Bridge & other card games/Bridge

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Question
I would appreciate your advice on the following:

Should Short Suit points not be counted on previously bid suits by a partnership and, if so, would you please explain why?

Thanks very much.

Stewart Fluney

Answer
Hi,

You should only count short suit points if the partnership has found a playable trump fit and your hand has at least three cards in the trump suit. Generally, though, you should not count short suit points in a suit that partner has previously bid and has shown length in.

Of course, general rules have many exceptions. Your shortness could be valuable if the suit bid by partner has only 4 or 5 small cards or even if it is Axxx. More often, though, the suit will look like KJxx or KQxx or AJxx where your having a singleton or void is not constructive. Opposite shortness, a suit like KJxx is not pulling its full weight and is not much better than having four low cards. It would be much more valuable if you held a fitting honor such as a queen (or a jack in the second example) to fill out the suit. Since you usually can't be sure what partner's bid suit exactly looks like, you are best advised to not count short suit points in that suit.  

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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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