~New Minor Forcing

New Minor Forcing fills a valuable niche when responder needs to make a forcing bid to invite game but doesn’t have the cards for a traditional forcing bid. After responder has bid a major suit and opener bids 1NT, responder makes the auction forcing and seeks specific information by bidding in a minor suit new to the auction. In Standard American bidding, this new suit by responder would also be considered forcing; the difference is that in 2/1, the new minor requires specific responses based on opener’s holdings. For the bidding sequence to be NMF, this sequence must exist:
~The first bid by responder must be a 1-lvl bid in a major suit.
~The second bid by opener must be 1NT or 2NT.
~The second bid by responder must be an unbid minor suit.

When this sequence occurs, opener knows that responder’s bid is conventional and must alert the opponents. Two examples:
1D               1S
1NT             2C

1H               1S
1NT             2C/2D

This new minor after 1NT by opener shows 10+ points and is, therefore, invitational and forcing one round. The bid can be used with a variety of holdings, the most common is when holding a 5-card major to inquire about 3-card support. Failure to use New Minor Forcing or some other strength showing bid appropriate for the situation, by default, shows a weaker hand of 6-9 points.

Opener’s Third Bid When Spades are Responder’s  First-Bid major

Listed below, in exact order of priority, are the available options from which opener can choose:
1. Two hearts (the unbid suit) shows a 4-card suit.
2. Two or three of responder’s major shows 3-card support and either a minimum (12-13 HCP) or a maximum
(Jump with 14+ HCP).
3. Two or three no-trump confirms a stopper in the unbid suit (or the artificial suit) and indicates a minimum (up to 13 HCP) or maximum (14+ HCP).

4. Rebid of the original suit or raise of responder’s minor is natural and denies the ability to make any other rebid.

If opener bids 2H, showing four hearts, responder may rebid 2S, showing a 5-card spade suit with game-invitational values–opener may pass or continue, having received this information. If partner had held 6 spades, he would have rebid spades to show length and strength (minimum or invitational).

A jump to 3S shows a 6-card suit and slam interest. With a 6-card spade suit, responder would have jumped to 3S over the 1NT bid (instead of using New Minor Forcing) with an invitational hand or to 4S (just to play game).

In the sequence
1D     1H
1NT   2H 

Responder is showing a 6-card heart suit but less than 10 HCP.

Opener’s Third Bid When Hearts are Responder’s First-bid Major

1D              1H
1NT            2C
In this example, opener has denied four spades (by bidding 1NT), so an eight-card spade fit cannot exist (with 5/5 in the majors, responder would have bid spades first).
~Here, opener’s first responsibility is to show a 3-card heart fit. A 2H bid now would show 3-card support and a minimum opener, while a jump to 3H would show 14+ HCP and 3-card heart support.
~Holding only two hearts, opener bids 2NT with minimum values and a spade stopper, but will jump to 3NT to show greater values and a spade stopper. An exception is that when opener’s first suit was diamonds, and the New Minor Forcing call has been 2C, opener will rebid 2D when holding only two hearts and five diamonds.
~Opener also has available a call of 2S. This cannot be showing a spade suit (already denied). It follows that when opener bids 2NT over the NMF call to show a minimum and only two hearts, that the 2NT bid also shows a spade stopper. When opener does not hold a spade stopper, he makes the “impossible” bid of 2S. Both the 2NT call and the 2S call promise two hearts.

1H               1S
1NT             2C/2D
Since either minor suit would be NMF, make the most natural call.
Responder may hold neither 4 hearts nor 5 spades and may only need to create a forcing auction. Subsequent bidding will reveal that fact.
~Any jump bid is natural and forcing to game.

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