Over 1 of a suit

An 1-of-a-suit opening usually shows at least average strength and length in the suit. Defense against conventions is not discussed here.

Opponents' auction deprives little bidding space and shows strength. Therefore, we shall be more preemptive than in our constructive auction.

Simple overcalls

Simple overcalls are constructive but somewhat limited. They show 5+ cards in the bid suit. Their strength depends on their level.

10+ points
1, 1♠
8+ points
2♣, 2, 2
11+ points

Hands with 16+ HCP are too strong for simple overcalls. Double first and then bid the suit in the next round.

In our bidding system, (1♣) 2♣ is natural instead of a Michaels cuebid. However, clubs was indeed an adverse suit, so a stronger hand is required to make such a turning bid.

(1♣) 2♣!
Opening values with 6+ cards

Precise Michaels

Precise Michaels aka Michaëls précisés are Michaels cuebids which show both suits. These bids are shortcuts to show 5+ cards in 2 suits.

Precise Michaels are unlimited. Advancer is unlikely to pass out because the strain is never a held suit. Precise Michaels take precedence over takeout doubles because they are precise in distribution.

To avoid bidding an actual suit, Wbridge5 allocates bidding space as follows.

Top & bottom2♠233♣
Highest 2 nonadverse suits
Transfer, the bid below the lower suit.
Top & bottom nonadverse suits
Cuebid or jump cuebid.
Lowest 2 nonadverse suits
Unusual notrump.

Unusual notrump

Unusual notrump shows the lowest 2 nonadverse suits. The following notrump overcalls are unusual.

There is no need to express a natural 2NT. Takeout double takes care of such strong hands.
1NT by a passed hand
We cannot have passed a strong notrump, so this bid is also unusual.

Opponents opened a minor

Highest 2 nonadverse suits, majors, 8+ points
Unusual notrump
Lowest 2 nonadverse suits, hearts and the other minor
Jump cuebid
Top & bottom cuebid, spades and the other minor

Being unexpected, (1♣) 2 requires an alert outside of France, but (1) 2 is not alertable because this is the expected meaning of a cuebid.

Opponents opened a major

Top & bottom cuebid, clubs and the other major
Unusual notrump
Lowest 2 nonadverse suits, minors
Highest 2 nonadverse suits, diamonds and the other major
Jump cuebid
Cuebid with 20+ points
Super unusual notrump which requres 6+ cards in each minor and 5 more points than 2NT


Most bids above lack description of strength because their strength depends on seat and vulnerability.

13+ points but 11+ if passed
Both vulnerable
12+ points but 11+ if passed
None vulnerable
11+ points
10+ points

Natural 1NT overcall

A natural 1NT overcall is almost the same as an 1NT opening. This bid requires

  • 15~18 HCP
  • Same distibution as 1NT opening
  • Stopper in the adverse suit.

Advancer takes this as an 1NT opening. This treatment is known as systems on.

Takeout double

The takeout double is one of the earliest conventions in bridge. It shows one of the two kinds of hands.

  • 12+ points with tolerance in all nonadverse suits
  • 16+ HCP, unsuitable for a notrump or a Michaels

Because this call usually implies shortness in the adverse suit, advancer only passes with length in the adverse suit, converting the double into penalty. Otherwise, advancer is forced to bid a suit as cheap as possible with a weak hand. Opener with minimum hand can safely pass to complete the competition because of tolerance to each nonadverse suit.

Since a notrump and Michaels are far more specific, they take precedence over a takeout double. However, a takeout double takes precedence over a simple overcall because overcall can bid the suit after the double, which makes a more specific auction.

Shape of a minimum takeout double

The hand must be in shape to double with < 16 HCP. Distribution points from the adverse suit is reconsidered as -1, 1, 3, 5 to upgrade 3-suiters and to downgrade flat hands.

  • 0~3 cards in the adverse suit
  • 3~4 cards in each nonadverse major
  • 2~5 cards in each nonadverse minor

Weak jump overcalls

A jump in a new suit is always a weak jump overcall by default. This also applies to high-level jumps such as (1♣) 4.

Weak jump overcalls share the same criteria as preemptive openings. For example, (1♣) 2 shows the same length and strength as a 2 opening.

If partner has passed, we shall preempt as aggressive as 3th-seat opening, for strength is concentrated in a known opponent.

Gambling 3NT overcall

To gamble when opponents opened, we must have a stopper in the adverse suit. This overcall still shows a 7+-card minor lead by AKQ with no stopper in the other side suits.

If opponents opened a minor, we bid 3NT always with the other minor, so advancer without enough stoppers to play 3NT corrects to the assumed minor.

The 4-level cuebids

The 4-level cuebids are blockbuster takeouts, showing 20+ points and 4+ cards in every nonadverse suit. What a cunning way to use 4-level cuebids!

results matching ""

    No results matching ""