Top 10 Mistakes

  1. Failing to open 1NT with 12–14 HCPs and 5–3–3–2 distribution with 5-card minor. Open 1NT with ♠ A 10 ♥ J 8 6 ♦ Q 10 6 ♣ K Q J 10 4, purchase not 1♣.
  2. Failing to make a weak takeout because you are ‘too weak’. After Partner opens 1NT, mind bid 2♥ with ♠ 8 3 ♥ J 8 7 6 4 ♦ 9 8 6 ♣ 8 6 3
  3. Opener failing to pass after a weak takeout. After opening 1NT and Partner’s 2♠ response (a weak takeout), bidding 3♠ with ♠ K 9 6 5 ♥ A J 5 ♦ Q J 10 6 ♣ Q 7. Pass is the correct bid.
  4. Responding 1NT bypassing a 4+ card suit. After Partner opens 1♣, bidding 1NT with ♠ K 9 7 ♥ J 8 6 3 ♦ A 6 5 ♣ 10 9 7. The correct bid is 1♥.
  5. Responding with a new suit at the 2-level with less than 10 total points. With ♠ 4 3 ♥ 9 8 6 ♦ J 10 ♣ K Q J 8 6 4 and Partner has opened 1♠, respond 1NT not 2♣.
  6. Failing to bid game when there are sufficient total points (including ruffing points). With ♠ K 10 3 2 ♥ A ♦ K Q 4 ♣ A J 9 8 7, you have opened 1♣ and Partner has responded 1♠. With 20 total points including shortages, you bid 4♠ —­ nothing less.
  7. Overcalling in a suit containing less than five cards. You have ♠ A K Q 9 ♥ Q 3 ♦ Q 10 8 4 ♣ 10 9 8 and RHO has opened 1♥. You must pass and not bid 1♠.
  8. Overcalling with 1NT but only 12–14 HCPs (requires 16–18 HCPs). You have ♠ A K 7 ♥ 8 3 ♦ Q J 7 4 ♣ K 8 7 3 and were about to open 1NT but RHO bids 1♥ first. You must not bid 1NT; in this case, PASS is the only option.
  9. Failing to lead top of honour sequence, instead leading fourth highest (or something else). Against 3NT you have chosen the suit for the opening lead: ♠ K Q 10 7 3. The correct lead is the king, not the 7.
  10. When making the opening lead,
    1. against a suit contract, and
    2. choosing to lead a suit headed by the ace,
    then failing to lead the ace. (“Never lead away from an ace”) Against 4♥ you have chosen the unbid suit for the opening lead: ♦ A 6 5 3. You must lead the ace.