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Michaels bid

MICHAELS BID . . . What happens next?

Q:  The other day I picked up the following hand:

H   Q
D   A Q 10 9 8 7 3
C   Q 10 8 5 3

My left hand opponent opened with 1D.  Partner bid 2 D showing both majors.  EEK!!! What do I do with this hand?   I decided that since partner had majors and I had minors, NT would be a good spot but partner then bid 4 D and since that seemed like a good place, I passed.  When the opponents doubled us, partner then bid hearts and we went down a bundle.  Why did partner bid again?

A:  Partner’s hand was in the majors and their 4D bid was a “pick your major suit game” since you had shown that you could support either.  Huh?  Support either?  Yes, since you bid 2NT, you showed that you not only had the other suits covered but had some cards to get to partner’s hand as well.  Partner held: 

S  A K 7 6 5 4
H   K J 9 5 3 2
C   K

Understandably, partner was SURE there was a major suit game once you bid 2N and you should have at least a couple of cards in one or the other of their suits. So what should you have bid?  How about PASS?   Even though your left hand opponent bid diamonds, you have 7 very good ones.   You really don’t want to play in NT since how can you get from one hand to the other?  Partner won’t be happy if you pass but you really need to slow down this auction and tell partner your hand is almost totally in the opponent’s suits. The lower you keep this auction, the better it will be.  Don’t worry, this hand will come up about every 10 to 20 years.


Q:  The other day I picked up the following hand:

S –  A Q 10 8 4
H –  9
D – K Q 7 4 3
C –  5 3

My right hand opponent opened with 1H.  We had agreed to play Michaels and I had read about Michaels over majors  showing the other major and a minor so I bid 2H.   The next player passed and my partner bid 2N so I raised to 3N. Partner then bid 4C.  What the heck was happening???

A:  Partner’s bid of 2N was asking you to bid your minor.   It was not a “natural” no-trump bid.  Their 4C bid was an attempt to rescue your side into a better contract.  What kind of hand might partner have for this bid?  How about:

S  7
H  10 5 3 2
D  K 10 9 4
C  A 7 6 2

Q:  Then why didn’t partner just bid 3C and let me correct to diamonds, if that was my minor suit?

A:  Let me ask you a question.  What should partner do with the following:

H  10 5 3
D  9 4
C  K Q 10 7 6 4 2

Partner knows you have spades and suspects your minor suit is diamonds.  However, with a really long suit of their own, they suspect that the best contract would be in clubs — and it is!   Do you really want to “correct” the contract to 3D?  Remember, bridge is a partnership game — trust that your partner is working to get the two of you to a good contract!