SCUM Against No Trump Openings
The origin of this conventional method is unknown. The previous variation of the present concept appeared gradually some time in the 1970s, but the origin is also unknown as is the original version. This defense method considers the Shape, Color, and the Major suit. The letter u seems to have been added in order to make a pronounceable designation and has no meaning.
This particular variation has been employed by Mr. Bart Bramley, and experienced bridge player on the national and international level. Source is: 50th Spring North American Bridge Championships, held in St. Louis, Missouri, Daily Bulletin, Volume 50, Number 4, Monday, March 12, 2007.
The three letters of the acronym correspond to the first three steps of the method, which is shown below: Shape-Color-Major suit. This method can be employed against a strong 1 No Trump opening, but the definition of a strong No Trump is any No Trump range that would normally contain sufficient defensive strength to beat a game. Against any 1 No Trump opening, which can be designated as constructive, generally 12 plus high card points, the conventional method of SCUM can be employed.
Against any 1 No Trump opening, which can be designated as destructive and/or non-constructive, normally 11 high card points or fewer, then a double is considered to be a penalty double.
South West Meaning 1 NT The range should be defined as per partnership agreement. Double Shows a two-suited holding of the same Shape, either Clubs and Hearts (Rounded) or Diamonds and Spades (Pointed). The point count becomes irrelevant since it is the distributional shape, which becomes the deciding factor in determining the possibility of an overcall. The length of the two suits may be determined by the state of vulnerability, which could be 4-4 (non vulnerable vs. vulnerable, rare), 4-5 (by equal vulnerability), or 5-5 (vulnerable vs. non-vulnerable). 2 Shows two suit of the same color: either Spades and Clubs or Hearts and Diamonds. The same guidelines regarding the length and vulnerability apply. 2 Shows both Major suits. 2 This is a natural bid and promises at least a 5-card plus Heart suit with 2-3 of the top five honors. The trick-taking ability should be that the holding be worth at the very least two tricks. 2 This is a natural bid and promises at least a 5-card plus Spade suit with 2-3 of the top five honors. The trick-taking ability should be that the holding be worth at the very least two tricks. 2 NT Shows both Minor suits. 3 Natural. Shows a semi-solid 5-card Club suit; normally shows a 6-card plus Club suit containing at least 2/3 playing tricks. 3 Natural. Shows a semi-solid 5-card Diamond suit; normally shows a 6-card plus Club suit containing at least 2/3 playing tricks.
Any and all continuances are per partnership agreement.
If you wish to include this feature, or any other feature, of the game of bridge in your partnership agreement, then please make certain that the concept is understood by both partners. Be aware whether or not the feature is alertable or not and whether an announcement should or must be made. Check with the governing body and/or the bridge district and/or the bridge unit prior to the game to establish the guidelines applied. Please include the particular feature on your convention card in order that your opponents are also aware of this feature during the bidding process, since this information must be made known to them according to the Laws of Duplicate Contract Bridge. We do not always include the procedure regarding Alerts and/or Announcements, since these regulations are changed and revised during time by the governing body. It is our intention only to present the information as concisely and as accurately as possible.
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