Theory and Conventions

M J Bridge

Home

Bidding

Hands

Overcaller’s first bid

If you choose not to play 2NT in this position in a natural manner then you have a further choice.


Most common will be to play it as a simple support bid.


An excellent alternative choice would be to play it as the good-bad 2NT (below).


Which one of these you choose will depend both on partnership style and also on how the bids combine with the rest of your system.


The good-bad 2NT


Subject to partnership agreement his convention may be used by advancer and by opener on his rebid.

Exceptionally a partnership might also agree to play it as responder.


After RHO has joined in you might wish to introduce a long suit of your own in a weak hand, and this non-support meaning will be the usual reason for including such a bid among your methods.


In its basic form the bid is no more than an extended application of the Lebensohl convention.

Partner is instructed to respond 3 after which the 2NT bidder will either pass, or bid his suit in a competitive but not encouraging manner.


In the present context of holding support for partner you will have the further option of rebidding in partner’s suit.

This can be given a support meaning


Alongside the direct raise and the immediate cue-bid the good-bad 2NT followed by a rebid in the opponents’ suit offers a third support route.


Allocate the three routes as you wish but typical would be:-


direct raise is weak (0 or 7);


2NT then support is ‘mixed’ (8 or 9);


unassuming cue-bid is a good raise (10+).


Alternative way of using the additional bid might be:-


to show a good raise with greater length in support;


to show a good raise with some specific honour holding in partner’s suit;


or to show a good raise with some specific holding in the opponents’ suit.


There is, though, a drawback with this method and that is that you might not get to show the nature of the hand in the face of further competition from the opposition - there is much to be said for getting the hand off your chest at the first opportunity while you still can.


I like the good-bad 2NT, but in my opinion, for the reason just given, it is probably best reserved for non-support hands.


You will, then, need to show your various support hands in other ways, either with a simple 2NT support bid or by way of jumps in the opponents’ suit, alongside the unassuming cue-bid and the direct raise.


Evaluation


I like the good-bad 2NT with its capability of introducing a new suit in a non-competitive manner, though it will seem a complication beyond the necessary for many of us.


However I have doubts about attempting to harness it as an additional support bid.


Various ways in which this bid might be combined with your other choices are linked from ‘intermediate and beyond’.

Post intermediate and above

T 9 5 3

6 5

A Q 3

K 9 7 3

Bid 2NT.

Partner will bid 3 and you will rebid 3.

With the agreement above this sequence shows three-card support (facing the two-level overcall) together with 8 or 9 points.

LHO

Pard

RHO

You

1

2

2

?









T 9 5 3

6 5

Q J 3

9 7 4 3

Bid 3 showing a weak three-card raise.

LHO

Pard

RHO

You

1

2

2

?









T 9 5 3

A K 7 3

Q J 3

6 5

Bid 3 showing a good raise with 10 or more points.

LHO

Pard

RHO

You

1

2

2

?