Strong Two Bids

Acol two openings in diamonds, hearts and spades used to show 8 playing tricks. However with the introduction of weak twos in the majors the definitions became blurred. To ensure that ‘strong’ means ‘strong’, the laws on opening strong two bids have been changed recently. You may announce an opening bid at the two bid as either “weak”, “intermediate”, or “strong” if it refers to the suit bid. If the bid refers to an undisclosed suit then it must be alerted. Opening bids of 2NT are now subject to announcements and are treated like a 1NT opening

Weak twos in the majors are quite common, and some players extend this to the opening two diamond bid. Intermediate strength openings are not common, though a bid of two clubs showing a five card club suit and less than 16pts, is a feature of Precision Club and similar systems.

Strong two opening bids in a suit must be strong, and are now subject to certain restrictions. If the bid is ‘natural’ then the hand can have wide ranging values but should have approximately opening points and 8 clear tricks. Be sure to define it properly in terms of its strength

If the bid is artificial showing a strong two in any suit then the hand must meet one of the following conditions

(I) The hand must have 8 clear tricks assuming the suit breaks the second worst way.

(ii) There is a minimum of 12 pts with 5 controls. An ace is 2 cpontrols and a king is 1 control. This is a considerable reduction on previous requirements. Many hands with 5 controls would not meet the earlier conditions.

For an 8 card suit it must be headed by the AKQJ if  the hand contains no other clear trick (an ace or KQ)

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