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Point count of opener's rebid of 3NT

My partner opened 1S with a balanced 19 point hand. I had 16 points, 3 spades and 5 hearts and bid 2H showing a 5 card heart suit and 10+ points.
She gave it some thought and bid 3NT. As she knew that I had 10+ points I took her 3NT as a sign off in game with 15-16 points. At this point she knew we had at least 29 points. I could only count on us having 31 points and eventually passed. She doesn't play Gerber. What should I have done? She says that a rebid of 3NT shows 19 points, but is this true after a 2 level response by partner. If it is, how do you differentiate between 15-16, 17-18, and 19 after a 2H response?
BTW She made 6 NT.


  • edited 6:05AM

    This is an area of bidding that you need to agree with your regular partner. Some play that a 2NT rebid after a two-over-one response shows 15-16 and 3NT shows 17-19. In this case, you are certainly worth 6NT.

    Many now play that 2NT in this situation shows 15-19 points and is forcing to game. The logic to this approach is that partner has promised 10 (or a good 9) to respond at the 2 level.

    Under this situation you can now bid three spades (forcing) to check whether partner holds a five-card spade suit. If partner just bids 3NT you can make one more try: bid 4NT which is quantitive (not Blackwood) and suggests that partner should bid 6NT with a maximum (18 or 19).

  • edited 6:05AM
    There is often a choice and for me the answer is which option gives the most (most important information).  You know your partner has a minimum 12 points and you consequently know that  1. You must be game and 2. You may have slam points.  Bidding 2H shows 10hcp up to a max of a very weak 15hcp. A jump shift bid (3H) shows 16+ points.  She adds that to her point count, factors in the hearts and makes a decision on a route to slam.  With 19hcp if she doesn't go looking it's her fault. You were at fault but your partner was also at fault.  Over your 2H she should have skip bid 3S showing 18+hcp, you then add 18+16 and move into slam mode.  You were both at fault but (IMO) yours was the greater fault - sorry!   
  • edited 6:05AM

    I strongly disagree with Roxbourne's statement that a 2H response is limited to "a very weak 15 HCP". This is certainly not Acol.

    Even if you are playing strong jump shifts these should only be used in very defined situations where you are prepared to sacrifice the bidding space. A strong jump shift should be based on either:

     - 16+ points with a good quality 6-card suit.

     - 16+ points with a 5-card suit and support for partners suit.

    There are many hands with 16+ points where you should choose to bid more slowly to allow you to investigate the correct strain and level. The hand held by Biddybuddy should certainly respond 2H.

  • edited 6:05AM

    As I said there's often a choice and it's about choosing the best option.

    I presume biddy had something like:

    H   A K T 7

    S   A 8 3

    D   K Q 5

    C   9 5 2

    Which response bid give the most (most valuable) information?   In my opinion it's a jump shift.

  • edited 6:05AM

    There is a good article on this subject in the Mr Bridge Magazine issue number 118 by Mike Wenble. This emphasises the need to conserve bidding space unless you know where you are going. With the very balanced hand you quote, the best contract may be in hearts, spades or no trumps. It is better to leave space for your partner to describe their hand.

    Even the sequence 1S-2H takes up a lot of bidding space and this response will show a five-card suit in Acol (and most natural bidding systems).

  • edited 6:05AM

    “I strongly disagree
    with Roxbourne's statement that a 2H response is limited to "a very
    weak 15 HCP". This is certainly not Acol.”

    I agree with Tramtickets on this one. It came up with
    my  partner recently and we checked our
    Acol. I can see how the misunderstanding about the 15 points limit for a Jump
    in a new suit might arise. Our understanding is as follows:

    A simple bid of a new suit has no upper limit, and preserves
    bidding space to exchange information. However, there are three (and only
    three) situations where, holding 16+ HCP, a jump bid in a new suit is preferable
    to a non-jump bid, because with these types of hand there is no need to preserve bidding space, and the jump bid gives partner some valuable information about responder's shape.  When partner hears the jump bid the will know that
    responder holds one of three types of hand:

    16+ HCP and:

    1. A quality 6+ card suit and
      no other 4 card suit. Responder intends to rebid the suit unless partner
      rebids his first suit and responder has 3 card support.
    2. A quality 5 card suit with
      4 card support for partner’s suit. Responder intends to bid his partner’s
      suit on the next round.
    3. A balanced 5-3-3-2 hand.
      Responder plans to rebid 3NT on the next round, unless partner rebids his
      first suit and responder has 3 card support.

    In every other situation responder bids a simple response. 


  • edited 6:05AM
    In response to Rockbourne  (20th December) I held 5 hearts, 3 spades, xxx diamonds and AK in clubs (16 points).  My fear was that an invitational 4NT with no exploration could end up in 6NT with 32 HCP and going down with no diamond stopper and on top of that isn't any bid of game a sign off? Which is why I ass-u-me-d she must have 15-17.

    I was taught to keep the bidding open, if there was a chance of slam, by bidding another suit - perhaps I should have said 4C after her 3 NT? I was also taught that a jump shift, particularly in a major showed a 6 card suit or a VERY high quality 5 card suit. Mine wasn't solid.

    Perhaps I should have crossed my fingers and toes and bid 4NT?

    By the way, I've looked on numerous sites and everywhere gives the example of 1H, 1S, - 1NT/2NT/3NT showing 
    15-16/17-18/or 19 points by opener but nowhere can I find a definitive answer to a 2 level response by partner such as 1S, 2H, -  2 or 3NT. After a 2 level response what would opener rebid with 5 spades and 14 points?

  • edited 6:05AM
    Opener's second bid should try to show partner how strong he is, i.e. is he minimum (12-15), intermediate (16-18), or strong (19+ and first bid was at the 1 level).
     If minimum then opener must not bid 'above the barrier'. If the opening bid is 1 Spade then opener's second bid cannot be higher than 2 Spades. So he has to rebid his Spades if he has 5+, or, if they are poor and not worth a rebid and he has to bid at the 2 level (so 1NT is not available), he has to bid 2 Clubs, 2 Diamonds or 2 Hearts. If his hand is 5332 then he is going to have to tell a lie as his second bid is supposed to show 4+ in the suit. In that case opener should lie in a minor, not a major. 
    It's not ideal, but it's pretty safe as partner has shown 10+ points by responding at the 2 level and is unlikely to show an interest in opener's minor. 
    A good maxim is that before you open, make sure you are prepared for any response from partner. 
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