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Jorj Club Bidding System

Do not be daunted. This is a new way to bid, a completely new way. Anything you see for the first time tends to be daunting but a relaxed reading followed by a more careful one will put it all in place.

This is not a hard system to learn  and play, it is a five card major natural system. The system principles are logical and repeated over and over again in a whole variety of different situations. Once you get the idea, your next move will be self-evident. Learn the opening bids and you are almost ready to go.

Study carefully all the auctions which follow from the opening 1C, including how you deal with intervention. Most of the basic system principles are incorporated in these auctions. 

The precise auctions which can lead to near-perfect slam bidding can be left on the back-burner for a long while. But once you have found success with the part-score and game auctions, I don't imagine it will be long before you are doing some bidding practice in, say, the BBO bidding practice area.

From the very first you will become a difficult opponent. You will be in the bidding more often than "they" are and the two-bids, in particular, will give them a real problem.


Here it is.


Jorj Club system ♠♥♦♣ George Cuppaidge 2016

A new feature enables users to distinguish between a 6-9 point, and a 10-12 point response to 1C, at the one-level when balanced, or at the level of two of a 5+ card suit. See 3.1. This complements the system’s means of distinguishing a 6-9 point 3-card raise of 1D, 1H or 1S from a 10-12 point raise, below the level of two of the suit. A direct 1NT response to 1C shows 6-9 points balanced, via 1D it shows 10-12 balanced

I use a similar concept following following the system's strong opener, 1NT showing all 20+. Responder can make a negative, a semi positive, or a full positive response. Opener, over 2C negative, can show an absolute game force and shape demand via 2D or simply describe his hand from 2H upwards. Having exchanged this information, one or other partner begins to describe his hand, always beginning at 2H and minimum bids in the five denominations have their natural meaning. The bids of 3C and 3D show a five-card suit, but not 5332. These are included in the 2NT, balanced, bid, five-card majors are not.

1.0 Introduction.

This is a five-card major system. It is a natural, standard system but by ordered use of low-level bids a foundation is laid for relay continuations for near perfect slam bidding It is not a collection of conventions, it is directed at bidding the hand you hold. Logically, it is impossible to do better than that. The opening bids are limited both in strength and in the shapes they may contain. The range of pass is 0-9 points. Whether you are involved in a part-score battle or searching for a key queen for that grand slam, you will outdo your standard-playing opponents consistently. You will always know more about what is going on than they do. As well you will get in their way a lot.

The system enables you to find exact hand-shape, without which really accurate slam bidding is impossible. Three-suiters and 45+shapes, which are ignored in standard bidding, are bid with certainty in this system.

The system strong bid is 1NT. This is the opening bid for all 20+point hands. It will be seen that the single extra step, compared to the more common 2C bid, makes bidding easier and more accurate. The 1NT opener can discover the exact shape and strength of any hand opposite and the disposition of honour cards, sometimes down to jacks. This is particularly valuable when opener is very strong and responder very weak. As well, 2C becomes free as a valuable natural bid, showing clubs only.

The set of two-bids is unique. The bids are safe, simple, natural, accurate and space-consuming. It is easy for us to find out all about them while opponents face a bidding mine-field. The bids describe important classes of hand which are normally bundled in with opening one-bids. All the system two-bids show hands in the minimum opening-bid range, 10-14 points. The hand types they show are all the three-suiters, hands which contain a four-card suit with a lower ranking longer one and 6+ card club single-suiters. The fewer shapes any bid can contain, the more effective it is. Contrast with a modern-day standard 1NT bid.

We keep game and part-score bidding simple. We do not invite marginal games. Bids released are used as below-game slam-tries and to help us to find the best game contract. Our science is directed where it counts, slam bidding. A scientific auction to a marginal game is of assistance only to the opponents. When we bid slams we usually know exactly where our tricks are coming from. We bid our game or get out low and quickly. We do not voluntarily play 8-card fits at the three-level. We encourage our opponents take the risk to push us there. Opponents will never know when our games are marginal. Balancing becomes very dangerous for them when we cannot be relied upon to announce a combined 23-25 points by inviting game. The 2NT bid is always forcing, many vital bidding problems are solved using it this way and no natural bid is sacrificed. It is often the starting point of a highly accurate slam investigation.

Standard point count is used. Count one point for each card over four in a suit headed by an A or a K. Open all 10 point hands and all hands containing AKQ, KKK or AA. The range of a one bid is 10-19 points.

The system’s means of dealing with intervention is unique. It utilises opponents’ bids and often they help us with our exchanges. Intervention is welcome also as the system is well geared to exact penalties. It is always “system on” whether they open or we do.

When opponents bid over any of our openings, double or redouble is Positive. It announces a strong hand and creates a game force except in some easily recognisable situations. Pass of intervention over our strong artificial 1NT is the strong response. Doubles of intervention by a passed hand are Negative. Four card suits may be opened in third or fourth seat.


2.0 Table of opening bids in first or second position.

One-level suit bids show 10-19 points.

1C Balanced hand of any strength, 4432, 4333 and 5332 with five clubs, or 15-19 points with a club suit, 6+ clubs and no higher ranking suit or 5+ clubs with a higher-ranking 4-card suit, three-suiter with clubs. The 10-14 point hands with these shapes are opened with a system two-bid.

1D No higher ranking 5+ card suit. It is safe to treat the bid as showing 5 cards in low-level competition. It will be made on four cards only when specifically 4441 with 15-19 points. The 10-14 point hand with that shape is opened 2D.

1H/S 5+ card suit. A 1H opener will not have 5+spades.

1NT 20+ points any shape.

2C 10-14 points, 6+ clubs, no 4 card suit. Same over opposing 1C.

2D 10-14 points. Either 4 diamonds and 5+ clubs or a three-suiter with both majors. Same over opposing 1C.

2H/S 10-14 points, 4 card suit with a 5+ card minor or a three-suiter short in the other major. Same meaning when 2H or 2S is a jump overcall.

2NT/3C 10-14 points, 5+5+ two-suiter. 2NT shows diamonds and major or both majors. 3C shows clubs and a major. As jump overcalls, over a major these bids show specific two-suiters, the designated minor and the other major. 1D-(2NT) shows both majors. The meanings of 1C-(2NT), 1C-(3C) and 1D-(3C) are unchanged. The cue-bid overcall of a major opening shows both minors.

3D/H Transfer pre-empts.

3S Any solid suit. 4C asks for shortage, 4D for the suit.

3NT Pre-empt in a minor.

4C/D Very good pre-empt in H/S. Two or three of the top honours with an ace outside. Relay is for shortage, first step low or no shortage.

4H/S Normal pre-empt

4NT Specific ace Blackwood. 5NT shows the ♣A, 6C two aces.

Four card suits may be opened in third or fourth seat. Opener’s rebid shows 15+ points or extreme shape. Double of intervention is negative.


3.0 Early bidding after each of the opening bids.

There a strong artificial Positive response to each of the opening bids. Failure to use it limits the strength of the hand. In general this response creates a game force, but after a minimum rebid some sequences can be dropped. Over intervention, double or redouble is Positive, the strong response. New suits at any level are not forcing, so responder should not bid a four-card suit at the one-level with a big fit for partner. A minimum NT rebid shows 15-17 points. Opener will pass a new suit response with 10-14 points, balanced.


3.1 After 1C

• 1D is the Positive reply. It is made with 10+ points, any shape. Dropping it to 10 points means that the 1H, 1S, 1NT, 2D, 2H and 2S responses show to 6-9 points. See below.

• Opener’s first three rebids over the strong reply are steps showing balanced hands of 10-12 points, 13-14 points and 15-17 points. Following the first two, the partnership may settle in 1NT or two of a suit. Over opener’s 1H rebid, 1S is game-force relay, 1NT and upwards is to play. Over opener’s 1S rebid, 1NT is to play and 2C is relay. The next five rebids, one in each of the five denominations, are natural, strong and create a game force. 2C shows a 6+ card single-suiter, 2D, 2H and 2S show 4 cards in the suit bid and 5+ clubs, all show 15-19 points. 2NT shows 18-19 points balanced. Next follow steps to describe strong three-suiters with a club suit. Steps show low shortage, middle shortage, high singleton, high void with 0-4 controls 0445 etc.

• This structure is retained in the face of intervention. Double or redouble is Positive, which now shows 12+ points. A game force is created when opener makes a second step or higher re-bid.

• Over intervention, or further intervention, on opener’s right, pass is the first step and double or redouble the second. After the first three steps, bids in the five denominations follow with their natural meaning, then steps describe the strong three-suiter with clubs, as above.

• In a game-forcing situation, passes are forcing and double is penalty.

• 1H and 1S replies are natural and not forcing limited to 6-9 points. When made on a 4 card suit, the hand will not hold a longer lower-ranking suit. See below.

• 1NT is balanced, 6-9 points, with no 4 card major and no 5 card suit, 2NT over 1NT is a club-slam try, asking responder to bid any suit lacking an A, K, or Q. 3NT denies one. 10-12 point balanced hands are bid via 1D but 4+ clubs are denied, see below.

• 2C shows the 10-12 point balanced 4 card club raise with 3-4 or 4-4 in the minors. Lacking game values, opener can pass but with a doubleton club may choose to bid the lower ranking 4 card suit. 2NT is used as immediately above.

• With other 10-12 point balanced shapes, responder relays and signs-off in 1NT when opener makes one of the first two step-rebids. Over this 1NT, opener’s 2C is Stayman. Responder will hold a 4 card major unless specifically 3343 which his 2D reply will show.

• When responder signs-off in two of a suit, he shows 10-12 points with 5+ cards in the suit. With a fit, opener can bid game.

• 2D shows 5+diamonds, 6-9 points, no 4 card major. Over 2D, opener’s 2H, 2S and 3C bids are natural. They show the strong hand with long clubs. Opener’s 2NT shows strong, balanced.

• 2H and 2S show 6-9 points, a 4 card suit, and a 5+ card minor. Opener can pass, bid 3C correctable to 3D or bid 2NT game forcing relay.

• 2NT shows 10-12 points, 5+ clubs. It is forcing but 3C from opener can be passed.

• 3C is a pre-emptive raise.

• 3D and 3H show 0-5 points with 7 cards in the suit above. 3S shows any 7 card solid suit with no A or K outside. 4C asks for shortage, first step low or no. 4D asks for the suit with the 4NT reply showing diamonds.


3.2 After 1D.


The Positive reply is 2C, as it is to 1H and 1S, it is dealt with in more detail below in 3.5. Opener rebids 2D on all 10-14 point hands. Responder can pass, ask opener to continue to describe with 2H or make a natural, game-forcing, bid. A new suit will show 4 cards in the suit and 5+ clubs. Responder’s 2NT bid shows 4 hearts as 2H asks opener to reply in the same way as he did to 2C.


3.3 Other replies.


• 1H/S shows a 4+ card suit. It is not forcing so when made on four should not have 5+diamonds. The recommended reply with 4 cards and 5+ clubs is 1NT.

• 1NT may contain a 4 card major with longer clubs but not 4+ diamonds. Now 2H or 2S from opener shows a 4 card suit and is forcing but not to game. 2D is a 6-9 point 3-card raise, it does not deny a 4-card major. Opener’s 2NT is game-force.

• 2H/S/3C are mini-splinters, 4+card support, a singleton and 3 or 4 controls. Over opener’s cheapest bid the first step shows 3 controls. The next step shows 4 controls with 0 or 2 control cards, ace or king, in the diamond suit. The hand is treated as a 4441, so control cards in the higher ranking unbid suit are shown next.

• 2NT is a 10-12 point balanced raise, with 4+diamonds. It denies five, but not four cards in a major. Opener’s 3D can be dropped.

• 3D is a pre-emptive raise.

• 3H/S/4C are maxi-splinters, 4+ card support, 3 controls and a void.

• 3NT shows 4 controls and any void, over 4C, 4D shows the club void.


3.4 After 1H/S


This is similar to responding to 1D. Differences are noted below.

• The 1S reply to 1H is made on a 4-card suit only when responder holds no fit and no longer suit.

• The 1NT reply to 1H does not deny four spades. Opener will introduce a 4 card spade suit with 15+. With support, 3S is stronger than 4S. Without 4-spades, responder retreats to a long minor or bids 2NT, rescue.

• Splinter responses are as over 1D but the 3S and 3NT maxi-splinter replies to 1H are interchanged. So over 1H-3S, showing a void somewhere, opener can bid 3NT asking where.

• Opener’s 2NT over 1NT asks responder to describe. Responder’s 3C shows 4 cards in diamonds or hearts. Responder’s 3NT shows no 4 card unbid red suit and by inference, long clubs.

• There are alternatives, but here it is recommended that the two over one replies of 2D and 2H show a 5+card suit and are played as game forcing. Opener's 2NT rebid is unlimited in strength and is balanced, denies 5+cards in another suit or denies a four-card suit which can be shown at the two-level. Responder's 3C over 2NT is a  range-ask. First step, four-card club suit, then 10-12, 13-14, 15-17, 18-19. A new suit at the three-level by opener after one of these two over ones shows a 5+card suit unlimited in strength. Opener shows length in the other major before showing diamond support.

3.5 The 2C reply to 1D/H/S


2C denies 5+ cards in an unbid suit, see below. Opener rebids 2D with all 10-14 point hands. The bidding can subside when responder bids two of opener’s suit which shows the 10-12 point 3=card raise. All other rebids show 15-19 points and are game forcing.


• A suit rebid shows 6+ cards.

• A new suit shows 4 cards exactly.

• A 2NT rebid shows 5332 shape with 15-19 points. Over 3C, opener’s steps are 15-17 points, 18-19 points low doubleton etc.

• Steps after the fifth natural denomination, the 7th step and above, show 5+cards in whatever lower-ranking suits are possible, lowest ranking first. To stop at the highest ranking possible suit shows 5+5+ with low shortage.*

Following a 2D rebid, the other major, or 2H after a 1D opening, is the strong artificial continuation. Opener’s minimum rebid in each of the five denominations has the same shape meaning as above. The 2NT rebid now shows 10-14 points and over 3C relay, the steps are 10-12 points, 13-14 points low doubleton, etc.The 1H or 1S opener who rebids 2D will not hold 5+cards in another suit, he will open 2NT or 3C with these hands. The minimum 1D opener may be 5+5+ in the minors. This begins to come out at 3S on the second round. A 10-14 point three-suiter is opened 2D, 2H or 2S.

*When the opening bid is 1D, opener’s direct reply of 3H shows the strong three-suiter short in clubs. The strong 5+5+ minor two-suiter begins to come out next, at 3S, low shortage. 3NT shows 1156 or 1165, 4C 1255, 4D 0355.

Further shape resolution, after opener has made a shape-showing rebid is explained below in the section Finding residual shape.


3.5.1 Intervention over 1D/H/S


Double or redouble is positive. It shows 12+ points or the 10-12 point 3-card raise. It can be made on any shape as new suits from responder are not forcing.


3.6 Other two over ones, 2D over 1H, 2D or 2H over 1S.


These are natural and game forcing showing a 5+card suit.

Opener shows a holding in the other major ahead raising.

Two-level new suit rebids show 5+4. Three-level new suit rebids show 5+5+.

The cheapest bid over all of opener’s suit rebids is relay with first step showing all 10-14 point hands.

Opener’s 2NT rebid will either be balanced or contain no 4 card suit biddable at the two-level. It is unlimited in strength.

Responder’s 3C reply to 2NT is a range-ask with these responses.

• Four card club suit. Responder with 4-diamonds can bid 3D over 2NT

• 10-12 points

• 13-14 points

• 15-17 points

• 18-19 points

A non-jump suit rebid promises a 6+card suit, a jump rebid promises 3 card support as well. Further resolution of the single-suiter is described in the section 4.0 Finding residual shape.


3.7 After 1NT, all 20+


When made directly the bids of 2H and higher are game forcing and show 6+points with 0-2 controls.


2C       0-5 points, no ace. Opener can continue in relay with 2D, responses are as 2H and onwards below. He can make any other bid, natural not forcing.

2D       Full positive, 3+ controls. Responder is now captain. Opener replies to 2D as below.

2H       Balanced. The first descriptive step is always used to show the balanced hands

2S       5+ spades

2NT     5+ hearts, replacing 2H, above

3C/D   5+card suit but not 5332. Over a relay, 2NT shows 4 cards in the relay suit, iota. No balanced shape is possible, so 2NT is not needed.

3H       Three-suiter with both majors.

3S       Three-suiter with hearts, 1444 etc.

3NT      Three-suiter with spades, 4144 etc


3.8 Intervention over 1NT.

Responder must act, we play the hand or they play doubled. Pass, is full positive, cheapest bid shows balanced, minimum NT replaces the denomination used to show balanced. Double is penalty and is treated as showing a 5+ card holding in the event that opener continues with a relay. A minimum bid in the opponent’s suit shows a three-suiter containing it and the next bid show the three-suiter short in it. When opener passes intervention, full positive, opener’s first step shows balanced. When responder shows shape, opener can continue with the cheapest bid, relay, or bid his hand, not forcing. Responder’s control base is 0-2 controls.Example. See 4.0 Finding Residual Shape, below.


♠AKQJ                            ♠87

♥A96                              ♥J2

♦AKJ                               ♦10875432

♣A74                              ♣Q5

1NT                                 2C (0-5 no ace)

2D (Shape demand)        3D (5+ diamonds not balanced.)

3H                                  4D (Single suiter, 6+ cards.)

4H (6D is safe)                5D (No 3-card suit, 7+ diamonds.)

5H 6C (7222 with 1Q.     5NT would show 0Q and the next relay would be for jacks.)

6D (Last relay. Where?)   6H (Not in diamonds.) 7D Pass

With a smaller diamond than the ♦J, or if partner shows ♦Q or a K we bid 7NT. It is nice to play the hand during the bidding.


3.9 After 2C

Responder can show a five-card major non forcing or bid 2D, the Positive response. Shape resolution is as for any single-suiter, see below.


3.10 After 2D.

The bid shows two quite different hand types, both in the 10-14 point range. The 12+ point Positive reply is 2NT. The replies to 2NT are

• 3C showing 4 diamonds and 5+ clubs. A further relay, 3D, asks for residual shape.

• 3D shows the major two-suiter with a club suit, so 4414 etc.

• 3H shows the first of the three-suiters with a diamond suit, 4441

• 3S 4450 etc.

Without game-going values the search is on for the best part-score. Responder’s first priority is to show a 3+ cards in a major which opener will pass with the three-suiter with both majors. Without 3 cards in either major, responder retreats to a 6+ card club suit. With neither, responder will hold long diamonds, only four when precisely 2245. He must pass 2D.

When showing a major, responder should show the stronger of two 3 card majors, the 5+ card major when 5+4 in the majors and the lower ranking of two 5+ card majors. With the three-suiter, opener will pass, but in correcting to clubs to show the minor oriented hand opener will use intermediate steps to show suitability for a major-suit contract. After a 2H reply, 2S shows 3 hearts and 2NT 3-spades, 3C shows poor tolerance for either major. After a 2S reply, 2NT shows 3 spades.

If regulations require an anchor suit, drop the 4414 from possible shapes. Then the hand will always contain four diamonds. Open this hand 1C and show balanced over 1D relay.


3.11 After 2H/S


The strong reply is 2NT, these are the replies.

• 3C (first step after intervention) shows 5+ clubs

• 3D shows 5+ diamonds

• 3H shows the flattest of the three-suiters short in the other major, 1444 or 4144.

• 3S shows 4045 or 0445 etc.


3.12 After 2NT and 3C, and the cue-bid.


As opening bids 2NT and 3C encompass all the 10-14 point, 5+5+ shapes except both minors. It follows that a minimum 1H/S opener will not contain 5+cards in another suit.

The cheapest reply is relay, other replies are correctable. When opener has one major to show, he bids it. With two, after a 2NT opening, he bids 3D over the 3C relay.

These bids have the same meaning when used as jump overcalls. When one of the possible suits is overcalled, they show specific two-suiters. The cue-bid overcall of a major shows the minor two-suiter, 2NT is relay.


4.0 Finding the residual shape, and thus the full shape, after a particular hand type has been shown.


4.1 Partner shows a balanced hand.


When a balanced hand is shown, with no suit known, the suit-showing replies to the relay are.


• NT Both minors

• Spades Spades one-suited or two-suited but not with hearts.

• Hearts Hearts one-suited or two-suited

• Diamonds Diamonds only

• Clubs Clubs only

When the fourth step reply is 3NT, after a 1C-1D; 2NT-3C or a pass of 3D on the captain’s right, for example.

• 3D One minor. Over the relay clubs is first step. If partner passes 3D, relay, double shows this hand.

• 3H Hearts. Over 3S, relay, 3NT denies spades, 4C and 4D show both majors low doubleton, high doubleton. 4C over 3NT asks for a minor or if 3433. First step four clubs.

• 3S Spades, not hearts.

• 3NT Both minors.


Over intervention, when denominations are to be shown, pass shows the denomination below, double or redouble shows the last bid denominations.


With a single-suiter.

4333 and 5332 shapes


• Step 1 Low doubleton

• Step 2 Middle doubleton

• Step 3 High doubleton

• Step 4 4333 minimum controls rolling on


When a 5 card suit is not possible the shape is 4333 and the relay is for controls.


With a two-suiter.


• Step 1 Low doubleton, 4432

• Step 2 High doubleton, 4423 minimum controls rolling on.

Over intervention, when steps are required, pass is the first step, double or redouble the second.


4.2 Single-suiters.


A 6+card single-suiter is shown by opening 2C or by rebidding a suit. When one has been shown, the relay asks for 3 card suits.


The denominations show.


• NT 3-3 in the suits of opposite rank to the long suit

• Clubs             Clubs only

• Diamonds      Diamonds only

• Hearts           Hearts, possibly a minor

• Spades          Spades, possibly a minor

• Long suit rebid Extreme single-suiter. A 7222 is by far the most likely shape.

When asked, all the other shapes, which will contain an 8+ card suit, are lumped together as the first step. The 7222, with minimum controls, is the second step, rolling on. A relay over the first step gets low shortage, middle shortage, high singleton, high void minimum controls. Improvise with say 9211. This will never happen.

When a 6+3 has been shown, further resolution is exactly as with a 5+4. See below. When a 6+3-3 has been shown, the relay first step response is singleton, second step void, minimum controls.

In auctions which begin with one of a major, a two over one bid in diamonds or hearts, and a rebid of the major, opener shows 6+ cards without 3 card support, possibly 4 cards in a suit lower-ranking than responder’s suit. When responder relays, his interest will be in what support opener does hold and shortages in the unbid suits. Over a relay, the first step will show all 10-14 points, then


• Two-card support. Over a relay, low shortage, no shortage, high singleton, high void 0-4 controls.

• No support, shortage, relay for it.

• No support, no shortage 0-4 controls rolling on.


4.3 Two-suiters.


The system separates the 5+5+ two-suiters from the 5+4 two-suiters. Truncate the steps if you wish


4.4 When a specific 5+4 or 6+3 has been shown, and a further relay.


• Step 1    Low shortage

• Step 2    2-2

• Step 3    1-3

• Step 4    1-2

• Step 5    1-1 (1-1 is more common than a 0-2)

• Step 6    0-2

• Step 7    0-1

• Step 8    0-0


4.5 After 5+5+ has been shown.


• Step 1    Low shortage

• Step 2    1-1

• Step 3    1-2

• Step 4    0-3

• Step 5    0-2

• Step 6    0-1

• Step 7    0-0


4.6 Three-suiters.


• When no suit is known, following a 1NT opening, first step after the five-denominations shows both majors, then hearts and both minors, spades and both minors rolling on.

• When an opponent bids a suit over a 1NT opening, the cue-bid shows the three-suiter containing the suit, then low shortage, middle shortage etc. The next higher bid shows the three-suiter short in the suit, the least described hand is shown first. When an opponent’s bid shows no specific suit, or two suits, revert to the previous dot point.

• When one suit is known, following a 1C opening, it is low shortage, middle shortage, high shortage, rolling on.

• When two suits are known, following a 2D opener, the lower ranking unknown suit, clubs, is shown as first step.


5.0 Control base.


Control base is the meaning of the first step in reply to a control ask.


When 0-5        0Q, 1Q, 2Q, K, KQ with neither or both in the top suit.

When 6+         0K, 1K, 2K, A, but not in the top suit.

When 10-12    0-2 controls1D/H/S-2NT 0-2 controls.

When 10-14    With a singleton or void, 0-2 controls. No shortage 0-3.

When 15-19    0-4 controls.

When 20+       5+ controls.

When responder makes a semi-positive reply to 1NT of a forced shape-showing reply over intervention over 1NT, the control base is 0-2 controls.


6.0 Intervention.


This is dealt with to some extent above, but, in general, double of intervention is relay or simply, positive, promising a game-going, or near game-going hand, of any shape. The double of intervention shows 12+ points, over 1D/H/S it includes the 10-12 point 3-card raise. The underlying logic….if the system forces you to act at a high level, 10+points and a 3-card fit offers some safety, 10 points opposite 10 points balanced, does not.

When one hand is describing and there is intervention on the describer's right, pass shows a bid in the denomination below the last bid, double or redouble shows a bid in the last bid denomination. When steps are required, pass is the first step, double or redouble is the second.

When the 1C opener is asked to describe his hand and there is, say, a 2D bid on his right, pass shows 10-12 balanced, double shows 13-14 balanced, 2H shows 15-17 balanced, 2S shows four spades and 5+ clubs with 15-19 points, 2NT 18-19 balanced, 3C 15-19 6+ clubs no other suit, 3D/H 15-19 points four card suit and 5+ clubs, 3S 15-19 points three suiter short in diamonds, then short in hearts, then spade singleton then spade void with 0-4 controls etc.

After a one-over-one beginning and intervention, a double is positive from both sides, new suits are not forcing. Double by a passed hand shows the unbid suits.

In contested auctions, this definition is used,

“Double is for take-out until a denomination is agreed. NT is agreed when partner passes the NT bid. 1C- 1NT agrees clubs.” Double is penalty and passes are forcing once a game-force has been established.


7.0 Defensive Bidding and play.


It is system on all the time whether they open or we do. After an opposing 1C, the full system is played with double replacing 1C. Otherwise, double of an opening bid is used, only, to show shape, balanced or three-suiter. The cue-raise is used to show the 10-12 point 3-card raise and 2NT is used to show the 10-12 point balanced 4+ card raise, always. Over all opponents’ NT bids, any level, any meaning, double shows both majors or 4 cards in the unbid major. Minimum bids in clubs and diamonds show the suit bid and a major, 4+4+ cards. This is very useful over a gambling 3NT.

1NT as an overcall can be played the same way as the system opening bid, (over 1C it is) but on balance it is probably better to play it to have the more traditional meaning with Stayman and natural non-forcing minimum replies. (Put the opening bidder on lead!). In the balancing seat the traditional 1NT bid is used, it shows 15-17 points.

The bids 2D/H/S retain their meaning over one-level openings bids as long as they remain as jumps to the two-level. The bids of 2C, 2D and 2H over 1S, for example, are natural, while 2S shows both minors. When they are double jumps, the bids of 3D and up retain their system meaning.Count is fundamental to relay, so play count leads, signals and discards, low from odd. The first discard is count in an unwanted suit.


8.0 Good luck.


You will not outbid this system using standard methods, and you won’t forget it. It is simpler than most standard systems. Some standard players’ system notes run to hundreds of pages. There is an underlying logic and cohesion, once grasped the system is easy to learn and remember. You can work out what “must be.”



© George Cuppaidge.

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