Bidding System

Below you'll find the bidding conventions used by all our players in the New Tricks Tournament Series.


15-17 balanced or semi-balanced (5M or 6m possible. Also some 5422 with rebid problems


2 ♣ = Stayman + Smolen (GF). After 2M response, 3 of OM = balanced slam try

2 / = transfers (break to 3M with 4 card fit (retransfers apply). After normal response of 2M then jump to 4M = mild slam try, no shortage

2♠/NT = transfers to ♣/ . Completing the transfer show fit. Bidding the gap denies fit. New suit from responder is now shortage.

3♣/ Invitational, 6+ cards

3 /♠ = shortage in bid suit with 3 cards in OM and 5-4 either way in minors

4♣ = transfer to . If responder bids again is RKCB or exclusion

4 = transfer to ♠ . If responder bids again is RKCB or exclusion

4 /4♠ = to play


20-22 balanced or semi-balanced


3♣ = 4 card Stayman

3 / = GF transfers. Break to 3NT with a doubleton, or to new suit cue bid with slam suitable hand

3♠ = minor suit Stayman

4♣/ / /♠ are two suit up transfers, slam tries. If transfer is to a major, then 4 major is weakest, gap suit is some interest, 4NT is RKCB. If transfer is to a minor then bidding 5m is weakest with fit, 4NT is to play and the gap suit is RKCB.


2+ cards. Usually respond 1M before 1D (Walsh style) unless GF


1NT = natural

2♣ = Invitational + with clubs. Now jump by opener is shortage.

2 / /♠ = natural, weak (3-7)

2NT = natural, invitational

3♣ = pre-emptive raise

3 / /♠ = pre-emptive


4+ cards


1NT = natural, NF

2♣ = natural, GF

2 = natural, invitational or better

2 /♠ = natural, weak (3-7)

2NT = natural

3♣ = natural, invitational

3 = pre-emptive

3 /♠ = pre-emptive


5 card majors


1NT = natural, semi-forcing, may have weak 3 card raise. Opener can pass with balanced min

2/1 in new suit = natural, GF

2 /♠ = constructive (usually 3 card fit) raise - 7-10

3 /♠ = invitational, 3 or 4 card fit

3♣/ = natural, invitational

1 -2♠ = natural, weak

1♠- 3 = natural, invitational

2NT = Jacoby, GF 3 of new suit = natural, non-min. New suit at 4 level = shortage, non-min 3M = non-min with nothing else to show, 4M complete min

Passed hand bidding after 1M opening: 2♣ = Drury (then 2M = no game interest)

Jumps from a passed hand are fit-showing


Shows 23+ balanced or any GF hand. Normally respond 2

2 / /♠ OPENING

Pre-emptive (mostly 6 cards). Responding new suit at 2 level is constructive, NF. At 3 level is GF. 2NT response = asking bid. Over 2 opening show a high card feature if non-minimum. After 2 /♠ opening ?????. Rebidding 3 of opening suit is any minimum.


Standard style pre-empts. New suit GF


Double = penalty. 2♣ = both majors. 2 / /♠ = natural


Single jumps = fit

Double jumps = splinter


Leads 4th highest, 2nd highest from bad suits. Attitude leads after trick 1.

Honour leads A/Q/J/T ask for standard attitude. K asks for standard count vs suits and is the power lead (demanding unblock) vs NT

Standard attitude and count (hi-lo = encouraging or even number)


RKCB 0314. 5NT asks for specific kings (responses show the K in the suit bid or the other two).

Exclusion RKCB where obvious.

Italian-style cue bidding (1st or 2nd round controls shown indiscriminately)


4th suit forcing is GF

After opener’s reverse, lower of 4th suit or 2NT is blackout

If opps interfere over 1NT then X = takeout. Also Lebebsohl (fast arrival shows a stopper)

Support doubles as long as stop in 2M is possible.

Most doubles of natural bids are takeout oriented. Doubles of artificial bids are showing the suit and are competitive/lead-directing. After double of 1NT opener, if opps run, then first double is takeout and subsequent doubles are penalty.

After opening or overcall of 1m, 2NT in competition is natural.

After opening or overcall of 1M, 2NT in competition is invitational plus 4 card raise. If opponents double 1M opening then responder’s bids are transfers (from 1NT through to 2M-1)

In competition, jumps in a new suit are fit-showing

After opener’s 1NT rebid, two-way checkback applies (2♣= puppet to 2 - either to play or any further bid is invitational). 2 is ART! And is GF checkback. If responder is a passed hand then all invites go through 2♣ and 2 is just natural.

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