If you bid No Trump you show that you have a balanced hand with no void, no singleton and at the most one doubleton
To open 1NT you should try to ensure that you have some control in all suits by having an
An honor card is sometimes referred to as a face cards
the Ace (A)
the King (K)
the Queen (Q)
the Jack (J)
and the Ten (10 or T) in each suit
The 10 and 9 card in any suit are known as Intermediate Cards
Opening the bidding in a major suit (heart or spade suit) with five or more cards in that suit and 13 points
This is the convention that Standard American, 5 Card Majors and Goren bidding system use.
This is not used in the ACOL bidding system where you can open the bidding with a 4 card major suit.
A holding of two cards in one suit that were initially dealt to a player.
Distribution of your hand can be in either of the three following patterns
5, 3, 3, 2
4, 3, 3, 3
4, 4, 3, 2
If your cards are in either of these three patterns your hand is called "balanced" or "flat"
Opening with a 1NT Bid
· 15-17 HCP
· a balanced hand
· No more than 1 doubleton* (2 cards)
· Your hand may contain a 5 card major suit
· Your hand may contain a 5 card minor suit
A doubleton when in a NoTrump contract should contain an honor card with the rank of Queen or higher. If the doubleton has two cards neither of which is a Q or higher then it is referred to as a "worthless doubleton" because effectively there are no stoppers in that suit
Exercise: With the hand below, what would you open the bidding?
♠ K 7 6 3
♥ A 10 8 7
♦ K Q 7
♣ A 7
Answer: Open 1NT with this hand. With no 5 card Major suit you should show your 4-4-3-2 distribution and 16 HCP