Lesson 11

Responding to Strong 2C Opening

In this lesson we are going to take a look at how we respond if our partner has opened with 2. If you remember, a 2 opening bid is an unnatural bid and is telling us that our partner has 23 or more points in their hand. This is great news, assuming we have some points too.

So, let's have a look at this hand. Remember our partner has opened with 2.

Not a great hand and with only 6 points we're not really in a great position, but we need to let our partner know this and so our first rule for responding to 2 is:

If 7 or less points we bid 2.

This is not saying we have diamonds, but is simply saying to our partner "I have 7 points or less. Over to you to decide how to proceed!"

So what about when we have a few more points? Let's take a look.

This is a better looking hand and with 12 points we are in a much better position and we have 5 Hearts, so our default position is to just play our longest suit, which in this case is 2. Our partner now knows we have more than 7 points and at least 5 Hearts and they can make a decision whether to go with Hearts or do something else.

We would do the same if we had 5 card strength in Spades, by responding with 2

But what about this hand?

Here we have the same number of points and we have 5 diamonds, so surely we bid 2?

Well, no, remember 2 means we have less than 7 points. So in this case we need to bid at the next level with a 3D response.

Similarly, if we had 5 card strength in Clubs, we would need to respond at the 3 level.

But what if we don't have any 5 card suit? In this case, we would respond with 2NT. This lets our partner know we have more thant 7 points but no 5 card suit.

So our rules for responding are:

Less than 8 points - 2

8+ points and 5 Hearts- 2

8+ points and 5 Spades- 2

8+ points but NO 5 card suit 2NT

8+ points and 5 Diamonds- 3

8+ points and 5 Clubs- 3