The original conventional defense method was developed and devised by Mr. Alvin Landy of Greenwich, Connecticut, United States. The concept is that of overcalling an opening bid of 1 No Trump by an opponent. The original version by Mr. Alvin Landy states that the overcall may be made either immediately or in the fourth seat after two passes. This is especially the case if the opponent has opened a weak No Trump with a lowest range of 12 high card points, which is the case when the bidding system of the opponents is the Acol bidding system.

Ability to Show Two-Suiter

The conventional defense method is also based on the idea that the initiator can compete in the auction with a marginally weak to an average two-suited holding showing both Major suits, via an overcall of 2 Clubs either immediately or in the balancing seat after two consecutive passes. The major deciding factor, especially in the immediate seat, is that the player must decide whether or not to compete by pre-calculating, pre-determining, pre-guessing a favorable result in the score, which will also be based on the state of vulnerability.

In the balancing seat this decision to compete becomes easier to determine since the partner of the No Trump bidder has shown weakness in points by passing.

     

The strongly suggested point count is that the player planning to compete against a No Trump opening should hold a minimum of 5/6 points, but no more than 15/16 high card points. If the player holds points in excess of 16 plus high card points, then the player should first double and then bid. The following two holdings should clarify when a player should decide to compete and when not to compete. The reader will notice that the distribution is identical.

Example 1
Opponent   Overcaller
AK8
A763
Q43
KJ5
 
QJ1096
QJ1094
75
9
1 NT   2
     
Example 2
Opponent   Overcaller
KQJ
AQ63
KJ4
J54
 
A9874
K10987
Q7
6
1 NT   Pass

The overcaller in Example 1 has a holding worth 5-6 playing tricks. The overcaller in Example 2 has a holding worth 3-4 playing tricks. The distribution is identical, and the values held by the overcaller in Example 1 equal 6 points as opposed to 9 points in Example 2, but the trick-taking capability of the holding in Example 1 equals at least 2-3 playing tricks more, which the overcaller can present to his partner, or advancer, as dummy, if the advancer becomes declarer.

Note: All partnerships solely basing and employing the evaluation method of Losing Trick Count should be very cautious in deciding to employ the Landy conventional defense method. As the bridge player can readily see, both holdings of the overcaller contain seven losing tricks.

Original Landy Convention

Example
Opponent   Overcaller   Meaning
AK8
A763
Q43
KJ5
 
QJ1096
QJ1094
75
9
   
1 NT       The range of the No Trump should be announced.
    2   Original Landy convention defense method: Promises both Major suits, each of 5-card plus length.

Landy Variant by Edwin Kantar

This variant employs an additional bid for an overcall and also the double. The following explanations should clarify the differences between the original version and the altered variant by Mr. Edwin Kantar. It is not known whether Mr. Edwin Kantar proposed the application of this variant for a distributional pattern of 5-5, 5-4, and 4-4 depending on the state of vulnerability and/or other elements.

Example 1
Opponent   Overcaller   Meaning
AK8
A763
Q43
KJ5
 
QJ1096
QJ1094
75
9
   
1 NT       The range of the No Trump should be announced.
    2   As in the original concept this overcall promises a two-suited holding with both Major suits. Note: the distributional pattern is per partnership agreement.
Example 2
Opponent   Overcaller   Meaning
AK8
A753
K53
QJ2
 
9
QJ1096
QJ1094
75
   
1 NT       The range of the No Trump should be announced.
    2   Landy Variant by Edwin Kantar: an overcall of 2 Diamonds promises a two-suited holding in both red suits: Hearts and Diamonds. See continuances below.
Example 3
Opponent   Overcaller   Meaning
AK8
A763
Q43
KJ5
 
QJ109
KQJ
AKJ
AQ7
   
1 NT       The range of the No Trump should be announced.
    Double   Landy Variant by Edwin Kantar: A double is for penalty and partner should pass. The overcaller has the major portion of the remaining values and/or a long-running suit with a side entry.

Any and all bids by the overcaller above 2 Diamonds are natural and should promise at least a solid 5-card suit with a side-winner, or a semi-solid suit with at least 6 cards and a side-winner.

Note: All continuances by the advancer are per partnership agreement. Since the 2 Clubs overcall is identical with the original Landy conventional defense method, then the continuances can also be employed. They are listed below for the convenience of the reader.

Overcall of 2 Diamonds

By an overcall of 2 Diamonds, showing both Hearts and Diamonds, then the continuances change. The advancer can bid his own 6-card suit, which may be either Clubs and/or Spades. The advancer can show weakness by showing only a preference for Hearts or pass if Diamonds are preferred. The advancer may show additional support for Hearts by jumping. Such an action for Diamonds would not be suggested since the opener bid No Trump. However, if the No Trump has a range between 12-14 high card points, then a possible 3 No Trump contract could be visualized. Etc.

Response Continuations

The responses of the advancer, or partner of the overcaller, are shown below for the overcall of 2 Clubs, not for an overcall of 2 Diamonds. It must be remembered that the advancer may be a passed hand before an opponent opens the auction with No Trump or also a passed hand, which immediately followed the No Trump opening by an opponent.

These responses become only valid if the partner of the No Trump bidder passes. All continuances in competition by the partner of the No Trump bidder are per partnership agreement.

The advancer may pass if the partner of the No Trump bidder competes.

Overcaller Advancer Meaning
2 Artificial. Shows both Major suits of 5-card plus length.
Pass Shows a weak holding with at least a 6-card plus Club suit.
2 Shows a weak holding, minimum of 3-card support, and a preference for Hearts. The bid does not deny equal length in the other Major suit, only a preference.
2 Shows a weak holding, minimum of 3-card support, and a preference for Spades. The bid does not deny equal length in the other Major suit, only a preference.
2 NT * This is an asking response requesting the intervenor (overcaller) to bid the better Major suit. The inference is that the advancer has equal support in both Major suits and sufficient values to support both Major suits on the three level. * See below.
3 Shows excellent support for both Major suits and game values based on distribution and/or Losing Trick count. This first response by the advancer is artificial and game forcing.
3 Natural bid. Shows at least a solid 5-card Diamond suit or a semi-solid 6-card plus Diamond suit.
3 Invitational. Shows at least a 3-card support in Hearts, a distributional holding with ruffing ability and/or sufficient high card points located in both Major suits.
3 Invitational. Shows at least a 3-card support in Spades, a distributional holding with ruffing ability and/or sufficient high card points located in both Major suits.

* Note: it must be noted that some variants employ the 2 No Trump response by the advancer as natural and employ only the 3 response as game forcing.

 

 

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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