XYZ

XYZ is new minor forcing for the 21st century!

New minor forcing (NMF) allows partner to ensure opener keeps on bidding after three successive bids ending in 1NT.

XYZ, on the other hand, applies after a sequence of any three 1-level bid ( 1X, 1Y,1 Z, e.g. 1, 1, 1).

2 by responder as an artificial relay. Opener must bid 2.

2 by responder as an artificial bid, saying that the partnership is going to at least game.
Other bids by responder are natural and NOT Forcing; 2-level suit bids are typically weak*, 2NT and 3-level bids are invitational.

* 2 is weak unless it is a reverse
* 2 is weak unless it is a reverse

Responder’s 2 relay is used to either place the contract in 2, or to be followed by an invitational bid.

For more details, including possible variations and tweaks, check out this article by Larry Cohen.


Bernard Marcoux, “The Most Beautiful Game” is one of my favourite bridge bloggers. He also presents some interesting variations which can make XYZ even more powerful.

Here’s one intriguing example from many in his exhaustive article:

The 2 relay initiates invitational sequences, but we can use it also for this type of hand:

In standard methods, you have probably only one bid: 4NT quantitative. But why play 4NT when you can play 3NT?

Opener Responder
1 1
1NT 2
2 3NT = partner, I have 19 pts, an invitational hand for slam

Opener will decide.