August 2017 English Bridge
D Unable to bid no-trumps (too strong) and
prevented from opening a 4-card major, you
must bid a minor - no one cares so much about
Try these hands and see how you get on:
If opponents ask particularly about 1® or 1t say
'Could be a 3-card suit - diamonds only three when
´ A K Q 9
™ Q 8 7 4
t 9 5 4
® A J
´ A K
™ 8 7 4
t Q 9 5 4
® A Q J 9
Hand 1 Hand 2 Hand 3
´ A K Q 9 ´ A K Q 9 ´ A K Q 9
™ Q 8 7 ™ Q 8 7 ™ Q 8 7
t 9 5 t 9 5 4 t A J 9
® A J 9 4 ® A J 9 ® 9 5 4
SUMMARY OF MINOR OPENINGS
D 1® and 1t are only 'shortish' (3-card) when
opener has a good balanced hand (15+ HCP).
Because both promise at least three cards,
neither 1® nor 1t require alerting or
announcing. It would be polite to announce
your new system before play to those used to
your old methods as 'Five-card majors, longer
D For balanced hands of 15-19 HCP - too strong
to open 1NT - which have no 5-card suit (so
4-3-3-3 or 4-4-3-2) open a minor:
D With 4-3 in the minors open the longer.
D With 3-3 in the minors open 1®.
D With 3-2 in the minors open the longer.
D With 4-4 in the minors open 1t unless
specifically agreed to open 1®. r
1. 1®. You'll have no qualms about starting with
1®, a decent 4-card suit. You can bid no-trumps
next, just as you would after opening 1´ in
2. 1®. What about now? 1® is still correct. You
have to open a 3-card minor.
3. 1®. Poor clubs and good diamonds - should you
switch allegiance? No. They may only be minors
but to retain as much confidence as possible that
partner may not have the suit, bid clubs. Avoid
opening a 3-card diamond suit.
4. 1t. Now there's no option but to open 1t. But
this is a unique case, 4-4 in the majors, three
diamonds and two clubs. It is the only pattern to
open 1t with three.
5. 1t. For the same reason as Hand 3 choose 1t as
it all but promises four cards and that may be
important in competition or at high levels. But it
would hardly be a crime to bid 1® - it may even
work out better if the goal is to stay low.
DISCLOSURE OF THE NEW SYSTEM
Your obligations to announce and alert changed
slightly in 2013. Read or take a copy of the EBU
Your system card should say, 'Weak no-trump,
five-card majors, three weak-twos'. Do not alert or
announce your one-major or one-minor openings.
At the start of a round it would be polite to tell the
opponents, 'Five-card majors, longer minor'. The
rest (weak-twos and 1NT) you announce anyway.