The origin of this variation is unknown. Rolling Blackwood, or Sliding Blackwood, is a variation of the Blackwood convention. It takes into account that two partners could reach an unsafe contract in the Minors using the normal Blackwood convention, which could take them past the level of a safe contract.

Note: Some bridge players will employ a different form of Blackwood if the established trump suit is a Major suit.

The following auction should illustrate the concept behind Rolling Blackwood, aka Sliding Blackwood.

The dealer is North - Vulnerable: North/South. No competition.

North   South   Meaning
1       North promises opening values.
    3   South holds a limit raise in Clubs. This first response denies holding a higher-ranking 4-card suit.
4 NT       This is the Blackwood convention inquiring about the number of Aces.
    5   South communicates the holding of only one Ace per partnership agreement.

Note: Under normal circumstances the continuation with a bid of 5 No Trump would inquire about the number of Kings.

Note: However, the Rolling Blackwood convention states that the lowest-ranking non-trump bid is employed to inquire about the number of Kings. North would then, per partnership agreement inquire with a bid of 5 Hearts.

North   South   Meaning
5       King inquiry.
    5   Shows either zero of 4 Kings.
    5 NT   Shows only 1 King.
    6   Shows 2 Kings.
    6   Shows 3 Kings.

Note:Although this variation of the Blackwood conventional method enjoyed some popularity the general bridge community decided eventually that other conventional methods were more advantageous.



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.