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transfers after 2NT

edited February 2014 in All Things Bridge
How would South bid with the hand below if North opened 2NT (20 - 22) and
had one of the 2 possible hands below?



S: AK532

H: A8

D: J64

C: 876


North hand A

S: Q76

H: 6532




North hand B

S: Q7

H: Q532




If no transfers are being used the NS bidding in case A might be 2NT – 3S 
- 4S – 4NT – 5H – 6S – Pass.

In case B it might be 2NT – 3S  - 3NT – 4NT (quantitative) – 6NT –


But how would the bidding go if transfers were being used? If the bidding
began 2NT – 3H – 3S – 3NT then in case A North would respond 4S and 6S would be
reached. But if North had hand B then he would pass 3NT and so NS would fail to
reach the 6NT slam.


Is there a transfer bidding approach that would reach a slam whichever hand
North held? 




  • edited 10:34PM
    The best auction is a transfer followed by a quantitative raise. The auction would go like this:

    2NT 3H

    3S 4NT

    As a good guideline, if a transfer followed by 4NT is quantitative, and a transfer followed by 4C is Gerber.
  • edited 10:34PM
    The problem with this auction is that with hand A North would pass the 4NT
    bid (as he holds a minimum 20 point hand) and so the 6S slam would not be
    reached. (Whereas the slam is easily reached if transfers are NOT used.) 
  • edited 10:34PM
    There is a lot to be said for taking a practical approach in this kind of problem. Add a point for your nice 5-card spade suit and you have a 13 point balanced hand. I would simply raise 2NT to 6NT. Just occassionally it will fail when 6 spades makes. But you have given the defence no clues for their opening lead.
  • edited 10:34PM
    Maybe I am answering the wrong question, but the person who asked the question asked how the auction would go WITH a transfer, so those who suggested it was best to not use a transfer are not answering the question. Transfer and then bid 4NT is the way to go (in terms of answering the question, which is truly independent of the hands presented).
  • edited 10:34PM
    Even if transfers are part of your system, you don't have to use them all of the time.

    You have a probem on this hand. You want to tell partner that you have a five-card spade suit in an otherwise balanced hand that is strong enough (or nearly strong enough to bid slam). After transferring to spades it would be nice to bid a NATURAL 4NT. I play this with some partners, but for most it would be ace-asking. One possibility would be to bid 5NT if you have agreed that this is "Pick-a-slam".

    I still think that the most practical bid (particularly at pairs is the simple 2NT-6NT. :)
  • edited 10:34PM
    A transfer followed by 4NT makes 4NT a quantitative bid, not an ace asking bid. And if you want to make the bid really useful when you might continue to slam, a 5-level bid after 4NT is NOT a Blackwood response. It is a 4 card suit, hoping to get to a 4-4 fit minor-suit slam that might be better than a NT slam. There will be people who do not agree with what I just wrote, but responding to a quantitative bid of 4NT with a suit is taken by experts to be an attempt to land in a suit in a close slam, making the slam more likely to succeed (an especially useful thing to do in rubber bridge or IMPS). Of course, a partnership can AGREE to answer Blackwood. Many pairs do just that because their quantitative bids can be low on points and/or your opening bids also follow that practise, then perhaps responding as it the bid were Blackwood might be the best choice. If bids are based on point-count, then there is no point in showing how many aces -- a real suit would be a better use for a suit bid. Whether or not a suit should be bid instead of merely bidding 6NT is a totally separate issue. I surely would feel pained if I responded as if the 4NT were Blackwood and my response was doubled for a lead. OUCH.
  • edited 10:34PM
    You could bid 2NT 3H 3S 5NT asking partner to pick a slam (in this case 6S or 6NT). The worst that could happen is that you would be in 6NT with a combined 32 count.

    The responder is far too good to bid 3NT after transferring. That could lead to 3NT on a combined 34 count.

    The normal meaning for 2NT 3H 3S 4C is not Gerber but natural other wise what would you do in response to a 2NT(20-22) hand with

    S KJ9xx
    H x
    D Jx
    C KQ743

    If you are making a slam it could be 6NT 6S or 6C. You can hardly afford to rule one of those out and bidding 5C on the second round take up too much room.
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