Successful bidding is all about getting into the action whenever you possibly can. Caution, timidity and silence rarely bring about good results. Occasionally, your frisky bidding might push opponents into a game contract that unbelievably makes, but more often than not your pushing will lead them into unmakeable contracts, or possibly inferior ones. Moreover, if you don't bid your hand at the first opportunity, you may never get another to tell partner where your assets are. If partner has to lead blind, there is little likelihood of finding the best defence.
So if you have a very lack-lustre and uninspiring hand, look to find reasons to bid it rather than pass. Often the zar method of evaluating hands prompts players to open the bidding on hands with only 9 HCPs, such as KQxxx...xx....Axxxx...x. This collection adds up to 27 zars ( 12+10+5 ) which certainly warrants an opening bid. Indeed, many top class players use a raft of conventions to show weak 2-suited distributional hands, not to mention the mini notrump in Ist/2nd positions, plus light openers in the 3rd position after 2 passes. These aggressive fearless bids have much going for them, because in the world of bridge faint hearts never win a damn thing.
Even bidding on tram tickets up to slam level has its merits, providing the following conditions apply :
- Green against red
- Double fit with partner
- Useful voids and singletons
- Highly distributional hands ( but with no duplication of shape )
- Plenty of cross-ruffing potential
- Any penalty double will result in a very profitable sacrifice
So imagine you pick up a yarborough xxxxx....x.....xxxxxx....x opposite the hand listed above. Your RHO opponent opens 1c ( no surprise there ) and on your left comes a bid of 1H. A take-ot double from partner, only to hear a confident 4NT on your right ! What do you do ? Bid 6H of course fixing opponents good and proper. Doubling this would be fatuous, yet for the opponents to bid on to a grand would be a blind leap of faith. 6H minus 12 only loses 600. Double of 6H to enable an escape into 6S could result in minus 3, or minus 5 tricks, for 500 or 1100 penalty respectively. These scores as it happens are far superior to a score of -1430.