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4=3=3=3 hands (with 4 spades)


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With 4=3=3=3 shape, when should you show or suppress your 4-card spade suit?

AS RESPONDER:

If you are the responder to 1♠ or 1♠, typically show the 4-card spade suit. You don’t want to miss a 4-4 fit, especially if opener happens to be unbalanced. So, respond 1♠ to 1♠ or 1♠ with: ♠K1076 ♠A32 ♠Q76 ♠432.  If you are responding to 1♠, you should raise to 2♠ with 6-10 in support of hearts (ignore the spades). If you have more than 10, you can start with 1♠ and raise hearts next round. So, raise 1♠ to 2♠ with ♠K654 ♠K107 ♠QJ2 ♠654, but respond 1♠ with ♠AQ76 ♠A32 ♠K32 ♠765.

If responding to 1NT, tend not to use Stayman with 4-3-3-3 hands (just treat them as balanced notrump hands).

AS OPENER

If partner responds to your 1♠ opening with 1♠, don’t show the spades with a balanced hand (this is the modern "Walsh" style). Rebid 1NT with 12-14 balanced and 2NT with 18-19 balanced. When partner responds 1♠, he either won’t have 4 spades, or it is his job to show them later. So, rebid 1N after 1♠-1♠ with ♠QJ76 ♠KJ7 ♠KJ4 ♠K32 and rebid 2N with ♠KJ76 ♠KJ7 ♠KJ4 ♠AK2.

If partner responds 1♠ to your minor opening, he could easily be 4-4 in the majors. His job is to respond up the line with 4-4. With 12-14, show your spades so you won’t miss a 4-4 fit. But, with 18-19, jump to 2NT (partner can look for a 4-4 spade fit on his way to 3NT). Accordingly, rebid 1♠ after 1♠-1♠ with:   ♠AJ76 ♠KJ7 ♠1087 ♠A32, but rebid 2N with ♠KJ76 ♠KJ7 ♠KJ4 ♠AK2.

 

SUMMARY for 4=3=3=3 hands:

As responder, ignore 4 spades only when you have to raise 1♠ to 2♠ instead. Ignore 4-card majors with 4-3-3-3 when responding to 1NT. As opener, ignore 4 spades after a 1♠ response or if you have 18-19. This all takes some getting used to.

What is your response to partner's 1♠ opening if you hold:

♠ AJ76  
♥ KQ2  
♦ 765  
♣ AQ2?
 

Choose One:

1♠

2NT

3NT

Other

What is your response to partner's 1♠ opening if you hold:

♠ Q1076  
♥ K43  
♦ 654  
♣ A32?
 

Choose One:

1♠

1NT

2♠

Other

What is your response to partner's 1♠ opening if you hold:

♠ AQ76  
♥ J76  
♦ A32  
♣ 542?
 

Choose One:

1♠

1NT

2♠

3♠

Other

As opener, what is your rebid after 1♠-1♠ with:

♠ AJ65  
♥ A65  
♦ KJ5  
♣ KQ10?
 

Choose One:

1♠

2♠

2NT

3NT

Other

As opener, what is your rebid after 1♠-1♠ if you hold:

♠ KQ76  
♥ KJ3  
♦ K65  
♣ J65?
 

Choose One:

1♠

1NT

2♠

Other

Playing matchpoints. As opener, what is your rebid after 1♠-1♠ if you hold:

♠ KJ43  
♥ AK2  
♦ KQ3  
♣ Q32?

Choose One:

2♠

2NT

3♠

4♠

4NT

As opener, what is your rebid after 1NT-2♠ if you hold:

♠ Q987  
♥ KJ4  
♦ KQ4  
♣ AJ8?
 

Choose One:

2♠

2♠

2NT

3NT