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Multi 2 Diamonds - An opening 2 Diamond bid, showing one of several types of hands (partnership agreements vary).

1.

Preemptive weak 2 level bid in an unspecified major

2.

"Mini-roman" 4=4=4=1 hand with 17-20 points

3.

Balanced 19-20 points

Details courtesy of BridgeGuys

A distinct disadvantage of the Multi 2 Diamonds opening is that the partner sometimes is unable also to choose the best immediate line of response, such as in making a preemptive raise, if weak, of the intended Major suit, which is still unknown to the partner after the opening. Based on the assumption that the opener could have a balanced holding and/or distributional holding with strong values, the partner is forced to make a compromising, artificial bid to await further information. This compromising, artificial bid allows the opponents to enter the bidding process.

A second disadvantage is the fact that the opponents also have a more successful chance to enter the auction if the opener first bids a Multi 2 Diamonds, than had the opener opened the auction with a weak 2 Hearts or 2 Spades bid, forcing the opponents to enter the auction perhaps on the Three Level.

However, there are definite advantages to the concept behind a Multi 2 Diamonds opening. If the holding is weak and the opener does indeed have a Weak Two Bid in one of the Major suits, then the opponents do not have the opportunity to cuebid any Major suit, since the Major suit of the opener is unknown. If the responder has a strong holding, it is quite possible that the responder may become declarer, who may be able to protect a tenace or a side suit King-small.

Another advantage is that the contract could be played in Diamonds, if the responder considers Diamonds the better suit than a Major suit. The opener may not employ Multi Two Diamonds with a Diamond void. Using Multi 2 Diamonds frees the opening bids and/or the bids of 2 Hearts and 2 Spades, which become idle bids after agreeing to play Multi 2 Diamonds and which may be used for other purposes, such as Acol Two-Bids. These idle bids could also be assigned, for example, an opening of 2 Hearts as meaning Flannery 2 Diamonds, and a 2 Spades opening could be used to describe a two-suited holding in both Minor suits and only distributional values. Remember, these examples of employing the idle bids of 2 Hearts and 2 Spades are only examples, not guidelines.

Since the original version of the Multi 2 Diamonds method underwent refinements almost immediately after its original version was made known, there have arisen many variations on the responses by the responder and rebids by the opener to communicate additional information within the partnership. It is impossible to represent all variations on this method, either for a tailored individual partnership or for a tailored national partnership understanding. Many variations are based entirely on a partnership understanding and these vary from country to country.

The following outlines represent only guidelines of partnership understandings, which have arisen to create a foundation for the employment of a Multi 2 Diamonds opening. They are not rules etched in stone, and the individual partnership must decide for itself the advantages and disadvantages of any chosen variation and/or variants of the concept.

After opening a Multi 2 Diamonds bid, the responder realizes that there can be generally 4 different types of hands that the opener, his partner, may have. The responder generally assumes that his partner has a Weak Two Bid in either of the Major suits and responds according to the assumption that his partner is weak.

Opener

Responder

2D

2H

A response of 2 Hearts can communicate several different meanings:

1. A response of 2 Hearts indicates the desire to play in Hearts opposite a Weak Two bid in that suit, which the responder does not know is the suit the opener desires, but this response shows good Heart support.

2. A response of 2 Hearts indicates that the responder is interested in keeping the auction alive and is awaiting further rebids by his partner. If the opener reveals a Weak Two bid, then the responder can determine, based upon the strength of his holding, the final contract, which may even be a slam contract.

3. A response of 2 Hearts may indicate a strong hand and shortness in Hearts, the holding of which will be revealed during the auction. It is important that the opener first describe his reason for opening.

4. A response of 2 Hearts can also indicate a weak to moderate holding containing support in both Major suits. The ensuing auction will reveal this, mainly through a pass rebid by the responder after the opener shows weakness. The desire in this case is not to exceed the Level possible for a successful contract.

Opener

Responder

2D

2S

1. A response of 2 Spades indicates the desire to stop the auction with the partner holding a Weak Two bid in Spades. His holding, however, can sustain a rebid by the opener of 3 Hearts, if Hearts is the suit of the opener. This response of 2 Spades mildly suggests a shortage in Spades and more length in Hearts, which is a key element in the case that the partnership ends up defending a contract and/or if the responder becomes declarer.

Opener

Responder

2D 2N

1. A response of 2 No Trump is forcing as it also is opposite a standard Weak Two opening bid. The opener is then required to communicate not only his suit but also his strength, revealing his reason to open:

1. Weak Two Bid in either of the two Major suits
2. A balanced hand with enormous values
3. A strong 4-4-4-1 distribution
4. A strong Two Bid in a Minor suit

The responder holds sufficient values to reach the Three Level, even opposite a Weak Two holding in either of the two Major suits. A response of 2 No Trump may also be entirely a tool of obstruction in the auction aimed at the defenders, who may wish to enter the auction, but will have to do so on the Three Level.

Opener

Responder

2D

3 C/D

Either of these responses are considered invitational and/or forcing depending upon the partnership agreement. Both responses shows sufficient values to enter the Three Level and at least a 4-card suit in the suit bid.

Opener

Responder

2D

3 H/S

In the Multi 2 Diamonds method, any response of 3 Hearts and/or 3 Spades are considered to be bids, which the opener can correct. The opener can correct the response by:

1. passing the bid suit or corrects to the other suit with a minimum values, or

2. can correct, for example, by jumping to game in Spades with maximum values after a 3 Hearts response. These responses are not to be considered preemptive in nature.

Opener

Responder

2D

3N

1. A response of 3 No Trump is to play in the more modern version of Multi 2 Diamonds.

2. In the original version, devised by Mr. Terence Reese and Mr. Jeremy Flint, a response of 3 No Trump promised a strong two-suited holding in the Minor suits and approximately four losers in total.

Opener

Responder

2D

4C

4D

4H

1. A response of 4 Clubs is a Transfer bid by the responder, in order that the responder become the declarer. The opener is required to bid one suit higher so that the responder can rebid Hearts. If the responder first bids 4 Diamonds, then the opener is required to rebid 4 Hearts and the responder rebids 4 Spades, his suit. The reason behind this transfer is that the defenders may find it more difficult to find the correct lead. It also shows moderate to sufficient values in the intended Major suit, which may not equal enough for a safe and secure contract.

Opener

Responder

2D

4D

1. A response of 4 Diamonds requests the opener to rebid his suit on the Four Level, which is game level. The responder has sufficient values to reach game and indicates that the opener is better equipped to be the declarer.

Opener

Responder

2D

4H/S

2. A game level response in either of the Major suits indicates sufficient values for game and the responder decides who is to become the declarer.

Any defense to a Multi 2 Diamonds opening becomes a matter of partnership agreement and must be based on the principle of which seat and/or position at the table decides to defend and/or enter the auction. This element is paramount in deciding the significance of any overcall. Any defense mechanism is also a matter of partnership agreement, but the partnership should determine whether an initial pass in the immediate seat, in order to discover the suit of the opener, followed by a bid equals a valid bid or an act of balancing. Also, the partnership must determine in advance the meanings of any:

1. Double

2. The bid of any unbid suit plus No Trump

3. the significance of any overcall on the Three Level. Several operable defense options are listed below and may serve as the foundation for a partnership understanding.

1. Any Double of a Multi 2 Diamonds opening by the First Seat is a Takeout Double.

South

West

Meaning

2D

X

Takeout Double

 

2H

The same as a Takeout Double of a weak 2H opening

 

2S

Natural and shows a 5-card Spade suit

 

2N

Balanced distribution and 16-19 HCPs

 

3C

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3D

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3H

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3S

Natural and indicates more values than 2S

 

3N

To play; possibly a good Minor trick-taking suit

 

4C

Strong values with 5-card Heart suit and 5-card Club suit *

 

4D

Strong values with 5-card Heart suit and 5-card Diamond suit *

 

4H

Natural and shows a 5-card Heart suit; stronger values than 3 H

 

4S

Natural and shows a 5-card Spade suit; stronger values than 3 S

 

4N

Promises a strong two-suited holding with both Minor suits **

* With a 5-card Spade suit and a 5-card Club suit, the recommendation is to Pass first, followed by a first bid of 4 Clubs, if possible.

** With lesser values, an immediate overcall of 3 Diamonds, followed by a rebid of 4 Clubs, if possible, should be understood to mean the same thing, a two-suiter in both Minor suits.

2. Any Double of a Multi 2 Diamonds opening by the First Seat promises a strong No Trump.

South

West

Meaning

2D

X

Shows a strong No Trump of 16-18 HCPs

 

2H

The same as a Takeout Double of a weak 2S opening

 

2S

The same as a Takeout Double of a weak 2H opening

 

2N

Promises a two-suited holding with both Minor suits

 

3C

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3D

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3H

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3S

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3N

To play; possibly a good Minor trick-taking suit

 

4C

Strong values with 5-card Major suit and 5-card Club suit

 

4D

Strong values with 5-card Major suit and 5-card Diamond suit

3. Any Double of a Multi 2 Diamonds opening by the First Seat is a Two-Way.

South

West

Meaning

2D

X

Shows a No Trump range of 13-16 HCPs or

 

X

Shows a holding of 19 HCPs plus, any shape

 

2H

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

2S

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

2N

Shows a No Trump range of 16-18 HCPs

 

3C

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3D

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3H

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3S

Natural and indicates an opening bid

 

3N

To play; possibly a good Minor trick-taking suit

 

4C

Strong values with 5-card Major suit and 5-card Club suit

 

4D

Strong values with 5-card Major suit and 5-card Diamond suit

If the following sequence occurs:

North East South West
2D P 2H/S  

West, in the Fourth Seat, must realize from the responses by South that these responses indicate that South has most likely bid the shorter Major in his holding, especially if South responds 2 Hearts. Any defense mechanism, initiated in the Fourth Seat and/or partnership understanding must consider this response based on this almost certainty. It is recommended that if Fourth Seat enters the auction, then all suit bids should be considered natural as well as any No Trump bid. A Double should be considered to be a Two-Way, either:

 1. Takeout Double, or

2. Penalty.

The point count should be near a standard opening bid and the shape should be considerably unbalanced as in a three-suited hand with at least a 3-card suit in the suits not determined by the Multi 2 Diamonds opener. If the opener clarifies his holding either by passing or correcting, then the partner of the player in Fourth Seat will immediately become aware of the intended suits, especially the Major suit. After this realization the partner of the Fourth Seat player can easily determine whether the double is for Takeout or for Penalty.

If the following sequence occurs:

North East South West
2D P 2H/S Pass
Pass ?    

It is apparent that East is in the Balancing Position. It is also apparent that North and South are satisfied to play the contract on the Two Level in either one of the two Major suits. This also carries the information that both North and South hold weak to moderately weak hands and/or values. The possibility remains that East is in a position to balance. If this is the case, then most balancing bids are to be considered as natural. There are several specific bids possible as illustrated below:

North East South West  
2D P 2H P  
Pass 2N     Shows a Limited Minor Two-suited holding
  3C     Shows a Two-suiter with Clubs and Spades
  3D     Shows a Two-suiter with Diamonds and Spades

whereas in the following bidding sequence:

North East South West  
2D P 2S P  
P 2N     Shows a Limited Minor Two-suited holding
  3C     Shows a Two-suiter with Clubs and Hearts
  3D     Shows a Two-suiter with Diamonds and Hearts

There are more features, however not fundamental, to the defense strategy, but they are mainly a consideration of partnership agreement and should be considered under this aspect.

As mentioned earlier, these responses may be interpreted by other partnership agreements to indicate different and/or alternative information. A distinctive alternative Multi Diamonds version from The Netherlands is presented below.

The foundation of the Multi Diamonds is that this opening bid can represent either of the following choices.

1. Weak Two Bid in either of the two Major suits
2. A strong holding with 20 plus high card points
3. A 3-suited holding of 4-4-4-1 or 5-4-4-0 shape

The continuing auction appears below with the corresponding alternative communication.

Opener Responder

Meaning

2D 2H

Relay response

  2S

Invitation to game opposite a good Weak Two in Hearts

  2N

Relay, 14+HCPs, asking

 

Opener Responder

Meaning

2D 2H

Relay response

2S  

Weak Two in Spade

Pass  

Weak Two in Hearts

3C  

3-suited holding with singleton Club or void

3D  

3-suited holding with singleton Diamond or void

3H  

3-suited holding with singleton Heart or void

3S  

3-suited holding with singleton Spade or void

 

Opener

Responder

Meaning

2D

2N

Relay, 14+HCPs, asking

3C

 

Poor Weak Two in Hearts

3D

 

Poor Weak Two in Spades

3H

 

Moderate Weak Two in Spades

3S

 

Moderate Weak Two in Hearts

4C

 

3-suited holding with singleton Club or void

4D

 

3-suited holding with singleton Diamond or void

4H

 

3-suited holding with singleton Heart or void

4S

 

3-suited holding with singleton Spade or void

Recommended defense against a Multi 2 Diamonds opening is presented below:

South

West

Meaning

2D

X

Informative double showing 12+ HCPs

 

2H

Natural, 5-card Heart suit and 12+ HCPs

 

2S

Natural, 5-card Spade suit and 12+ HCPs

 

2N

Transfer to Clubs

 

3C

Transfer to Diamonds

 

3D

Transfer to Hearts

 

3H

Transfer to Spades

Another method of responding has been suggested by Mr. Barry Rigal and Mr. Chris Ryall of England. The premise of this method is that the opener have one of the following holdings:

Poor Weak Twos in the Major suits
Sound Weak Twos in the Major suits, 8-9 high card points
Sound Weak Twos with a side suit splinter
Sound Weak Twos, balanced with a fluently running suit
A strong (e.g. 22-24) balanced hand with 22-24 high card points
A pure Acol Two in a Minor suit

The problem, as noticed by Mr. Barry Rigal and Mr. Chris Ryall, was that there appears to be insufficient bidding space on the Levels available after a Multi 2 Diamonds opening to reach the optimal contract, especially if that contract should be 3 No Trump. Using this method, which specifically states that a Multi 2 Diamonds opening should be:

1. Shows 5-9 high card points by favorable vulnerability

2. Shows 7-11 high card points by unfavorable vulnerability

The concept behind the method, in the case that a contract of 3 No Trump is the optional contract, is to ignore the Major suits and to employ a Two-Way 3 Diamonds response to 2 No Trump. Other response include:

Opener

Responder

Meaning

2D

2H

To play or may pass/raise 2S

 

2S

To play or interest in game in Hearts using standard Paradox Principle *

 

2N

General Inquiry ** with 15+ or 9+ with both Major suits

 

3C

Natural, strong and forcing.

 

3D

Natural, strong and forcing

 

3H

Paradox-based Preemptive Raises

 

3S

Paradox-based Preemptive Raises

 

3N

4-card Preemptive Raise in either Major suit, 0 to a bad 9 HCPs

 

4C

The same as 3 No Trump but with 5+ Hearts

 

4D

The same as 3 No Trump but with 5+ Spades

 

4H

Natural and to play

 

4S

Natural and to play

* A Paradox bid is a call of the suit you do not hold when the length in one of two suits has been shown or implied by partner's bid, generally when the partnership expects to establish the final contract in one of these suits.

The partner can simply bid the lower suit for the partner to either pass or correct. Alternatively, if the partner has a fit for that lower suit, the partner bids the other suit. Therein lies the paradox. Although a call of the lower suit with support for the higher may also be paradoxical, this case is trivial. Using a Paradox bid generally forces the partnership one level higher, but this is accomplished only with a good fit. Two examples follow:

Opener   Responder   Meaning
2D   2S    
   
J 5
A 8 5 3
K 4
A Q 7 3 2
  Usually the opener will pass.
However, game is possible,
if the opener has Hearts.

 

Opener   Responder   Meaning
2D   3S    
   
J 5 4
A 8 5 3
9
Q 10 7 3 2
  It is apparent that the opponents have game. But a Paradoxical Preempt of 3S makes and also is totally obstructive for the opponents to reach their contract successfully.
Play in 3H, or in 4H.

General Inquiry Fundamentals

South

North

Meaning

2D

2N

General enquiry, usually with 15+ HCPs or a good 9+ HCPs and both Major suits

3C

 

This shows a No Trump balanced holding with 22-24 HCPs

 

3D

Stayman

3D

 

Either a poor 2H opening or good 2S opening. The Pivot Bid

 

3H

Alternative Relay Bid. This response to 3 D may be passed

 

3S

Alternative Relay Bid. This response to 3 D if forcing

3H

 

Good Weak Two in Hearts

 

3S

Asking for the splinter after a 3H rebid by the opener

3S

 

Poor Weak Two in Spades

 

3N

To play

 

4 any

Cuebid

3N

 

Shows 6-3-3-2 distribution and enough entries to run the Major suit

4C

 

Natural and strong

4D

 

Natural and strong

4H

 

A rare hand unsuited for 3 level preempt

4S

 

A rare hand unsuited for 3 level preempt

Presented also is a defense mechanism called Dixon and which is generally used in the United Kingdom, also presented on the Internet by Mr. David Stevenson. Using this method, the position of the Seat is of great importance and must be taken under consideration. It must also be reiterated that the use of all the guidelines presented below are recommendations and that several of the features are completely optional for the partnership agreement.

Defense features employed in Second Position:

Opener

2. Position

Meaning

2D

X

Either 12-16 HCPs, balanced or any 20+ HCPs hand

 

2H

Takeout of Spades with at least four Hearts, non-forcing

 

2S

Takeout of Hearts with at least four Hearts, non-forcing

 

2N

17-20 HCPs, balanced distribution

 

3 suit

12-16 HCPs and a good 6-card suit

 

3N

To play

 

4C

Strong Major-Minor two-suiter

 

4D

Strong Major two-suiter

 

4H

To play

 

4S

To play

 

4N

Strong Minor two-suiter

 

5C

To play

 

5D

To play

In responding to a double of a Multi 2 Diamonds opening, the responder may bid:

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

X

P

2N

Lebensohl

The overcaller, however, rebids naturally to show a balanced holding of 20 plus high card points, generally the cheapest available rebid, but can be any suit.

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

Double

P

2H/S

Natural

P

3 any suit

 

 

20+ HCPs, balanced

In the following bidding sequence, the overcaller can also show a 20 plus high card points holding even after his partner passes:

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

X

2H/S

P

 

P

3 any suit

 

 

20+ HCPs, balanced

If the overcaller bids a higher-ranking suit, the responses suggested are:

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

2H/S

P

2NT

Lebensohl

If the bidding sequence is as follows, then the partner of the overcaller has several options:

North East South
2D 2H Anything

 

West:

Meaning

Double:

Penalty Double

2S:

Weak and natural

2N:

Shows both Minor suits

3C:

Shows Clubs and Spades

3D:

Shows Diamonds and Spades

3H:

Shows 17-20 HCPs, good 6-card Minor suit and possible void in Hearts

3S:

Shows 17-20 HCPs, good 6-card Spade suit

3N:

Shows 17-20 HCPs, good 6-card Minor suit and good Hearts

If the bidding sequence is as follows, then the partner of the overcaller has several options:

North East South
2D 2H 2S
     
2D 2S Any other suit

then West has several options:

West:

Meaning

X:

Penalty Double

2S:

Weak and natural

2N:

Shows both Minor suits

3C:

Shows Clubs and Hearts

3D:

Shows Diamonds and Hearts

3H:

Shows 17-20 HCPs and a good 6-card Heart suit

3S:

Shows 17-20 HCPs, good 6-card Minor suit and possible void in Spades

3N:

Shows 17-20 HCPs, good 6-card Minor suit and good Spades

Defense features employed in Fourth Position:

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

P

2H

X

Takeout Double of Hearts

Any other bid

Natural

 

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

P

2S

X

Takeout Double of Spades

Any other bid

Natural

 

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

2H

2S

X

Takeout Double of Spades

Any other bid

Natural

There is another version/variation of the Dixon method also employed against a Multi 2 Diamonds opening, and is presented below:

Opener

Overcaller

Meaning

2D

X

Either 12-16 HCPs and balanced or any 20+ HCPs holding

 

2H

Natural

 

2S

Natural

 

2N

17-20 HCPs and balanced

 

3 any suit

12-16 HCPs and a 6-card suit in the bid suit

 

Any game bid

To play

Once the partner of the overcaller is able to respond, then:

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

X

P

2N

Lebensohl

The overcaller, however, rebids naturally to show a balanced holding of 20 plus high card points, generally the cheapest available rebid, but can be any suit.

Opener

Overcaller

Partner

Responder

Meaning

2D

X

P

2H/S

Natural

Pass

3 any suit

 

 

20+ HCPs, balanced

If the bidding sequence is as follows, then the partner of the overcaller has several options:

North East South
2D 2H P
     
2D 2H 2S
     
2D 2S P

then West has several options:

West:

Meaning

X:

Weak Takeout Double

2S:

Weak and natural

2N:

Shows both Minor suits

3C:

Strong Takeout Double

This version/variation of the Dixon method employed against a Multi 2 Diamonds opening can be altered, reversed and/or modified according to the desires of the individual partnership.

Also in the Fourth Position, a different version/variation of the Dixon method is employed by partnerships, which is perhaps more convenient in its employment against a Multi 2 Diamonds opening.

North

East

South

West

Meaning

2D

2H

Suit bid

X

Promises Hearts

 

 

 

3C

Weak Takeout of Hearts

 

 

 

3H

Strong Takeout of Hearts

 

 

 

Others

Natural

 

North East South West

Meaning

2D 2S Suit bid X

Promises Spades

      3C

Weak Takeout of Spades

      3H

Strong Takeout of Spades

      Others

Natural

 

North East South West

Meaning

2D 2H 2S X

Promises Spades

      3C

Weak Takeout of Spades

      3H

Strong Takeout of Spades

      Others

Natural

 

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