I am hoping you can advise on the following.
S K 10 8
H A Q 10 6 5
D J 9 8
C K 8
S A Q 9
H K J 7 4
D A K 10
C J 9 2
North opened the bidding with 1H and East passed. South, with 17 HCP knows that with a 4-card major fit a game in 4H is certain but if North is strong (16 HCP or better) a slam may be on. What is South's best first response in order to find out more abouth North's hand? A jump shift in a new suit would seem best, (say 3D), showing 16+ points and when North rebids 3H to show 5H and a weak opening hand (12-15 HCP) South would realise a slam is not on and close out with 4H.
My question is, can you use a jump shift with only 3 cards in a suit or would it be better to respond 3NT, showing 17-18 points and a balanced hand (albeit with no spade stoppers)? I can see that responding 3NT would probably cause North to pass as he would think that South has only 2 hearts, and therefore no major fit, which would be incorrect!
Your thoughts and explanation would be well appreciated.