Mr Bridge
card fan

for BRIDGE Magazine, holidays and much more

Welcome to our Community!

If you want to take part in the discussions, sign in or apply for membership below.

Opener's rebid in Competition

I am asking about situations where you open the bidding, there is an overcall from LHO and your partner bids at the 2 level.  How does this affect whether opener's rebid is a reverse.
1.  Suppose the bidding goes
Does the 3C rebid show any extra strength?  I believe the answer is no, because your partner's response already was above the "barrier" - the 2 level of your opening bid.

2.  How about
Here I believe the answer is YES, because partner's rebid was below the "barrier"

3.  Finally, what about hands where you are balanced but without a stopper in the overcalled suit e.g.
S 765
D K2
C KQJ8 (16pts)

I believe that 2NT in this situation should show a spade stopper, so the only other alternative is 2S - a directional asking bid, asking for a spade stopper - as long as your partnership has this understanding. I think 3C should be avoided as it should show 5 hearts.



  • edited 12:54AM
    Conventional wisdom is that a rebid of 3C in situations 1 or 2 would show extras (barrier or not). It's forcing and the auction is in danger of spiralling out of control if you are minimum. Some tournament players would rebid 2NT to show a hand with diamonds and clubs in situation 1 and hearts and clubs in situation 2 but minimal values.  3C would show the same shape with more values. It's called Good-Bad 2NT. That's ok on some hands but leaves you without a bid for a decent balanced hand with a stop. This method makes more sense if you are playing Strong NT to start with.

    In situation 3 if you have a balanced hand then bidding 2NT with no stop not only risks 3NT with no stop but wrong siding it when partner does have a stop so 2S seems better. If you have strong NT values and partner has bid at the two level then you should be close to game anyway.
  • edited 12:54AM
    Thank you for your comments.  The advice on situation 1 - that this does shows extra strength is contrary to Ron Klinger's "Guide to Better Acol" p98 where he says that a reverse bid does not show extra strength if responder has already bid above the "barrier". Any other opinions would be welcome.
  • edited 12:54AM
    Consider Jeremy's first sentence above. Where are you going after this 3C bid? You are on the 3 level, potentially with no fit. It seems to me that for the 3C bid not to how extras, it should be passable, which is impossible since you might have considerable extras.

    Does the book you cite give any advice about continuations?
  • edited 12:54AM
    In the section on "When is a Reverse not a Reverse?", Ron Klinger does not describe how the auction might continue after that.  The examples he gives are slightly different to mine - to quote 
    "After 1C: (1S): 2D a rebid of 2H by opener need not have extra strength.  Responder's 2D was already beyond responder's 2C barrier.  Likewise after 1D-(2C)-2H a rebid of 2S by opener can be made with minimum values.".

    So the examples he gives do not show opener rebidding at the 3 level.  On the other hand after 1D-(1S)-2H-P
    if you cannot rebid 2S or 2NT, you will have to rebid something at the 3 level (3C or 3D).
  • edited 12:54AM

    Imagine that you hold:





    It is normal to open one diamond, planning to rebid two clubs over a one heart response. The auction hasn't developed like that. LHO has overcalled one spade and your partner has responded two hearts. What are you supposed to bid? Partner has made a forcing bid and you can't pass. You can't raise hearts (not enough hearts) or bid no trumps (not enough points). A cue-bid would suggest more points and ask for information about partner's hand - it suggests a more balanced hand, or a much stronger hand that can take control of the subsequent auction. All you can do is continue with your original plan and rebid clubs - one level higher.

    This DOES NOT show extra strength. I do agree that you might be getting uncomfortably high on a mis-fit - but you have to bid something! Your partner must therefore have additional values to justify the two-level response - normally 10+.

    Your SECOND EXAMPLE is different, since the opposition bidding has not prevented your partner from bidding diamonds at the lowest available level. Three clubs is a reverse (sometimes called a High Level Reverse) without the opposition bid, and has the same meaning with the opposition bid. If you lack the values to reverse you should simply rebid two hearts (with a five-card suit). If you have a balanced hand 15+ (so only a four-card heart suit), your THIRD EXAMPLE, you bid 2NT with an adequate stop or cue-bid two spades without a stop. [I'm assuming that you are playing Acol and a weak NT].


  • edited 12:54AM

    Note that your bidding system is important. If you are playing American systems (Strong No Trump / Five-card majors) then you do not need the 2NT bid to show a balanced 15+ hand - you would have opened 1NT with this hand type, so would not be in this position. Playing Acol (Weak NT / Four-card majors), the 2NT rebid is a natural rebid showing a balanced 15+ and a stop if the opponents interfered.

    Jeremy's suggestion of a "Good/Bad 2NT" is only available if you are playing a strong NT.  Without this convention you need to bid three clubs, even with weak hands.

  • edited 12:54AM
    Thank you, tramtickets, I agree with all your views.  Yes I was assuming Acol with a weak NT.
Sign In or Register to comment.