Responder’s Limit Bids
April 2, 2017
Counting Points
April 2, 2017

Opener’s First Bid

An opening bid of 1 of a suit shows 12+ points. If you have enough to open, choose from the following:

  • Longest suit
  • Higher-ranking 5-card suit
  • Lower-ranking 4-card suit*

* open your better minor if you are playing 5-card majors


High Card Points

An opening bid shows 12 or more high card points although, if you have a long suit, you can open with 11 or occasionally 10.

Which suit do you open?

You’re trying to find a suit you and your partner both like and, by opening with a suit at the 1-level, you can show partner where your length is.

If you have a 5-card suit, go ahead and bid that suit and, if you are lucky enough to have two 5-card suits, open the higher ranking.

If you don’t have a 5-card suit, open your lower ranking 4-card suit*.

*If you’re in the USA or playing 5-card majors don’t open 1H or 1S unless you have 5 of them. In those circumstances, open your better minor suit, even if you only have a 3-card suit.

On this hand you have more spades than anything else, therefore that would be a good suit to have as trumps.

Now, you have two 5-card suits. Open 1H, your higher ranking 5-card suit.

No 5-card suit this time, so open 1D.


  1. Profile photo of nigel1956 nigel1956 says:

    I am learning to play bridge. We use the acol system. Do any of your videos relate to Acol. I start to get confused when standard rules are mentioned.

    • Profile photo of graeme graeme says:

      Hi @nigel1956 and welcome to Sky Bridge Club. We have lots of Acol videos and we’re just doing a big rework of the site to make things easier to find. Right now I can’t even find anything myself! – stick around and in a day or two it’ll all become clear. In the meantime, where are you up to with your lessons? I’d be happy to find a few appropriate videos for you to watch while we finish our housekeeping.

  2. Profile photo of foxter foxter says:

    In the last example why wouldn’t you bid 1 spades as this is higher suit and you there are stronger cards?

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