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Tag: kokish

Kokish Relay

After a strong 2♣ and 2 relay (waiting bid). Now the 2 bid forces 2♠. Now the 2NT bid shows 25+ points if the bid of 2NT shows 23-24 points.

Partnerships can have different points holding for 2NT openers so make sure you have a partnership agreement as some people play 20-21 2NT openers.

Let’s look at some examples of 2♣ openers using kokish relays :-

a)b)c)d)
♠ AK
AJ10
AQ532
♣ AK7
♠ AKJ5
AQ9
A87
♣ AK5
♠ AQ10
AK
QJ104
♣ AQJ10
♠ Q103
AQJ
AQJ
♣ AK96
♠ QJ732
98765
5
♣ 42
♠ 107
K108632
K52
♣ 43
♠ 7432
543
987
♣ 973
♠ KJ954
42
1074
♣ 743

a) 2♣ – 2 – 2NT – 3♣ – 3 – 4 – 4.

The 2NT bid shows 25+ points. partner bids muppet stayman and the 3 response denies a 4 card major. Partner bids 4 to show 5-5 in the majors and 4 is reached.

b) 2♣ – 2 – 2NT – 4♣ – 4 – 4NT – 5♣ – 5 – 6 – 6NT

The 2NT bid shows 25+ points. Partner bids a two under slam try 4♣ and partner accepts with a cue bid of 4. Partner does a quick check for keycards and decides 6NT is a better contract.

c) 2♣ – 2 – 2 – 2♠ – 2NT – All Pass

The 2NT bid shows 23-24points.

d) 2♣ – 2 – 2 – 2♠ – 2NT – 3♣ – 3 – 3NT – 4♠

The 2NT bid shows 23-24 points. 3♣ is muppet stayman, 3 denies a 4 card major, 3NT shows a 5 card major and partner bids 4♠.

The kokish relay is a useful system for keeping the bidding at 2NT when you have these 25+ point holding allowing partner to investigate major holdings below the 3NT level. The disadvantage of this system is in order to agree hearts you can end up bidding 4H…

2♣ – 2 – 2 – 2♠ – 3 – ? harder to agree hearts without signing off in 4

Where the bidding previously may have preceded with….

2♣ – 2♦ – 2 – 3 – now can look for a slam in hearts more comfortably

So it’s up to you if you want to play the Kokish relay system…how often do you pick up 25 counts?

Kokish Game Tries

Kokish game tries are similar to trial bids. They come after partner has raised 1 of a Major to 2 of a Major, so:

  • 1 – 2 and 1♠ – 2♠

So 2♠ would be a kokish game try when the hearts have been raised and 2NT would be a kokish game try when the spades have been raised.

Responder now bids there lowest suit they are happy to accept a game try in…by either having help in that suit because they have a shortage or they have good values in that suit. So Qxx would not be considered that good in the suit where KJxx would be a good holding.

If responder cannot help in any suit they simply bid the major at the 3 level.

If opener doesn’t like the response e.g. 3♣ they can then bid 3 or 3 and ask for help in the bid suit.

You can also play a direct raise asks for help in the trump suit…but most people play that as a pre-emptive raise.

  • 1 – 2 – 3 and 1♠ – 2♠ – 3♠

The advantage of this system over normal long suit trial bids is if your partner shows no help you haven’t divulged where your weakness is.

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