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Don’t despair when you pick up a bad hand. It could get better. Here’s what to look for:
You are South and the bidding proceeds (North dealer):
Here are two possible hands for you:
|South (a)||South (b)|
♠ Q 3
♥ Q 7 3 2
♦ 9 7 3 2
♣ 8 5 3
♠ J 10 3
♥ K 3
♦ 9 7 4 3
♣ 8 4 3 2
With South (a), you have a heart fit and your two queens are in partner’s long suits – golden honours. Don’t pass, raise to 4♥.
With South (b), you now know for sure you have a spade fit and ♠J10 are worth much more than one point. Plus your ♥Kx is gold-dust. Don’t merely give a preference to 3♠ (which you’d do with small doubletons in both majors); jump to 4♠.