Defending against 1NT (Lionel)

The system presented below was designed by Lionel Wright, and can be used against both a strong and a weak notrump. It does not use penalty doubles, which is hard to play even after a weak notrump. The weak notrump almost never gets a large penalty anyway. Instead, the method focusses on getting to a good contract for our side.

Versus a strong NT: Bid when you feel like it, the main purpose is to get them out of this confortable contract. Two-suited bids may be done on 4-4 hands.

Versus a weak NT: We want to find a good contract. Bid constructively.

Here are the responses to the opposing 1NT:

  • Double: + other suit or a very strong hand
  • 2: +
  • 2: +
  • 2/: Natural
  • 2NT: +
  • The two-suited overcalls deny a good 5-card primary suit ( for double and for 2/), as 5M + 4m hands make the natural overcall.

    Further bidding after double:

  • Pass: Gotcha!
  • 2: Pass or correct
  • 2: Strong asking bid
  • 2/: To play

    Further bidding after 2/:

  • A suit bid is to play
  • 2NT is a strong asking bid 1