Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Chris Gibson
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we have invitational values and no fit - and partner is suggesting defending might be right (my view on these balancing actions is that you should never balance with X unless playing a doubled contract is something you can stand). My hand is defensive in nature, even without a club stack. This could go wrong, but I think its worth trying for 200 at mps. I pass
Feb. 18, 2012
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thank you, I do like that lead of the T. It also gives me an idea - when I hold the same hand without the K of clubs, I should defend as though I do have the K - after all, playing partner for a diamond honor is still a give-up play, declarer will always have 9 tricks assuming partner doesn't have 5 diamonds to the K - and why wouldn't he lead a diamond from that holding. The only hope is that declarer will set herself.
Feb. 17, 2012
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John, I think you are coming across a little strong in your comments. The only option I had to steer declarer away from a winning play was what? Please suggest an alternate defense from my hand which would have led declarer into not taking the club hook. (and I really hope that you can - I think the next area of real improvement I can make in my game is to learn to take tricks from declarer which I am not entitled to, so this could be really helpful) Don't bother including what partner could do differently, or cooperatively; he was a random, not someone I had any partnership agreement with.
Feb. 17, 2012
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John, I think that's a nice analysis. Unfortunately, I think I'm basically tight-roped into the end position regardless - If I return a diamond, declarer has the tempo to test clubs with some confidence in how the diamonds must lie, and I may have to reveal the heart distribution with my discards anyway - I haven't done much work on that as of yet.

The point of this wasn't to say my defense was awesome. The point was to say that declarer took the cues from my defense to bend the imp odds so that it was worth taking the finesse at the end for the 2 imps.
Feb. 17, 2012
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I suppose it might be because she wanted to give E a chance to win his theoretical ace of diamonds, then return something helpful - I don't know for sure, but that's what I would surmise as most likely. Either that, or she didn't give it much thought until the endgame developed. The pace of play was such that declarer didn't really pause much after the first trick until the time I ducked the Q
Feb. 16, 2012
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2D then 3C. I'm not ashamed of game forcing this, and I don't make two-suited negative doubles with 11 cards in the suits - partner has a hard time visualizing that & making good decisions.
Feb. 16, 2012
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Funny experience. My partner and I were playing in a club duplicate last night where there were two concurrent games - a “teaching” game for new players, and a regular open game. Both games had a sit-out, so the director just rotated in the pairs to practice against each other. When my partner and I played our sit-out, the director built us up as the big bad wolves, even inventing a “national ranking” in which he said we were rated. The very first board, I'm lost in my own head and I revoke on the first round of trump, setting up a nice cross-ruff for the defense later in the hand. The newbies were not impressed with the technique I showed:)

In fact, one of the great benefits of playing up is that you take the pressure off yourself - you realize that the high level players screw up too. If someone had been following me around in the past year, they would have seen me play a slam in a 3-3 fit with no opponent bidding (7-0 break doomed the contract), two grand slams off cashing aces, and other really bad sillyness too, despite the fact that I am regularly compete at the top levels in my area.
Feb. 16, 2012
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Greg, in my partnership we actually use that sequence by an unpassed hand as a slam invite. We don't invite game, we just bid it or don't bid it as a style.
Feb. 15, 2012
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Greg - how disappointed can partner really be - I have 6-7 playing tricks in my hand in hearts. I really can't think of a hand where partner can leap to blackwood missing four keycards in response to a 2H opening; I'm sure you can. What I worry about is that if partner responds, let's say, 2S, that 4H still sounds like a 3 card splinter in support of spades.
Feb. 15, 2012
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Lynn - Sectional tournaments have their format and start times decided by the Unit board. Regional tournaments have their format and start times decided by the District board. Nationals have their format and start times decided by the ACBL board.
Feb. 15, 2012
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I bid 2 hearts, game forcing with hearts. The reason I did so was because I don't want to stop short of game, and because I want to suggest (later demanding) hearts as trump. I will not cooperate with partner if she makes a slam try, I'm just going to keep on bidding hearts until we arrive at 4.
Feb. 14, 2012
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I voted for 3S, but I'm reconsidering because this is the sequence I would use if I had 4 hearts and a spade stopper, choice of games. Since I have neither 4 hearts nor a spade stopper, I feel like that's a dangerous bid. I'm just bidding 4C, and hoping that partner is on the same page, showing a massive club fit. I kind of wish he would have just bid 3C like I asked.
Feb. 13, 2012
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Was 2N forcing? regardless, I'm leading a spade.
Feb. 13, 2012
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Steve's idea will either decrease the quality of the open game, or drive out all beginner level players. Really, what I think these extra games do is winnow out the sick and weak from the field, making the open event that much tougher and that much more enjoyable. I don't want a top board because some bunny bid their way to 4S on a 4-3 fit and had no idea how to play it; I want a top because I bid my way to a 4S on a 4-3 fit when it was right, or because I played & defended as well as possible.
Feb. 12, 2012
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If you are asking whether senior events are “killing the game” then I'd have to say no. I have never heard of anybody who gave up bridge because they saw that the ACBL offered senior games, or because the open games at regionals were only two sections instead of 4.

If you are asking whether the open games would be more enjoyable with more players in them, I'd say yes, but frankly the ACBL members are voting with their feet, saying that they find more enjoyment out of playing senior games instead of the open games. Who am I to say they shouldn't have that option just because I would like to have a bigger open game with better opponents?
Feb. 11, 2012
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Hi Robert. I'm a younger player, and I worry that the average age of the bridge population is growing every year, and that the majority of successful marketing strategies used by the ACBL appear to be toward senior citizens and the newly retired. What strategies is the ACBL prepared to follow to attract people of all ages to the game?
Feb. 9, 2012
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Hendrik, stay on message. It was already asbaf earlier, a much catchier acronym :)
Feb. 8, 2012
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2 spades. It's where I live, implies a diamond fit, and takes away their cheap cue-bid.
Feb. 8, 2012
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I voted other because I didn't like your follow-up description of a strong jump shift, but I would think a strong jump shift. I know that I would definitely not pass, as ASBAF (All strange bids are forcing) rules would be in effect.
Feb. 7, 2012
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I really don't understand the strong objection to Peg's post, Randy. She's not demanding that people play up. She's not calling for the elimination of limited events. She's not disparaging people who don't play up, or saying that it's not possible to have fun if you don't play up. I think that the gist of the article is two-fold: Playing against better competition in turn makes you a better player (strongest steel forged in the hottest fire argument), and that even though the wins will be far less frequent, she thinks that the majority of the players will find them much more meaningful.

My own experience bear testament to Peg's article. I value my times playing against the best because it highlights both how far I've come as a player, and how much I still need to work on. And, frankly, at this point most of my most prized bridge memories are winning or losing plays against the top players competing in my region or at Nationals.
Feb. 5, 2012
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