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Breaking a convention

edited 12:44AM in Bridge Laws
Playing acol week no trumps. Is it breaking the rules of bridge to bid 1nt with 15 points provided you have not made any agreement with partner?


  • edited 12:44AM
    There are two points to consider: 1) There is no law against bad bidding, and 2) Mistakes are allowed. With regards to your question, these two points imply that one may make any legal bid with any hand as long as there is no private agreement and such things occur rarely if ever. In North America, the rule as stated by the head national director is that such a variant occur no more than 1% of the time and that this is not something that has happened before with the same partner.

    On the other hand, when I come to England next month, I may very well open 1NT with 15 hcp whenever I feel like it as long as I consider my hand to be worth no more than 14 points. For example, if I held QJ3 QJ3 QJ32 QJ3, I would pass even though I held 12 hcp. Judgement is always allowed, and that hand is worthless on offense and much better on defense. With that hand, if partner opened 1NT, I know partner's cards are golden (only aces and kings) so I would promptly raise to 3NT. If I held the same cards with a king replacing one of those 3s, the high card points would now be 15, but that is a horrible 15 which I would downgrade to about 13 and I would be delighted to open the hand 1NT.

    Judgement is always allowed in bridge, and "misleading" partner in the above example is a judgement call which I am certain would be made by almost all advanced players.
  • edited 12:44AM
    Thanks. That was my view. But I was told recently that if I bid 1nt with 15 points when playing in a club I would be penalised.
  • edited 12:44AM
    If someone tells you that you are breaking the law ask them which law. They may struggle to come up with one.
    As said above judgement is allowed. The only thing that might be wrong is if you did it knowingly and frequently so that your range was not really 12-14 but 12-15 and you didn't let your opponents know that.
  • edited January 2018
    Thanx for that lucky charm game!
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