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Brevard Duplicate is a small, friendly club formed in March 2015, now in our third year.  Our club is located in Brevard, North Carolina--home of the white squirrel. Yes, you can sometimes see white squirrels in the parking lot.  Generally we host 4 to 6 tables and 6 to 8 in the summer months.  Brevard Duplicate holds its sessions in the French Broad Community Center at 281 E. French Broad Street.  This center belongs to the City of Brevard.  Parking at the Center is limited, so come early for the best spots.  There are coffee and snacks at the games.  Although small, the club welcomes all newcomers.  

 
ARCHIVES: Learning Points
POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN USING THE STAYMAN CONVENTION (PART 1 OF 2)

Points For Responder To Consider When Bidding Stayman

1. A conventional 2C bid made by Responder when Opener bids 1NT.  EX: N = 1NT; E = P; S = 2C.

2. Says absolutely nothing about Responder’s club holdings; therefore it is an “artificial bid”.

3. Designed to detect a 4 – 4 fit (8 total trumps) in a major suit.  2C bidder must hold at least 4 spades or 4 hearts.  Think of it as a statement with a question: “Partner, I have at least 4 of a major suit; do you?”

4. Stayman bidder needs between 8 - 9HCP (high card points; some partnerships prefer using total points = HCP plus length points).  Opener has 15 – 17HCP.                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Note: holding 0 – 7HCP = Basic rule is to pass with <8 points.  Exception might be made when Responder is short in clubs as with                                                                 S = J843; H = QT63; D = J953; C = 3.  Respond 2C (Stayman) and pass opener’s rebid.

5. A forcing bid.  1NT opener must rebid.

Points To Consider When 1NT Opener Rebids After Responder’s Stayman Bid

1. These are conventional as well:  2D = no 4-card major.  “I can’t help you in either major”                                                                                                                                                       2H = 4 cards in hearts, denies 4 cards in spades (see Note)                                                                                                                                               2S = 4 cards in spades, denies 4 cards in hearts                                                                                                                                                                  2NT = 4 cards in hearts AND 4 cards in spades. “I’ve got both; your preference?”                                                        Note: some partnerships prefer bidding “up-the-line”, meaning, when 4 – 4 in the majors, 2H is bid first followed by 2S at the next turn.”

Points to Consider When Stayman Bidder (Responder) Rebids

1. Holding 8 or 9HCP, 2NT or 3 of opener’s major after Stayman is an invitational bid: 

    a. Responder’s Hand = S: AQ72; H: Q53; D: 9876; C: 97 (Notice only four spades.)                                                                                                              Bidding: Opener = 1NT; Responder = 2C (Stayman)                                                                                                                                                                 Note: if Responder’s hand held NO 4-card major, the bid is 2NT (invitational to game) and NOT 2C (Stayman).

      1) If opener rebids 2D (denying a 4-card major), responder still bids the invitational 2NT.

      2) If opener rebids 2H (affirming holding 4 hearts), responder only holds 3 hearts, so the invitational 2NT is still the correct bid. It denies that responder’s 4-card major holding is hearts; rather, it is spades.  Remember: responder should never bid Stayman unless holding a 4-card major.

      3) If opener’s NT hand also holds 4 spades with minimum strength (15HCP), his rebid is 3S.  If 4 spades and maximum strength (17HCP), his rebid is 4S.

      4) If opener has fewer than 4 spades and a minimum hand, he will pass 2NT.  With a maximum hand, opener bids game at 3NT.

      5) If opener rebids 2S, a fit has been found.  Responder invites game by bidding 3S.  Opener will pass with around 15HCP and raise to game at 4S with 17HCP.

    b. Another hand for Responder: S: KJ843; H: 9; D: A86; C: T962 (Notice five spades.)                                                                                                       Bidding: Opener = 1NT; Responder = 2C (Stayman) an invitational hand with 9 total points; too  strong for 2S (signoff response) and too                               weak for 3S (game-force response)

                      Opener’s rebid = 2D (or 2H); Responder’s rebid = 2S (shows 5-spades; invitational)

                      Opener = Pass if NT hand is minimum strength with only 2 spades; raise to 4S if maximum and holds 3 at least spades; 2NT if                         minimum or 3NT if maximum.

2. Holding 10 or more HCP (game-forcing hand)

    a. Responder’s Hand = S: AQ72; H: KQ54; D: 9876; C: 8                                                                                                                                                           Bidding: Opener = 1NT; Responder = 2C (Stayman)  

       1) If opener rebids 2S, responder jumps to 4S.

       2) If opener rebids 2H, responder jumps to 4H.

       3) If opener rebids 2D (showing no four-card major), responder jumps to 3NT.

  b. Another hand for Responder = S: AQ7; H: KQ54; D: 9876; C = 82                                                                                                                                  Bidding: Opener = 1NT; Responder = 2C (Stayman)

       1) If opener rebids 2H, responder jumps to 4H.

       2) If opener rebids 2S, responder jumps to 3NT.

       3) If opener rebids 2D (showing no four-card major), responder jumps to 3NT.

  c. One more hand for Responder = S: AQ72; H: KQ5; D: 9876; C: 82                                                                                                                                       Bidding: Opener = 1NT; Responder = 2C (Stayman)

       1) If opener rebids 2H, does he hold 4 spades AND 4 hearts (bidding up-the-line)? To find out, responder jumps to 3NT.  Partner corrects to 4S if he does and prefers game in a suit contract.

Compiled and edited from various sources; principally GoTo Bridge and Grant's Bidding in the 21st Century.

STAYMAN CONVENTION EXERCISES

Exercises (Answers below):

DEAL 1: Partner has opened 1NT.  As responder you hold: ♠ KJ75; Q985; 862; ♣ 87.  What is your response to partner?

DEAL 2: Partner has opened 1NT.  As responder you hold: ♠ QT972; AJ74; 7; ♣ J872.  How do you bid in response to partner?

DEAL 3: Opener bids 1NT.  Responder holds ♠ KJ92; AQ74; 53; ♣ J65 and responds 2♣  (Stayman)  Opener rebids 2S.  What is your rebid as responder?

DEAL 4: As Opener you bid 1NT holding ♠ KJT2;  AKJ3;  A95; ♣ 54.  Responder bids 2♣  (Stayman).  How will you rebid?

DEAL 5: Your partner opened 1NT.  You hold ♠ 875; AQ75; 65; ♣ Q432 and respond 2C (Stayman).  Partner rebids 2NT.  What will you say to partner?

 

 

Answers

DEAL 1: Pass; Only 6HCP; Stayman bidder should have a minimum of 8.  (A Transfer is not an option here; no 5-card suit.)

DEAL 2: 2♣ (Stayman); 8HCP; then bid spades on second turn to signify holding 5 of them.

DEAL 3: 4♠; you have found a fit in spades.  You can now count dummy points (1 for doubleton  for 12 total points).  Your points added to opener's 15HCP = 27 partnership points, more than the 25 required for game in a major suit.  You have a sure fit in either, so responder bids game in her four-card major.

NOTE: optional bid for some partnerships is 2H and then spades at the next turn—bidding up the line. 

DEAL 4: 2NT; a conventional response showing you are 4x4 in both majors.

DEAL 5: 3H; opener’s 2NT rebid shows 4x4 in the majors.  You should react as if he responded 2H, since you know there is a fit in that suit.  You bid 3H inviting partner to bid game if his NT hand holds maximum strength (17HCP) or pass your 3H with fewer points.                                                                                                                                                                

POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN BIDDING AND RESPONDING TO A NEGATIVE DOUBLE

POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN BIDDING A NEGATIVE DOUBLE

1. Doubler is the responder to a one-level opening bid by partner which is followed by an overcall in another suit by opener’s LHO. Ex: N=1D; E=1H; S=Dbl (negative).

2. The negative double is a form of takeout double (not a penalty double).  It is “forcing” and is to be “taken-out” by opener’s rebid.  Ex: N=1D; E=1H; S=Dbl; W=P; N’s rebid = 1S (takes out or voids responder’s negative double)

3. Doubler is showing support for both of the unbid suits.  Ex: N=1C; E=1S; S=Dbl (shows support for hearts and diamonds—the two unbid suits).

 4.  The support being shown should always promise four-card support for an unbid major.  Support can be three cards for an unbid minor, but four cards are ideal.

5. At the one level, at least 6HCP (high card points) are being promised.

6. At the two level, at least 8HCP are being promised.

7. The level through which negative doubles are used is decided through partnership agreement.  Standard American Yellow Card, however, suggests through 2S, meaning a double of any 3C or higher bid is for penalty.  Many partnerships prefer to increase this to “through 3S”.

8. Since a negative double is forcing upon opener demanding he rebid (unless opener’s RHO interferes), a double at the two level could force opener to rebid at the three level.  Ex: N=1S, E=2H, S=Dbl (showing 4x4 in minors, the unbid suits), W=P, then N (forced to bid and desiring to support one of partner’s minors) must bid either 3C or 3D). (NOTE: Doubler should take the partnership’s combined point-level into consideration and double when that level is appropriate for the rebid opener is forced to make: perhaps 19 – 20 points at the two level and 21- 22 at the three level).

POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN RESPONDING TO A NEGATIVE DOUBLE

1. The doubler is looking for a fit (a Golden Fit of an 8-card trump suit) hopefully in a major but does not have the 5-cards required to overcall in a new suit.  Ex: N=1C; E=1H; S=Dbl promises four spades as well as support (hopefully four) in diamonds.  S is hoping N also has four spades (a Golden Fit in a major). NOTE: with five spades S would simply respond 1S (a one-level, new-suit, forcing overcall to E’s 1H bid).

2.  However, N=1C; E=1D, S=Double promises four spades AND four hearts (the unbid major suits). NOTE: with either 5 Spades or 5 Hearts S would respond 1S or 1H with 6+Total Points.

3.  Further, N=1H; E=1D; S=Dbl promises at least four diamonds and four clubs (the unbid minor suits).  NOTE: with either 5 Clubs or 5 Diamonds S would respond 2C or 2D with 11+Total Points.

4. If responder is too weak to introduce a five-card suit, responder uses a negative double on the first round (forcing) and bids the suit on the second round.

POINTS TO CONSIDER FOR OPENER’S REBID

1.  With a minimum opening hand (13 – 15TP), opener rebids a natural suit or notrump at a low level.  Always show four-card support for the suit (especially a major suit) indicated in responder’s double. Ex: N=1C; E=1D; S=Dbl (showing 4x4 in the majors); W=P; then N=either 1S or 1H with four- card support or 1NT with no four-card major.

2. With a medium-strength, invitational, opening hand (15 – 17TP), jump one level to show extra strength. Ex: N=1C; E-1D; S=Dbl (4x4 in the majors); W=P; then N=jumps to 2S or 2H with four-card support).

3. With a maximum-strength, forcing-to-game, opening hand (18+TP), jump to game OR cuebid opponent’s suit if in doubt of the best contract.  Ex1:    

                                                           N=1C; E=1D; S=Dbl (4x4 in the majors); W=P; then N=jumps to game at 4S or 4H with 4-card support.

                                                                                  Ex2: N=1C; E=1D; S=Dbl (4x4 in the majors); W=P; then N=2D (cuebid of E’s 1D overcall asking doubler’s

                                                          help in finding their best contract).

4. “Balancing takeout (negative?) double:  Ex: N=1D; E=1H; S=P; W=P; then N=Dbl (a “balancing” double) showing shortness in hearts (the opponent’s suit). This is forcing upon responder who rebids her best suit.  Should responder pass, she is allowing opener’s double to convert to a penalty double, because she has strength in opponent’s heart suit.

POINTS TO CONSIDER FOR RESPONDER’S REBID

1. With a minimum hand (6 – 9TP)

    a. Pass opener’s minimum rebid: Ex: N=1D; E=1H; S=Dbl, supporting spades and clubs; W=P                                             

                  then N=1S (minimum rebid at a low level showing four spades), E=P; S=P (a part-score contract; N’s minimum rebid tells responder, also with

                  minimum count, to Pass).

   b. Give a simple preference to opener’s original suit:  S=2D in the above sequence.

   c. Bid a new suit without a jump:   S=2C in the above sequence.

2.  With an invitational-strength hand (10 or 11TP), bid again to invite opener to game. Ex: N=1D;

               E=1H; S=Dbl (support in spades and clubs), W=P; then N=1S; E=P; S=3S (inviting N to

               bid 4S if she has around 15 points).

3.  With a maximum-strength hand (12 or more points), bid game. Ex: N=1D; E=1H; S=Dbl; W=P;

              Then N=1S; E=P; S=4S (knowing N holds four spades and has around 13 – 14 points as an opening hand).

Compiled and edited using various sources, mainly ACBL’s “Defense in the 21st Century”; Lesson 9.

APPLYING THE NEGATIVE DOUBLE

AFTER STUDYING "BIDDING AND RESPONDING TO A NEGATIVE DOUBLE" TRY THIS EXERCISE AND DEAL TO APPLY WHAT YOU'VE LEARNED:

EXERCISE: WEST OPENS 1♠; NORTH OVERCALLS 2; EAST DOUBLES.

                        A. HOW MANY HCP SHOULD EAST HAVE TO DOUBLE AT THE TWO LEVEL?

                        B. EAST'S DOUBLE SHOWS SUPPORT FOR WHAT TWO SUITS?

                       C. IF EAST'S DOUBLE SHOWS SUPPORT FOR A MAJOR SUIT, HOW MANY CARDS MUST EAST HAVE IN THAT SUIT?

                       D. IF EAST'S DOUBLE SHOWS SUPPORT FOR A MINOR SUIT, COULD EAST HAVE ONLY 3?  HOW MANY WOULD BE IDEAL?

                       E. SOUTH PASSES AND WEST REBIDS 2 .  WHAT IS WEST TELLING EAST?  AFTER A PASS BY NORTH, WHAT CAN EAST REBID?

ANSWERS:

A. 8

B. s AND ♣ s (THE 2 UNBID SUITS)

C. YES; 4

D. 4

E. WEST'S REBIDDING AT THE LOWEST LEVEL THE MAJOR SUIT SHOWN IN EAST'S DOUBLE TELLS  EAST, "I OPENED WITH A MINIMUM HAND (13 - 15 TOTAL POINTS) AND I HAVE FOUR HEARTS". 

WHAT EAST REBIDS DEPENDS ON THE STRENGTH OF HIS HAND:

1) MINIMUM (6 - 9TP) EITHER A. PASS OR B. SHOW PREFERENCE FOR OPENER'S ORIGINAL SUIT () OR C. BID A NEW SUIT WITHOUT A JUMP.   OR

2) INVITATIONAL (10 - 11TP) BID AGAIN (3) INVITING OPENER TO GAME.  OR

3) MAXIMUM (12+TP) JUMP TO 4 .

DEAL: Dealer N; None Vulnerable

North: ♠ KQ84; 8; AT43; ♣ KJ98

East: ♠ 32; AKT53; K92; ♣ QT7

South: ♠ AJT5; 9642; QJ; ♣ A65

West: ♠ 976; QJ7; 8765; ♣ 432

1) How many total points does N have?  Is this a minimum strength, medium strength or maximum strength opening hand?

2) Should N open?  What level?  What strain?

3) Should E overcall?  If so, at what level and strain?

4) Should S double (negative)?  If so, what two unbid suits will the double indicate?

5) After a pass by W; N is forced to bid.  At what level and in what strain should N rebid? 

6) After a pass by E; what bid should S make?

ANSWERS:

1) 13; minimum

2) Yes, 1 (the higher of 2 four-card minors)

3) Yes, with 12HCP and 1 length point for 5; 1H

4) Yes, with 11HCP, more than enough to double at the one level (only 6 required). Double indicates ♠  (exactly 4) and ♣ (either 3 or 4)--the 2 unbid suits.

5) N knows S is looking for 4x4 in a major. S's double of E's 1H overcall shows 4♠.  N has 4♠.  With a minimum-strength opening hand, N must bid 2♠ (supporting S major at the cheapest level).

6) S now knows a) N has 4♠ and between 13 - 15TP.  S adds his 11HCP to N's 13 - 15TP and surmises JUMP To Game (4♠).

 

BIDDING AND RESPONDING TO A TAKEOUT DOUBLE

POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN BIDDING A TAKEOUT DOUBLE

1. A double is for takeout if it meets these guidelines:

     a) Neither the doubler nor the doubler’s partner has previously made a bid (previous passes are okay).
     b) The opposing partnership has bid either one or two suits (notrump is not a suit).
     c) It is either the doubler’s first or second turn to bid.
2. The doubler must have "tolerance" or "support" in each of the unbid suits. Four cards with at least one "stopper" in EACH unbid suit are ideal; but rare.  Why?  Partner's response to the double (called "the advance") may establish trump, and partner may have only four cards in the suit being bid.  If doubler also has four cards, a Golden Fit is uncovered..
3. One should have the strength of an opening bid (12 HCP/ 13 - 21 total points) to make a takeout double.
4. One can count dummy (short suit) points when determining takeout double strength, because very often the doubler will be the dummy. The double forces partner to name a suit, so chances are high he will become the declarer.
5. Takeout doubles may also be used to show a hand with 18 or more total points (a hand too strong for an overcall).


POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN RESPONDING TO A TAKEOUT DOUBLE

1. When a player responds to a takeout double, she is called the "advancer".
2. If doubler's left-hand opponent (LHO) bids, the doubler’s partner may pass; thus not "advancing" the takeout double.

3. Otherwise: doubler's partner should never pass a takeout double (it is a forcing bid).  Exception: doubler's partner ("advancer") has great length and/or strength in the suit the opposition bid. Passing the takeout double MIGHT raise the eyebrows of the doubler (partner); however, should that suit become trump as the opposition takes the contract, they may suffer a defeat resulting in a decent score for the doubler/non-advancer pair.  Passing the takeout double, thern, can serve to convert it into a "penalty" double.

4. As the advancer, one's first choice is to bid a 4-card or longer major suit. The second choice is to bid a 4-card or longer minor suit. The last choice is notrump.
5. When responding, classify the strength of one's hand: a) as a minimum hand with 0-8 total points (HCP + dummy points) = bid as cheaply as possible; hopefully at the one level. (Ex: N=1H; E=double (opening point count which includes dummy points; ideally, yet rare, 1 heart and 4 spades, 4 diamonds and 4 clubs with a stopper in each); S=Pass; W (advancer) = 1S (minimum hand with 0 - 8 total points and at least 4 spades.)

                                                                                  b) a medium hand is 9-11 total points = game may be possible; jump bid one level, an invitational bid asking doubler to clarify the strength of his hand which may lead the partnership to game. (Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=2S (medium hand with 9 - 11 total points and at least 4 spades.)

                                                                                                                               OR  

                                                                                   c) a maximum hand is 12 or more total points = partnership should be in game (hopefully 4S or 4H--perhaps 3NT, which is best bid with two--no less than one--stopper in the suit the opponent bid). One option is to immediately jump to game in a major suit (advancer assumes doubler holds at least 4 cards in the major advancer chooses for an 8-card trump fit).  Perhaps a safer option is for advancer to cue-bid opponent's suit, a  demand-bid, forcing doubler to bid her cheapest four-card suit (or any five-card suit).  On advancer's rebid he has more information to use in placing the contract.  Ex: N=1S; E=Double; S=Pass; W=2S (a cue-bid of N's suit to show partner--doubler--advancer holds 12 or more total points and that bidding should continue to game); N = Pass; E=3H (bidding the other major); S = Pass; W= sets the game contract, ideally at 4H holding four of them; otherwise 3NT).

6. Because partner’s takeout double states tolerance in the three unbid suits with weakness in opponent’s suit, advancer must have good strength in opponent’s suit plus a stronger hand to advance in NT.  Ex: N=1S; E=Double; S=Pass; W=1NT (should have 8 - 10HCP and at least one high honor in spades).  A jump to 2NT requires 11-12HCP.  3NT requires 13 or more.

POINTS TO CONSIDER WHEN TAKEOUT DOUBLER REBIDS

1. Doubler classifies her hand: Minimum hand; Medium hand; Maximum hand.

2. Rebid with Minimum hand (13 to 15 total points):

    a. If advancer shows a minimum hand (0 - 8 total points) by bidding at the cheapest level, takeout doubler should pass; partnership will play in

       partscore.   Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=1S (or 2D or 2C); N=Pass; E= Pass (play in partscore).

    b. If advancer shows a medium hand (9 - 11 total points) by jumping a level, if doubler holds a minimum hand = pass.  If doubler's hand has unusual

        distribution (such as strong support in the suit advancer named), doubler might carefully consider raising advancer's suit one level or bidding 3NT>

          Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=2S or 3D or 3C); N=Pass; E=pass (play in partscore)

    c. If the advancer shows a maximum hand (12 or more points) by bidding game, doubler takes this as "sign-off for play" and passes.

         Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=4S (or possibly 3NT with at least one high honor in opponent's hearts); N=Pass; E=Pass (play in game)

3. Rebid with Medium hand (16 - 18 total points):

   a, If advancer show a minimum hand, takeout doubler moves up the Bidding Scale one level.

       Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=1S (or 2D or 2C); N=Pass; E=2S (or 3D or 3C)

   b. If  advancer shows a medium hand, doubler bids game.

       Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=2S (or 3D or 3C); N=Pass; E=4S (or possibly 3NT with at least one high honor in opponent's hearts)

   c. If advancer shows a maximum hand, doubler either bids game or, with an usually strong hand, pursue slam.

       Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=4S (if prefer jumping directly to game) or 2H (if prefer cuebidding of opponent's suit;

              N=Pass; W=either 4NT after 4S (Blackwood) or 4C after 2H (Gerber) pursuing slam.

4. Rebid with Maximum hand (19 - 21 total points):

   a. If advancer shows a minimum hand, takeout doubler jumps a level to show extra strength.

         Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=1S; N=Pass; E=3S (Jump bid)

   b. If advancer shows a medium hand, doubler bids game.

         Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=4S (or possibly 3NT with at least one high honor in opponent's hearts)

   c. If advancer shows a maximum hand (rare), doubler pursues a slam contract.

         Ex: N=1H; E=double; S=Pass; W=2H (cuebidding opponent's suit); N = Pass; E=4C (Gerber) pursuing slam

Edited and Abridged from: ACBL Bridge Series – Bidding – Chapter 8 Page 2 of 2 ATeacherFirst.com

A SAMPLE DEAL USING TAKEOUT DOUBLE WITH ANALYSIS

North Dealer

North's hand: ♠ 876; KQJT; AQ87; ♣ QJ

East's hand: ♠ AK83; A953; T4; ♣ A72

South's hand: ♠ QT42; 74; K652;  ♣ T84

West's hand: ♠ J5; 862;   J93; ♣ K9653

Bidding Sequence:

1. North opens 1 

2. East  doubles (takeout).  Guidelines: 1) neither East nor West has bid; 2) North has bid a suit; 3) it is East's first bid; 4) East has opening point count (15HCP+ 1 Dummy Point); 5)East has shortness in opponent's suit; and 6) East has support (no less than 3) for the three unbid suits.  This is a forcing bid demanding partner to bid her best suit, which most likely will become trump.

3. South passes; so West with 6 total points (5 HCP and 1 dummy point), being forced to bid, advances the take out double--actually "takes it OUT"--by bidding her best suit at the cheapest level (2♣ ).

4. All pass.  East did not rebid after West's minimum advance (bidding a suit at the cheapest level) and settled for a partscore contract in a minor suit.