Contract Bridge Scoring
Scoring: After the tricks have been played, it is clear whether the declarer made the contract (i.e., took at least the number of tricks bid for) or, instead, went down. If the contract is made, the declaring side scores according to the table below. If you make a contract of 6, it's called a small slam; a grand slam is a made contract of 7 bids. Both slams receive bonuses. If you win six or seven tricks but did not bid that number; you are not credited with a slam.
These are the scores allotted "below the line" for contracts that have been won.
If the contract goes down, the other side scores points
for undertricks according to the chart above.
A side that has scored one game is vulnerable, so if both sides have a game both are vulnerable. A side that hasn't scored a game yet is not vulnerable. When defenders defeat, or set, a contract, they earn greater points whenever the other side is vulnerable. Score for the winning side is also increased when the final contract is doubled or redoubled. Note: Extra tricks (overtricks) made at any contract do not count toward game.
Scoring above and below the line: Both sides usually keep score, either on a preprinted Bridge score pad, or else just by drawing lines in a cross.
Contract scores are separated from
undertrick,overtrick and bonus
points by a line.
Below is a list of scoring for bonuses and overtricks.
Overtricks, honors and other additional bonus points.
Tips and strategy: Remembering the cards played is one key to improving your play. This will occur over time. As a start, make sure to notice and remember the first time someone doesn't follow
to a trick. It also helps to develop an ease with the number 13. That's the number of cards in a suit, the number or cards each player is dealt, and the number of tricks in the play.
More books have been written on Bridge than on any other card game, so go to the library or bookstore and explore the bidding styles and tips for good card-play.
Contract Bridge is a complex game with many layers of strategy, but once you get the hang of it, you can play it for life. On the next page, we'll introduce you some variations -- Auction Bridge, Honeymoon Bridge, Reverse Bridge and Three-Handed Bridge.