Bridge & other card games/Bridge

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QUESTION: Is it correct (as a responder) to initially answer opener with a lower or higher ranking suit and then re-bid opener's opening suit secondly so that opener has as much information about responder's hand as possible?  For example, responder has the following 11-12 point hand:  S   K J 10 9
         H   10 4 3
         D   Q J 10 7 5
         C   K
Opener bids 1 S, responder replies 2 D, opener re-bids 2 H, responder re-bids 3 S (invitational).

Do you agree with the above bidding and re-bidding by the responder?  I had alsays thought responder should support opener's major or minor bid when answering the first time but perhaps I've misunderstood.

Could you please straighten me out on this?  Many thanks.

Stewart Fluney

ANSWER: Hi,

Responder should strive to show support for opener's major suit as early as possible. However, this may be constrained by the rules of the bidding system. In Standard American, with 6-10 points responder should just bid 2S and with 13 or more he should respond 3S. However, with 11-12, the rules of the bidding system force responder to bid something else first...here it is 2D. After opener's 2H reply, however, responder only needs to rebid 2S. Responder showed 11-12 points by bidding 2D initially so a subsequent jump to 3S, taking up bidding room, is unnecessary and wasteful.



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Do you foresee any great harm in using the rule for 11-12 points with the 6-10 point and 13 and more point hands?  I'm trying for consistency here; there's so much to remember.

If you see a problem in this, that's fine.  I'll try to remember the above rule.

Many thanks.

Stewart Fluney

Answer
Hi,

With 6-10 points you are not allowed to respond in a new suit at the two level...your hand is too weak. With 13 or more you may bid 2D first but would then have to jump to 3S on your next turn since partner would be allowed to pass a 2S rebid. It is best, though, to just jump to 3S with 13 or more since this shows unambiguous support as early as possible.

Also, since bridge is a partnership game, you and your partner need to be on the same wavelength. Other players will tend to play by the predefined rules and it would not be good for you and your partner to be playing different systems since it will result in misunderstandings. Of course, if you have a regular partner then you can make an agreement to play whatever system you wish.

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I can answer questions on bidding and on cardplay with the caveat that the former may necessarily involve some subjectivity. I have been playing tournament bridge for over 20 years and I have won several regional tournaments.

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