Main     Bridge Basics 1UB8 by Richard Pavlicek    

How To Keep Score

The most popular method of scoring for a single table of bridge is called “Chicago” or four-deal bridge. A round consists of four deals, one by each player in turn. If a deal is passed out, it is not counted and the same player deals again. It is customary to draw a large “X” on the score sheet to indicate the deal number and who is the dealer.

Vulnerability adds spice to the game by varying the magnitude of the scores that can be obtained — either for making or defeating a contract. On Deal 1 neither side is vulnerable, on Deals 2 and 3 the dealer side is vulnerable, and on Deal 4 both sides are vulnerable.

Let’s play a sample round to illustrate. You will be the first dealer. Your score sheet is shown as it would appear after each of the four deals. To better understand it, verify each score from the scoring tables.

Deal 1 — We bid 3 S and win 10 tricks. We get 90 for the trick score and 30 for the overtrick. We do not score a game because we did not get 100 points below the line.

Deal 2 — They bid 3 NT and win nine tricks. They get 100 for the trick score and 500 for a vulnerable game. A new line is drawn to indicate that a game has been won.

Deal 3 — They bid 3 C, you double, they make it. They get 120 for the trick score (60 doubled), 300 for a nonvulnerable game, and 50 for making a doubled contract.

Deal 4 — We bid 6 H and win 12 tricks. Dummy held H A-Q-J-10. We get 180 for the trick score, 500 for a vulnerable game, 750 for a vulnerable slam, and 100 for four trump honors in one hand. It’s party time! Adding up all the scores gives us 1650 to their 1070. We win the round by 580 points, which is customarily rounded off to the nearest hundred so we score +600 or +6.

Trick Score (below the line)Score
Clubs or diamondsEach trick bid20
Hearts or spadesEach trick bid30
NotrumpFirst trick bid40
Each additional trick bid30
If doubled multiply the trick score by two.
If redoubled multiply the trick score by four.

Undoubled eachTrick score value
Doubled each100200
Redoubled each200400

Game (trick score of 100 or more)300500
Slam bid and made500750
Grand slam bid and made10001500
Making a non-game bid on 4th dealn/a100
Making a doubled contract50
Making a redoubled contract100
Any four trump honors in one hand100
All five trump honors in one hand150
All four aces in one hand at notrump150

Defeated BidsUndoubledDoubled
Down 150100100200
Down 2100200300500
Down 3150300500800
Each additionaladd 50add 100add 300add 300
If redoubled multiply the doubled score by two.


© 2013 Richard Pavlicek