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All comments by Ben Thompson
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Sure, but you've got to balance 4-1, 4-1 (and pickable uppable), North being 22 in the blacks (where pitching if South has Qxx is the play). Then factor in South's defensive choice, how happy he was about his choice, your position, etc etc.

I think declarer should cash K then go A,K,another … but the main lines both fail on a bunch of layouts where the other succeeds and there's more to the odds problem than just the possible layouts.
Aug. 20
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Clubs 4-1 is a bit of a problem
Aug. 20
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Thanks David. I was aiming to “lift the curtain” for all the players who have never experienced a world championship. I'm glad it also appealed to someone who's regularly in the mix at them.
Aug. 20
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INV can mean invitational to game OR slam, while GF can mean exactly GF or totally slam forcing. Thst is, it's useful to split your ranges - and it's quite sensible to play various jumps after 2C-2D as a slam invite
Aug. 17
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We've really liked 3 so far

- Le Nord (one of the Paul Bocuse brasseries)

In Croix-Rousse (about a 10 euro uber from the venue) on Rue Belfort:
- L'Artisan et Le Cuisinier
- Chez Lucien
These are up the hill in Croix-Rousse and away from the downtown tourist areas. 3 excellent courses for 30-35 euros, and really nice staff. Very very limited English at Chez Lucien but my very bad French seemed to be just good enough to get by.

There are heaps of restaurants on Rue Mercerie near Place Bellecour. A bit touristy but we've eaten at a couple that were fine. Cafe l'Epicerie in that area is great for a simple lunch
Aug. 17
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I had a few in mind but when the hands came to the party I got my first choice!
Aug. 16
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Felix, the argument is that you have to work harder to win 10-0 on a flat set than 60-50 on a wild set. I don't entirely agree with that argument (eg low turnover doesn't guaranter flat boards OR good bridge)

Also, the high turnover style is entirely valid. If you think you win 60% of all imps turned over, of course you want more turnover
Aug. 16
Ben Thompson edited this comment Aug. 16
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David, not at all, but a poor balanced hand would pass (perhaps that's not your preference but our EW were clear that it's theirs).

East was of course aware of the risk of hitting a very weak unbalanced hand opposite but judged that upside opposite an average 8 count justified the risk. That's by no means universally popular - eg Sweden vs USA1 in the Bowl was flat in 4S making 6.
Aug. 15
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After West's 4 overcall, East jumped to 5 and West bid 6. East apparently said “this bid has no meaning” but thought it would have to include very good diamonds. To cut a medium story short, we asked for a ruling and the directors essentially ruled no infraction. We're satisfied with the directors' process and ruling.
Aug. 15
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Yes that's right. Our East made a slam try with 5 and West accepted. Retrospectively I'm sure North would wish they had bid 5 to take the slam try away from East (then even 5 can be taking the push rather than an enthusiastic slam try)
Aug. 15
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Thanks!
Aug. 14
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Thanks - that does make me feel better! I'm picking the Netherlands for the Silver (obviously my tattoo takes priority :) )
Aug. 13
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The whole deal is a bit much but the key card could be a goer. Hopefully the 3 in a grand slam swing
Aug. 13
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No fair jumping the auction like that!
Aug. 13
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Or Canada could officially change the name of their currency to “Loonie”, and come up with a nifty symbol for it.

Or the US could officially change the name of their currency to “Greenback”, and come up with a nifty symbol for it

Or both, which would be quite convenient for the rest of us on some kind of dollar :)
July 8
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A full discussion of style is impractical (and can be more confusing than helpful) but a check-box for “our takeout X style is different from textbook 3+ in the other suits OR strong” is a good idea. Just some warning that it may be worth asking the question.
July 8
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Serious or non-serious 3NT, you choose

Hamman once said if he never bid another slam, he'd be ahead

If I never end a slam try auction at the 5 level again, I'll be further ahead than Hamman
June 17
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I thought this was the best played hand of the year when I wrote it up.
June 14
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From Bob Richman (famously enthusiastic bidder) when I was a young and an even more enthusiastic bidder than I am now, for use whenever I was thinking up some excuse to bid:

“Don't do it”

From Stephen Burgess, maybe the most natural player I've ever met:

“Whatever your first thought was, do it unless you can 100% prove to yourself that it's wrong”

or in shorter form “trust your instincts”

or in other words “just do it”

My bridge career could be seen as an exercise in finding a proper balance between those two very useful pieces of advice
June 13
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Yeah, naahhh. Especially at IMPs. If you're making 2Cxx you're usually making some game, and the IMP variation is small. And if you're making 2Cxx, as here, they often have somewhere to run that's also a small IMP variation to your game making.

Then there's frequency. In practice you want to be very confident you're scoring 2Cxx because you look like a major noodle going one off rewound trying to ping the oppos for their impertinence instead of just making your regular game. So you're never going to collect all the times you could.

On this hand, for example, say you send it back with the South hand. Great when North has this hand. What about when their C support is 2 small (and East really meant their X with AQJxxx)? Do they sit it or go for a regular contract? But what South had the AQ1087 type of holding?

Here's a more frequent, and bigger value, problem. Right-siding the eventual contract. Sometimes North has the C stopper, sometimes South has it. You can't control who plays NTs but you can control who plays a major suit contact. A significantly better use of XX is as part of any sensible scheme to unwind who has what major together with who has a C holding that should be protected on opening lead.
June 11
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