♠Q 7 5 4 ♥— ♦K Q 10 9 6 5 3 ♣6 2
What’s your call?
Most of the panel bypassed their major suit. They preferred to try and play in their seven-card suit. Here’s what they said:
Larry Cohen: “If I respond 1♠, partner will kill me with 2♥, and I won’t be able to get out in 3♦. This would be more comfortable if we were playing Flannery (not that I do).”
August Boehm: “If I bid 1♠ and bid diamonds next, I will get an unwelcome correction to spades. This problem is a good argument for Flannery.”
Mel Colchamiro: “I bid 1NT, intending to bid diamonds next, of course.”
Kay and Randy Joyce: “Because 1NT is forcing, we will bid that rather than confuse the issue with a spade bid. Our hand is about diamonds, not spades.”
Jeff Meckstroth: “Bidding 1♠ is too dangerous. I want to play in diamonds and a 1♠ response can’t handle most rebids by opener.”
Jill Meyers: “I want to be able to get to diamonds.”
Kerri Sanborn: “If I were to begin with 1♠, there would be a lot of impossible auctions. Discretion says to play the deal in diamonds.”
Karen Walker: “My goal is to play a diamond partscore, and this is the only way to get there.”
Peggy and John Sutherlin: “1NT gives us our best chance to play a diamond partial. If we start with 1♠, we will have a hard time convincing partner our distribution is 4–7.”
Allan Falk: “I start with a forcing 1NT and hope to get a chance to bid 3♦ next.”
Steve Robinson: “It’s very unlikely to be able to play in diamonds if I bid 1♠.”
The minority bid 1♠.
Mike Lawrence: “If partner rebids 1NT, I can still get to diamonds. If he rebids 2♥, however, we will lose the diamond suit.”
Kitty and Steve Cooper: “1♠ is automatic. The problem is coming on the next round.”
Don Stack: “I have great admiration for bidding 1NT forcing, followed by a non-forcing diamond bid, but we might have a spade fit. If partner rebids 1NT, I can jump to 3♦ showing six or more diamonds and a weak hand.”
You can do it, if your methods allow it.
Barry Rigal: “There’s a good case for a forcing 1NT, then diamond bids, but that lets spades get away from us. After 1♠, if partner bids 2♣, I will pass and pray.”
Bridge Baron: “Major suits are for computers, minor suits for humans.”
Most of the time, playing in a partscore in diamonds will be best. To do so, South has to plan ahead and start with a forcing 1NT.