Source: Gold Coast Bulletins
BUILDING A BETTER MOUSETRAP
After Jacoby Transfers
Following completion of the transfer, a jump in your own major at your second turn is a mild slam try, showing a six-card suit and at least a control-rich 13 HCP. For example, you hear partner open a 15–17 1NT and you hold: A Q 10 9 8 5 10 6 A Q 5 Q 9.
A jump to 4 shows mild slam interest. With game-going values but no slam interest, the Texas transfer gets you to game and no further. With additional shape, the simplest way forward is to use jumps in new suits as self-agreeing splinters:
A transfer to spades then a rebid of 3 would show 5–5 in the majors. Hands with 5-4 pattern in the majors go through Smolen. Fans of complexity for its own sake will find that if they have a way to show 5–5 in the majors – perhaps via Smolen sequences or by using 1NT–3/3 – they can combine singleton- and void-showing calls after transfers. 1NT–2–2–3 and 1NT–2–2–3 would both show unspecified shortness. Four-level jumps would show voids. But let’s keep it simple! A jump to 4NT over a Jacoby transfer is quantitative with a five-card major. A jump to 5NT offers a choice of slams.
By contrast, a Texas transfer requires at least a six-card suit and is the way to reach game when you have no slam interest. Texas followed by 4NT becomes key card. And the Texas transfer followed by 5NT is the grand slam force. New suits after the Texas transfer are Exclusion Blackwood, showing a void in that suit and asking partner to disregard that ace when responding to key card.
When you produce an extravagant jump or use Texas and then bid a new suit, you set the last naturally bid suit as trumps. Your new suit shows a void and asks partner for key cards excluding the ace in your void suit. Because the possibility of zero key cards is rather higher than usual, using 3041 responses in Exclusion Blackwood is preferable, as the zero-response should not take you past the trump suit.
Again, the two key-card response lets us take a shot at 7, knowing partner’s bits and pieces should cope with any slow black-suit losers. At matchpoints you might consider that seven of the exclusion suit is often used as ‘bid 7NT with this ace or seven of our suit without.’ The hand above would not be quite good enough for this treatment. But add the J and there could be 13 top tricks in no-trump.