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Answer 35

Three possible hands are given for South, but only one is consistent with their bids. Which one? What would the others hands have bid differently? Neither side is vulnerable.

North   East   South   West


Hand a)
♠ A 9 7 3 2
A 8 5
- -
K Q 8 4 2
Hand b)
♠ A K Q 8 3
J 8 3
K Q 5 2
Hand c)
♠ K Q J 2
J 5 2 
A K J 5

  • (a) is correct.
  • Hand (a) is fabulous – you would not be surprised if 7 could be made. (However grand slams should generally be avoided – too tough). Your shape is great, your fit is great and your controls (aces, voids) are great. Note there is no point in using the Blackwood convention to ask for aces – as the number of aces in partner’s hand is pretty irrelevant.
  • Hands (b) and (c) have more points but are considerably more worrying – (b) because of the hearts and (c) because of the diamonds. In both (b) and (c), your side could belong in 3NT (or 4 - in (b)), and the best way forward with both is to bid the Fourth Suit Forcing convention (2). Partner’s reply may help you to resolve a tricky bidding dilemma (in both cases).
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