Hackett Defense Against Weak Two Bids

This defense method was devised and developed by Mr. Paul D. Hackett of England. It is a defense to Weak Two bids of preemptive nature, especially opening bids.

Mr. Paul Hackett is considered the patriarch of arguably the most famous bridge family in the world, Paul was born in the year 1941 in Peshawar, Pakistan, which is also known as the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. With the death of his father, killed in action in a fighter plane over Singapore Straights, he returned to England. Not wanting to go into the business world after University, Paul took up golf and bridge and tried to earn a living from both of them.

Note: The city of Peshawar, also known as Pekhawar, is the capital of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (formerly known as the North-West Frontier Province), and the administrative centre and central economic hub for the Federally Administered Tribal Areas of Pakistan. The city of Peshawar is situated in a large valley near the eastern end of the Khyber Pass, close to the Pak-Afghan border. The city is also known as City on the Frontier.


Paul Hackett

Hackett Defense Concept

The competitive defense bids and calls are shown below, and they follow a preemptive opening, and/or possibly overcall, of a Weak Two bid. Whether or not they may also be employed in the passout seat becomes a partnership understanding.

Bid Meaning
Double: A double is for penalty.
2 NT: This bid is natural and promises a balanced holding of originally 16-18 high card points. The range can be modified, but the range should be considered strong, as in 14/15-17 high card points.
3 : This overcall is for Takeout and promises values between opening values and maximum 16 high card points.
3 : This overcall is for Takeout and promises values of more than 17 high card points.

The bridge player will immediately notice that the partnership, when agreeing to use this defense method, will no longer be able to establish a final contract of 2, since the concept is unable to include this. However, this particular approach does permit the partnership to overcall with an immediate exchange of information about the strength of the holding. All continuances are a matter of partnership agreement. This particular defense method is used by partnerships, who have agreed that an opening of 2 is a strong, artificial bid and is therefore not included in the list of Weak Two bids.



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.