Bidding Two Suited Hands

A two suited hand is one which has at least 5 cards in one suit and at least 4 cards in another. This is the most common type of 2 suited hand, but they can be as extreme as 7-6 with two voids!

Your ability to show both suits depends on your point count and what bids are available to you. Lets start by looking at the more common 2 suited hands.

5-4 Hands

When you have a hand with a 5-4 shape you should always start with the longest suit.

♠ KQ73

♥ AQ943

♦ A6

♣ 93                 OPEN 1 ♥

♠ 73

♥ AKQ9

♦ Q6

♣ Q10793         OPEN 1 ♣

When you open these kinds of hands you should be planning to show your second suit if you can, unless partner supports your opening bid. 

You will not always be able to show your second suit. Remember that you need 16+ points to bid through your barrier. If bidding your second suit would require you to bid through the barrier but you lack the points then all you can do is repeat your first suit.

Equally, if you do have a strong hand then you must ensure to bid high enough to show your hand.

You have opened 1♥, partner responds 1NT. What would you rebid with these hands?

♠ K87

♥ AQ943

♦ A642

♣ 9                 

Rebid 2♦ – rebid is below the barrier so shows a hand with at least 5 hearts, 4 diamonds and 12-15 HCP

♠ K873

♥ AQ943

♦ A6

♣ 93                   

Rebid 2♥ – Although you have a 4 card spade suit you cannot bid spades at the 2 level as you lack the points to bid through your barrier. Don’t worry though, if partner had had spades they would have bid them!

♠ K873

♥ AQ943

♦ A6

♣ A10      

Rebid 2♠ – This time you have enough points to bid through your barrier. Although it is unlikely that partner has a spade fit this will describe your hand and they can make an informed decision.             

5-5 Hands

When you have a hand with a 5-5 shape you should always start with the higher ranking suit.

♠ KQ

♥ AQ943

♦ AQ753

♣ 9                   OPEN 1 ♥

♠ 108763

♥ AK9

♦ Q6

♣ AKQ107         OPEN 1 ♠

Starting with the higher ranked suit will make it easier for you to rebid if you have a weaker hand. It means that you will be able to bid your second suit without going through your barrier if you need to. 

4-4-3-2 Hands

If you have a hand with a 4-4-3-2 shape then you will open 1NT if you also have 12-14 points. If you have more than this you will need to choose a suit to open and plan to rebid NT at the appropriate level.

If you have 4 cards in both major suits open 1♥.

If you have 4 cards in both minors then open 1♣.

If you have a 4 card major and a 4 card minor, open the major.

Bidding this way will make sure that you never miss a major suit fit with partner.

More extreme shapes

If you have an even more shapely hand the rules are roughly the same. If one suit is longer then start with that one. If you are lucky enough to have 2 six card suits, open the higher ranking.

If you have a strong hand with an extreme shape then you will have more opportunity to describe your hand accurately. You may be able to bid a suit twice to show extra length. Think about your priorities and what partner has said about their hand.