Q:

What is contract bridge scoring?

A:

Quick Answer

Contract bridge scoring tracks the points from the two sides in a game of contract bridge match. In each hand, after the tricks have all been played, the teams record their scores and then begin the next hand.

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Full Answer

Once the tricks are all gone, it is obvious whether or not the declarer made his contract, which means taking, at minimum, the number of tricks in the bid. If the declarer made his contract, that side receives 20 points per trick if the trump suit was a minor (clubs or diamonds), 30 per trick if the suit was a major (hearts or spades) and 40 points if it was a no-trump contract. Making a contract of six tricks is called a small slam, and making a contract of seven tricks is called a grand slam. Catching that many tricks without bidding that high, however, does not result in a slam.

If the declarer fails to make the contract, the other side receives undertrick points for each trick the declarer is down, or short of the bid. The undertrick points total 50 per trick short, although both doubling and redoubling are possible, depending on the terms of the contract. On the score sheet, which has a cross on it, points toward the game go below the horizontal line, while overtricks and bonuses go over the line.

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