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Opener’s First Bid in a Suit (Suit Bidding)
- Acol Lesson 2

In a game of bridge the first person to make a bid (other than "pass" or "no bid") is called the opener. You should have at least 12 TP to open the bidding in a suit.

Your first bid should be your longest suit – “Bid Length before Strength”.
The rules differ according to whether you open a major (spades and hearts) or minor (diamonds and clubs) suit.

1 NoTrumps(1NT) is not a suit bid so we will learn about this bid later

Ranking of Suits - the ranking of bids from highest to lowest

NT NoTrumps
These are listed in descending order: NoTrumps (NT) is the highest bid winning over suit bids:
Spades is the highest ranking suit
followed by hearts
then by diamonds
and the lowest ranking suit is clubs

Comment: The importance of this ranking is to do with winning the bidding for a contract. You can take the contract at any level by bidding a higher ranking suit

Bidding 1 beats a bid of 1
Bidding 1 beats both 1 & 1
A bid of 1 beats 1 & 1 & 1
1NT beats all of these but is NOT a suit bid!

Major or Minor Suits, what is the difference?

The Major suits are

Spades & Hearts,

Opening bids at the level of 1 in either of these suits tells your partner that you have:
· 12-19 TP
· you have a 4-card suit
· your longest suit is the one you have just bid

Note: if you have two 5-card major suits, you must start your bidding with the higher ranked suit (spades is higher than hearts)

If you have two 4 card major suits you should bid the lower ranked suit first then later the higher ranked


The Minor suits are

Diamonds & Clubs,

Opening bids at the level of 1 in the Minor suits (diamonds is higher than clubs) tells your partner that you have:

· 12-19 TP
· promises at least a 4- card suit
· open your longest suit, regardless of quality
· with two 4-card suits, open the lower ranked suit
· with two 5 card minor suits bid your higher ranking one first and then
bid your lower ranking one for your second bid

Try your new suit bidding knowledge on these hands below:

Hand 1.
Your Hand
A K J 10
A 8 6 5
A 10 3 2
Your Bid
The correct opening bid here is 1. With two 4-card minors open the lower.

You can bid your diamond or heart suit later, if possible.

Hand 2.
Your Hand
J 5 4 3 2
6 5
Your Bid
The correct opening bid here is is 1.

Even though the spade is stronger, the heart suit is longer and should be bid first.

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