Unusual 2NT
February 14, 2017
Rule of 11
February 14, 2017

Stayman

Stayman

The Stayman convention is used to find a 4-4 major fit after a 1NT or 2NT opening. Responder ASKS opener for a 4-card major by bidding 2.
Opener has 3 options

  1. 2 = no 4-card major
  2. 2 = 4 hearts, maybe 4 spades as well
  3. 2 = 4 spades, not 4 hearts

Practice hands for those playing a strong 1NT openning ( 15-17 )

Play

Practice hands for those playing a weak 1NT openning ( 12-14 )

Play

When to use Stayman

Responder must possess a 4-card major to use Stayman and the opener must reply.

Stayman is best considered as a 2-step process – Ask for partner’s 4-card major then how your shape and strength.

Stayman asks for a 4 card major



You have enough for game with this hand, so tell partner. You have also found a spade fit. The best game will be 4. If partner had bid 2 or 2 you would follow have simply bid 3NT

42 Comments

  1. If you initially pass, your partner will open 1 . After you respond 2, partner rebids his spades. What would this usually promise? Why would he rebid s here?

    Of course, there might be another good option you could have done to start the auction besides passing for those playing Weak 2s. Did you consider opening your s? Why or why not?

    Inspired by @drroflstomp‘s fantastic question, @tina and @helen recorded a quick video about this auction…

  2. Profile photo of drroflstomp drroflstomp says:

    @graeme or @tina does rebidding a suit promise 6? I was disappointed to see North’s hand after he bid spades twice. Its not even a very good 5 cards spade suit.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P 4
    P P P

  3. Profile photo of hound hound says:

    I would also be interested in what @grahame/@Tina has to say. My take for what its worth is that North is in a very difficult rebid spot of trouble after our 2 heart bid and his very minimal opening hand. The other options of 2 NT, or Pass, are unappetizing. My computer suggestion (which I ignored ) was 2 Spades by South. Like you I felt I NEEDED to bid my Hearts but things would likely have worked out better if we hadn’t. North with his measly offering could then just pass 2 spades.
    So Its the usual story of there rarely being a perfect bid just the best compromise.

    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P 4
    P P P

  4. Profile photo of graeme graeme says:

    Hi @drroflstomp and @hound,
    This is quite a common situation. I think @hound sums it up pretty well with “the usual story of there rarely being a perfect bid just the best compromise”.
    I actually wrote about it on a hand from the previous day. Check this out and please feel free to comment.
    http://skybridgeclub.com/compete_16_11_29_6/

  5. Profile photo of holley holley says:

    Went down 1 in 4spades.
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 1
    P 1 P 2
    P 2N P 3
    P 4 P P
    P

  6. Profile photo of holley holley says:

    Opened correctly with 2H this time and made contract.
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  7. Profile photo of hlabreche hlabreche says:

    Opened 2H here and PPP. Made 3 ! No other bid as far as I am concerned.

    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, weak twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  8. Profile photo of hugmada hugmada says:

    Weak two only bid I reckon
    Bid 2H and got 8
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  9. Profile photo of says:

    bid was 2 spades .

    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  10. Profile photo of normie616 normie616 says:

    weak 2 Hearts contract and made it cheers normie sa
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  11. Profile photo of suzie08 suzie08 says:

    I opened 2 hearts partner bid 2 spades and I passed making 8 spades
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  12. Profile photo of cherj cherj says:

    I opened 2 H, partner passed, made 9 tricks.
    Bidding system: weak 2’s
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  13. Profile photo of pantazis pantazis says:

    Passed first round
    Responded 2h and passed after 2S
    Made 3S
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P P
    P

  14. Profile photo of pasanaa pasanaa says:

    South passed the first round and bid 2H only after North opened withh 1H. This usually means (in Standard) five cards and 10 hcp. So why should North support hearts when he has only one of them?
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P

  15. Not really an easy hand to bid, but I’d see 2S as a minimum opener, and leave it there.

  16. Profile photo of sandra sandra says:

    played in 2 spades and made 9
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  17. Profile photo of jan2bridge jan2bridge says:

    Thank you for explaining . I did not think twice.
    I automatically assumed partner had 6 spades and figured with my strong Heart hand we could make game.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 1
    P 1 P 2
    P 2N P 4
    P P P

  18. Profile photo of sockstevens sockstevens says:

    Played and made 4H. Odd that W didn’t front up with the AH.
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, strong twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 1
    P 1 P 2
    P 2N P 4
    P P P

  19. Profile photo of chini chini says:

    Opening should have been 2H. Possible then. 1S would be bid if H not bid but wouldn’t make.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P 3
    P 3N P P
    P

  20. Profile photo of judyjunkin judyjunkin says:

    Crazy North hand! I opened with 2 H and N said 2 S. With 3 of his suit, I raised to 3 S and CRAZY North went to 6!. What possessed this person/machine? Of course, I didn’t make it.! I had watched the hand bid with Tina and Helen bidding, so know 2 Spades was the bid.! OH well, I will never get use to North’s bidding.! C’est le vive.!
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P 3
    P 6 P P
    P

  21. Profile photo of judyjunkin judyjunkin says:

    Played hand again. This time I passed to begin the bidding and N bid 1 Spade, I bid 2 H and N went to 2 S. I passed and we made 3 S. That is all the hand was worth.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  22. Profile photo of rocky25 rocky25 says:

    rocky25 Sez
    I as south opened 2HTS(weak)
    Ended up in 2HTS, making 2HTS
    ?????
    Rocky25
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  23. Profile photo of lesorcan lesorcan says:

    I was going to ask hound ( he/she commented on 12/01) why a 2H bid wasn’t forthcoming (he/she employs weak 2’s) and congratulate you, rocky25, on how effective weak 2 bids, especially in a major, can be! Regards, lesorcan
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  24. Profile photo of joueur007 joueur007 says:

    I bid 2H and partner passed. I made 4H.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  25. Profile photo of aujeanne aujeanne says:

    I would not go to the 2 level with less than10hc pts. …… Therefore I bid 2 spades knowing we had a fit.

    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P P P

  26. Profile photo of bcoughlin bcoughlin says:

    I opened 2 hearts. Partner bid 2 spades, I passed. We made 8.
    Thanks.
    Have good holidays.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  27. Profile photo of janetru janetru says:

    First time ended up in 4 spades and went down one — second time bid and made 2 hearts. Learned that to go to the three level as opener, one is promising game? Enjoyed video — thanks.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  28. Profile photo of denise1938 denise1938 says:

    Why would you bid 2 hearts, you need 10 points to bid at the 2 level

    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P P P

  29. Profile photo of rhudon rhudon says:

    Partner put us into 4 Spades…after I supported spades after bidding hearts twice. guess I should have bid 2 Spades 🙁 Down 2

    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 1
    P 1 P 2
    P 2N P 3
    P 4 P P
    P

  30. My partner and I open 2 hearts with 6 hearts and at least 4 points in hearts. However, opening 2 hearts limits the opener to just this one bid so when the partner bid 2 spades, the opener passes. If the partner in this game has the Q (or A) of hearts and points, why shouldn’t he bid 3 hearts? When I played 2 spades I only made 2 spades so I guess I should have played better to make 3! On the other hand, maybe we make more hearts.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  31. Profile photo of markpx markpx says:

    I think sequence should be: North 1S, South 2H, North 2S, South 3S, North pass.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, weak notrump, weak twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P 3
    P 4 P P
    P

  32. Profile photo of elizakaye elizakaye says:

    I could not see the sense in going to 3 s. But I made 9 spades. Does everyone open with 12 points and 8 losers? What are the rules for that.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  33. Profile photo of elizakaye elizakaye says:

    When I opened with a weak 2 hearts I made the contract, but when I went 2 hearts over 1S, and the computer went 2 spades I could only make 8 for some reason.

  34. Not playing weak 2’s we ended in 2 spades ( Ptn must reply after 1st round change of suit regardless) after 2 heart response. Made 9.
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  35. Profile photo of elizakaye elizakaye says:

    I opened 1NT and my partner went 2 spades. I thought it was transferring to a minor so I bid 2 clubs, but they really meant spades so we ended up in 3 spades. It can be made but I went down by 2.

  36. Profile photo of elizakaye elizakaye says:

    I wanted to play it in 3 Hearts but the computer put me up to 4. Only made 9. I don’t think it is possible to make 10.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P 3
    P 4 P P
    P

  37. Profile photo of joanbrookes joanbrookes says:

    Bidding system:
    Weak NT, 4-card majors, Stayman, transfers, weak 3×2’s
    Auction:
    — P, 2 H,
    2 S, P, P, P

    We made 8 tricks. I am finding more and more that opening a weak Two really works with both my partner and myself.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  38. Profile photo of joanbrookes joanbrookes says:

    P.S. I do not play 5 card majors, strong notrumps, strong two’s as indicated above. I wish that could be removed on the above.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  39. Profile photo of mayroses mayroses says:

    Easliy made 2S plus 1. Seems maybe this hand could do 3N
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, weak twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  40. Profile photo of frankkegley frankkegley says:

    I very much disagree with North’s opening bid. A stiff Queen is extremely liable to be worthless. One of the rules I use for evaluating my hand for opening the bidding is this:

    Any card I don’t see in my own hand is TWICE AS LIKELY to belong to one of the opponents. This makes sense as the opponents have 26 cards to your partner’s 13.

    Therefore, had I been sitting North, with 3 passes to me, I would have passed the hand out, spade length be darned!

    Bidding System: 5 card majors, weak notrump, weak twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 2
    P P P

  41. do not play weak two so straight forward bidding made 3s
    Bidding System: 4 card majors, weak notrump, strong twos, transfers.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P P
    P 1 P 2
    P 2 P P
    P

  42. Profile photo of cacho cacho says:

    went down 3 in 4 spades.
    Bidding System: 5 card majors, strong notrump, strong twos.
    Auction
    W N E S
    – – P 1
    P 1 P 2
    P 2N P 3
    P 4 P P
    P

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