MALCOLM CLOUTT e-mailed this question: What value should I put on tens when making a no-trump reply to my partner’s 1NT opening bid?
As we all know, point counts are only a guide to evaluating your hand. Just because you have a combined 26-count, this does not give a guarantee that game will have any play at all, and likewise a combined 19-count will sometimes give us nine straightforward tricks in no-trumps. The Milton Work point count (A=4, K=3, Q=2, J=1) is the most popular method, and pretty good at providing a guide for balanced hands. For distributional hands, some prefer the
Losing Trick Count as this awards value to shortages and extra length.
The Milton Work count gives no value to tens, and yet they are often much more valuable than smaller cards, especially in no-trump contracts. My advice would be…Click here to continue reading