 2C, the fourth suit, shows opening bid, or near opening bid, values-something you don't have.    

7.  3S.  Invitational.   Better to support partner's major as opposed to partner's minor holding four cards in each suit. 

8.  2C. Fourth suit asking for more information. The 4th suit is considered artificial (unless it is rebid). In addition, it is a no-no for partner to bid notrump after the 4th suit without a stopper in the suit.  

#21   CAUGHT BETWEEN THE DEVIL AND THE DEEP BLUE SEA    

After partner makes a takeout double and third hand redoubles, there isn't much strength left over for 4th hand. Let's see how you handle this common sequence with neither side vulnerable: 

West    North    East     South (you) 
1C        Dbl.      Rdbl.    ? 

What action, if any, would you take with the following 8 hands? 

1.  S. 1096   H. Q32          D. 9854          C. J82  

2.  S. 3          H. J83           D. Q10654     C. 10876

3.  S  54        H. QJ1086   D. 9532          C. 108

4.  S. 54        H. KQJ43     D. Q76            C. 874 

5.  S. 76        H. K1076      D. 943            C. 9765

6.  S. K765   H. Q832        D. Q942         C. 8

7.  S. KJ9764  H. 1093     D. 54                C. 94

8.  S  843     H. 107          D.  109          C. KJ10875       

SOLUTIONS 

1.  Pass.  With a balanced hand lacking a four card major, let partner bail himself out in his longest suit. 

2. 1D     Bidding after a redouble does not show strength, just  a little length. Your high card expectancy in this sequence is  2-5 HCP. 

3.  2H    Preemptive. Jumps bids over a redouble are preemptive.

4.  Pass    With a "good"  (7+ HCP) cuebid or pass and then bid (or jump) to show strength.  2H would be preemptive.  See previous problem.
West   North   East    South 
1C       Dbl.     Rdbl    Pass 
Pass   1S       Pass    2H  (shows some strength - no heart bid earlier)
In this sequence your 2H bid shows a relatively good hand. (7-9 HCP) With less you would have bid 1H or 2H directly; A jump to 3H would show an ever better hand.  

5. 1H   Same as #2 

6. 2C   A cuebid shows 7+ HCP with at least two places to play. 

7. 3S   Preemptive.  (See #3)  Typically a half way decent six card suit with little or nothing else. Just what you have. 

8. Pass    And then bid clubs which shows clubs. Bidding 2C directly is a cuebid.   See problem #6.       

#22   DEALING WITH A PREEMPT 

Say you are vulnerable against not and your RHO opens 3C.
How would you handle the following seven hands? 

1.  S. A4   H. KQ876   D. KJ765   C. 4 

2.  S. 53   H. AQJ984  D. AKQ5  C. 6 

3.  S. 54   H. K4   D. AKQ982  C. A105 

4.  S. 2   H. QJ984  D. AKQ984  C. A 

5.  S. AKJ94  H. KQJ54  D. 1097  C. -  

6.  S. AJ765   H. KQ87  D. AQ75  C. - 

7.  S. AJ4   H. J32  D. 543  C. AQ109 

SOLUTIONS 

1.  3H   You can't just sit there with this good of a hand. If you get doubled, you might consider running to your other suit. 

2.  4H  Much too good for 3H which puts undue pressure on your partner. When you need just a little bit to make game, bid it yourself! 

3. 3NT    Are you a man or a mouse?  Solid minor suits were meant to play notrump. 

4. 3D   Ugh!  And  pray someone, anyone, bids something. If they do, bid 4H. Making a takeout double with a singleton spade, an unbid suit, is a recipe for disaster. If  everyone passes 3D, don't call and don't write, I don't know you.          

5.  4C   A major suit takeout showing at leat 5-5 in the majors with opening bid values.  

6.  Dbl.  Don't bid 4C which shows the majors. 

7.  Pass.  Not strong enough to bid 3NT and double is for takeout. Pass and hope partner can reopen with a takeout double.     

#23  TRUE-FALSE SLAM BIDDING QUIZ  

1.  The proper response to a 4NT Blackwood bid holding all four aces is 5C. 

2. When partner asks for aces and you have a void, count the void as an ace. 

3. Cue bids always show first round controls. 

4. The Blackwood bidder is usually the stronger of the two partnership hands. 

5. A direct jump to 5NT bypassing 4NT is a king-ask. 

6. When the Blackwood bidder first bids 4NT and then 5NT asking for kings, the responder can leap to seven without answering for kings. 

7. The Blackwood bidder will seldom have a void suit. 

8. Any jump to 4NT is Blackwood.  

 

ANSWERS 

1. True. The 5C response to regular Blackwood ask shows 0 or 4 aces.   (Nowadays most play Key Card Blackwood with different responses)

2. False. There are various responses to show a void, but counting the void as an ace is not one of them. 

3. False. Not by a long shot. 

4. True.  The strong hand usually does the asking, the weak hand, the telling. 

5. False. After agreement, it is usually the Grand Slam Force asking partner about trump honors in the agreed suit. 

6. True. If the responder can count 13 tricks, he should bid the grand. It is assumed, of course, that the 5NT bid guarantees joint possession of the four aces. 

7. True. Say the Blackwood bidder has two aces and a void and gets a one ace response. He may not know which ace partner has. 

8. False. If the previous bid was 1NT, 2NT or 3NT, a follow up bid of 4NT by partner is natural, not Blackwood.

 

#24   SHORT QUIZ  (YOU ARE SOUTH) 

1.   North       South 
       2C (1)      2H (2) 
       3H            ? 

       (1) Strong and artificial 
       (2) Positive response not promising two of the top three honors 

You hold: S. 843  H. KJ943  D. A5  C. 874 

2.   South      North 
        1C          1H
         ? 

You hold:  S. 4  H. A105   D. AK3  C. AQ7432 

3.    North       South 
         1S           2C 
          2S          3H 
          4S          ? 

You hold:  S. A4  H. AQJ7  D. 94  C. AKJ54   

4.     North       South 
         1D           1H  
         1S           ? 

You hold:  S. A104  H. AJ432  D. A75  C. 93 

5.     South      North 
          1D          1S  
          2D          2H 
          ? 

You hold:  S. K9  H. 108  D. AKJ763  C. KJ8 

SOLUTIONS

1.  4D.  Show your partner your control. It may be just what the Dr. ordered. 

2.   2D.   A "fake reverse" to force partner to bid again. Next you will support hearts and partner giving partner a pretty good idea of your hand. A jump to 3C is not forcing and might miss a 5-3 heart fit.    

3.   5S.  A raise to the five level of the last bid major in a sequence where three suits have been bid asks partner to bid slam with a control in the unbid suit. Partner passes lacking first or second round diamond control, bids 5NT with the guarded DK,  trots out 6D with the DA and bids six spades with a singleton diamond.

4.  2C.  The 4th suit to create a force. A jump to 3D is not forcing and bidding 3NT is bizarre. After the 4th suit, partner usually bids notrump with a stopper in that suit. The bid of the 4th suit has nothing to do with your holding in that suit. It is just a convenient way of foricng partner to bid again, particularly after having made a one level response.    

5.  3NT.  A 2NT rebid would shows a minimum type hand, typically 12-14 HCP with at least one club stopper. You are too strong to make such a discouraging rebid.  Many would open this hand 1NT to avoid  awkward rebidding problems.

#25   U.S TEAM TRIALS QUIZ       


1.
   (You)           (Dummy)

       KQ1086       432

This is your trump suit in a slam contract. The opponents have done no bidding and you have no outside losers. You have unlimited dummy entries. You start with a low card from dummy to the king in your hand which holds. You reenter dummy and lead the suit again. This time second hand plays the 9. Which card do you play? 
 

2.  Sitting South with both sides vulnerable, you hold:

S. K7   H. KJ75  D. K953  C. J103

 West    North    East      South

 2S (1)    3H       Pass          ?       (1)   Weak
 

 

3.   Still South, with both sides vulnerable, you hold:

S.  A5     H. -   D. AJ9854  C. Q9754 

South     West   North   East

1D          Pass   1S         2H

3C          Passs  3S         Pass      

 ?
 

4.   You are West,  vul. vs. not.   S. J4   H. AQ9  D. J4  C. AJ10932

South   West   North  East  

4D        Pass    5D       Pass

Pass     Pass

What do you lead? 
 

WINNING ACTIONS

1.  Play the 10 it is the % play in case  East started with AJ9x. 

2.  Both South players bid 4H and went down. 3NT was the winning action:

Partner's hand:  S. J102   H. AQ1032   D. A84  C. A2 

3.  Billy Eisenberg raised to 4S which was made with the help of a defensive errror. 5D would have been a bit easier. Partner's hand:  S. KQ10432   H. 65  D. 732  C. K2

4.  Paul Soloway led the Ace of clubs and then gave partner a club ruff. The HA was the setting trick. Actually the lead of either ace defeats the contract as long as you give partner a club ruff. .... 

#26   AND THE WINNER IS?

In this quz you are given a bidding sequence and four possible hands you might hold. Your job is to decide which hand best fits the sequence and what the hands that don't fit the sequence should bid. 

Ready? Here is the sequence, the four hands beneath.

Dlr:   South (you)
Vul:   None
South    West    North   East
1C         Pass     1H       Pass
1S         Pass      2D *   Pass
2H
   *4TH suit. Could be artificial.   Shows 11+ HCP.

1.   S. AKQ4  H. 10743   D. 62  C. A65

2.   S.  AJ84   H. AQ3   D. 2   C. A10984

3.   S.  KQJ4   H. K2    D. 43   C. K8732

4.   S.  KQ42   H. A2    D. K8    C. J10932

ANSWERS

1.  This can't be the right hand. With this hand you raise to 2H directly.

2.  This hand is strong enough to jump to 3H over 2D to show extas with three hearts and presumably a singleton diamond. 

3.  This hand is the winner.  This sequence can show a doubleton honor in hearts if no more descriptive rebid is available.  One is not supposed to rebid 2NT after the 4th suit without a stopper in the 4th suit. Rebidding a miserable five card suit is also not an option.

4.  This hand rebids. 2NT. It has a diamond stopper and 12-14 HCP.  With 15-17 HCP and a diamond stopper 3NT is the rebid.

#27 AND THE WINNER IS .....

You get a sequence and four possible hands to go along with the sequence.

Your job is to select the hand that best describes the sequence, but you still aren't off the hook. You also have to decide what the other hands should bid. 

(Assume you are not playing the 2D response as a game force.)

North    East    South (you)   West 
1S         Pass    2D *              Pass
2H        Pass     2NT                        * Not a game force

 

1.  S. 4      H. AJ4   D. KJ852       C. Q1084

2.  S.  4      H. AJ4   D. AQ1087    C. A862

3.   S.  42     H. K7   D.  AQ1086     C. KJ97

4.   S.  KQ   H. 76   D. AQ432       C. 10843

ANSWERS 

1.  The winner!  The hand is not strong enough to rebid 3NT and raising hearts, a second suit, promises four card support.  If you thought you should bid 3C or rebid diamonds, don't mention it. Just don't!  

2.  This hand could rebid 3NT, but an even better rebid is 3C to find out if partner has five hearts or diamond support.  If partner has five hearts, the hand should play in hearts. If partner has three diamonds and a singleton club, there might be a diamond slam.

3.  This hand is too strong to rebid 2NT (11-12) and should rebid 3NT.

4.  This hand is best described by rebidding 2S.  Partner may think you have three spades, but the KQ doubleton will have to do. Furthermore, the return to 2S shows about 11 HCP and is more descriptive than 2NT with such flaky clubs.

#28  AND THE WINNER IS  ...... 

You should know the rules by now.  Here's the sequence and you are South:

South   West    North     East 
 1D      Pass    1S          Pass
 2D      Pass    2H         Pass
 2S  

Which of these four hands best describes your sequence? 

1.  S. AQ4   H. 63    D. KQ875   C. K54

2.  S.  A4    H. 42    D. AQJ9643   C. J4

3.  S.  A4    H. Q63   D. AK7532   C.  84

4.  S.  K63   H. 2      D. AQ874     C. QJ76

ANSWERS  (You may not like these) 

1.  This hand raises to 2S directly. If it is against your religion to raise with three trump, change churches or rebid 1NT.

2.  This hand rebids 3D to emphasize the seven card suit. 

3.  The winner.  Partner should expect a doubleton spade in this sequence though you might have three little ones with strong diamonds. 

4.  This is another hand that raises to 2S directly. Rebidding 2C and then supporting spades shows a stronger hand. A hand in the 15-17 point range. Something like this:  S.  AK3  H. 2   D. AQ874  C. QJ76.

#29  RESPONDING TO A JUMP REBID

North (partner)    East      West (you)    South
1C                        Pass      1H                 Pass 
3C                        Pass    ?

You have the following hands with neither side vulnerable at matchpoints.
What action, if any, do you take?

1.   S. 653   H. AJ932   D. KQ4   C. 74

2.   S.  65    H. AKQJ54  D. 543  C. 93 

3.   S.  AQ4  H. KQ76   D. 832  C. 865

4.   S. 92   H. K5432   D. QJ87  C. 54

5.   S. J1087  H. K8432  D. Q932 C. -

ANSWERS

1.  Try 3D. You are hoping partner can rebid 3NT with a spade stopper. 

2.  4H   A jump after a jump shows a solid suit with no outside strength.  Not everyone plays this way.

3.  3S   For the same reason you bid 3D on #1; looking for 3NT.  Always looking for 3NT.

4.  Pass   Just not enough to go on.

5.  Pass   The club void is a big minus and the rest of your hand is nothing to write home about either.  If you bid 3NT, do not mention it in public.

#30  RESPONDING TO A TAKEOUT DOUBLE AFTER THIRD HAND REDOUBLES

 West   North   East   South (you)
1C       Dbl.     Rdbl. ? 

What is your bid with each of the following eight hands? (Neither side vulnerable)

1.  S. 1096  H. Q32  D. 9854  C. J82

2.  S. 3    H. J83  D. Q10654  C. 10876

3. 54  H. KJ10863  D. 654  C. 73

4. 654 H. 43  D. 54  c. KJ10986 

5. 76  H. K1076  D. 764  C. 9843

6. K765  H. Q765  D. Q1032 C. 3

7. QJ109432 H. 65 D. 7  C. 932 

8. 65 H. KQ107 D. Q10932 C. 65  

ANSWERS

1.  Pass.  Let partner rescue himself. Your pass is non-commital and generally announces a balanced hand. With an unbalanced hand a suit is mentioned.

2. 1D  After a redouble a suit response does not show strength, merely length. A good partne realizes in this sequence you can't hold much of a hand. 

3. 2H  Shows a six card suit with about 3-5 HCP. When the bid to your right is strong strong, a jump by you is weak. A 1H response is often made on a four card suit.

4. Pass. And if partner gets doubled when he bids a suit, bid 2C which is to play. An original response of 2C is a cue bid, see hand #6.

5. 1H  Contrast this hand with #3.

6. 2C  A cue bid showing a moderate hand with support for at least two of the other suits, more likely three.    

7. 3S  Very descriptive. Very preemptive.

8. 1D. You have a good hand on the bidding and should be planning to bid hearts next to show longer diamonds.  

#31   RESPONDING TO A 2NT OPENING BID (20-22)

You are playing Stayman, three and four level transfers,  3S shows the minors, slammish, and a direct response of 4C is Gerber, ace-asking.  

Here are 8 practice hands to test you.

1.  S. KJ54  H. Q7653  D. 43  C. 43

2.  S. 10      H. 1043    D. 1076  C. K108643

3.  S.  5       H. J3    D. KJ983  C. AJ943  

4.  S. AJ4  H. K98  D. K1032   C. 1065

5.  S. 5   H. 102  D. KQJ108765  C. A9

6.  S. KQ H. AJ4  D. K654  C. 8743 

7.  S. 4    H. KJ9843 D. 10983  C. 62

8.  S.4    H. AQ873  D. 54   C. 10832

ANSWERS

1.  3C, Stayman. If partner bids a major,raise to game. If partner bids 3D, bid 3H to show five hearts and four spades. Note: Nowadays most everyone plays 'Smolen' in this sequence. Playing Smolen you bid 3S, your four card suit rather than your five card suit. Now if partner has three hearts he will bid 4H and the hand will play from the strong side. With five spades and four hearts, bid 3H over 3D. This is a win-win convention.

2.  3NT   Not much you can do with hands like this. 3C is Stayman and you are not strong enough to make a slam try in clubs.

3.  3S   Showing the minors with slam interest. The rest is up to partner.

4.  4NT  Invitational, not Blackwood. You don't need 4NT for Blackwood when you have Gerber to ask for aces.

5.  4C    Gerber. This hand has grand slam potential but you need to find out how many aces partner has.   4C is the way to do it. One set of responses is this:  4D=0 or 4, 4H =1, 4S=2, 4NT=3. 

6.  6NT  The one who knows, goes. A 13 point hand facing at least 20 HCP should be enough for 12 tricks.

7.  4D   A transfer to 4H. If you transfer to 3H and then raise to 4H, that is considered a mild slam try.

8.  3D   A transfer to 3H to be followed by 3NT giving partner a choice of games.

#32   YOU OVERCALL AND PARTNER RESPONDS TO YOUR OVERCALL WITH A SUIT OF HIS OWN.

Now it's back to you again!

East  South (you)  West   North
1D    1S                 Pass   2C
Pass  ?

What action would you take with the following 6 hands?
Keep the following in mind: 2C is not forcing and denies three spades. A jump in response to a one level overcall is invitational (some play it forcing) and the only force is a 2D cuebid. Not everyone plays this way, but you have to talk over even a simple sequence like this and come to some firm agreements.

1.  S. AK654  H. AJ4  D. 54 C. J108

2.  S. AK65432  H. A42   D. 64  C. 10

3.  S. AQ843  H. 7  D. KQ1085  C. 75

4.  S. AQ843  H. K5  D. A1043  C. K5

5.  S. AK843  H.  A53  D. 76     C. KJ9

6.  S. AKJ42  H.  1098  D. KQ5   C. J10

ANSWERS

1. 3C  You have a good hand in support of clubs and maybe 3NT will be in your future if partner bids 2NT

2. 3S  Invitational.

3. Pass   2D would be a cuebid, presumably with a club fit.  It could also be asking for a diamond stopper!

4. 3NT What else?  You are too strong to bid a non-forcing 2NT.

5. 2D   Has multiple meanings, but partner's first obligation is to bid notrump with a diamond stopper.

6. 2NT  Invitational, too strong to pass and a good partner will have something in hearts!

#33   TEST YOUR CARD COMBINATION KNOWLEDGE  (A LITTLE VARIETY NEVER HURTS) 

Here are 20 card combinations broken up into five sections of four problems each. You will be given your hand and dummy and told how many tricks you need. Then you will be given a 'best' line of play for the required number of tricks. Your job is to answer 'true' or 'false' to the given line of play. If your answer is false, you should know what the correct play is to get full credit. (I'm tough!).

Assume a notrump contract with plenty of entries back and forth. 

Section A      THE BEST PLAY FOR ONE TRICK

YOUR HAND          DUMMY      RECOMMENDED LINE OF PLAY          TRUE?  or  FALSE?

1. xxx                   K109         Low to the nine, then low to the king.
2. xxx                   QJ9            Low to the queen, then low to the jack.
3. xxx                   Q10x          Low to the queen.
4. Jxx                   Q9x            Low to the jack, then low to the nine.

Section B    THE BEST PLAY FOR TWO TRICKS 

5. AJxx                 10xxx       Ace and low to the ten.
6. AQxx                xxx           Ace and then low then low to the queen.
7. Kxx                  Q10x         Low to the ten. 
8. xxx                  AJ9            Low to the jack.

Section C   THE BEST PLAY FOR THREE TRICKS

9. xxx               AKJx           Ace and then low to the jack.
10. AQJx            xxx             Low to the queen, then low to the jack.
11. AJxx            K9xx           Ace and low to the 9 if second hand follows low.
12. AQxx           Jxx             Low to the queen and if it holds, play the ace.

Section D   THE BEST PLAY FOR FOUR TRICKS

13. xx              AKJ10          Low to the ten and then low to the jack.
14. xxx            AKJ10          First the ace and then low to the ten.
15. xxx            AJ108x        Low to the ten and then low to the jack.
16. Axx            KQ10x         King, ace and then low to the queen.

Section E   THE BEST PLAY FOR FIVE TRICKS

17. xx             AKJ10x         Ace and then low to the jack.
18. xx             AKQ10x        Ace, king, queen.
19. Kx             A1087xx      Start with the 10 and if second hand plays low, let it ride. If second  hand hand                                   plays the 9, rise with the king and lead low to the 8 next.
20. Kxx           AJ98xx         Start with the ace.

SOLUTIONS 

Section A      THE BEST PLAY FOR ONE TRICK
1. False         Low to the nine and then low to the ten.
2. True
3. False         Low to the ten.
4. True

Section B    THE BEST PLAY FOR TWO TRICKS 
5. True         Safety play for two tricks. For three tricks lead low to the jack.
6. True       Or low from both hands then ace and then low to the queen.
7. False       Low to the king and then low to the ten in case second hand has AJ doubleton.
8. False       Low to the nine and if it loses to a high honor, low to the jack.

Section C   THE BEST PLAY FOR THREE TRICKS
 9. False    Ace, king and then low to the jack. Why lose to a doubleton queen?
10. False  Ace, then low to the jack then low to the queen. Why lose to a singleton king? 
11. True   Safety play.
12. False  Ace andl low to the jack or ace and  low to the queen.

Section D   THE BEST PLAY FOR FOUR TRICKS
13. True
14. True
15. True
16. True

Section E   THE BEST PLAY FOR FiVE TRICKS
17. False  Take a first round finesse so you can pick up Qxxx on your left.
18. True
19. True   A strange safety play, but nevertheless the best play for five tricks. It caters to a stiff 9 in the fourth hand to play.
20. True   The safety play against a 4-0 break in either hand.

RATING SCALE   
20-17        Laudable
16-13        Commendable
12-9          Avoid playing notrump contracts
 8-5           Avoid declaring any contract.
Less          Go back to the bidding quizzes.  

                         

#34  TEST YOUR WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BIDDING DECISIONS 

Here's your chance to see how you would have done at the 1975 World Championships in Bermuda. If you can come up with the winning bid on 8 or more of the following 10 problems, perhaps you should have been on the team!  (You are always South)

1. Neither vulnerable, you hold:  S. AK4  H. A83  D. AKQ4  C. 1075

South    West    North    East
2NT       Pass     3D*      Pass
3H         Pass     3NT      Pass
?        * Transfer

2.  Neither vulnerable, you hold:  S. K9832  H. -  D. K10932   C. 763

West      North     East    South
1C*        1S         Pass    4S
6H          Pass      Pass     ?   * Artificial-Forcing

3.  Neither vulnerable, you hold:  S. K4  H. J753  D. A106  C. AQ63

East       South    West    North 
1C*       Pass       1D**   3H
4S         ?                              *Artificial-Forcing    ** Negative

 

4.  Both vulnerable, you hold:  S. KQ1084  H. 953  D. AK  C. Q93 

South     West     North     East
1S          Pass      2C         Pass
2S          Pass      3H         Pass
3NT        Pass      4S         Pass
?

5.  East-West vulnerable, you hold:  S. 1095  H. AQ74  D. AK7  C. 963

North     East     South    West
Pass       Pass    1NT*      Pass
3D**      Pass    ?                        *13-15   ** Invitational

6.  North-South vulnerable, you hold: S. 87653  H. AJ8643  D. KJ   C. -

North    East    South    West
1D*      Pass    1H         Pass
3D        Pass    3S         Pass
3NT      Pass     ?                            * Less than 17 HCP 

7.  Both sides vulnerable, you hold:  S. 972  H. 7  D. 10985  C. K10632

North    East    South    West
1H        1S       Pass      2D
Dbl.       3D      ? 

8. East-West vulnerable, you, hold:  S A7  H. AJ6  D. K54  C. AK1063

South   West    North    East
1C        Pass     1S        Pass
2NT      Pass     3D        Pass

3NT    Pass      5D*       Pass

?

 

 

* Signoff    4D would have been stronger.

 

 

 

9. Both sides vulnerable, you hold:  S. K64  H. Q4  D. KQ10953  C. J6  

North   East    South    West
1H       Pass    2D*       Pass
2H       Pass    ?                      ** Not a game force 

10. East-West vulnerable, you hold:  S. AK10974  H. A83  D. K4  C. Q2

South     West   North   East
1S          Pass    2S       Pass
?

WHAT WOULD HAVE WORKED:

1.  It was right to return to 4H. I must admit I passed and they rattled off the first five club tricks when partner turned up with:  S. Q103  H. KJ1092  D. 1053  C. 64

2.  It was ever so right to bid 6S. The opponents can make 6H and you are only down one in 6S. (I passed-no wonder we didn't win that World Championship) Partner had: S. AQJ54  H. 106 D. QJ873  C. K

3.  The winning bid was 5H. Bob Hamman passed and when he made the normal heart lead they made the contract. 5H makes.
Partner's hand: S. 63  H. AK109642  D. - C. 10942

4.  Franco of Italy persisted and arrived at a doubtful 6S contract which made. Hamman-Wolff stopped in 5S, making six.  Partner's hand: S. J732  H. AQ10  D. J8  C. AK72

5.  Garozzo made the disastrous decision to gamble 3NT. Billy Eisenberg, on lead, had 8 solid clubs not to mention partner's SA! The winning action was to pass. Partner's hand: S. KJ6  H. K1-3 D. Q109842  C. 10

6.  Belladonna persisted to 4H and went down two tricks. Hamman-Wolff stopped at the much better contract of 3NT, making. Partner's hand: S. QJ  H.Q  D. AQ108432  C. KQ6

7.  Paul Soloway bid 4C which John Swanson raised to 5C, making. Belladonna-Garozzo languished in 2H! Partner's hand: S. AJ5  H. AKJ64  D. 3  C. AQ54

8.  Both Soloway and Belladonna could not the resist the temptation to raise to 6D. Garozzo went down 2, Swanson went down 3. Partner's hand: S. Q10982  H. 2 D. QJ10873  C. 4

9.  Hamman raised to 3H and Wolff tried 4H which was doubled and defeated three tricks. The Italians played 3NT making on a defensive error.  Partner's hand: S. 105 H. AK732  D. AJ8 C. Q54

10.  Soloway rebid 2NT and was raised to 3NT which he passed-and made. Garozzo went down two tricks in the same contract. 3NT turned to be a better contract than 4S which had no play when spades were 3-1. Partner's hand: S. 853  H. K52 D. A108 C. 8764 

So, should you have been on the team?

# 35   ARE YOU A GOOD LISTENER?   PART I

The more bids your partner makes, the more he tells you about his strength and distribution. Take this 10 question quiz to determine whether or not you are a good listener. Your job is to determine the most likely distribution the opener has on the first five sequences and the most likely distribution responder has on the last five. 

Ready? (Read across)

1.   Opener    Responder       2.  Opener  Responder    3. Opener  Responder
      1S           2D                             1S        2C                     1C        1H
      2H           3C                             2D       2NT                    1S        2D 
      3S           3NT                           3D       3NT                     2S        2NT
      4D                                            4S                                 3H 


4.   Opener    Responder      5.   Opener   Responder  
      1D          1H                           1C          1H 
      2D          2S                           2D           2S
      2NT        3S                           3D           3S
      4H                                         4H

SOLUTIONS WITH REASONS

1.  Opener shows six spades and four hearts with the first two bids and three diamonds with the third.

2.  After the first three bids responder assumes 5-5, possibly 6-5, After the fourth bid, opener must have six or seven spades. 

3.  Opener has five clubs, five spades (some open 1C at times with this distribution) and three hearts. If you thought opener had a short club under no circumstances mention this in public! 

4.  Opener is bidding like someone with a likely 2-2-6-3 pattern. With three hearts opener would have bid 3H over 2S and with three spades opener would have raised 3S to 4S.  

5.  Opener has six clubs, five diamonds and two hearts. The diamond rebid showed five diamonds therefore the club opening showed six clubs. With 5-5 in the minors, the proper opening bid is 1D even if the opener has reversing values. If opener is that strong, opener can always jump shift to 3C and then possibly rebid clubs. 

#36   ARE YOU A GOOD LISTENER?  PART II

What do you think responder's distribution is?

6.  Opener    Responder       7. Opener    Responder     8. Opener   Responder

     1D          1S                       1C               1H                     1D         1S
     2D          2H                       2C               2S                     2D         3S          
     2NT        3D                       3C               3D                    3NT        4D 


9. Opener    Responder     10.  Opener  Responder   
    1C           1D                            1C        1H
    1H           1S                             1S        2S 
    2NT          3H                            2NT      3H  

SOLUTIONS WITH REASONS

6.  Responder's most likely distribution is five spades, four hearts and three diamonds. The 3D bid, delayed support at the three level, is forcing.

7.  Opener has six or seven clubs with a minimum hand. Responder has a strong hand with five hearts and four spades, possibly four hearts and four spades, as responder may be looking for a diamond stopper for 3NT. The 3D bid is ambigous and could be looking for a diamond stopper in openers hand. It could be argued that the 3D bid is looking for half a stopper (Qx, Jxx) in opener's hand as the opener apparently doesn't have a full stopper not having bid 2NT over 2S. This is a tricky sequence.   

8.  Responder is making a slam try with six spades and three diamonds. 4D is a game force.

9.  It looks like responder has five diamonds, four spades,three good hearts, and is exploring possible game or even slam contracts. Responder is still unlimited. Had responder four hearts, he would have raised hearts over the 1H bid.

10.  Responder should have six hearts, four spades and not all that great a hand as 2S has limited the hand. 


#37    BIDDING TRAPS — WILL YOU FALL IN?  

The following bidding problems all have one thing in common-they are designed to trap you into making an incorrect bid even though the correct one stands out like a beacon! You start this quiz with 150 points to the good, but you lose 10 points with each 'accident'.

You are always South, not vulnerable against vulnerable playing rubber bridge for real money.
 

1. You hold: S. AQ10xx  H. Axx   D. Axx  C. xx  (same hand first two problems)

North  East   South  West 
Pass    Pass   1S       Pass
1NT     Pass   ? 


2. North  East  South West  
    Pass    Pass  1S      Pass
    2NT     Pass  ? 


3.  You hold:  S. AKJxx H. xx  D. Axxx  C. xx

South  West  North  East
1S       Pass   2C      Pass
?


4. You hold: S. AQ109xxx  H. K  D. AK  C. AKx

South    West     North     East
2C*       Pass      2D**     Pass
2S         Pass      3S         Pass
4NT***  Pass      5H**** Pass   * Strong and artificial ** Waiting *** Keycard Blackwood **** 2 keycards
?                                                  including the four aces and the SK.


5. You hold: S. AQJ10xxx H. x  D. xx  C. xxx

South  West  North  East
3S       Pass   Pass   4H
?


6. You hold: S. Qx H. AQxxx D. xx  C. KQxx

South   West  North   East
1H        Pass   1S       2D
?


7.  You hold: S. AKxxx  H. Qxx  D. xx   C. AQx 

South  West   North  East
1S       Pass    2C      Pass
?

8.  You hold: S. AKxxxx H. AKJx D. xxx  C. -

South   West   North  East
1S        Pass    2C      Pass
?


9. You hold:  S. KQxx  H. KJxx  D. AJx  C. xx

North    East    South    West
1C        Pass    1H         Pass
2C        Pass     ?


10. You hold: S. x  H. QJx  D. Q9xx  C. AQxxx

North  East   South  West
1S      Pass   2C*      Pass
2H      Pass   ?                  * Not a game force 


11.  You hold:  S. KQx   H. xxx  D. Jxxx  C. xxx

North   East   South  West
1H       Pass   1NT     Pass
2S       Pass    ? 


12. You hold: S. AJx  H. KQx  D. Axxx  C. Qxx

North   East   South   West
1NT*    Pass   ?                     * 15-17 


13.  You hold:  S. xx  H. Jxx  D. AKQxx  C. xxx

North   East   South  West
1NT*    2S     ? 


14.  You hold:  S. x   H. AKQJxxx  D. A109  C. xx 

North   East   South   West
Pass     1C     ? 


15.  You hold:  S. xx  H. J10x  D. AQ10xx  C. AK10  

North    East    South    West
1H        Pass    2D         Pass
2NT      Pass     ?


SOLUTIONS 

1.  Pass.  The trap is to rebid 2S with only five spades in this sequence. You guarantee six. 

2.  3NT    Partner has 11 HCP and you have a sweet 14. The trap is either passing or bidding 3S. 

3.  2D      The trap is bidding 2S and not showing diamonds, a lower ranking suit. 

4.  7NT    The trap is bidding 7S  when you have 13 top tricks. If you play 7S, there is always the
              possibility (however remote) that the opening lead may be trumped and wouldn't that be 
              lovely?

5.  Pass    Partner's knows the vulnerability and knows your hand. You don't know his. If anyone takes the
              sacrifice it should be partner. For all you know, partner may have a rock solid penalty double of
              4H.

6.  Pass   You have a minimum and partner has a chance to bid. The trap is bidding 3C which shows extras.

7.  3C      A raise to the three level either shows four card support or extras with strong three card support.
              The trap is rebidding 2S which is not nearly as informative. 

8.  2H      With a good 6-4, bid the four card suit second and then back to the six card suit. With a weaker
              6-4, bid the six card suit twice and then the four card suit.

9.  3NT    You are too strong to rebid 2NT (the trap) which is not forcing.

10.  2NT  A raise to 3H, a second suit, guarantees four hearts in blood. 2NT is just right.

11.  3H   Partner has five hearts and four spades so don't strand partner in spades even if you have to
              go to the three level to get to the longer trump suit. A raise to 3S with three card support of a
              second suit is beyond the pale. 

12.  4NT  Invitational. Not strong enough to bid 6NT, too strong to bid 3NT. If you wish to ask for aces
               after partner opens 1NT, jump to 4C, Gerber.

13.  3NT   The overcaller seldom has a solid suit. With solid spades he passes and waits to lead the suit
               hoping you end in notrump. Also, partner doesn't seem to have a diamond stopper so you
               shouldn't worry about him having two suits unstopped!

14.  4H    You can't risk a double with a singleton spade, a huge no-no. Partner is a passed hand and
               an opponent has opened the bidding so you don't figure to have a slam. Be happy if you can
               make game.  
15.  3H     Forcing. There might well be a slam here. See what partner has to say.  

                        

RATING SCALE

150-130   What a laugher this quiz was for you.
120-100   So you fell in a few times.
90-70       Brush up on your basics
60-40       Hopefully your forte is declarer play, defense, or both, because we know what it isn't!
Less         I won't tell anyone and I'm sure you won't either. 

#38   WHICH ONE WILL IT BE?

 Here's a bidding quiz that will test both your viualization and imagination.

Your job is to study the bidding sequence at the left and then decide which of the three hands to the right comes closest to the bidding that South (you) is doing!

Assume neither side is vulnerable.


1.   South    North     (a) S. 10954       (b) S. AK87        (c) S. A1076 
      1D         1H               H. -                     H. 2                   H. -
      1S         1NT             D. AKJ65             D. AK76             D. AJ987
      2C                           C. AJ87                C. AJ104            C. AKJ9
      

2.  South  West  North  East     (a) S. 54         (b) S. 4               (c) S. -
     1H       1S     2C      2S               H. AK876         H. KQ753           H. AQ1098
     3C        3S    Dbl.    Pass            D. AJ9              D. AJ76              D. AQ87
      4D                                            C. Q43             C. K76                C. 9765  


3.  South    North       (a) S. AKQ76         (b) S. KQ876           (c)  S. AK9854
     1S         1NT              H. K105                 H. A                         H. AQ
     3C         3D                D. 2                       D. A54                     D. -
     3NT                           C. AK76                  C. AQ76                   C. KJ1086


4.  North     South      (a)  S. KQ875          (b) S. A6543            (c) S. A8765
     1D         1S                  H. AQ10                 H. A104                   H. 1098  
     2C         2NT                D. 876                    D. K32                     D. KJ10
     3C         5D                  C. J9                      C. J8                        C. K4             


5.  North   East   South     (a) S. AJ87       (b) S. KJ10932          (c) S. KJ104  
     3H       3S     Dbl.              H. KJ65              H. 65                        H. 4
                                             D. 2                    D. J98                       D . AQ84
                                             C. Q543             C. 43                         C. J954 


6. South  West  North  East      (a) S. KQ76   (b) S. 765              (c) S. QJ764 
    Pass     1D     Pass   1H              H. 65            H. AQ9                  H. 3
    1NT                                             D. 94            D. KQ107              D. 2
                                                       C. AJ1065     C. 754                   C. AJ9653 


AND THE WINNERS ARE

1.  (a)    (b) is strong enough to make a jump shift and (c) should bid 3C over 1NT.

2.  (c)    Both (a) and (b) should pass the penalty double of 3S.  

3.  (a)   (b) should raise diamonds and (c) should rebid clubs.

4.  (b)   (a) should bid 3NT and (c) should bid 3D over 2C, not 2NT without a heart stop.

5.  (c)   (a) should bid 4H before the opponents find their diamond fit; (b) should pass because (b) had no
                defense against any other contract your double may chase them to. (c) is just right.
6.  (c)   When a passed hand bids 1NT in the direct position it is unusual. Your double showed at least 5-5
           in the blacks. (b) should pass... quickly and (a) has a perfect passed hand takout double.  

#39   HOW WELL CAN YOU PICTURE YOUR'S PARTNER'S HAND?

 In the following quiz you are playing with an expert who plays almost as well as you do. He will have what he says, and you can count on his distribution to be accurate.

Your job is to answer the questions following each problem and then decide what to bid. 

Assume you are playing in a team game with IMP scoring.
 

1.  Your hand: S. AQ1032  H. AK76  D. J108 C. 2 

You   Partner
1S     2D
2H     2NT
3D     3H
?

a. How many hearts does partner have?
b. How many club stoppers does he have?
c. How many diamonds does partner have?
d. Can partner have three spades?
e. What do you bid now?


2.   Your hand:  S. J104  H. Q984  D. A   C. AK765 

You   Partner 
1C     1D
1H     1S 
1NT    2S

a. How many spades does your partner have?
b. How many diamonds?
c. Do you think you have a poor, average, good or super hand on the bidding? 
d. What do you do now?


3.  Your hand:  S. K854  H. 1043  D. Q4  C. KJ108 

Partner    You
1D           1S
2H           2NT
3S            ?

a. How many spades does partner have?
b. How many clubs?
c. Can partner have a 4-4-4-1 distribution with a strong hand?
d. What do you assume partner's red suit distribution is?
e. What do you do now?


4.  Your hand:  S. K76  H. J109  D. A54  C. Q875 

Partner     You
1C            1NT
2D            3C
3S            ?

a. What is partner's most likely distribution?
b. Is this a partscore, game or possible slam hand?
c. What do you do now?


5.  Your hand: S. A10854   H. A109  D. 65  C. Q109 

Partner     You
1D            1S
2C            2NT 
4C            ?

a. What do you think partner's 4C bid means and why didn't he jump shift?
b. Which is more likely on the bidding-a game or a slam?
c. What do you do now?


ANSWERS

1. 

a.  Three. If he had four hearts he would have supported earlier.
b.  Looks like only one club stopper-no 3NT bid.
c.  Should have five. With 4-4 in the minors, the normal response is 2C.
d.  No, no a thousand times no. He is likely to have a singleton.
e.  5D  looks reasonable with partner having a likely HQ.     


2. 

a. Five
b. Six    With 5-5 partner responds in the higher ranking suit first.
c. You have a good hand on the bidding.
d. Jump to 4S.  After all, you don't have to play it, partner does! 


3. 

a. Three
b. One
c. No. He would have raised spades or splintered.
d. Five diamonds and four hearts.
e. 3NT.  Your clubs are more than strong enough to play notrump facing a singleton.


4.

a. Partner figures to have five clubs, four diamonds, three spades and a heart. 
b. This could well be a slam hand as you have three vital cards facing a reversing hand.
c. You should cuebid 4D and if partner bids 4H, bid 4S.


5. 

a.  Partner probably has six diamonds and five clubs, just possibly five diamonds and five clubs, with a hand too strong to make a non-forcing 3C rebid over 2NT but not strong enough to jump shift originally. A hand rich in playing tricks.

b.  This hand looks very very slammish.

c.  It's hard to construct a hand that justifies that 4C bid that doesn't have a great play for 6C, what you should bid. At the very least, partner should have something like:  x    x    KQJxxx  AKJxx.  
 

#40   MATCH YOUR BIDDING WITH DON KRAUSS

  My good friend Don Krauss has represented the United States twice in World Championship play and has consistently done well at the National Level, the true test. He formed successful partnerships with the legendary Lew Mathe and Bob Hamman, for many years the #1 ranked player in the world. Don was also a successful rubber bridge player in San Francisco. Now retired, Don still plays locally and still keeps on winning.

Now, you match wits with Don on the following 10 rubber bridge problems from actual play, sitting in the South seat. 


1.  Neither side vul, you hold: S. AQx  H. x  D. A9xxxx  C. Axx

South   West   North   East
1D        Pass   1S        Pass
?

     

2.  Both sides vul, you hold:  S. AQ9  H. AK108xx  D. Ax   C. Ax

South   West  North   East
2C*      Pass   2S**   Pass 
?                                        *Strong and artificial  ** Positive, showing a reasonable suit.


3.  East-West vul, you hold:  S. KQ   H. xxxxx  D. AQ9xx  C. Q 

West      North   East     South
1NT*      Pass    2S**        ?      * 15-17   ** Signoff


4.  Neither side vul, you hold:  S. AKxxxxx  H. QJx  D. -  C. Kxx

South    West   North   East
1S         Pass    2H       Pass
?       


5.  North-South vul, you hold:  S. 10x   H. KQ10x   D. KQxx   C. Axx

East    South  West   North
1S      Dbl.      Pass   Pass
1NT    ?   


6.  Both sides vul, you hold:  S. J9xxx  H. AKJxxx  D. x  C. x

North   East   South   West
1C       Dbl.    ? 


7.  Neither side vul, you hold:  S. J9x   H. A9x   D. KJx   C. Kxxx

South   West   North   East
Pass      Pass   1H       1S


8.  Both sides vul, you hold:  S. x  H. Kx   D. KQJ10  C. AQxxxx

South   West   North   East
1C        Pass    1D       Pass
3D        Pass    3H       Pass
?


9.  Both sides vul, you hold: S. QJ10x  H. x  H. AKxxxx  C. Ax

South   West   North   East
1D        Pass    1H       Pass
1S        Pass     4S       Pass ​

?


10.  North-South vul, you hold:  S. x  H. KQxx  D. Q10x   C. AQxxx

North   East   South    West
1D       4S      ?


DON'S ANSWERS

1.  2S   Playing with Mathe I don't worry much about these hands. He seems to find another bid whenever we can make game and he always seems to think we can make game!

2.  3H    We tend to make positive responses to 2C openings when we have something clear to bid (overlooking one time when I opened 2C, Lew responded 2S and I had the AKQJxx of spades!) Maybe I can find out if partner has any heart support. If he does not I will bid 7S as there cannot be a possible loser outside of hearts. The only thing can maybe beat a grand slam is three small hearts in partner's hand and that is what I am trying to uncover.  (I find this reasoning admirable)  

3.  Pass  I would bid if I had honors in hearts rather than spades.

4.  3S  Forcing. Hoping partner's next bid will help m decide which major should be the trump suit.

5.  Dbl. to tell my partner I had a sound original double.

6.  1H  I am going to start bidding my suits before the opponents preempt in diamonds.

7.  2S  Asking for more information and looking for the best game contract. There must be a game-I am playing with Mathe. 

8.  4C  Need more information from partner. I see nothing else clear to bid.

9.  5C  Tough hand. Maybe this will suggest a singleton heart and partner can make an intelligent decision.   (I would have bid 4NT)

10.  4NT  for takeout after a 4S overcall. All suits are in the game. 

#41   MATCH BIDS WITH MARSHALL MILES

  My first serious partner and lifelong friend was and is Marhall Miles. Nobody I have ever met loves the game of bridge more than Marshall. Marshall has written some of the classics in bridge literature, is a National Champion many times over, and well known for his theories and imaginative bidding. Everybody, including Marshall's partners, have to be alert at all times!  Things are not always what they seem to be when Marshall is at the table. Here's your chance to test your bidding skills against those of Marshall Miles.

You are South and you are playing rubber bridge.
  

1.  Both sides vulnerable, you hold: S. KJ10954  H. K8643  D.10  C. J

East   South   West   North
Pass   Pass     1NT*   Dbl.**
Pass   ?                                 *13-15     ** Penalty


2.  Neither side vul, you hold: S. K84  H. AK10743  D. 63  C. A8

South   West   North   East
1H        Pass    2C       Pass
?


3.  Both sides vul, you hold:  S. KJ943  H. KJ  D. KQ4  C.Q105 

North   East   South   West
3H       Pass   ?    


4.  North-South vul,   You hold:  S. A105  H. AJ1032   D. 3   C. A1054

South   West   North   East
1H        Pass   2NT*    3D        *Natural, 13-15
?


5.  Neither side vul,  you hold: S. KQJ10432  H. Q83  D. 4  C. A9

North    East    South   West
1D        Pass    ?                     You play strong jump shifts


6.  East-West vul, you hold: S. AQJ43  H. 97  D. 1043  C. 1054 

North   East   South  West
1H       Pass   1S       Pass
2D       Pass   ?   


7.  Neither side vul, you hold: S 53  H. K843   D. K65   C. AJ54 

West    North    East   South
Pass     1D        3S      ?      


8.  Both sides vul, you hold:  S. -    H. AK642  D. A1043  C. A1043

South    West   North   East
1H         Pass   1S        Pass
?           

 

9.  Neither side vul, you hold: S. A9653  H. 1054  D. Q5  C. AKQ

South    West    North    East
1S         Pass     2S        Pass
Pass       Dbl.     Rdbl.     3D


10.  Neither side vul, you hold:  S. J654  H. 10943  D. 9843  C. 6 

West    North   East   South
1C       1H       1S         ?          I think 3H would have been a limit raise at the time this was written.

MARSHALL'S ANSWERS

1.  4S   My spades are so strong that I don't care if I miss a heart fit. Unless partner has all the wrong cards there should be a good play for game.

2. 3H  A good suit and a reasonable amount of controls on the side. A jump will be necessary to reach slam if partner has  S. xxx  H. Qx   D. AJx   C. KQJxx 

3.  4H We may or may not make this one. Partner should not have an ace on the side, but he may have the CK or a singleton club. 3NT would be dangerous since we are missing three aces.  (I was sure Marhall was going to bid 3NT) 

4.  3H.  Unless I rebid the suit, partner can't very well support the suit with a doubleton honor and a single diamond stopper. If he now bids 3NT, I can pass with confidence.

5.  1S    No problem. Too much side strength for a preempt, not strong enough for a jump shift.

6.  Pass  Game is unlikely so I pass in the safest partscore contract. (I thought Marshall would bid 2H)

7.  Dbl.  At this level a double simply shows high cards. If partner has a balanced hand, he should pass. If he is distributional he can bid knowing I have high card strength.

8.  2D   Since I hope to bid all three suits, I do so in the normal order. With a weaker hand I might bid 2C planning not to show the diamonds unless partner bids them first.

9.  Dbl. I have as good a defensive hand as partner can reasonably expect. His redouble shows a good defensive hand.

10.  Pass.  If I raise, partner may take a sacrifice for one trick too many. Or he may double. When my hand is this weak, I believe in staying out of the bidding so as to avoid a disaster. (Good advice-wish I had taken it more often).        

 

#42   PICK A WINNING HAND   

Here we go again. You are given a bidding sequence and then shown three possible South hands. Pick the one that closest describes the sequence. Also think of what you would bid with the other two.

Neither side is vulnerable and you are playing at IMP scoring.


1.  South  North   (a) S. AJ65  H. KQ87  D. 2  C. A876
     1C       1D        (b) S. Q973 H. KQ9    D. J108 C. AJ10  
     1NT                  (c) S. K4  H. J10  D. A876  C. KJ1082 


2.  South  North  (a) S. KQ4  H. A8763  D. 76  C. A87
     1H       1S       (b) S. 64  H. AQ1032  D. K87 C. KJ5
     2H                  (c) S. 4   H. AJ10954  D. A876  C. Q9  

 

 

3.  South   North  (a) S. KQ86  H. 2  D. AK1087  C. AQ8 
     1D        1H       (b) S. KQ86   H. 2  D. AJ87      C. K987
     1S         2H      (c)  S. KQ86   H. 42  D. AJ87    C. KJ2
     2NT 

    

4.  South   North    (a)  S. KQJ H. 2  D. AK876  C. AJ107
     1D        1S        (b)  S. K4  H. - D. AKQ765  C. KQJ32 
     3C        4C        (c)  S. 2 H AK  D. AKJ76  C. KQ986 
     4NT


5.  South   North   (a)  S. AJ764  H. AJ32  D. K8  C. 87  
     1S        2S        (b)  S. AK765  H. AJ76 D. K4 C. 76
     3H        3S       (c)   S. AKJ53 H. AQ104 D. 2  C. A108
     Pass  


6. North    South    (a)  S. 54  H. AJ3  C. KJ4  C. Q10865                       
    1S        2C *      (b)  S. 2  H. K54 D. Q87  C. A87432  
    2H        2NT       (c)  S. 10 H. AJ10  D. KJ108 C. K10976

    *  Not a game force.


7. North    South   (a)  S. 76  H. AK983  D. QJ  C. 7654 
    1D        1H        (b)  S. K104  H. QJ10965 D. 2  C. J76
    2D        2H        (c)  S. QJ7  H. Q87432  D. -  C. 9432 
                            (d)  S. 9 H. AQJ982 D.64  C. K943 


8. North   South    (a)  S. AKJ43  H. QJ6  D. K76  C. K10        
    1D       2S*       (b)  S. AKQ1076  H. 43  D. AK  C. Q105 
    2NT     3D         (c)  S. AKJ54  H. 43  D. AKJ5 C. 65
                            (d)  S. KQJ54  H. AQ87  D. AJ5  C. 3  

 

 *  Strong jump shift ​


9. North   South    (a)  S. 54 H. 104  H. K1098  C. AQ763  
    1H       1NT       (b)  S. 765  H. A97643 C. A109  
    2D       4C         (c)  S. 2   H. 32  D. 763  C. AKJ10543 


10. North  South   (a)  S. AQ5  H. K8  D. J9832  C. AJ4
      3C      3NT      (b)  S. A  H. AK76  D. KQ65   C. K876
                            (c)  S. A876  H. 54  D. AK76  C. K97  
    

THE BEST CHOICE         

1.  (b)   fourth spade or no fourth spade, the hand 'reeks notrump. (a) should clearly rebid 1H, (c) should raise  to 2D.

2. (c). First of all the sequence promises 6H or five very good ones (KQJ9x, AQJ10x) so that eliminates the other two. (a) should raise to 2S and (b) should rebid 1NT.

3.  (a) With a singleton heart the 2NT bid should show about 17-18 points (16 with a poweful side suit). (b) has the fastest pass in the world. (c) is at least in the ballpark because of the heart fit. 3H is another possibility, but both bids would be stretches.

4.  (c) stands out like a beacon. All you really want to know is partner's ace count. Facing none, play in game, opposite one With one play in 6C, facing two shoot the works! (a) is a clear-cut 4S bid and (b) should cuebid 4H hoping to hear 4S. If partner does bid 4S, try 4NT. If partner bids 5C over 4H, bid 6C hoping partner has the CA. Sometimes you have to take a chance.

5.  (b) best fits the sequence. (c) is the worst because even a coward gets to game with that one. With (a) it would be a stretch to bid over 2S. With both major suit 10s it wouldn't be much of a stretch. 

6.  (a) is perfect. (b) is the worst and is from outer space or even further away. (b) should have responded 1NT as the singleotn spade has weakened the hand. (c)  should rebid 3NT with those great intermediates. Surely that hand is worth at least 14 points. 

7.  (b) is about what the sequence shows. (d) should jump to 3H, invitational, (a) should raise to 3D and (c) must be made with a man with lots of money because disaster is right around the corner. This sequence is supposed to show six reasonable hearts or five very good ones (KQJ9x, AQJ10x). You get the idea.

8.  (c) is clearly best, the others are all flawed. (a) should raise to 3NT; (b) should rebid 3S. 3D shows four card support, minimum. (d) should not jump shift in the first place. (d) has three things to tell partner and should not waste a level starting the description. One does not jump shift with a two-suiter unless the second suit is partner's suit.

9.  (b) is what the bid is supposed to show-a huge diamond fit with the CA. (a) should raise to 3D, invitational. Some play that in this sequence 2S is a stronger diamond raise than 3D, a good idea. (c) should either start with 2C and then bid 3C, invitational, or bid 3C now.

10.  (a) is best for obvious reasons. (b) is the worst as you are almost certainly on for a slam. (c) should bid 3D hoping partner can bid 3H showing a stopper in that suit. If partner does bid 3H, (c) should bid 3S so partner can bid 3NT with the HK and play the hand from the right side.  


 


  

 



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