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The Kickback Convention

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The origin of this concept is by Mr. Jeff Rubens of Scarsdale, New York, United States. The concept is also a result of an application called U.S.P., or Useful Space Principle, also conceived by Mr. Jeff Rubens, which is defined as when allocating bidding space under partnership agreements and understandings, then assign the bidding space where most useful without reference to natural or traditional bridge meanings of calls. This U.S.P. principle was published by The Bridge World magazine, 1980-1981.

 Mr. Jeff Rubens concluded that the Blackwood conventional method and most, if not all, of its variations contained within them the disadvantage of actually wasting useful bidding space. This was especially true if the trump suit is not Spades. The concept of Kickback was devised in order to avoid and alleviate this particular drawback by employing some bid other than the usual and traditional 4 No Trump bid as the Keycard Asking Bid.

Therefore, according to Mr. Jeff Rubens, the suit employed to trigger the request for Keycards, or the so-called Kickback suit, is the suit in rank above the agreed trump suit and the Kickback bid is four of this suit. This conventional method may be employed for all four suits, for both Minor suits and Major suits.

As long as the agreed trump suit has been clearly implied and/or definitely established, then it is of no importance whether or not this suit has been previously bid by either partner or opponent in the case of any intervening call or overcall or implied suits via any double.

Note: Some partnerships have the understanding that the Kickback conventional method is typically, normally, and generally employed when the trump suit is a Minor suit. Therefore, the Ace-Asking or Keycard-Asking bid in Kickback is four of the suit above the agreed / established trump suit, i.e. 4 for Diamonds and 4 for Clubs. Compare: Redwood conventional method.  

Response Method 0314

The responses to the Kickback Asking bids are accomplished by steps and the meanings are identical to the responses to the 4 No Trump Keycard Asking bid employed in the Roman Keycard Blackwood convention.

Opener   Responder   Meaning
    Limit Raise or Forcing Raise is a matter of partnership agreement. The trump suit is established.
      Kickback Keycard Asking Bid.
    First Step:   Promises 0 or 3 Keycards.
    Second Step:   Promises 1 or 4 Keycards.
    Third Step:   Promises 2 or 5 Keycards without the Queen of Trump.
    Fourth Step:   Promises 2 or 5 Keycards with the Queen of Trump.

Response Method 1430 Click here  to continue reading

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