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Partner opens 1NT, 2NT or 3NT  
 
1NT in Acol is often a very difficult place to play, the opposition usually have more points than you. So, when your partner opens 1NT you must think about the difficulty s/he will be in if you leave them to play there. If you have a four card Major suit and 11+ HCP

A quick overview of responses

“Always add points in your hand to partners minimum points range - this will help you to know what your contract should be”

Negative Responses to Partner's 1NT opening bid

Opening Bid Negative Reply Points Meaning of Responder Bid
1NT Pass 0-7 Game is out of reach and you have no five card suit to bid
1NT 2C 8+ Stayman, promising a 4+ card major asking partner
to bid their 4 card major (2H or 2S) if they have one, otherwise rebid 2D (can have as few as 8 HCP for this bid)
1NT 2D, 2H or 2S 0-9 are all sign off bids - promising five cards in the bid suit with only minimum points.


Negative Responses to Partner's 2NT opening bid

Opening Bid Responders Negative Reply Points Meaning of Responder Bid
2NT Pass 0-2 Game is out of reach and you have no five card suit to bid
2NT 3C 0-3 Stayman, promising a 4+ card major asking partner to bid their 4 card major (3H or 3S) if they have one
2NT 3D/3H/3S 0-2 sign off bids - promising five cards in the bid suit with only minimum points. Opener must pass.


Negative Responses to Partner's 3NT opening bid

Opening Bid Responders Negative Reply Points Meaning of Responder Bid
3NT Pass 0-7 no five card suit to bid and less than 8 HCP for a slam
3NT 5D, 4H or 4S 0-7 are all sign off bids - promising five cards in the bid suit with only minimum points. Opener must pass.


Exercise: Your partner opens 1 NT, what should you bid?


Your Hand
  • A 3
  • J 10 6
  • 6 4 3 2
  • A Q J 5

Answer: Your bid is 2 NT - your 12 HCP added to Partners minimum of 12 HCP mean you are just one point short of game. Partner will bid 3NT if they have 13-14 HCP




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