4 Suit Transfers
After opening a strong 1NT, with the basic structure provided by Gerry Bare including Jeff Fang’s minor revision, presented by Mike Savage
In Gerry’s structure 1NT-2NT is natural and invitational (using Stayman for this just gives the opponents information on how to lead and defend). 1NT-3D is played natural and invitational. Minor two-suiters are shown by bidding 1NT-3H or 3S with 5-4 and a singleton major or by transferring to clubs and then bidding diamonds with 5-5 and a jump to 4S as Minor Stayman. 1NT-2S begins our four-suit transfers.
2S = Transfer to 3C: a club bust, invitational with clubs or starting a forcing sequence.
2NT = Shows a non-minimum with a good fit in clubs and usually with stoppers.
3C = To play with no game interest.
3D = Natural, showing five or more clubs and usually five diamonds, game forcing.
New Suit = Cue bid in support of clubs
3H or 3S = Shows shortness
3NT = To play, no stopper problems and a minimum
4 of the minor = Shows stopper problems for 3NT, may not have slam interest.
3NT = To play with just enough strength opposite a non minimum and a good fit.
New suit at the 4-level = Showing shortness with good clubs and slam interest.
4C = Roman Key-card with clubs as trumps.
3C = Denies a maximum with a good club fit (usual response).
Pass = Shows at least six clubs & no game interest after the discouraging 3C response
3D = Natural showing five or more clubs and usually five diamonds, game forcing.
New Suit = Cue bid in support of diamonds.
3H/3S = Shows shortness
3NT = To play. Denies slam interest or stopper problems.
4 of the minor = Shows stopper problems for 3NT and no sure slam interest.
Responses: Roman Key responses with slam interest, bid 5C without.
3NT = Shows a balanced hand with five clubs and slam interest.
4C = Roman Key-card with clubs as trumps (4D if playing Kickback)
4D/4H/4S = Splinters with six or more clubs, a stiff or void and slam interest.
4NT = Shows a balanced hand with six clubs and slam interest..
5NT/6C = Balanced; 5NT: Pick a slam (5 clubs) or 6C: Pick a slam (6 clubs).
2NT = Natural and invitational (in other versions of 4-Suit Transfers, 2NT begins the transfers).
3C = Transfer to 3D. After 3D:
Pass = Shows a diamond bust.
3H/3S = Shows five or more diamonds and shortness in the bid major, forcing.
3NT = Shows a balanced hand with five diamonds and slam interest.
4D = Roman Key-card with diamonds as trumps. (4H if playing Kickback)
4C/4H/4S = Splinters with six or more diamonds, shortness and slam interest.
4NT = Shows a balanced hand with six diamonds and slam interest.
5NT/6D = Balanced; 5NT: Pick a slam (5 diamonds) or 6D: Pick a slam (6D).
3D = Invitational to game with a six-card suit. My preference is with poor suit (w/o the ace).
3H or 3S = Shows five-four in the minors with a stiff in the major and is game forcing.
If opener bids 4C/4D, denying no-trump stoppers in your stiff, you can bid game or try for slam. A 3NT response is usually passed but with slam interest, you can bid 4C with five clubs or 4D with five diamonds, but if you bid 4NT, it denies a stiff and if you have bid 3H: 4NT = 2-2-4-5 and if you have bid 3S: 4NT = 2-2–5-4.
With interference at the 2-level, above 2C (and suit is not available at the 2-level):
2NT = Transfer to 3C. With AKx or AQx and stoppers, opener could gamble on 3NT.
3C = Accepts the transfer. Denies AK or AQ 3rd and good stoppers.
3D = Natural and forcing, at least five clubs and four diamonds,
3H and 3S is forcing, showing shortness in the bid major
Responses: New Suit = Cue bid in support of clubs.
3NT = To play and denies any slam interest or stopper problems.
4 of the minor = Shows a fit with stopper problems and no slam interest.
3NT = Six+ clubs and no stopper in their suit. Opener passes with stoppers or bid clubs.
4C = Invitational to 5C with a hand unsuitable for no-trump.
4D/4H/4S = Splinters showing long clubs, a stiff or void and slam interest.
4NT = Slam invitational to either clubs or notrump (accent on clubs).
3C = Transfer to 3D. With AKx or AQx and stoppers, opener could gamble on 3NT.
3D = Accepts the transfer. Denies AK or AQ 3rd and good stoppers.
3H/3S = Showing shortness in the bid major and is game forcing.
Responses: Same as above.
3NT = Six+ diamonds and no stopper in their suit. Opener passes or bids diamonds.
4D = Invitational to 5D with a hand unsuitable for no-trump.
4C/4H/4S = Splinters showing long diamonds, shortness and slam interest.
4NT = Slam invitational to either diamonds or notrump (accept on diamonds).
3D = Transfer to 3H. If 2H was available at the 2-level, this bid is invitational or better.
If 2H was available at the two-level:
3H = Shows all minimums.
3NT = Shows only two hearts and a maximum.
4H = Shows at least three hearts and a maximum.
If 2H wasn’t available at the two-level:
3H = Accepts the transfer on all hands without a maximum and a good fit in hearts.
4H = Shows a good fit in hearts and you are at the top of your no-trump range.
3H = Transfer to 3S. Shows an invitational or better hand with at least five spades.
Since 2S was available at the two-level:
3S = Shows all hands that are not maximums.
3NT Shows only two spades and you are on the very top of your no-trump range.
4S = Shows a maximum and at least three spades.
3S = Shows five-five or more in the minors with at least distributionally invitational values.
3NT = To play (see note 2 below).
Four-level bids: Retain their original systemic meanings, ignoring the overcall.
- With game values, a long minor & a major you can make a 2-level neg. dbl & if no fit, bid the minor.
- Transfering into the suit overcalled by the opponent is Stayman.
- There are other variations, some more complex, on how to play 4-suit transfers, but these are
Gerry’s basic 4-suit transfer structures, which have been developed and expanded and, as a whole, seem to have substantial advantages over standard no-trump sequences.