Asptro Convention

The origin of this conventional method is unknown. This is a conventional method and borrows elements of both the Aspro convention and the Astro convention, and is considered to be a combination of both. The designation is also a combination of both methods: Asptro-Astro. This conventional method is a defense method employed after an opponent opens the auction with No Trump.

The original concept of the Asptro convention method is as follows:

2 : Shows Hearts and a second unspecified suit.
2 : Shows Spades and a second unspecified suit.

The responses are per partnership agreement and can take any form. These responses may be based on the state of the vulnerability, the actual shape of the holding of the responder, and held values can determine whether a jump would clarify the holding more accurately. With neither Heart support nor Spade support and in order to discover the second suit of the overcaller, the advancer necessarily requires an inquiry bid which is generally 2 No Trump.

The conventional treatment of two-suited holdings of equal length or comprosing one or both Minor suits is the same as in the orignal conventions of Aspro and Astro. When the intervenor (overcaller) holds a distribution of 5-4 in both Major suits, then the guideline is: the intervenor makes his initial overcall to show the 4-card Major suit, which means that the intervenor overcalls with 4 with a 4-card Heart suit and 4 with a 4-card Spade suit.

This overcall on the four level should be based on a holding containing a certain number of tricks or Losing Tricks with the values located in both Major suits. The generally accepted minimum should be: KQJx - KJ109x.

 

Once the intervenor overcalls 2, the advancer may pass or compete if the partner of the No Trump bidder enters the auction. However, if the partner of the No Trump bidder remains silent, then the advancer must respond.

2 : This is a relay bid showing at most a 2-card Heart suit, and the intervenor can now show his 5-card Spade suit.
2 : This bid shows at least a 3-card Heart suit and at least a 4-3 trump fit.

 

Once the intervenor overcalls 2, the advancer may pass or compete if the partner of the No Trump bidder enters the auction. However, if the partner of the No Trump bidder remains silent, then the advancer must respond.

2 : This is a relay bid showing at most a 2-card Spade suit, and the intervenor can pass since the advancer most likely has at least 2 Hearts, meaning that the partnership has found a 5-2 trump suit fit.
2 : This bid shows at least a 3-card Spade suit and at least a 4-3 trump fit. The intervenor may pass.

The advancer, with stronger values plus distribution, raises the artificial bids of the intervenor. This requires the intervenor to further clarify the holding. The rebids of the intervenor, depending on the overcall, are:

 

After a 2 overcall and a raise to 3 by the advancer, which is viewed as an artificial game forcing response:

3 : Shows a 4-card Heart suit (the anchor suit) and a 5-card Diamond suit.
3 : Shows a 5-card Heart suit and an unspecified 4-card Minor suit.
3 : An artificial rebid by the advancer asking for the Minor suit.
3 NT: This is a natural bid and is to play in No Trump.
3 : Shows a 4-card Heart suit and a 5-card Spade suit.
3NT: Shows a 4-card Club suit.

 

After a 2 overcall and a raise to 3 by the advancer, also an artificial game forcing response:

3 : Shows a 4-card Spade suit (the anchor suit) and a 5-card Heart suit.
3 : Shows a 5-card plus Spade suit and an unspecified 4-card Minor suit. A 4 relay by the advancer asks for the Minor suit.
3 NT: Shows a 4-card plus Spade suit and an unspecified 5-card Minor suit. A 4 relay by the advancer asks for the Minor suit.

 

Note: There are variations of the Asptro conventional method and they are somewhat dependent on the bidding system employed and can be altered or varied to meet the requirements of the particular bidding system.

Note: Some partnerships have agreed that the distribution of the holding, when overcalling could / may be reduced to 4-4 in both Major suits regardless of the state of vulnerability, otherwise the distribution is generally 5-4, 4-5, or 5-5 depending on the state of vulnerability. This is entirely a partnership agreement in all employed variations of the concept.

 

 

If you wish to include this feature, or any other feature, of the game of bridge in your partnership agreement, then please make certain that the concept is understood by both partners. Be aware whether or not the feature is alertable or not and whether an announcement should or must be made. Check with the governing body and/or the bridge district and/or the bridge unit prior to the game to establish the guidelines applied. Please include the particular feature on your convention card in order that your opponents are also aware of this feature during the bidding process, since this information must be made known to them according to the Laws of Duplicate Contract Bridge. We do not always include the procedure regarding Alerts and/or Announcements, since these regulations are changed and revised during time by the governing body. It is our intention only to present the information as concisely and as accurately as possible.




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