How to compete against opponent’s no-trump

Bridge

Barry Neil Kaufman, an author, said, “A loud voice cannot compete with a clear voice, even if it’s a whisper.”

Bridge players like to compete in the auction. This week we will look at intervening after an opponent has opened one no-trump.

There are several models on the market.

Dont enjoys considerable popularity, but I prefer Cappelletti because, with a major-minor two-suiter, you name the major immediately (whereas Dont shows the minor). I believe that bridge revolves around the majors. So, let’s concentrate on Cappelletti (which in some circles is known as Hamilton or Pottage).

The anchor intervention is two clubs, which shows at least six cards in any of the four suits. Assuming the responder passes, the advancer (as the overcaller’s partner is known) asks for his partner’s suit with a two-diamond relay (but he may pass with long clubs or show his own lengthy major).

In today’s deal, for example, South bids two clubs then three clubs to show his long suit. North should let South become the declarer because he should have a good suit to drive the auction to the three-level. (Note that three diamonds goes down one, losing three spades and two diamonds.)

East takes the first three tricks in spades and shifts to the heart jack. Now the trump suit must be played for just one loser. The only chance is to find an opponent with jack-doubleton. So, South cashes the club ace and continues with the club queen.