Advanced Bridge

 

Lesson 10

 

Defense to Two-Suited Interferences

 

Unusual No Trump Over Unusual 2NT

 

&

 

Michaels Over Michaels Cuebid

 

       When an opponent conventionally overcalls over your partner’s opening bid of 1C, 1D, 1H, or 1S, and evidences a two-suited hand, as with a MICHAELS CUEBID OVERCALL, or as with an UNUSUAL NO TRUMP OVERCALL, the opening bidder’s partner has several countermeasures; i.e., a double, a raise in opener’s suit, one or two cuebid(s) in the opponent’s implied suit(s), and a bid of the fourth suit not yet evidenced either by opener or by the implied two suits of the opponent’s overcaller.  One must ascribe different meanings to each of these potential actions by the would-be responder.

 

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1.      A “Double” is a strength showing action.  It is a hand that would be worth a redouble over opponent’s take-out double and should be avoided unless responder is prepared to penalize the opponents in at least one of the two choices implied by the interference. 

 

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     Alternatively, if responder has offensive features, he/she should begin to describe his/her hand as in 2-5 below.

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     2.  A Single Raise in opener’s suit is equivalent to a normal constructive raise in partner’s suit and is merely competitive.  Although such a raise takes the partnership one level beyond a normal constructive raise, it has pre-emptive value on the assumption that the opponents have a fit which they would otherwise more easily find.

 

          Example:  You hold:   XX   QXXX   AXXXX   JX

 

                      1H    “2H”     ??? 

 

          (Bid 3H even though without interference responder has

           insufficient values for a Limit raise to 3H.  At favorable

           vulnerability, such a raise can be made with even fewer values.)

 

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          3.  A Bid in a New Suit at the 2-level is natural and non-forcing, and a Bid of a New Suit at the 3-level is forcing to game.

 

          Examples:  You hold:   QX   AXXXXX   KXX   AX

 

                      1S    “2NT”     ???     (Bid 3H – forcing to game)

 

                                          (or)

 

                  You hold:   QX   XXX   AXXXXX   KX

 

                      1C    “2C”      ???     (Bid 2D – Non-forcing)

                     

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       4.  A Cuebid in either suit shown by the interference, when two specific suits are evidenced by the opponents, is a general force that begins the further investigation for the best final contract.  Responder must have invitational strength or better and either support for opener’s suit or length in the fourth, as-yet-unmentioned suit.   In such instances, a cuebid in the lower ranking suit of the opponent’s implied two suits shows invitational strength or better in the lower ranking of the alternate two suits; and a cuebid in the higher ranking suit of the opponent’s implied two suits shows a good hand of invitational strength or better in the higher ranking of the alternate two suits.  This parallelism; i.e., the lower cuebid = the lower of the alternate suits, and the higher cuebid = the higher of the alternate suits can be easily interpreted by opener as opener’s suit or, alternatively, the fourth, as-yet-unmentioned suit, simply by their relative suit positions on the bidding ladder.

 

   Ex.:   1S  “2NT”  “3C”  (Clubs and Diamonds are shown by the opponent.

                            Therefore, this cuebid of the lower ranking

      of their two suits signifies a limit raise or better in the lower ranking of the remaining suits; i.e., the as-yet unmentioned Heart suit.)

                   

(or)

 

          1S  “2NT”  “3D”  (Clubs and Diamonds are shown by the opponent.

                            Therefore, this cuebid of the higher ranking

      of their suits signifies a limit raise or better in the higher ranking of the remaining suits; i.e., partner’s Spade suit.)

                    

(or)

 

          1H  “2NT”  “3C” (Clubs and Diamonds are shown by the opponent.

                           Therefore, this cuebid of the lower ranking

      of their suits signifies a limit raise or better in the lower ranking  

of the remaining suits; i.e., support for partner’s Heart suit.) 

                           

(or)

 

          1C  “2C”  “2H” (Hearts and Spades are shown by the opponent.

                       Therefore, this cuebid of the lower ranking of

     their suits signifies a limit raise or better in the lower       

ranking of the remaining suits; i.e., support for partner’s Club suit.)

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(or)                

 

          1D  “2NT”  “2C” (Clubs and Hearts are shown here by the        

                        opponent.  Therefore, this cuebid of the 

     lower ranking of their suits signifies a limit raise or better in the lower ranking of the remaining suits; i.e., support for partner’s Diamond suit as opposed to the higher ranking unmentioned Spade suit.)

 

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       5.   Note:  In some two suit interferences, however, the opponent’s action also shows two suits, but, one of them remains unspecified.    In these instances, responder only has one known cuebid available and the actions as outlined in # (4.), as well as the ability or need to mention a fourth suit, as before, becomes mute since the second unmentioned suit held by the interfering opponent remains as-yet-unmentioned.

 

                     (Examples:    1H    “2H”      (or)       1S    “2S”)   

 

     In the above examples, Spades is the only available cuebid in the first instance, and Hearts, in the second, and the opponent’s Minor suit remains as-yet unmentioned.   For these reasons, in these two unique instances, the following alternate responses by Responder to the opener are suggested.

 

(a)     Most of all above-listed responses in numbers 1 through 3 are still in force; namely, a bid at the 3-level in a new suit is game forcing, and a double is penalty oriented.

 

 

(b)    A bid of partner’s suit at the cheapest level is constructive.

 

          (Examples:    1H  “2H”  3H       (or)       1S  “2S”  3S   

 

 

(c)     A cue-bid in their unmentioned Major suit is invitational or better in support of opener’s Major suit.

 

     (Examples:    1H  “2H”  2S (Invitational or better in support of     

                                      partner’s Hearts)   

                   1S  “2S”  3H (Invitational or better in support of

                                      partner’s Spades)

 

 

(d)    A Bid of 2NT is natural with invitational values.

 

 

 

               

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