Brozel Convention

This is a conventional method with the purpose of defending against a 1 No Trump opening generally with a range of 15-17 high card points. The Brozel convention was developed by Mr. Bernard Zeller of New Jersey, United States, and can be applied either in the direct or balancing position. The conventional method can be employed to show a two-suited holding and also a three-suited holding.

The Brozel convention is a system of bids to describe a two-suited hand. Distribution of the hand bidding Brozel is the key to a successful contract. Similar to the Pinpoint Astro, it however places emphasis on Hearts.

In addition, a double promises a one-suited holding with at least a 6-card unspecified suit. If the partner holds values and wishes to compete, the partner will use the relay bid of 2 Clubs allowing the Doubler to show his suit. Once the Doubler has shown his suit, the partner will generally pass. If the Doubler passes the 2 Clubs bid, then the Club suit is his suit.

The overcaller is generally referred to as the intervenor and the partner of the intervenor is generally referred to as the advancer.

The following schematic outlines the overcalls and the responses of the advancer:

Overcaller Meaning Advancer Meaning
2 : Shows Clubs and Hearts - rounded two-suiter. Pass/2: If there is a Club fit and advancer has weak values, then the advancer passes. If there is no fit and advancer has weak values, then the advancer corrects on the same level to the Heart suit.
2 : Shows Diamonds and Hearts - both red suits. Pass/2: If there is a Diamond fit and advancer has weak values, then the advancer passes. If there is no fit and advancer has weak values, then the advancer corrects on the same level to the Heart suit.
2 : Shows Hearts and Spades - both Major suits. Pass/2: If there is a Heart fit and advancer has weak values, then the advancer passes. If there is no fit and advancer has weak values, then the advancer corrects on the same level to the Spade suit.
2 : Shows Spades and a Minor suit. Pass: If there is a fit and advancer has weak values, then pass is the correct response.
2 NT: Asks for the Minor suit. Implies no support for Spades.
       
2 NT: Shows both Minor suits. 3/3: The advancer bids his better Minor suit.
Double: Shows a 6-card plus suit. Pass: The advance may pass the double if holding sufficient values. The double is converted to a Penalty Double. Otherwise the advancer makes the lowest possible bid.
3 : Shows a three-suited holding with either a void or singleton in Clubs and at least 4-card support in each of the unbid suits. 3/3/3: The advancer bids his best suit in the unnamed suits and establishes the final contract.
3 : Shows a three-suited holding with either a void or singleton in Diamonds and at least 4-card support in each of the unbid suits. 3/3/4: The advancer bids his best suit in the unnamed suits and establishes the final contract.
3 : Shows a three-suited holding with either a void or singleton in Hearts and at least 4-card support in each of the unbid suits. 3/4/4: The advancer bids his best suit in the unnamed suits and establishes the final contract.
3 : Shows a three-suited holding with either a void or singleton in Spades and at least 4-card support in each of the unbid suits. 4/4/4: The advancer bids his best suit in the unnamed suits and establishes the final contract.

Attention and Note: Since the Brozel convention is so flexible, two-suited hands can also be shown even after the partner of the 1 No Trump bidder has made a weak response. Whatever the responder of the 1 No Trump bidder bids, the Brozel bid indicates the suit bid and the next higher unbid suit.

West   North   East   South Meaning
1 NT   Pass   2   2 South shows Hearts and Spades.
  2 South shows Spades and Clubs.
  3 South shows Clubs and Hearts.

This feature is flexible and should be employed by an experienced and long-term partnership owing to its flexibility. For example, if East, in this particular example, bids something else, then the meanings of the bids by South will change accordingly, as described below. Whether or not the Brozel conventional method should be employed on the three level is per partnership agreement. The state of vulnerability is an important and deciding factor since the partnership will have to discover a fit almost immediately.

West   North   East   South Meaning
1 NT   Pass   2   2 South shows Spades and Clubs.
  3 South shows Clubs and Diamonds.
  3 South shows Diamonds and Spades.

The overcall of 2 No Trump is generally not accepted or employed in this position, since this particular bid becomes ambiguous. Would the intervenor actually should a two-suited holding in both Minor suits as this overcall would show in the immediate position, or would the intervenor actually show two touching suits, two rounded suits, two pointed suits. No significance for a cuebid has been included in this bidding sequence.

By a Three-Suited Hand, after a 1 No Trump opening as a direct call or in the balancing seat, the Brozel bidder would jump to the three level, not only showing good distribution and a void but also sufficient strength. For example, the Brozel bidder has the following holding:

West   North   East   South
1 NT   3  
 
AJ109
KQ87
AJ963

The Brozel bidder would bid 3 Hearts over the 1 No Trump opening or in the balancing position. His partner is expected to set the final contract.

Brozel After Weak Response by Partner

If the responder of the 1 No Trump opener has made a weak response, the Brozel bidder can bid 2 No Trump showing a three-suited holding with adequate strength. A cuebid of the bid of the responder indicates a three-suited holding, but suggests a stronger hand.

Using the Brozel convention, the Brozel bidder can also double, showing a one-suited hand. His partner, the advancer, may pass with very few values and thereby converting the double to a penalty double. If the advancer, however, wishes to enter the bidding, the advancer will relay in the next ranking suit (over the response of the opponent) asking the advancer to bid his suit. For example:

West   Intervenor   East   Advancer Meaning
1 NT   Pass   2   Pass
Pass   Double   Pass   Pass Advancer converts the double to a penalty double.
               
West   Intervenor   East   Advancer Meaning
1 NT   Pass   2   Pass
Pass   Double   Pass   2 The advancer asks the intervenor to name his suit. If the suit of the intervenor is Spades, then the intervenor passes. Otherwise the intervenor corrects.

 

Variation

As a variation on this concept Mr. Lionel Wright, mainly of Auckland, New Zealand, proposed and developed bids, which could be employed against strong No Trump openings in the range between 14 and 18 points and weaker No Trump openings with fewer points. In essence, the bids are identical to the original version of Mr. Bernard Zeller except for four bids, which are shown below as well as the responses of the advancer after a double by the intervenor:

Intervenor:   Meaning
Double:   Promises at least a 4-card Spade suit plus a longer unspecified suit.
2 :   Promises at least a 5-card suit plus in Hearts.
2 :   Promises at least a 5-card suit plus in Spades.
2NT:   Shows a fit for Spades and is invitational.
     
Advancer:   Responses after a Double by Intervenor
2 :   Indicates strongly a misfit for Spades. The intervenor either passes the Diamonds relay of advancer or corrects.
2 :   A natural bid; to play.
2 :   A natural bid; to play.
2NT:   Shows a fit for Spades and is invitational.

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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