The origin of this conventional method is unknown. Any additional information as to the original version and/or developer of this conventional method would be greatly appreciated as would any clarification of the designation, which appears to be a surname.

Note: there are various versions of the McKendrick conventional response method, and if the reader knows of other version, please email us this information in order that we can post it for the benefit of other visitors.

Principle of the Concept

The concept of the McKendrick conventional method is defined by its requirements for the responder following a No Trump opening bid by partner. The multiple two-response method, which is the basic principle behind the concept, is the basic definition of the concept as clarified below. The partnership may by agreement, however, incorporate only one feature of the conventional method and not the other feature. This is a matter of partnership agreement.

Note: The McKendrick conventional method is generally played in countries, in which the Acol-based bidding approach is prevalent. These countries include Australia and mainly England. Note: this means that the generally accepted range of the No Trump opening promises a 12-14 high card point range, and it is this range, upon which this presentation is based.

Note: There exist some bridge purists, who maintain that the McKendrick conventional method only refers to the agreement that the first response of 2 Spades promises 11 plus high card points. Other partnerships, who base their approach on the Acol bidding system, agree to playing under the multiple two-response method that the 2 Spades first response can promise either 11 plus high card points and any shape or a long unspecified Minor suit with a 6-card plus suit and weak values. The latter agreement is normally referred to as Extended McKendrick.

Concept of McKendrick

The principle concept of the McKendrick conventional method is to bid 2 Spades over a 1 No Trump opening bid by partner. This first response by the responder communicates to partner one of two features:

1. The responder either promises a holding containing 11 plus high card points and any shape, or
2. a holding with weak values and a long Minor suit. The consensus is that the long Minor suit should be a 6-card plus suit.

The communication of either the first or second possibility is accomplished with a first response of 2 Spades, which is one-round forcing.

Note: The range of the No Trump opening bid is a partnership agreement. However, the McKendrick conventional method seems to have been devised for strong No Trump ranges between a good 14 points to a maximum of 18 high card points with balanced distribution and only one possible doubleton. However. the range of the No Trump opening can, by agreement, be adjusted, which results in the necessary adjustment of the values held by the responder to employ the McKendrick conventional method according to the established parameters.

Note: Whether or not the McKendrick conventional method can be initiated following interference by the immediate player is a matter of partnership agreement. The general consensus is that if the interference does not impede the employment, then the partnership should discover the meaning of the interference, if deemed necessary, or completely ignore the interference and continue according to the partnership agreement.

Responses to a No Trump Opening Bid

There are only two possible responses to the No Trump opening by partner.

Opener   Responder   Meaning
1 NT       Range according to partnership agreement.
    2   This is the Stayman conventional method.
    2   This is, by consensus, a Jacoby transfer bid to Hearts.
    2   This is, by consensus, a Jacoby transfer bid to Spades.
    2   This first response initiates the McKendrick conventional method. The No Trump bidder is requested to bid Clubs. The communicated information is that the responder holds either 11 plus points or a weak holding with a long unspecified Minor suit.
2 NT       This bid by the No Trump bidder informs partner that the values for the No Trump opening bid represent minimum values.
    Continuations by the Responder:
    3   Responder promises a long Club suit with weak values. Promises a 6-card plus suit.
    3   Responder promises a long Diamond suit with weak values. Promises a 6-card plus suit.
    3   Optional idle bid. The partnership may assign any meaning to this bid.
    3   Optional idle bid. The partnership may assign any meaning to this bid.
    3 NT   By bidding game the responder informs partner that the minimum values held are 11 plus high card points.
    Note: This response method allows the partnership to determine immediately whether only a partscore can be reached safely or whether there is a game contract.
         
3       This bid by the No Trump bidder informs partner that the values for the No Trump opening bid represent maximum values.
    Continuations by the Responder:
    Pass   The responder, with weak values, passes if Clubs is the long Minor suit. Promises a 6-card plus suit.
    3   The responder, with weak values, corrects to Diamonds if Diamonds is the long Minor suit. Promises a 6-card plus suit.
    3   Optional idle bid. The partnership may assign any meaning to this bid. For example, a long suit game try.
    3   Optional idle bid. The partnership may assign any meaning to this bid. For example, a long suit game try.

Other Sources

bridgewebs.com presents in .pdf file format a summary of the McKendrick conventional response method. This summary is presented below.

There are different versions of McKendrick, but the one often used is a 2 Spades response to a 1 No Trump opening by partner, which shows either an ordinary 11 high card points or a long 6-card (plus) Minor suit (weak), asking opener to bid 2 No Trump with 12-13 high card points or 3 Clubs with 14 high card points - (Note: minimum or maximum range). Then the responder, with 11 high card points, will pass partner's 2 No Trump rebid or convert to 3 Clubs to 3 No Trump.

If the responder instead has a weak hand with a long Minor suit, then he will convert as necessary to either 3 Clubs or 3 Diamonds. (Note: with an 11 high card points hand the responder does best to examine the hand to assess its playing strength and to consider Stayman when the hand contains a 4-card Major suit, rather than be rigid.)

Grumpy Extended McKendrick (GEM)

Authored by Mr. Ian Grant the presentation illustrates how the bridge player can employ Grumpy Extended McKendrick to both inquire whether the opener holds a 4-card Major suit and to inquire as to the range of the No Trump.

Note: This information has also only been preserved and archived on this site in .pdf file format for future reference.

 

 

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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