JACOBY TWO NO TRUMP

This conventional method was originated by Mr. Oswald Jacoby. The concept was devised to be employed in conjunction with the Limit Raises conventional method. The following examples and explanations should clarify the importance of this concept.

Example:

Opener
Responder
AKJ83
QJ85
97
QJ
Q976
J1074
K84
AK
1
2 No Trump

If the responder has more than 10-12 support points for the suit of the opener, then the responder will use the Jacoby 2 No Trump method to show game-going values of 13 plus support points. This response is absolutely game forcing, and the opener may not pass until game has been reached.

Partnership Agreement for Jacoby 2 No Trump:

1. The responder is required to have an excellent 12 points or 13 plus support points for the Major suit of the opener.
2. The responder needs a minimum 4-card support in the bid suit of the opener.
3. The Jacoby 2 No Trump response is game forcing.
4. With only a 3-card suit support, the responder must bid another suit.
5. If the responder is a passed hand, then a 2 No Trump response is a natural bid.
6. A Jacoby 2 No Trump response is used normally only as a response to a Major suit opening.
7. A Jacoby 2 No Trump response after a Minor suit opening is only used with partnership agreement.

The opener, after realizing that the responder has at least a 4-card support for his suit and that a trump suit has been established, can further describe his holding. It is important to remember that the Jacoby 2 No Trump response is not a Limit Bid. The responder may have more values, and is therefore an unlimited bid.

If the opener rebids 4, then the opener shows minimum strength from 12 to 14 support points, no interest in continuing the auction, and normally sets the final contract. The only situation where a slam may be attempted is when the responder has additional values not yet shown, such as a void or a doubleton headed by the Ace/King and a void.

Example 1:

Opener
Responder
AK974
AQ98
98
87
Q1086
J105
K74
AK6
1
2 No Trump
4
If the opener rebids 3 No Trump, then the opener shows a holding with medium strength between 15 and 17 support points. The responder, upon re-evaluation of his holding may or may not consider a slam attempt.

Example 2:

Opener
Responder
KJ1076
QJ10
AQ2
Q4
Q985
K54
K843
AJ
1
2 No Trump
3 NT
If the opener rebids 3 , then the opener shows maximum strength or 18 plus support points and a definite interest in slam.

Example 3:

Opener
Responder
AKQ96
93
AQJ
Q65
J1084
Q87
K843
AK
1
2 No Trump
3
If the opener rebids 3 / 3 / 3, then this rebid of a new suit on the Three Level promises shortness, either a singleton or a void, in that suit. The significance of this rebid is useful to the responder in re-evaluating his holding and consider seriously the possibility of attempting a slam. The responder has the information that his partner holds a singleton or a void in the rebid suit and that the opponents can not possibly take the first two tricks in that suit, even if the opponents hold the Ace and King of that suit. The responder also realizes that the opener is looking at slam possibilities.

There are several partnership agreement variations regarding the point range to communicate when bidding a singleton. This is entirely a partnership understanding. The point range can be agreed upon to be a moderate to good opening count or even showing a point count exceeding 18 plus points. The general consensus is that the point count should be at least 14 points before deciding to show a singleton, and that the trump suit should contain at least 2 or 3 touching honors of the top 5 honors, or even have a certain Losing Trick Count. However, as mentioned, these guidelines can be varied according to the partnership agreement.

Example 4:

Opener
Responder
AKJ1076
AK4
K105
6
Q986
J1075
QJ8
AK
1
2 No Trump
3
If the opener jump rebids to the four level except for the agreed trump suit, such as 4 / 4 / 4, then this jump rebid by the opener shows a two-suited hand. The second suit should have at least two honors and must be a 5-card suit, such as the KJ10xx, and contain the values for attempting slam. The holding must contain either a singleton or a void, but instead of cuebidding the singleton or void, the opener will inform his partner first of his second 5-card suit. This action is not considered to be a Splinter bid, since a singleton can be shown as in Example 4.

Example 5:

Opener
Responder
AKJ107
AK
J
KJ1086
Q986
Q1087
K9
AQ9
1
2 No Trump
4
Interference:

There are several ways to handle interference from the opponents. If there is a direct overcall or Takeout Double over a 1 Heart or 1 Spade opening, the standard agreement is that the Jacoby 2 No Trump response is off. The concept behind the Jacoby 2 No Trump response is generally to explore slam possibilities. After a direct overcall by an opponent, a slam seems unlikely. Although an overcall typically does not prevent the responder from bidding 2 No Trump, the 2 No Trump response in such situations has proven to be more useful as a natural, invitational, and non-forcing response.

Example 1:

West
North
East
South
Q986
J1087
K9
AJ9
Pass
1
2
2 NT

When playing systems off, the response of 2 No Trump by South in the above example can be used to show 10-12 high card points and a stopper in the bid suit of the opponent. This response no longer means that South has a 4-card Spade support and game-going values in Spades. The response becomes now natural and invitational.

Example 2:

West
North
East
South
KQ75
AJ3
J4
QJ62
Pass
1
2
3
In the case that the responder does have game-going values and a 3/4-card support in opener's suit, then, using Limit Raises, the responder will cuebid the suit of the opponent to show this holding. This cuebid is absolutely artificial and says nothing about the cuebid suit.

Example 3:

West
North
East
South
KQ75
AJ3
J4
QJ62
Pass
1
Double
2 NT

In the above example, the opponent has Doubled, instead of overcalling with a suit bid. The general guideline, using Limit Raises, is to treat this double as non-existent. The Jacoby 2 No Trump response is once again used in its original interpretation. It is treated as if the double does not exist. The idea behind this systems on again feature is the fact that no bidding space has been consumed.

In the case that an opponent decides to enter the bidding after a Jacoby 2 No Trump response, then the opener has several options available to describe his holding, whether a minimum opening or a medium holding of 15-17 support points.

Example 1:

North
East
South
West
1
Pass
2 NT
3 //

Since South still has a turn to bid, North has the following options depending on his holding:

1. A Pass shows shortness, either a singleton or void, in the suit of the opponent.
2. The bid or a new suit shows shortness, either a singleton or void, in that suit.
3. A bid of game in the agreed Major suit shows minimum strength, no singleton or void, and a semi-balanced hand.
4. A bid of 3 No Trump shows a medium to maximum strength with no shortness in any other suit.
Some of the other conventions used together with the Limit Raises conventional method are:

Swiss - The Swiss Convention requires a response of Four in A Minor Suit to an Opening of One in a Major Suit and shows a Standard Forcing Raise to the three-level. This means 13-15 points.

Singleton Swiss - This variation of the Swiss Convention is short and to the point. The cards of the responder must have a definite distribution.

Mini-Splinter - The application of the Mini-Splinter shows, after a Jump Shift by either the Opener or Responder, a definite Suit Fit and also a Singleton or even a Void in the suit bid.

Super Swiss - A means of showing either a Singleton or a Void after establishing a Fit.

Omnibus Two No Trump - A step by step Bidding Process with artificial bids to indicate length and strength.