go Paul, go Acol Bidding System visit the Durham Uni bridge website and look at the poor bridge page

General Structure

1. With 5+ card suits, open the higher ranking longer suit.

2. With only 4 card suits;

(a) 4333 open the 4 card suit (If you wish to guarentee a 5-card 1 spade opener then open 1C with 4 spades, as this is the only occasion when you will only have 4 spades).

(b) non-touching; open the lower suit.

(c) 4432 touching; open the higher suit except when holding hearts and spades when open 1H.

(d) 4441 open the suit immediatley below the shortage unless holding a singleton club when open 1H.

3. When responding, bid 4 card suits up the line, but prefer a major suit over a 1C opening unless holding considerable extra strength.

4. Any change of suit rebid by responder is forcing except over opener's 1NT rebid.

5. A non-reverse change of suit rebid by opener is non-forcing if responder bid at the 1-level, but is forcing if responder made a 2-over-1 response.

6. A reverse by opener is F1 with 16+ points and at least 5-4 shape; the first suit will be longer.

7. Fourth suit forcing is GF, except

      1C  :  1D
      1H  :  1S
Now 1NT rebid = 15+ GF. Rebids by responder at 2-level NF over 2C/D/H by opener. 3-level rebids are GF.

8. Any possibly ambiguous bid shows values or length in that suit. eg. we "fragment" rather than "splinter", we show stoppers rather than ask for stoppers.

9. Over 3M when we have a known fit in the major; 3NT is natural if 3M was non-forcing; but is a trump cue if 3M was forcing.

10. Over 3m, 3NT is always at least a suggestion to play.

11. A simple raise of responder's 2-over-1 is invitational(NF). A jump raise to 4 of a minor is GF and suggests slam interest. Hands worth "3.5" minor raise must find another bid.

12. 1S : 2H promises 5cH but 2m promises only 4c suit.

13. New suit at four level after partner has shown strength is a cue showing a hand too strong to raise partner's last bid suit directly.

egs.  1C : 1S                    1H : 1S
      3H : 4D = strong H raise   3H : 4C/D = cue, H agreed. 

General Examples

   1H : 2C    1H : 1S    1H : 1S    1H : 2C    1S : 2H
   2D = F1    2D = NF    3H = INV   3H = GF    3H = INV

1H : 2C Bid 2D with x see 11. ? AJTxx AQx Kxxx

1C : 1H 2D : 2H/3C = not encouraging 2S = 4SF (GF) 2NT = I 3D = F1 3H = GF as opener has reversed

1H : 1S 2D : 3C 3D : 3H = slam going. Now 3NT by opener is a trump cue.

1H : 3H 3NT = choice of contracts.

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