Forth Suit Forcing Bids, BridgeHands

Conventions – love them or hate them, there is a time, place and season for every Bridge bid.  So what about when you and partner do not seem to be able to find a suit fit?  Or when you as responder have game-going values and are stuck to find a rebid? Enter the world of the Fourth Suit Forcing rebid by our beloved responder.

So as unpassed hands, the auction typically begins with opener bidding a minor suit and responder following with 1 of a major suit.  Next opener either rebids a major or 2 of a lower ranking suit then their first bid:

1C – 1H;
1S – ?

1D – 1H;
2C – ?

1H – 1S;
2C – ?

1C – 1D;
1H – ?

In this 2 hour video lesson, in Part 1 we will start with the fundamentals of the who, what, when, where and why of Fourth Suit Forcing bids.  If you are already up to speed with with the need and basics of FSF (Fourth Suit Forcing) bids, why they are alertable by partner, etc, then feel free to start with Part 2 where we review various opener and responder hands and bidding scenarios.  And in Part 3 and Part 3b, the second hour of videos covers actual hands, situations when we should and should not use FSF calls.  But wait – there’s more as we play through a dozen hand variations covering common situations when we are playing in 3 Notrump, 4 of a major suit or even some slam hand!

Part 1 – Introduction to Fourth Suit Forcing bids – 27:30 minutes of video
Free, Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 2 – 19:30 minutes of video

Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 3 – 31:07 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 3b – 36:01 minutes of video

And best yet, here at BridgeHands all of our Bridge hands are full of commentary (regardless of who is the declarer and defender) and analysis on hand evaluation, bidding and play with over 2 hours of animated card play.   As always, our hand discussion offers a refreshingly rare glimpse of Bridge inside the minds of all four players at the table as play progresses, bid by bid, card by card.  Visitors are welcome to view the Part 1 series of our video lesson with several hands including critical decisions that will influence our card play.  Those with the Free BridgeHands  membership may also watch Part 2 where we review another three hands with provocative play tips and strategies to ensure you bring home the contract. As a Premium and ULTRA member, you are welcome to enjoy the entire five-part lesson segments with dozens of hands, plus an opportunity to view future shows during your membership subscription period.   And as always, be sure to check out the hundreds of hours of videos in our archive that is growing by leaps and bounds, by clicking “Index to Videos” on the navigation above or simply click this link.

Happy Trails,

BridgeHands

For more videos, also see Hands Of The Week

Our BridgeHands HOT-W (Hands Of The Week) videos offer extemporaneous, fast-paced videos lessons watching a variety of real people play real hands at the table.  For most hands we will compare and contract competitive bidding and play at various tables to highlight Bridge at its best and … well, you know the rest!
So in addition to the full classroom lessons below, be sure to check out our snappy HOT-W sessions.  Those with our BridgeHands Free or Premium membership can view a glimpse of each lesson – ULTRA members can view the entire shows as well as hundreds of hours of our Polling You, Social and Advanced lessons.  Click here or INDEX OF VIDEOS – HOT-W (above, upper right).

Social Lesson #17, Competitive Bidding – Overcalls & Preempts

Hello Bridge Friends!

Love it or hate it, competitive Bridge bidding is the spice of life at the table. So once we have a solid grasp on the basics of non-competitive auctions, it’s time for us to step-up and delve into both the exciting and darker side of Bridge bidding.

And how about you?  Once your Right Hand Opponents has opened the auction, in the second seat are you ready to overcall a wide variety of hands with various strengths and suit lengths?  How many points: 12+, 8-9,  or perhaps only 6-7 High Card Points at the 1 level?  Does vulnerability matter and how about your distribution of honors – do you need good working honors in your long suit?  And if not at the 1 level (1D, 1H or 1S), do you need better working honors if you overcall at the 2 level if making a non-jump bid?  So if it’s a preemptive jump bid, now maybe?    We welcome you to tune in to our first in a series of episodes on competitive overcall bids, starting off with suit overcalls in the second seat – be it at the 1, 2 or 3 level.

Part 1 – Introduction to Overcalls for all audiences – click here to view 18 minutes of video
Free, Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 2 – 30 minutes of video

Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 3 – 17 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 4 – 33 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 5 – 32 minutes of video

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Advanced Lesson #16, Responder Rebids – #11-20 with Analysis, Commentary and Numerous Bridge Hands

We are back with more of our analysis, commentary and illustrative Bridge hands to bid and play in response to our survey questions regarding responder rebids!

As you will recall, responder rebids are based on a significant number of dependencies:
- Opener’s bid
- Responder’s first bid
- Opener’s rebid
- Possible interference bids

Not worry, as always BridgeHands is more than willing to take on the beast with insightful responses to the survey questions.

We will take a look at various forms of the Fourth Suit Forcing bid, jump suit 2 level opening bids in the fourth seat after three passes, passing and making a jump rebid after partner opens, Jacoby Transfers with opponent doubling or making interference bids, unusual rebids after partner makes a Stayman call and more.

All audiences – Part 1, hand 11 with two variations – 18 minutes
Free, Premium an ULTRA audiences – Part 2, hand 12 with five variations – 16 minutes
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 3, hands 13-16 with six variations – 40 minutes
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 4, hands 17-18 with 7 variations – 32 minutes
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 5, hands 19-20 with 7 variations & recap of entire show – 45 minutes

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Social Lesson #16 – Bridge Partscore Contracts – Gaining Entries, Finesses, Unblocking, Endplays

Greetings Bridge Friends!

At long last, we conclude our series on Bridge promotion plays looking at partscore contracts and focusing our attention on gaining entries.  And while it might seem easy to make a contract when not playing for a game bonus, our opponents have other ideas – particularly when THEY have their fair share of honors.  In this lesson we begin with 10 hands, yet before the play is through, we expand the hand permutations and associated play to a whopping 35 hand variations.  So while sometimes a less than perfect line of play might turn out okay, be careful – on the next hand the opponents line of play may improve, our their card distribution might change and all is lost!

Part 1 – Entries and Promotion Play for all audiences – click here to view 23 minutes of video 
Free, Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 2 – 18 minutes of video

Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 3 – 19 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 4 – 27 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 5 – 28 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 6 – 17 minutes of video

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Advanced #15: Rebids, Splinters, Jacoby 2 Notrump – Slow Shows, Fast Denies

In this 192 minute mega-episode we explore Splinter Bids, Jacoby 2 Notrump, cuebids, interference bids, defensive strategies and more.  BridgeHands provides commentary and illustrative Bridge hands to bid and play in response to our survey questions 12 through 21 with over 2 dozen hands regarding opener and responder rebids.  If you are looking to make more slams, especially when you and partner only have 25 or so High Card Points, you’ve come to the right place!

This lesson goes deep, very deep with a comprehensive discussion on how “Slow Shows – Fast Denies” bidding is both important for you and your partner to accurately bid your game and slam hands, as well as utilize obstructive tactics to minimize interference from the opponents.  Of course in some circumstances frisky opponents have a mind of their own.  But worry not Bridge friends, we will encounter some of these “messy” bidding scenarios in our lesson and provide you additional tactics to succinctly and elegantly counteract their obstructive bids.

All audiences – Part 1 – Benefits of Slow Shows-Fast Denies – 22 minutes
Free, Premium an ULTRA audiences – Part 2, Splinters, hands 9-9b 22 minutes
Free, Premium an ULTRA audiences – Part 2b, Splinters, hands 10-11b 22 minutes
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 3, Jacoby 2 Notrump, hands 12-12b – 24 minute video
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 4, hands 13a-14 – 26 minute video
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 4b, hands 15a-16 – 15 minute video
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 5, hands 17-19b – 33 minute video
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 6, hands 20-22 – 29 minute video

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Social Lesson #15 – Bridge Suit Promotion Part II, Rule of 7, Hold Back, Endplay, Loser on Loser, Safety Plays, the Dangerous Opponent and more

Greetings Bridge Friends!

Here we go again with more on promotion plays and another 24 challenging yet glorious hands to quench your declarer thirst to bring home that game, slam or even a grandslam contract.  As always, we start off by considering our objective.  In a suit contract we begin by counting our losers, while in a Notrump contract we count our winners – desperate to first win our tricks before the opponents promote THEIR suit.  Depending on factors like our quick tricks, running suits, shortage, leads, bids and the like, after long (or even short honor-bound) suit promotion, we begin by considering ruffing and finesse plays.  As in our prior lesson, we will start off seeing the consequence when the declarer makes a quick play without evaluating the best line of play to make their objective.  Then we will carefully cover the best line of play declarer to proudly bring home our contract.

Part 1 – Promotion play for all audiences – click here to view 29 minutes of video
Free, Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 2 – 34 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 3 – 35 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 4 – 41 minutes of video
Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 5 – 40 minutes of video

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Social Lesson #14 – Bridge Suit Promotion, Rule of 7, Hold Back, Endplay, Loser on Loser, Safety Plays, the Dangerous Opponent and more

Between promotion, ruffing and finesse plays, certainly promotion plays gain us the most tricks hand over hand.  And when promotion plays are used in connection other plays, we rack up even more tricks.   In this two-episode MEGA lesson (Lesson 14 and 15), we will cover a whopping 37+ hands.  And if that is not enough, for each hand we will take 2 (or more) attempts, first illustrating the problem when we do not use our arsenal of suit promotion options, second where we us e one of a handful of suit promotion techniques .

As expected, you will see the Rule of 7 come into play on a fair number of Notrump contracts.  However, over the series of 16 hands (plus several warm-up hands) in Lesson 14 Day 3, we will learn that like all so-called “rules,” it pays to carefully consider other factors before blindly playing hands by rote.  Ditto on holdback plays when the opponent s lead a side suit where we have a 5 or 6 card suit – while we worry that the opponents may soon ruff the suit, when holding Ace-third opposite 2 or 3 little, sometimes we ought to duck winning the first trick.

Regarding safety plays, we will reinforce the wisdom of playing unfavorable odds (like 4-1 opponent suit splits) when we need to make a critical contract.   Then there’s the spooky “dangerous opponent,” the situation when our house of cards would fall apart (figuratively) should we let a certain opponent on the lead.  The consequence will likely lead the opponents to trap our finessable honors, promote THEIR suit, or both!

Loser on loser plays make sense when giving up a losing trick will gain more than one trick elsewhere (including avoiding a dangerous opponent).

Part 1 – Promotion play for all audiences – click here to view 40 minutes of video

Free, Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 2 – 27 minutes of video

Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 3 – 32 minutes of video

Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 4 – 33 minutes of video

Premium and ULTRA Members click here to view Part 5 – 30 minutes of video on how to make challenging slam contracts and other tricky plays

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Advanced Lesson #14, Responder Rebids – Survey Questions 1-10 with Analysis, Commentary and Numerous Bridge Hands

Okay, at long last we have produced our first segment of our analysis, commentary and illustrative Bridge hands to bid and play in response to our survey questions regarding responder rebids!

You would think bidding and responses might be challenging enough, let alone figuring out various permutations of responder rebids.  But wait, there’s more!  Yes, in this lessons we push our look and explore responder REBIDS after opener’s rebid!  Whew, that might be a tall order to fill but we will give it our best shot based, taking a look at hundreds of your survey responses and as if to prove the point, we will explore 20 hands to demonstrate various lines of bidding and play.

But fear not, in this segment we will limit our analysis to the first 10 of the 40 questions in the survey.

All audiences – Part 1 with four variations of the first hand – 24.5 minutes
Free, Premium an ULTRA audiences – Part 2, hand 2 – 19 minutes
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 3, hands 3-5 – 38 minute video
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 4a, hands 6-8 – 25 minute video
Premium and ULTRA Members – Part 4b, hands 9-10 – 19.5 minute video

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SURVEY for Advanced Lesson #14 – Rebids

Greetings Bridge Friends!

We will be producing Advanced Lesson #14, “Rebids, Part 1″ shortly  In the interim, we welcome your responses to the attached survey/questionnaire.  Good luck and happy hunting!

Click here to begin the slam bidding survey.

FYI – below is a copy of the survey questions and possible responses (click the above link to take the actual survey).

In our upcoming Advanced Video Lesson #14 in addition to our commentary including an assortment of hands to bid and play (with animation), we will share everyone’s consolidated survey results along with our feedback.

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