February 2020 English Bridge
Unless declarer intended to claim (Law 48B2 and
Law 68), the cards exposed by declarer are picked up
and do not become penalty cards (Law 48A). The
correct dummy is put down and play continues.
artin Jennings asks: Playing Simple
Precision, I opened 1t (announced by
my partner as 'may be as short as two,
may hide five clubs'). My partner then bid 2®,
which I passed. I was chastised by the Director
who insisted that I should alert the 2® as nonforcing.
I appreciate that in England, Acol is the
norm, but does the Blue Book reflect this fact?
oger Brindley came across an interesting
situation: The bidding concluded and at
the facing of the correct opening lead
declarer immediately put his hand down, thinking
he was dummy.
Non-forcing responses by a non-passed hand are
alerted. Blue Book 4H2(d):
A non-forcing new suit response, to a non-forcing
suit opening at any level, below game, unless
responder has previously passed, bids over a natural
NT overcall, or makes a double jump.
an Lewis asked: Tonight at the club, at least
two people opened this South hand using
In both cases, the convention
card was not asked to be
looked at but in both cases,
the card is slightly outdated
and says 'eight Playing Tricks'
and on one card, the words 'Rule of 25' and on the
other 'or 21/22 HCPs'.
2® was alerted by partner and when the
opponents asked the explanation was it should be
Benji style and 'strong'.
What do we do with these auctions as this hand
doesn't satisfy the rules of 2®? Or with the
announcements made (or not made) and the
convention cards, does it stand? Should an
adjustment be made in either case?
I do not think that any adjustment should be made
on the hands you know about or other hands, as no
one has asked for a ruling. This is a matter for
education and disclosure.
Players/partnerships must realise that calling an
agreement 'Benji' or 'eight playing tricks' does not
necessarily make it permitted.
DPartnerships should agree what their 2® opener
DThey should ensure their agreement meets the
regulation in Blue Book 7C1.
DThey should alert 2® and (if asked) explain their
DIf the 2® bid is not 'strong' according to the
regulation (16+ HCP or 12+ HCP with 5+
controls), the explanation should make this clear,
and it should be clear how the agreement
nevertheless meets the regulation.
The following is a permitted agreement:
Strong balanced (21-22), OR a strong hand with a
long minor (8/9 playing tricks), OR an intermediateor-strong
hand with a long major (7/8 playing tricks).
The hand you gave is not 'strong' according to the
regulation. I suggest that if the pairs want to open
such hands with 2® they restrict the non-strong
hands to those with a long major.
This could be explained as:
Eight playing tricks in any suit, may be less than 16
HCP if the suit is a major, but will be 'strong' if the
suit is a minor. r
obin Barker is the EBU's Deputy Chief
Tournament Director. He is editor of
the White Bookrobin@ebu.co.ukard to
answering your questions. Please email him
The author, English Bridge and the EBU are
not responsible if the information provided is
incorrect or incomplete.
´ K Q
™ A K Q 9 7 5 3
t 10 4
® 8 3
distribution if they need to know. If 'Staymanesque'
meant the same thing to everyone then it might be
a satisfactory response, but so often using names for
conventional meanings is misunderstood.