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Responding to Benjaminised Acol

Make sure you know what your two level opener system is and that partner has the same understanding, before playing. The advantage of Benji Acol is that you have a lot more hands that can be described by a 2 level opening. The downside of this flexibility is that it allows for lots more misunderstandings and mistakes. For this reason absolute beginners usually prefer to play Strong Two’s.

What are my bids?

Overview

There are many different responses which you need to know in order to respond properly to a Benji Two level opening. This is the reason players usually wait until they are more experienced before playing Benj Two Level openers. You need to know whether you are responding to a strong or a weak hand in your partner’s hand, and you need to know whether to give a positive or a negative response to partners opener.

Responding to Strong  2 level Openings

Partner opens 2♦  (23+ points – game force)

1. Negative response is 2♥ this bid shows 0-7 points and says nothing about the suits you hold, you show your suits with your rebid (second bid).

2. Positive response is anything other suit, which promises 8+ points and natural suits. It is responder’s decision whether to make a slam or grand slam try after this opening bid.

Partner opens 2♣  (18-22 points – 9 playing tricks)

1. Negative Response; Give opener a chance to bid their own suit as 2C does not describe the cards in partner’s hand, for this you use a relay bid  2♦, which says nothing about your points or your suits it just gives the opener a chance to bid his own suit. After opener has rebid you can show your suits and strength, again it is usually responders responsibility to decide the final contract whether it is part-game, game or slam.

2. Positive response; Give opener a chance to bid their own suit use a relay bid of 2♦, which says nothing about your points or your suits it just give the opener a chance to bid his own suit. After opener has rebid you can show your suits and strength. It is usually responders responsibility to decide the final contract whether it is part-game, game or slam.

Partner opens 2NT (20-22 points – balanced hand )
  • Stayman bid (8+ points)
  • Jacoby Transfers (0-19 points)
  • Bid game (5+ points) 
  • Weak takeout (5 card suit  except for club suit and less than 3 points,)
  • Pass (you are on your own partner)

Responding to the weak  2 level bids

Partner opens 2♥ or 2♠( 6-10 points – 6 card suit)

Your strong responses to partner’s weak 2 bid are;

  • Bid a new suit usually indicates responder has strong hand (17+) and no support for opener’s suit
  • Bid 2NT which is a strong enquiry (usually 15+ points) looking to bid game in openers suit
    • 3C minimum points (6-8) with bad trump suit
    • 3D minimum points (6-8) with good trump suit
    • 3H maximum points (8-10) with bad trump suit
    • 3S maximum points (8-10) with good trump suit