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Acol Bridge Online - Lesson 11

Responding to Your Partners Opening 1NT

There are two types of hands; balanced or unbalanced. You respond differently depending on whether your hand is suitable for playing in No Trumps or should be played in a Trump suit

Balanced or Unbalanced hand

With a Balanced Hand respond a NT Bid

With Unbalanced Hand respond a Suit Bid


    Responding to 1NT with a balanced hand using limit bids


    • Less than game points (10 or less points) ---Pass with fewer than 11 HCP

    • Possibly game (11-12 points) --- Bid 2NT inviting partner to bid game with 11-12 HCP

    • Enough for game(13-20 points) --- Bid 3NT



    Hand 1.
    Your Hand
    J 9 8
    Q 8 7
    A Q 7 3 2
    A 7
    Your Bid
    Bid 3NT as you and partner have enough HCP for game even if your partner only has 12HCP




    Hand 2.
    Your Hand
    K 7
    Q 6 5
    Q 9 8 3
    A 9 8 4
    Your Bid
    You have enough HCP to bid game if your partner has 14HCP so an invitational 2 NT limit bid (showing you have 11 or 12 HCP's)




    Hand 3.
    Your Hand
    10 9 3
    A Q 10
    9 8 6 4
    6 5 4
    Your Bid
    Pass - because you don't have enough HCP's



    Responses to 1NT with unbalanced hands.


    • Less than game ---Bid at the 2-level of longest suit with not enough for game

    • Game & 5-card major --- jump to the 3-level 3 or 3 with a 5-card major (a new suit, freely bid at the 3-level is forcing for your partner to rebid.

    • Game & 6-card major --- Bid 4/ 4 with a 6-card major and enough HCP for game

    The opener must pass any bid at the 2 level.  


    Hand 4.
    Your Hand
    Q 7
    J 10 8 7 5 4
    8 7 2
    A 7
    Your Bid
    Your bid is 2 you have less than 11 HCP and the hand will play better in a suit contract - remember your partner will have at least 2 because they opened with 1NT. Your partner should not make any other bids, their hand has already been described


    Hand 5.
    Your Hand
    A 7 6
    J 10 8 7 5 4
    K 9
    A Q
    Your Bid
    Your bid is 4 You have 14HCP and your long 6 card heart suit means game is better played in This triple jump bid is also shutout bid, your partner should stop bidding


    Hand 6.
    Your Hand
    9 3
    10 2
    J 7 6 5 4 3
    10 9 2
    Your Bid
    Bid 2 Your hand is stronger if this contract is played in When responder bids at the 2 level after partners opening 1NT this is a shut out, so opener will not keep bidding (later we will learn about conventions where 2 level responding to 1NT opener may not be a shutout)


    Hand 7.
    Your Hand
    K 5
    K J 10 8 2
    A 6 5
    10 9 2
    Your Bid
    Bid 3 This bid is a forcing bid to game, your partner chooses either 4 or 3NT depending on the number of hearts in the combined hands




    Remember that the choice of the best contract usually lies with the responder. Bidding a suit at the 2-level after partner opens 1NT, is called a “weakness takeout”.





    Limit Bids 1NT - How to Play Bridge - Acol Lesson 11

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