A method designed to use 2NT not only for game forcing hands for also limit raises with 4+ trumps. It is designed to let responder show a singleton or void & extra values, so that an immediate splinter bid (e.g. 1S-4C) is limited, about 10-13 high card points.
Note that M is the major bid, so 1M is 1H or 1S, 3M is 3H or 3S etc.
1M-2NT: Limit Raise or Better, four + trumps, or any 4-3-3-3 & 16+ HCP.
Normally opener makes one of two bids opposite 2NT (see passed hand bidding below):
3C: would pass limit raise.
3D: would accept limit raise, so establishes GF.
Opposite both these bids, 3M still shows the limit raise, and a new suit, except for cheapest new suit, shows shortness, a hand too good to splinter directly over 1M.
The full structure after 1M-2NT:
3C: would pass limit raise or a very weak hand in HCP; now:
3D: asks shortness:
suit bid not M: singleton/void.
3NT: 5-3-3-2 shape
4M: six or seven card suit, no singleton
3M: a 5-4-2-2,. After 3M, cheapest bid (may be 3NT) asks opener to show 4 card suit, 3NT showing Ss over 3S.
3M, 4M: to play, but opener can bid 4M over 3M with very weak hand but play for game.
3NT: choice of contracts, can have any 4-3-3-3 with 16-18 HCP.
Other: shows singleton but not void, slam try, more than an original splinter.
3D: waiting, GF, responder then:
- Bids 3M with limit raise, now cheapest bid is shortness asking (e.g. 3NT/3ª).
Example: 1©-2NT-3¨(waits)-3©(limit)-3ª(asks)-3NT(short ª).
- Bids 4M with no shortness, more than a limit raise but not much more (otherwise ask again).
- Bids cheapest new suit to ask shortness, with 3M, 4M or higher showing no shortness, and a bid of 3NT showing shortness in the ask suit e.g. 1S-2NT-3D-3H(asks)-3NT(short H).
- Shows a singleton by bidding a new suit (which shows more than a splinter if it was available).
- Bids 3NT with shortness in the cheapest new suit bid (e.g. 1H-2NT-3D-3NT = S shortness).
- Note that with any 4-3-3-3, 16+ HCP, after 3D opener must re-ask with cheapest new suit.
4M: to play with bad hand but wants to try game opposite limit raise.
Above 3D: natural, at least mild slam interest @ 3 level, good slam interest if 4 level.
[Showing or Asking by Responder]
Since opener will play M contract, responder with shortness shows it (via splinter or 2NT then shortness bid), so that opener’s hand is less revealed. Only with no shortness does responder ask opener’s shortness, to better evaluate the degree values are working or not.
[2NT by passed hand]
Good limit raise values by passed hand with simple responses:
3M: would not accept limit raise.
3C: asks singleton, 3M = C singleton, 3NT=none. 3M rebid NF by either player.
Game bids: 4M to play, 3NT suggestion.
Other: natural, slam tries.
3M by either hand shows poor hand.
Double or Redouble shows defensive cards, by opener can be the 4-3-3-3 hand with 16+ HCP.
New suit length/value showing.
Pass shows balanced hand, better than 3M.
Bidding reverts to natural.