Quick summary

Enemy called 1NT, but you have an opening hand with 2 long Majors?

Call 2club ("Landy")

Your HCP strength MUST be in the Majors. Also

Your partner must know that 3club is the standard Club overcall!

Response (even with zero HCP):

Rarer responses:

Other overcalls of 1NT that go well with Landy


Print cribsheet

Bridge Venue

Example Deal

«  0172  »

2-suited Overcalls, Landy over 1NT

Isn't it annoying when you have an opening hand but the opponents open with a weak 1NT?

To bid at all, you have to start at the 2-level, and yet the enemy has admitted to being weak. However, you should try your best to prevent them from stealing your contract.

But how? Your normal option after 1NT from the enemy is to overcall in one suit at the already high 2-level, but only provided you have 6-cards in that suit and a good hand. But what if you have an opening hand (in the sense of LTC = 7) with two good Majors? Is there anything you can do to tell your partner about them both?

Enter "Landy", an overcall bid of 2club.

Overcalling 1NT - the whole picture

Assuming you and your partner do use Landy for overcalling two Major suits at once, here first is an overview of what the various possible overcalls mean after an opening bid of a weak 1NT from the enemy:


Here's what 2club Landy promises to your partner:

  • two 5-card Majors, or a 5-4
  • HCP are in the Majors (very very important)
  • 6 losers (so, a good opening hand, compared with the normal 7-loser opening hand)
  • 7 losers if not vulnerable

If you are not familiar with Losing Trick Count, then the equivalent HCP guidelines require you to think about both the vulnerability (you need more HCP if vulnerable) and about the exact Shape (you need more HCP if your shape is 5-4, instead of 5-5):

  • with two five-card Majors, you need 10 points if vulnerable, or 7 if not,
  • with five-four in the Majors, you need 12 points if vulnerable, or 10 if not.

It's best not to "Landy" with only two four-card Majors, because you could end up in a terrible 4-2 six-card fit, with fewer trumps than the enemy. Only do it with 4-4 if:

  • they are both good suits, and
  • you're not vulnerable, and
  • have a 6-loser hand, and
  • you have a singleton

Response? You have to reply! (unless you have 7 clubs)

That's because your Landy-overcaller-partner who just bid clubs probably has almost no Clubs at all. In most cases you and partner should end up contracting in one of the Majors, and your main job now is to tell your partner which is your longest Major.

Remember you know your partner is strong, and you are forced to bid.

  1. You simply reply with your longest Major.
  2. If your Majors are the same length, reply in 2diamond to force your overcaller-partner to say which Major he prefers.

When replying with your longest Major, even with zero points, reply at the 2-level if it's only a 3-card Major.

But with 4-card Major support, knowing that you have at least an 8-card fit, you can GET EXCITED, fully evaluate your hand using point count or better still using Losing Trick Count, and raise to the 3-level or more in a Major. On partner's response you can continue to evaluate on the same basis.

(A maximum length of 2-card support in your Majors will normally mean your Majors are both 2-cards, and therefore you'll reply 2diamond anyway).

Other responses are relatively rare

That's because the enemy have at least an opening hand, and so Slams for you are very unlikely, and even Games are uncommon. (The main objective is to stop your enemy from stealing your contract with their annoying 1NT opening!)

  • reply 2diamond, if you have 10-12 HCP,
  • reply 2NT, if you are strong (13+ HCP) and no 4-card Major (very rare).

Obviously, partner does not know which reply of 2diamond that you mean, so will reply with his longest Major, allowing you to find the best fit, and either pass or rebid 2NT if you have 10-12 HCP.

With the very rare 2NT reply: Normally, "Game" is probably on and the Landy bidder should show his 5-card Major. The exception: Game is not on if the Landy overcaller is at the weak end of his range with 5-5 shape in the Majors, in which case he should bid 3club, which will allow partner to make a choice of NT or one of the Majors.

Overcalling the enemy 1NT - from the last hand

If you are sitting in the "last hand" position (the enemy open 1NT, followed by 2 passes) you should be more aggressive. That's because you know the enemy don't have a "Game" on. In this case:

  • a good single five-card suit can be enough to overcall (instead of a single 6-card suit in the direct overcall seat),
  • Landy is still a good way of showing two Major suits, if that's what you and partner agree.

In a 1NT contract by the enemy, a good 5-card suit of yours would, unfortunately, be unlikely to be led by your partner. So the enemy has a better than usual chance of making their annoying 1NT. Another good reason to overcall if you have a good 5-card suit in the last seat.


Now try the quiz

Can you put all this into action ? Try the quiz for this subject by clicking on the link at the top left of the page, just below the main menu.
(You can try quizzes for any other subjects too while you're there. Look out for the thin red line).



About us   Contact us     Terms & conditions of use      Log in      Comment on current page

© Bid and Made. Nothing on this website may be reproduced without written permission from Bid and Made. Just drop us a line, and we'll almost certainly say yes.