The origin of this treatment is unknown. It is employed by many partnerships, which utilize the response of 2 Spades as a slam try in a Minor suit. The concept is based on the idea that the responder, following a 1 No Trump opening by partner, relays to Clubs with a first response of 2 No Trump.

Basic Principle

The partnership can employ this understanding also if the opening is 2 No Trump or even 3 No Trump. However, the general consensus is that this drives the bidding level too high and can include some risk, and is therefore not advisable. The following illustration illustrates this particular feature.

Example 1

North   South   Meaning
1 NT       The No Trump range is dependent on the partnership agreement.
    2 NT Relay to 3 Clubs. Partner must accept per agreement.
   
75
64
Q84
QJ9865
3     The forced relay per agreement.

The responder holds only weak values and passes following the relay since Clubs is the intended suit. Generally any competition will occur on the two level in the immediate seat. However, by employing the 2 No Trump bid the responder preempts the following advancer of the overcaller, who may be more hesitant to compete.

Example 2

North   South   Meaning
1 NT       The No Trump range is dependent on the partnership agreement.
    2 NT Relay to 3 Clubs. Partner must accept per agreement.
   
75
64
QJ9865
Q84
3     The forced relay per agreement.
    3 The responder corrects.

Those partnership agreements, which employ this particular relay to 3 Clubs feature, also employ the relay when the responder has a three-suited holding with game values and a singleton in one of the Major suits. It is important to remember that the singleton must be in a Major suit.

Holding the following hand, the responder would force the 1 No Trump bidder to rebid 3 Clubs, and then the responder rebids his singleton in a Major suit.

Example 1

North   South   Meaning
1 NT       The No Trump range is dependent on the partnership agreement.
    2 NT Relay to 3 Clubs. Partner must accept per agreement.
   
7
QJ82
A752
AJ76
3     The forced relay per agreement.
    3 The responder bids the suit with the singleton.
Continuances are per partnership agreement.

Example 2

North   South   Meaning
1 NT       The No Trump range is dependent on the partnership agreement.
    2 NT Relay to 3 Clubs. Partner must accept per agreement.
   
KQ64
5
Q87
KQ954
3     The forced relay per agreement.
    3 The responder bids the suit with the singleton.
Continuances are per partnership agreement.

To differentiate between a weak holding and an invitational holding, the partnership understanding is that with an invitational holding, the responder would jump immediately one level. This is not forcing to game, but strongly invitational as in the following auction and shown holding of the responder:

North   South   Meaning
1 NT   3   Invitational to game in No Trump.
   
63
5
AQ10974
Q763
   

If the 1 No Trump bidder discovers an entry, generally three entries to the Diamond suit, then the 1 No Trump bidder should continue to game. If the entries are lacking, then the No Trump bidder should pass.

With this partnership understanding, the natural first response of 2 No Trump is lost, but can be circumvented with the following bidding auction:

North   South   Meaning
1 NT       The No Trump range is dependent on the partnership agreement.
    2 The Stayman convention per agreement.
2 //     The bid suit is irrelevant.
    2 NT Shows a balanced holding with 8/9 high card points and no 4-card Major suit. (Note: this is not a relay bid to 3 Clubs.)
   
652
52
AQ74
Q763
 

 

 

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.

 


     
Email Conventions Bridge Sites
     
Home Page I Glossary Home Page II
     
Responses Methods   Slam Bidding