S A K Q 9 7 6 H K 4 2 D Q 7 4 C 6
The bidding has proceeded as follows:
East South West North 1C 1S 2C 2S 3C ?
What do you bid?
A. With East-West bidding clubs so earnestly, it’s doubtful partner has many points in the suit. Giving partner eight support points, I’d picture North with a hand like:
S J 5 2 H Q J 10 9 D K 10 8 5 C 8 5
Actually, there’s a way to find out something specific about partner’s hand. Bid 3D. That’s a “help suit game try,” which tells partner you’re inviting game but are worried about your diamond holding. With diamond help — or with a maximum 2S raise — partner will go to 4S. Without help, North will bid 3S.
Q2. Sitting South, with North dealing and no one vulnerable, you hold:
S Q 10 7 5 4 H K Q 9 6 4 D 10 C 9 8
North opens 1NT, and East passes. What do you bid?
A. Your hand is much better than the average seven-pointer, especially opposite 1NT. Bid 2H to transfer to spades, then 3H (forcing) to show 5-5 distribution in the majors. With at least one three-card major, partner will place the contract in 4H or 4S.
There are some rare occasions when partner will open 1NT with 2-2 in the majors. Therefore, an alternate possibility is to bid 2D (transfer to hearts), then 2S to show 5-5 and invitational values. But with the above hand, I’d push to game.
Q3. With West dealing and no one vulnerable, you hold:
S A 4 H A Q 10 7 6 5 3 D 7 C A J 10
After three passes, what do you bid?
A. 4H. No need to fool around. If partner has one heart and a couple of likely tricks, you’re in a good contract. Since East-West didn’t bid, that seems like a reasonable gamble.
Q4. Sitting South, with West dealing and both sides vulnerable, you hold:
S Q J 10 9 H J 7 2 D 5 2 C 9 8 7 2The bidding has proceeded as follows:
West North East South 1S 2D 2S Pass 3S Pass 4S ?
What do you bid?
A. Knowing that East-West have a terrible trump split and you have two tricks in spades, and knowing partner has an opening hand needed for a two-level overcall vulnerable, I’d double. Your chances for four defensive tricks are excellent.