How's cuebidding different in the fourth seat?
Ala natural, when opener begins with a possible short suit minor
However, it's a different story when opener holds a 5 card major
With only 2 bidders, 2N should show strength
Sandwich bidders promise a filling spread unlike opponents' suits
But sandwich suit bids show a real suit
When using Michaels and the Unusual No Trump bids, what do these bids mean
in the balance seat? For some reason, all Iíve read only discusses these
two-suited bids in the direct seat.
Sigh, this is one of those "it depends" (on partnership agreement) grey
areas. But let's take a look at some basics. Which of these bids might be
useful as natural bids?
A. (1C) -
P - (P) - 2C;
B. (1S) -
P - (P) - 2S;
C. (1C) -
P - (P) - 2N;
D. (1S) -
P - (P) - 2N;
A. (1C) - P - (P) - 2C;
Using 2C as a natural bid makes a lot of sense Ė balancer can
freely bid the higher of two long suits, so most players agree over LHO's 1
minor (short suit), bidding that suit should be natural. Note the bid
is alertable since bidding opponents' suit is normally considered
B. (1S) - P - (P) - 2S;
It makes no sense to play 2S as natural when the LHO would be
finessing the balancer. So this must be Michaels or some other form of
cuebid, depending on partnership agreement.
C. (1C) - P - (P) - 2N;
While I suppose some would bid 2N as Unusual, most players would
prefer to bid 2H and then rebid 3D to show a two suited hand.
Instead play 2 Notrump as a natural balanced hand with values approximating
a strong 1 Notrump opening hand. See
Bidding 2 Notrump in passout seat
Finally, you should also have partnership agreements on auctions as:
E. (1C) -
P - (1H) - 1N;
F. (1C) -
P - (1H) - 2C/H
E. (1C) - P - (1H) - 1N;
Many Duplicate player like to use "Sandwich Notrump" (long in the other
suits) for this bid. In fact, the advancer could overcall 2 Notrump with an
even more distributional hand and good vulnerability. Note - this bid is an
F. (1C) - P - (1H) - 2C/H
A nice treatment is the "Sandwich Overcalls" here, playing advancerís
bids as purely natural. After all, the opener may be short bidding a
convenient minor and responder certainly may hold a 4 card major.
Interestingly, this natural bid is also alertable since by definition
cuebids of opponentís suit are considered some sort of conventional
Incidentally, Mike Lawrence did write a fine book dealing with
these problems - see "The
Book on Balancing in Contract Bridge".