Conventions: Good-Bad 2NT



Let’s prefix this article with a warning.  Please, no reason to read this unless you and your Partner are fully familiar with the [ilink url=»»]Lebensohl[/ilink] concept. If these Lebensohl situations are already part of your bidding arsenal, then you are no doubt ready for the Good-Bad 2NT!

 Let’s start by reviewing the basic 1NT-Lebensohl situation, as illustrated by these two hands:

A: 7    954   KJT985  753
B:  94    KQJ842   A975  

After Partner opens 1NT and RHO bids a natural 2vwith Hand A, you have no aspirations for game, but you would surely like to compete to 3.  With Hand B, you want to play in game … whether that game should be 3NT or 5 will depend to a large extent on Opener’s Spade holding.  Clearly, you cannot use 3 for both of these hands.

Using Lebensohl, we can give up on the natural 2NT and use it as a way to double the rest of our sequences … 2NT is used as our way of competing to the 3-leveland bidding directly at the 3-level is a stronger sequence.

 Here’s an example from Board 16 of the Wednesday Game, 25th Oct, 2006.  The auction had started as follows:

                West   North   East     South

                Pass   1        1        Dbl

                2       ??

 This was North’s hand :   AQ8    T932   Q9632  A

North would like to compete to the 3-level in the 4-4 Heart fit, but she does not want to show extra values.  So, she bids 2NT, requesting that Partner bids 3 (or 3, we’ll come back to that later).  Now, when North converts to 3, Partner will know that we have no extras to speak of and are merely competing.  But, give us the same hand but with an extra King and we would bid 3 directly, inviting game.

 Basic Conditions

 Under what conditions does this Good-Bad 2NT apply?  You’ll get numerous different answers to that question, we suggest that you start with a rigorous and limiting set of rules, and then consider expanding from there.  At the very least you could play Good-Bad under these conditions:

              Only on by Opener

              and Responder must have taken some action (but not a game-invitational bid, see below)

              and Opener’s RHO must have bid 2 or 2 or 2


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