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All comments by Art Korth
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I know that in one of the first Romex books there was an explicit agreement that any grand slam bid after asking bids was final - in other words, if the partner making the asks bid a grand slam in another suit, responder could not correct.

There was an example hand in which the asker bid a grand slam in a known 4-2 fit that was absolutely cold on any 4-3 break in the trump suit. A ruff was needed in the short trump hand for the 13th trick. No other denomination had any play for 13 tricks.

We can debate the merits of knowingly bidding a grand slam in a 4-2 fit, but it was a cute hand.

Absent that agreement, I agree that the 4NT bid over 1 is dangerous.
Oct. 24, 2019
Art Korth edited this comment Oct. 24, 2019
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Sure, but it allows for those bids to be used for other purposes.
Oct. 23, 2019
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@Randy: In the auction showing 5-5 in the majors with slam interest, the 4 bid is FORCING. Opener bids 4 with a preference for spades, 4NT as a regressive action without a fit, and anything else with a preference for hearts.

@Mike: In the usual Muppet Stayman sequence, if responder was just checking to see if opener had a 5 card major, over opener's 3 rebid responder bids 3 to deny 4 hearts (he may or may not have 4 spades) or 3 to deny holding 4 spades (and showing 4 hearts). Over responder's 3 call, opener will bid 3 with 4 spades. Responder will make sure that a 3NT contract is reached.

Note that the 3 call by opener promised at least one 4 card major (and denied holding a 5 card major).

Keep in mind that Muppet Stayman is designed to make the 2NT opener declarer except where unavoidable. So, with 4-4 in the majors responder bids 3NT over 3 and opener bids 4 of the major in which a fit exists.
Oct. 23, 2019
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In the Muppet version that I play, the following sequences show 5-5 in the majors:

2NT - 3
3* - 4**

*denies a 4 or 5 card major
** 5-5 in the majors, no slam interest

If opener's response to 3 is anything other than 3, there must be a 9+ card major suit fit. If opener's rebid was 3 showing at least one 4-card major, responder can bid 3NT promising at least 4 cards in both majors and opener will reveal the fit.

2NT - 3*
3 - 4**

* Transfer to 3
** 5-5 or better in the majors, slam interest.

This sequence allows responder to show his hand and his slam interest. It is a little awkward, but that is par for the course after a 2NT opening.
Oct. 23, 2019
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Deleted.
Oct. 22, 2019
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“I haven't thought it through, but I think leading towards the QJ wins with hearts 5-1 and Kx with west, but leading the Q doesn't help with hearts 1-5 and Kx with east.”

It does if there is a squeeze (red suit length both held by West). But, in any case, it doesn't hurt. You will be one trick ahead of those who led towards the QJ.

If by 1-5 you meant that the heart length is with East along with Kx of diamonds, then nothing helps, so it really doesn't matter. That case can be ignored.
Oct. 22, 2019
Art Korth edited this comment Oct. 22, 2019
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We were not told the type of scoring.

Considering the 5-1 breaks, I agree with you that the singleton K in front of the QJxxx is one case where you will make by leading small towards the QJxxx and there may not be a compensating gain for a 5-1 break in the other direction. You may still make even if running the Q loses to the singleton K depending on the heart distribution and whether a squeeze succeeds.

If this is matchpoints, running the Q gives you a chance of making an overtrick.
Oct. 22, 2019
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There may be more to this, but it seems to me that running the Q gives you more possibilities.

If the Q wins, you can then go after hearts to establish your 12th trick on any 3-3 or 4-2 break.

If the Q loses to the K, you can try for a 3-3 break in both red suits.

In addition, after losing to the K, you have the possibility that one of the opps has length in both red suits, in which case he will be squeezed on the run of your black suit winners. The squeeze may operate even if the Q wins, but you may not be able to give up a heart trick after you run your black winners.
Oct. 22, 2019
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After winning the A and playing the A, felling the K, followed by a high diamond ruff in dummy and cashing the A, you state that it is tempting to duck a club, so that you can ruff a club in dummy. “You will get 5 Spade tricks in Hand, One Diamond Ruff, Heart Ace, Club Ace and a Club ruff. That brings you to only 9 tricks.”

You are forgetting that you won the A at trick 1. So, if you could ruff a club in dummy successfully you would have 10 tricks.

Of course, it is not that simple, as East can threaten a club overruff. But you should have the trick count correct in your narrative.
Oct. 18, 2019
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Another advertisement for upside-down signals.
Oct. 14, 2019
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Sorry, this discussion makes my head hurt.

When did people stop thinking?
Oct. 12, 2019
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True, but attitude is not a rational explanation in this situation.
Oct. 12, 2019
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David, I don't understand your comment.

Count has nothing to do with attitude. It is informing partner of the count. He can use that information in any way he sees fit.

You would give count here whether or not you wanted clubs continued.
Oct. 12, 2019
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In this situation, the J is, for all intents and purposes, not an honor. Partner is known to hold the AK and the dummy has the Q. So the J is just a card. If you are playing standard carding, the play of the J is clear.
Oct. 11, 2019
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West should shift to the J.

That shift probably will not result in multiple diamond ruffs, but it makes it easy to get 3 heart tricks.

As for the play of the club suit by East, playing standard signals the J is automatic and East should do so in tempo.
Oct. 11, 2019
Art Korth edited this comment Oct. 11, 2019
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I met Harold a few times as he played occasionally with a friend of mine, Arnie Fisher. Harold was quite a character.
Oct. 7, 2019
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Ian: I don't doubt that arrow-switching achieves some marginal benefit. I just don't think it is worth the trouble.

It is similar to using a web movement in a club game. Sure, a web movement is likely to be preferable to other movements. But the amount of gain involved is (1) not really significant given the circumstances; and (2) more trouble than it is worth.

I suspect that either of these “improvements” are more for the psyche of the TD than for the benefit of the players. (Note: “psyche” not “psych,” often misspelled as “psyche”)
Oct. 7, 2019
Art Korth edited this comment Oct. 7, 2019
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I suppose arrow-switching is OK, but my general take on this is that is much ado about nothing.
Oct. 7, 2019
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Over the years, I have frequently played against Beth and have followed her bridge career from a distance. I distinctly remember having a good round against Beth and Bill Cole in my first regional win in Philadelphia in 1977. Having a good round against Beth and Bill was definitely a good omen, as it was very rare.

A tremendous loss. My condolences.
Oct. 3, 2019
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I agree that the 5 call is way out there. So NS should not get any benefit of a ruling against EW.

Assuming that EW has any evidence as to their actual agreement, my opinion is that the result stands.
Sept. 26, 2019
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