Making Our Contract

Length: 10 minutes

Our score, assuming we make our contract, is made up of three parts. Our points for tricks bid, our points for overtricks and our bonus points for the level of contract we make. The points we win for tricks bid and over tricks are the same unless we are doubled and can be found in the table below.

Clubs/ DiamondsHearts/ SpadesNTs
Points for 7th trick203040
Points per trick (from 8th trick)203030

If we can make the same number of tricks whichever suit we play in, then we will score the most points in NTs. Earning only 20 points per trick in a minor, it is easy to see that we won’t build a big score that way. However, we can often make more tricks with a good trump suit, so it’s not always simple to know which suit to play in. 

Bonuses

BonusNon-VulnerableVulnerable
Part-score5050
Game300500
Small Slam500 plus game bonus750 plus game bonus
Grand Slam1000 plus game bonus 1500 plus game bonus

For bidding and making those high level contracts, we win great bonuses. We want to bid to the highest one of these we can make, so it’s attractive to bid them whenever we can. 

A small slam is when we say we can make 12 tricks and a grand slam when we bid to say we will make all 13 tricks. For now, the usual games are 3NT, 4H, 4S, 5C and 5D. Why these contracts are games and some other game contracts will be covered in lesson 2.

Doubled

If our opponents think we cannot make our contract, they may double us. This ups the stakes as we will win more points for making our contract but lose more if we go down. Today we are only focusing on making contracts and below is how our score will be calculated.

MinorsMajorsNTs
Tricks bid2 x 20 = 402 x 30 = 602 x 40 = 80 for the first, then 2 x 30 = 60
Overtricks100 NV, 200 V 100 NV, 200 V 100 NV, 200 V
Compensation for
the insult
505050

We will also receive the bonus for making a part-score, game, small slam or grand slam depending on our tricks bid. Notice, that the suit we have chosen to play in does not affect the score we receive for our overtricks and the insult.

Redoubled

If our opponents doubled us, we could choose to redouble. This ups the stakes even further as we will win more points for making our contract but lose more if we go down. Today we are only focusing on making contracts and below is how our score will be calculated.

MinorsMajorsNTs
Tricks bid2 x 2 x 40 = 802 x 2 x 30 =1202 x 2 x 40 = 160 for the first, then 2 x 2 x 30 =120
Overtricks200 NV, 400 V 200 NV, 400 V 200 NV, 400 V
Compensation for
the insult
100 100 100

We will also receive the bonus for making a part-score, game, small slam or grand slam depending on our tricks bid. Everything is simply double what we would have scored if the contract was doubled.

Back to: How to Score in Bridge