Dear Rebecca ,
What do you do when playing 5 card majors and your partner opens 1S, with this miserable collection in your hand : x.....xxxxx.....Qxxx.....KJx ?
Well , I bid 1NT and sure as eggs are eggs he rebid 2S. In comes the loudest double ever by my LHO , passed round to me. Oh what to do ? Having nothing more to say, I passed and the contract went down 3 for 800.
Yours Enna Pickle
Dear Enna ,
Your 1NT is a perfectly sound bid , and has everything going for it. Any rebid by partner (2C/2D/2H) will be gratefully received and passed. Moreover 1NT might well be passed out , and even if partner does rebid his spades , the suit may be ( or should be ) robust enough to withstand a double. On occasions declarer will come up against a very nasty trump break, but there again so will every other declarer that night , which should make it a flat board.
Mind you we have a pair of dodgy grandmasters in our club who use a very simple system to cater for this awkward type of hand which have descibed . Any long delay before bidding 1NT tells partner you have a void or singleton in spades and not much in the way of outside values. A moderate delay shows a weak hand with a doubleton spade , whereas an instant 1NT response shows top-of-the-range points with a doubleton spade. It works a treat but please only use it at centres for approved cheating.
Yours never missing a trick, Rebecca