Paul Cronin

A “rare” bidding question: continued

For those of you lucky enough to use 4C as ace asking anytime (well, OK, there are a few exceptions) how about trying the auction


West North East South
P 3S 4C
 4S  X  P  5C
 P  5D/5H  P  P/6D

4C asks for aces, and the responses are 0/3, 1/4.

Playing DOPI, the X shows 0: playing DEPO. the X shows even

5C asks for kings – 0,1,2,3,4

Over N’s 5D, S passes – over N’s 5H, S bids 6D.



Judy Kay-WolffAugust 10th, 2010 at 12:54 pm

Hi Paul:

You say “For those of you lucky enough to use 4C as ace asking….” — I have never heard that auction before — but of course I am far from an aficionado on bridge conventions. I have enough problems remembering what I play with my husband who drastically changed my entire bidding structure seven years ago.

I have never spotted that treatment on a convention card. Is it something new or played primarily in a certain country?



LindaAugust 11th, 2010 at 5:18 pm

It seems like there is enough trouble bidding over 3S. Taking away the 4C bid is far too much for me. It can be natural; it can be non-leaping michaels but how often do you just want to ask for aces. It has never happened to me.

I have no idea when you would use DEPO and when you would use DOPI. Generally since the auction is below the 5 level I guess it would be DOPI. So assuming that DBL should none then I guess East needed 1 king for a small slam and 2 for a biggie and no kings was a big problem. I am trying to imagine East’s spade suit. Maybe he just was going to count on East not to have the spade king if he showed one. There is an argument that East shouldn’t count it if he has it.

MichaelAugust 13th, 2010 at 4:22 am

That would be a great way to bid with a hand, like, say:

– Axx AQxx AKQxxx


xx xxx Kxxx Txxx

Paul CroninAugust 13th, 2010 at 10:11 am

Hi Judy,

Using 4C for ace asking anytime is an invention of mine. The exceptions are (i) it’s off when both opponents have done someting other than pass (ii) when it’s the answer to something like 1H 2NT
where 4C would now show a club void
(iii) when common sense says “No” as when the auction has gone

P 3H P P


Paul CroninAugust 13th, 2010 at 10:21 am

Hi Linda,

Do you have the hands transposed here? What East holds is immaterial – it’s what North holds that matters. If North has no kings, his call is 5D and the hand is played there by him. If North holds one king, his call is 5H, and then South bids 6D and plays it there. All South wants to find out in this auction is if North holds any red kings – nothing else matters. When North shows one king it could of course be the spade king, but that possibility. IMO, is not worth considering.


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