Join Bridge Winners
Penalizing Partscores at IMPs

Knowing when to slam a partscore is an area I'm eager to improve upon, and I think intermediate players in gneral would benefit from the BW community's advice. This article presents three hands I misjudged at the Austin Fall Sectional A/X Swiss and will hopefully drive that discussion.

I'm familiar with the guidelines, such as "don't double for down 1", but these haven't been enough. What I'm looking for is the expert's thought process. What factors into the decision to or not to whack, and how?

First hand:

South
KQxx
J9xx
QJx
109
W
N
E
S
P
1
2
2
P
P
3
P
3
3
P
3
?

The pass of 2 is probably suspect. I figured my spade values would be wasted, making the hand too weak to compete. I was then delighted that they competed at the three level and pounced on 3 with confidence. The result was making 4 on a misdefense, but it was always making 3.

Second hand:

South
KJxx
Qx
Qxxx
Kxx
W
N
E
S
2
P
P
X
P
?

We play lebensohl, making 3 a decent description of the hand. However, I expected 4-5 defensive tricks against 2 and chose to pass. The result was making 3 on another misdefense. There may have been a double-dummy line to set, but the normal result is making 2.

Third hand:

South
8xxx
10
KJ9x
KQ9x
W
N
E
S
1
2
2
P
P
2
P
P
2
P
P
3
P
P
?

I chose 2 for a few reasons. First, holding a club stack, I expected that we didn't have game, and they were going down at the 3-level. Going low looked like a good way to goad them into overcompeting. Also, I did not want to make a negative double and hear partner bid 2, over which I'd have to bid 3 (which felt wrong). Partner's subsequent 2, even though it introduced a double-fit, didn't change my gut feeling that we should stay low.

When 3 came back, I ballparked my defensive trick count at 2.5 and passed. The result was a very easy down 1 and could have been down 2.


On each of these hands, I'd like to know what your decision would be and how you come to it. Did I misjudge or get unlucky? More importantly, how do you evaluate these situations in general?

32 Comments
Getting Comments... loading...
.

Bottom Home Top