Main   System Notes 7L01 by Richard Pavlicek  

Example Auctions

Pavlicek System (short version)

1 NT 2 NTMajorsMinors2 C3 NT

Strength requirements, unless specifically stated as HCP, are presumed to be total points based on the Pavlicek Point Count method.

Natural Notrump Openings

1 NT = 15-17. May have 5-card major if no worthless doubleton.

S Q 2
H A Q 9 7 2
D A 8 4
C K Q 2
1 NT
Pass
Pass3 NTPass S A 6 3
H K 10 4 3
D K 7 3
C J 10 4
1

But with S x-x open 1 H.

2 C = Stayman. Then:
2 H = weak (correctable); at least 4-4 majors or 3=4=1=5.

S K Q 2
H A 4
D A J 4 3
C Q 10 9 3
1 NT
2 D
2 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
2 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S J 10 7 6
H 9 8 7 6
D 2
C 8 6 4 2
2

If responder were 3=4=1=5, he would correct 3 C.

2 S over 2 D = sign-off

S Q 2
H A 5 2
D A K 7 6
C K J 8 7
1 NT
2 D
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
2 S
Pass
Pass
S J 9 8 6 5
H Q 9 7 6
D 5 3 2
C 3
3

2 S over 2 H = exactly 4 spades (checkback); forcing.

S A 4 3
H K J 8 7
D K J 2
C K 10 4
1 NT
2 H
2 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
2 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
S Q 9 8 5
H A 2
D Q 10 9 4
C 5 3 2
4

With a maximum opener would bid 3 NT or 4 S.

2 NT = invitational; no major-suit interest.

S A J 3 2
H K J 8 7
D K 10 3
C A J
1 NT
2 H
3 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
2 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
S Q 9 4
H A 9 6 3
D 7 6 5
C K 3 2
5

Responder only bid 2 C to invite, not to seek 4-4 hearts.

3 C or 3 D = game forcing.

S K J 8
H A 8 2
D Q 10 6 2
C A Q 8
1 NT
2 D
3 S
6 D
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
3 D
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A Q 5 2
H 3
D A K J 8 4
C 9 7 3
6

Note opener’s cue below 3 NT shows strength.

3M over 2 D = Smolen (likewise after 2 NT opening).

S K 2
H Q 9 4
D A K 8 6
C K 9 8 4
1 NT
2 D
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
3 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A 9 8 3
H J 10 8 6 3
D 2
C A J 2
7

3 other major over 2M = artificial slam try with fit.

S A 2
H K J 10 4
D A K 9 3
C 8 7 6
1 NT
2 H
4 D
5 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
3 S
4 NT
6 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S K 9 7 4
H A Q 9 8
D Q 4 2
C A 2
8

4X over 2M = splinter.

S A Q 9 7
H Q 3
D K Q 6
C K 10 9 4
1 NT
2 S
4 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
4 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
S K J 10 3
H A 9 8 7 2
D A J 2
C 2
9

2 D or 2 H = Jacoby transfer. Then:
3 other major = artificial slam try with 6+ card suit.

S 6 2
H K J 10 7
D A Q J 4
C K J 8
1 NT
2 S
3 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 H
3 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A K 9 8 7 4
H 4 3
D K 2
C A 4 3
10

2 S = both minors; invitational or better (2 NT or 3m rejects).

S K Q 10 8
H A Q 9 7
D 9 2
C K Q 2
1 NT
3 NT
Pass
Pass
2 S
Pass
Pass S 2
H 8 5 2
D K J 10 4
C A 8 7 6 5
11

With a maximum and only one strong major, opener should bid that major.

2 NT or 3 C = minor-suit transfer; one-suited; weak or GF). Then:
New suit = splinter, slam try.

S A 7 6
H A 8 2
D K 10 9 6
C K J 3
1 NT
3 C
4 D
4 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 NT
3 S
4 H
6 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
S 2
H K 4 3
D A 8 2
C A Q 10 8 7 6
12

3 D = 5-5 majors; game forcing (opener sets strain). Then:
4 C or 4 D = splinter, slam try.

S J 3
H K 8 5
D K J 6
C A K 7 5 2
1 NT
3 H
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
3 D
4 D
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A K 8 7 4
H A J 7 6 3
D 2
C 4 3
13

3 H or 3 S = splinter; 3-suited slam try.

S K 2
H A 8 5 2
D A J 4
C Q J 9 8
1 NT
4 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
3 H
6 C
Pass
Pass
S A Q 4 3
H 3
D K Q 10 2
C K 10 7 2
14

Responder expects a good fitter when opener does not bid 3 NT.

4 D or 4 H = Texas transfer (also in competition through 3 C).

S Q 4
H K J 10 5
D A K 7 2
C Q 10 8
1 NT
4 S
3 C
Pass
4 H
Pass
Pass S K J 10 9 7 6
H A 6 2
D 6 5
C 4 3
15

If overcall were 3 D, responder must bid 4 S (4 H would be natural).

If 1 NT is doubled, system is on, and redouble forces 2 C to rescue.

S K Q 5 4
H A K 8 6
D K 4 2
C Q 3
1 NT
2 C
Dbl
Pass
Rdbl
Pass
Pass S 7 6 2
H 3
D 8 7 6 5
C J 10 8 6 2
16

Responder would correct to 2 D with diamonds.

If 1 NT is overcalled, system is off. New suits NF at two-level; forcing at three-level.
Lebensohl (direct denies) applies.

S J 4
H A K 8 6
D K 9 5
C K J 10 3
1 NT
4 C
Pass
2 S
Pass
3 NT
4 D
Pass
Pass
S 5 2
H Q 3
D A Q 10 8 7 4
C Q 8 2
17

Opener removes to 4 C (minimum) since 3 NT denied a stopper, and responder corrects.

Double is penalty at two-level; negative at three-level (also over 2 NT).

S K J 8 3
H K 2
D A J 5
C K 5 4 3
1 NT
3 S
Pass
3 D
Pass
Dbl
4 S
Pass
Pass
S Q 9 7 2
H A 8 6 4
D 4 3
C A 8 2
18

2 NT = 20-22. May have 5-card major if no worthless doubleton.
Stayman (Smolen), Jacoby, Texas, and 3 S = both minors (slam try).

S A 3 2
H K Q 9
D K J 10 8
C A K 3
2 NT
4 D
4 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
3 S
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S 9 8 7
H 2
D A Q 9 3 2
C Q J 10 7
19

Opener signs off (4 NT natural) when responder has wrong splinter.

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Major Openings

1 H or 1 S = 13-22; 5+ cards (or 10-12, 4+ cards in 3rd or 4th seat).

S J 2
H K Q 8 3
D A 8 2
C J 10 7 5
Pass
1 NT
Pass
Pass
1 S
Pass
Pass S K Q 10 7
H 4 2
D Q 9 7
C A 6 4 2
20

Opening the good suit is both lead-directing and preemptive.

1 NT = 6-14; forcing.

S 10 3
H A K 9 8 4
D K 7 3
C Q 9 2
1 H
2 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
1 NT
3 NT
Pass
Pass
S K Q 7
H J 2
D A 10 8 2
C K J 8 4
21

Responder shows 13-14 (2 NT would show 11-12).

2 over 1 = 5+ cards; GF unless responder rebids same suit, then invit.

S K 10 9 7
H A K J 9 4
D 2
C 9 7 5
1 H
2 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 D
3 D
Pass
Pass
S J 3 2
H 3
D K Q J 10 7 6
C A 6 4
22

3 D is only non-GF rebid (2 S did not show extras).

Single raise = 7-10; 3+ cards. Then:
Reraises = preemptive (with or without competition).

S 4 3
H Q J 9 8 7 6
D A 8 3
C A 2
1 H
3 H
Pass
Pass
2 H
Pass
Pass S 9 7 6 5
H K 10 5
D 4 2
C K Q 7 3
23

Opener’s 3 H is not a game try.

Three of a suit (including 3 S jump) = 4+ cards; slam try (GF).

S A K Q 7 5
H 8 3 2
D A
C A Q J 4
1 S
3 C
4 D
6 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 S
4 C
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
S J 10 2
H A 7 4
D 9 7 6
C K 10 9 5
24

Responder cooperates after the good hit, and opener knows to play in clubs.

Cheapest bid = only game try; artificial ask.
Responder shows 3+ suit (2 NT = spades) with K or Q, else 3M or 4M.

S Q J 8 7 6
H 8 3
D A K 4 2
C A 2
1 S
2 NT
3 D
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 S
3 C
3 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
S K 5 3
H 4 2
D 9 7 6 5
C K J 8 4
25

3 C shows club values, 3 D asks min/max, and 3 S shows minimum.

Responder may “raise” the artificial ask with 4-3-3-3 maximum.

S Q 8
H A K Q 4 3
D A 8 2
C K 8 3
1 H
2 S
3 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 H
3 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A 7 2
H J 10 5
D 9 7 6 5
C A 6 2
26

Opener opts for notrump opposite a flat dummy.

2 NT = 15+ balanced (usually no 5+ suit); may or may not have fit.

S K Q J 10 4
H A Q J 2
D 4 3
C 9 2
1 S
3 H
6 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 NT
4 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A 2
H K 5 4
D K Q 9 7
C A K 6 5
27

Responder would rebid 3 NT with 15-17, so 4 NT = 18-19 (quantitative).

Jump raise = 11-12; 4+ cards. (Same range after an overcall but 3+ cards.)

S A J 2
H Q J 8 6 5
D 5 3
C A 8 3
1 H
Pass
Pass3 HPass S K 3
H A K 9 7
D 10 7 2
C 7 6 4 2
28

3 NT = 13-15; 4+ card fit; no splinter.

S A K 10 5 2
H A 10 9 3
D 9 2
C 4 3
1 S
4 S
Pass
Pass
3 NT
Pass
Pass S J 8 6 4
H K 4 2
D K 3
C A K 7 2
29

If responder were any better (say S Q-x-x-x) he would start with 2 NT.

Jump shift = weak; ability to win 4 tricks less than bid.

S A K Q 7 4
H A Q 7 6
D Q 8 4
C 2
1 S
Pass
Pass3 CPass S 3
H 8 2
D J 5 3
C Q J 10 8 7 6 5
30

Responder suggests 5 tricks in clubs, and opener sees no future.

Double jump shift = splinter; 13-16 (with 17+ prefer another route).

S K Q 8 6 5
H 4 3
D K 9 2
C A J 2
1 S
4 S
Pass
Pass
4 D
Pass
Pass S A 10 9 4
H A 8 7 6
D 3
C K 8 6 4
31

Note: After an enemy bid, only a jump cue is a splinter; other jumps are natural and weak.

Two-way reverse Drury by passed hand; does not apply in competition.
2 C = 11-12; 3-card support.

S K 8 3
H A 8 2
D K 8 6 4 3
C 4 3
Pass
2 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
1 H
2 H
Pass
Pass
S 4 2
H K J 10 9
D Q 9 7
C A J 9 2
32

Opener signs off with a subminimum opening.

2 D = 11-12 (or more); 4-card support.

S Q 8 7 6
H A Q 6 4
D 8 5 4
C K 2
Pass
2 D
4 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
1 S
2 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S K J 9 5 4
H 3 2
D K 3
C A 8 4 3
33

Opener’s 2 H (artif) shows doubt. Responder goes with tip-top maximum.

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Minor Openings

1 C or 1 D = 13-22; 3+ cards; better minor with 3-3 (judged by interior cards).

S K 9 7 6
H A 8 2
D Q J 9
C A 4 3
1 D
1 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
1 H
1 NT
Pass
Pass
S A 8 2
H Q 10 4 3
D 10 2
C Q J 9 8
34

Opener prefers 1 D by interior strength.

Inverted minor raises (also after a double or overcall).
Single raise = 11+; no 4-card major; forcing.

S 8 2
H A K 5 2
D 8 4 3
C K Q 8 4
1 C
3 C
Pass
Pass
2 C
Pass
Pass S A 4 3
H 4 3
D A J 7
C J 10 9 3 2
35

With a minimum, opener must rebid 2 NT or 3 C. Other bids show at least a queen extra.

Exception: After a 1 NT overcall, a minor “raise” is a weak major takeout.

S A 10 2
H 3
D A Q 8 6 5
C K 8 4 3
1 D
2 S
1 NT
Pass
2 D
Pass
Pass S K J 9 4
H Q 10 8 7 6
D 2
C 9 7 2
36

Logic is that if responder had a good raise, he would double 1 NT.

Jump raise = 7-10; no 4-card major.

S Q J 7
H A Q J 8
D A K 7 3
C Q 3
1 D
3 NT
Pass
Pass
3 D
Pass
Pass S 8 6 2
H 3
D Q 9 8 6 2
C K 8 7 4
37

With 18-19 and major stoppers, 3 NT is usually a favorite.

1 NT = 6-10; no 4-card major.

S A 7 6
H K J 8
D A 9 7 6
C J 10 3
1 D
Pass
Pass1 NTPass S 8 3 2
H 9 7 6
D K Q J 8
C A 8 2
38

With a flat hand 1 NT is preferable to a minor raise.

Jump shift = weak; ability to win 4 tricks less than bid.

S K Q 8 2
H 8 2
D A Q 5
C A K J 3
1 C
Pass
Pass2 HPass S 7 3
H K J 10 9 6
D 8 6 4 3
C 9 2
39

Despite a strong hand, opener wisely gives up with game too remote.

2 NT = 15+ balanced (usually no 5+ suit or 4-card major). Natural bidding follows.

S A K 7 2
H 8 2
D Q J 9 7
C K 4 3
1 D
3 NT
Pass
Pass
2 NT
Pass
Pass S Q 8 3
H K J 7
D A 8 6 2
C A Q 9
40

With a balanced hand, opener does not look for a suit fit (3 S would show at least 4-5).

3 NT = 13-14 balanced (usually no 5+ suit or 4-card major). Natural bidding follows.

S 3
H A K 9 2
D Q 7 4
C A Q J 7 6
1 C
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
3 NT
4 NT
Pass
Pass
S K Q 9
H 10 6 4
D A J 9 2
C K 8 2
41

With strength in the wrong places, responder discourages slam.

2 C over 1 D = 11+; 4+ clubs. Then:
2 D = any minimum, artificial.

S Q 7 6 5
H K 8 4 3
D A K 2
C 8 5
1 D
2 D
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
2 NT
Pass
Pass
S A 8 2
H Q J 2
D 7 6 4
C K J 9 4
42

Responder shows 11-12 balanced. (3 C would also be NF; any other bid is natural and GF.)

Any other bid = natural; extra values; GF.

S A 2
H 4 3
D A K J 9 7
C K Q 9 4
1 D
3 C
4 C
6 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 C
3 NT
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
S Q 8 3
H A J 2
D 10 2
C A 10 8 6 5
43

Opener proceeds slowly until the 4 H cue brings welcome news.

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Two Club Opening

2 C = 23+ or within 1 trick of game in hand; artificial force. Then:
2 D = 0-4 HCP or 8+ HCP (or an A+K).

S A 4
H A K Q 8
D A Q J 4
C K Q J
2 C
2 H
2 NT
4 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 D
2 S
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
S 9 8 7 6 5 2
H 3
D 9 7 6
C 10 9 2
44

Kokish relay shows GF balanced hand, then “system on” (4 H = Texas).
Opener assumes 0-4, so with 8+ responder must bid past game.

2 H = 5-7 HCP or an ace.

S 3
H A 2
D A K Q J 3
C A K 10 8 4
2 C
3 D
4 C
6 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 H
3 H
5 C
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
S K J 5 2
H 7 5 3
D 4 2
C Q 9 7 3
45

Responder’s cheapest next bid (3 H) is waiting.

2 S = any 5-card suit with 2/3 top honors. System on if opener bids 2 NT, else natural.

S A K Q 5
H A 6 2
D K Q 8
C A K 10
2 C
2 NT
3 H
6 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
2 S
3 D
3 NT
Pass
Pass
Pass
Pass
S 4 3
H K Q 10 8 7
D 9 7 6
C J 8 3
46

Responder transfers and offers to stop in 3 NT, but opener deduces the decent slam.

3 of a suit = 6 cards with 2/3 top honors. Natural bidding follows.

S A J 10
H A K Q J 10 7
D K Q 9
C 5
2 C
3 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
3 C
3 NT
Pass
Pass
S Q 7 2
H 2
D J 8 2
C K Q 9 8 7 4
47

The misfit warns of caution, and notrump should be fine.

After interference, all doubles are penalty (trump stack below 3 NT).

S A K J 10
H A K 8 2
D A K 7 6
C 4
2 C
Pass
3 CDblPass S 6 2
H 9 7 6
D 5 4 3 2
C Q J 7 3
48

Responder knows where to play. If responder passed, opener would bid 4 C (double is penalty).

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Three Notrump Opening

3 NT = good 1-suiter; 9+ tricks; forcing. Then:
4 C = 1 ace; opener may then bid 4 D to ask for extras (4 H = none, 4 S = some, 4 NT = lots).

S A K Q 9 8 7 6 5
H 2
D A 3 2
C 3
3 NT
4 D
4 S
Pass
Pass
Pass
4 C
4 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S 2
H A 8 6 4
D J 8 7 4
C 9 8 7 2
49

Responder shows nothing extra, so opener settles for game.

4 D = 0 or 2 aces; opener assumes 0; responder must bid again with 2.

S 2
H K Q J 9 8 7 6 5
D K J 2
C A
3 NT
4 H
6 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
4 D
5 H
Pass
Pass
Pass
S A 7 6 5 3
H 2
D A 8 7 6
C 9 6 5
50

Responder shows 2 aces by bidding over 4 H, and opener takes his chances.

If an opponent overcalls: Double = trump stack; cheapest suit = 1 ace; 4 NT = 2 aces.

S
H A 2
D A K J 9 8 7 6 3 2
C 3 2
3 NT
6 D
4 S
Pass
5 C
Pass
Pass S 7 6 5 4
H K 7 6 5 4
D 5 4
C A 9
51

Responder shows 1 ace, and opener gambles. Nice H K partner!

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© 2020 Richard Pavlicek