The Intermediate American Bidding System

(Vol. II of the American Bridge Series)

by Chris Hasney & Jerry Pottier



Book Details

Language : English
Publication Date : 7/12/2006

Format : Softcover
Dimensions : 7.5x9.7
Page Count : 186
ISBN : 9781552122105
Format : E-Book
Dimensions : N/A
Page Count : 1
ISBN : 9781466959507

About the Book

Overview of the American Bridge Series

The American Bridge Series is designed as a sequential set of bidding courses, suitable for self-study or classroom-style study under the guidance of a professional bridge teacher. Volumes I through III include declarer play and defense skills as they relate to the bidding skills taught in each text. Volume IV is reserved for true experts; thus, declarer play and defense lessons would be an insult and are not included. The entire series takes about five years of study and practice to complete.

Volume I, The Basic American Bidding System was written for beginners and for social players who need to brush-up on basic bidding skills prior to tackling modern bidding methods. It features 5-card major suit opening bids, strong twos, and some basics of Forcing and Non-Forcing Stayman, Blackwood, Gerber, and few other things designed to form the framework for further study.

Volume II, The Intermediate American Bidding System makes the transition to modern methods including weak two openings. It teaches all of the pieces of "Standard" American in a way that integrates all of the varied forms of same. Don't be thrown by the term "intermediate." Many duplicate players think that they have reached that level when they can no longer play in novice games. Not so. "Intermediate," as defined by the authors, can vary from folks with zero ACBL masterpoints to 2500 masterpoints. It's not the points that count, it's the skill level.

Volume III, The Advanced American Bidding System presumes a complete understanding and skill with all of the material in Volume II. However, some of the Volume II material is repeated for intended redundancy, since the authors suspect that many folks who shouldn't be attempting to study Volume III will do so anyway. After all, "I'm a Life Master, I must be Advanced." The authors suggest that anyone not comfortable playing in Flight A at an ACBL regional or national tournament, or the World Bridge Federation (WBF) or other governing body equivalent thereof avoid purchase and study of Volume III until they have mastered all that is taught in Volume II.

Volume IV, The Expert American Bidding System, (NOT YET RELEASED) presumes two years' experience with the bidding techniques taught in Volume III, and expert declarer play and defense skills. This is not a "Mom and Pop" book. It is for those who wish to successfully compete in such ACBL events as Flight A Grand National Teams, the Blue Ribbon Pairs, the Life Master Pairs, the Spingold, Vanderbilt, and Reisinger teams, etc., and International events like the Bermuda Bowl and Venice Cup, The London Times Pairs, the McCallan, etc. It features 4-card majors, the TEAS responses to no trump openings, weak no trumps, and a variety of other bidding methods which will get bidders to the optimum place but will require expert declarer play or defensive skills to maximize results.

All four books emphasize sound, disciplined bidding and an underlying philosophy of "You bid your cards, I'll bid mine, we'll get to the right spot." By the time students complete study and practice of Volume III, they should be able to know what cards partner holds almost to the spot at the conclusion of an auction. In fact, Jerry and one of his partners were once accused of cheating when they got cocky and did this after an auction. The comment was: "How can you know what cards your partner holds?" Jerry's answer: "Isn't that the whole point of the bidding?"

About the Author

Chris Hasney played a bit of bridge in college in the early 1970s but did not develop a keen interest in the game until the mid-1980s when he met Bob Jones at the Thunder Mountain Bridge Club in Sierra Vista, Arizona. Unfortunately, Chris was working full time as a stockbroker for Dean Witter Reynolds Inc. and engaged in hobbies such as community theater which limited his time at the bridge table and made his studies of the game under Bob’s tutelage spotty, at best. In addition, Chris contracted Chronic Fatigue and Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (CFIDS) in late 1986, and suffered a gradual worsening of that condition. Eventually the effects of the disease became so pronounced that Chris reluctantly left the securities business on long term disability in early 1995.

Chris grabbed bridge as a therapeutic lifeline. It allowed him to remain in the company of other people and to combat the "Brain Fog" which is one of the classic symptoms of advanced CFIDS which is also known by the names Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS) and Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (M.E.). Unfortunately Bob Jones died of a heart attack in 1995, and so Chris began taking bridge lessons from Jerry Pottier and Billy Miller. At the same time, Chris began to transcribe Bob Jones' old lesson plans in an effort to learn a bit more and to save Bob's work for posterity. Volumes I and II of The American Bridge Series sprouted from this project.

Another therapy was the Internet. Despite frequent CFIDS relapses Chris began learning e-mail and HTML and became somewhat adept at basic website design. He also began playing bridge on the Internet via OK Bridge, which he found to fit better with CFIDS since he was not committed to a 3-1/2 hour duplicate session. One of the things he noticed was a huge inconsistency between what he learned from Bob, what he learned from Jerry and Billy, what he was reading in bridge texts, and what was being played as SAYC or "Standard" on OK Bridge. The Intermediate American Bidding System (Volume II of The American Bridge Series) addresses those inconsistencies.

With Jerry as partner at the El Paso Regional and playing The Advanced American Bidding System (Volume III), Chris won the Flight A Unmixed Pairs event, which led to a Blue Ribbon Pairs entry at the San Francisco Nationals. After the afternoon session Chris and Jerry were 17th in section and needed only to play average in the evening session to qualify for the semi-finals. Unfortunately CFIDS brain fog reared its ugly head in the second session, and board after board was tossed away. They missed qualifying by 1/2 point out of 1250 or so. Poor Jerry, he had to sit opposite a partner who couldn't think. It is to Jerry's credit that he maintained his composure and did his dead-level best on every board, despite what was going on. Billy Miller has experienced this as well, playing with Chris in San Diego and Reno regional events. On a good day, Chris can bid and play reasonably well, but you don't want to partner him during a CFIDS relapse.

Chris lives in Sierra Vista, Arizona where he is building a Nutrition For Life International business with a goal of Presidential Platinum. He also does web page design and website hosting for bridge pros, schools, and organizations via The River's Bridge Suites, which he created and manages. He is webmaster of The Contract Bridge World Wide Website and is Coordinating Webmaster for the CFIDS CFS ME FMS GWS Directory project, an attempt to catalog CFIDS, Fibromyalgia, and Gulf War Syndrome support group links worldwide in one website.

Contact the author at or 301-753-5099