Bridge & other card games/Bridge

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Question
"Do you agree that a pre-emptive “weak two” bid of say 2 hearts; i.e., 6 points and 6 hearts, can be supplemented by partner to a 3-level bid with 3 hearts and 6 points or a 4-level bid with 4 hearts and 6 points.  In other words, they can make Game based on quantity of tricks rather than on points?  This situation means opener and partner have 12 points between them.

Do you also agree that a 1 heart bid by opener, increased subsequently to 2 and 3 by opener, means opener had 13 points to open and 5 hearts, and on second and third bid to 2 and 3 by opener means opener has 6 and 7 hearts (and 13 points minimum).  If partner ups opening bid to 2 hearts, it signifies 3 hearts and 6 points for partner and should opener re-bid to 3 hearts, it signifies having 6 hearts and minimum of 13 points.  Should partner re-bid 4 hearts, it means having 4 hearts and minimum of 6 points. In other words, do you agree it is possible to get to Game this way – by Heart count rather than by point count which would require 25 points.  

Thank you for your consideration and response.

Stewart Fluney"

Answer
Hi,

Partner can raise a weak 2H bid to 3H with three card support and 6-11 points and to 4H with four card support and an outside singleton or void. The expectation is not necessarily that these contracts will be successful but rather that this will make life more difficult for the opponents by taking up their bidding space. The opponents have a majority of the high card points and can possibly make a game but it will be harder for them to find their correct spot if they have to start bidding at the three or four level. Of course, obstructing or sacrificing against the opponents is counterproductive if your side ends up suffering a 500 point or 800 point penalty. Therefore, one should be careful when making these bids. I would not bid 3H with a 4-3-3-3 hand since your hand offers no ruffing value to help declarer avoid some of his losers. I would therefore, with the point count you mention, only bid 3H with at least an outside doubleton and only bid 4H with an outside singleton or void. Also I would be more conservative if I were vulnerable.

A rebid of 2H will generally show a sixth heart and a minimum. A third bid of 3H may or may not show 7 hearts. Opener may have six hearts but nothing else to bid...no support for suits bid by partner and no stoppers to bid notrump.

If partner responds, say, 1S or 1NT and opener rebids 2H showing 6 hearts, responder should pass unless he has at least 11 points so you will not end up in game unless you have close to 25 points. If responder bids 2H, opener should pass with a minimum so game will not be reached either. 3H would be invitational showing at least 15 or 16 points and responder should have at least 8 or 9 points to carry on to 4H. Alternatively, some advanced players play that 1H-P-2H-P-3H would show a minimum opener with 6 hearts. Th3e objective is to crowd the opponents out of the auction. Playing this style, however, partner should almost always pass 3H. You should not bid game based on number of hearts alone unless your side has a lot of distribution (singletons and voids) to go with it.  

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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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