Bridge changes, constantly. Even the most basic convention, Stayman, must evolve in order to adapt to the changes. Now that it is common to open 1NT with a five-card major, you have to be able to find an eight-card fit. To do so, it was necessary to add a second Stayman to the classic one, which itself is slightly modified: Puppet Stayman.
The increase of 1NT openings with a five-card major and the search for confidentiality (avoiding unnecessarily describing opener’s distribution) led to improving the response system facing 1NT openings with the introduction of double Stayman: the usual Stayman of 2♣ and a Puppet Stayman of 3♣.
It reveals four Hearts in the hand of the future declarer, solely at the advantage of the defense.
Discovery of a 5-3 fit
You all, like me, have responded 3NT over 1NT with:
… not a success opposite:
The 1NT opening meets all the criteria that you remember from your courses (never 17HCP, no small doubleton, rather three cards in the other major); the 3NT response is obvious, there is no culprit, and the board will probably be a tie when it comes to scoring… unless your opponents play Puppet Stayman.
2- Puppet Stayman
The response of 3♣ to the 1NT opening is a particular Stayman:
- Looking for five-card majors in opener’s hand, but it also allows you to find a 4-4 fit without revealing, in case of failure, opener’s four-card major.
- Game-forcing. 9+HCP without upper limit.
- Balanced distribution, zero or one four-card major. No singleton, not both four6card majors. Forcing de manche. 9+H sans limite supérieure. Distribution régulière, zéro ou une majeure quatrième. Ni singleton, ni les deux majeures quatrièmes.