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All comments by Craig Zastera
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Yes, I know there is a check box on the ACBL convention card that says “minimum off-shape take-out doubles.”

I'm presuming that our partnership does not check that box.
Sept. 23, 2018
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2 is natural, values & suit for a 2 level overcall.
2 is limited Michaels (Majors)
3 is both majors, very strong
Double is TO of s (could be a very strong 1 suiter)
Sept. 23, 2018
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Patrick,
Perhaps you should take a poll:
You are VUL, They are NOT
LHO opens 1 in 1st chair and partner DOUBLES
What is the probability that partner holds 4 or more s ??

I am quite confident that the answer will be above 50%, justifying “usually.”
Sept. 23, 2018
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The point I am trying to make is that the strength range shown by advancer's jump to 2 should be the same regardless of whether advancer has a 4 card suit or a 5 card one.

I play that this range is “9-11”.
Now it is certainly true that having a 5 (or 6) card suit is an asset. But that fact is taken care of by counting extra “points” for each card over four in advancer's long suit and also point(s) for advancer's shortness in suits other than the one partner doubled.

So, the minimum *high card* point requirement for a jump advance of 2 when advancer has a 5 card suit is lower than when his suit is only 4 cards (and lower still when he has a 6 card suit), but the the point range is still “9-11” when his HCPs are adjusted for his suit length and for his shortness in other suits, and secondary honors in his LHO's suit are discounted.
Sept. 23, 2018
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John,
The problem I see with your argument is that when advancer has a 4 card major, *usually* partner (the TO doubler) has 4 card support.

When advancer declines to express the full value of his hand for fear that the “fit” is only 4-3, good games can be missed because doubler does not know advancer has invitational strength.

Of course, when the fit really is only 4-3, the cautious approach you advocate will likely pay off.
Sept. 23, 2018
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Hand could be similar but with :AKQ and :A or :AKQJ, etc.
It is hard for me to imagine what hand type responder can have for 5 other than something along these lines.

A void seems all but certain, else he could just ask for key-cards in s.
Sept. 22, 2018
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What would your call be if your partner opened 4 and you held:
: QJT9xxxxx : void : AK : AK ?
Sept. 22, 2018
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Michael,
I don't consider this a form of Puppet Stayman.
The main goal was to be able to
(a) allow overcaller to show 5 cards in either major
and
(b) allow advancer to be able to show 5=4 or 4=5 majors
and
© find all routine 4=4 major suit fits

“(a)” is well handled by Puppet Stayman, but that convention does not handle “(b)”.

“(b)” is well handled by Smolen, but that convention does not handle “(a)”.

The method I outlined handles both “(a)” and “(b)” (and “©”), while in all cases resulting in the strong hand declaring.

I'm doubtful that “Regular Stayman” can do that (nor can Puppet Stayaman nor can Smolen) even with a “few modifications”, unless those modifications are something like what I've outlined (which I certainly wouldn't call “Regular Stayman with a few modifications.”
Sept. 22, 2018
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Here's a way to handle advancer's 4=5 and 5=4 majors, find 4=4 major suit fits, and discover if overcaller has a 5 card major:
After (2)-2N-(P)
advancer's 3 inquires about majors.
Overcaller replies:
3N: shows 5 s
then, 4 transfers to s

3: shows 5 s
advancer can bid 3N or 4 to play
or 4 to show slam interest in s

3: shows exactly *4* s
advancer can raise to 4 to play or
or bid 3 as relay to 3NT either to play or
to continue as a slam try

3: < 5 s and < 4 s
then:
(a) 3 asks for length:
3 = three s
(caters to advancer's 5=4 majors+
3NT = < 3 s (generally, two)
4 level=4 s
cue-bid in case advancer has slam
interest.

(b) 3 is relay to 3NT
(to play or continue with slam interest)

© 3N shows advancer's 4=5 majors (an 8
card fit can still exist in either major)
4N/5N would be same shape but stronger
Sept. 22, 2018
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Further, a pair that uses 2NT as their strong passed hand major suit raise opposite a 3rd chair opener is most likely *not* a pair that frequently opens very light 1M in 3rd seat.
A frequent very light opening pair would surely play 2 “Drury” in order to discover the light opener without bidding beyond 2M.
Sept. 21, 2018
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In 3NT, we are likely to get a lead.
That will remove our A.

Then, if partner lacks the A (or even if he has it stiff), our hand is likely to be “dead.”

That suggests to me that passing 3NT is unwise even though this be matchpoints.

So the only issue I see is whether to bid 4 or 5.
Surely 4 must be forcing, but 5 seems more to the point of emphasizing “good s in context” which I think we have.

Yes, one could easily criticize North's earlier bidding in various ways (e.g. open 5 or rebid 3).
Sept. 21, 2018
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Isn't it interesting that on this poll:
* 48% choose a call committing to slam (5NT, 6, 6)
* 41% choose the call rejecting slam (5)

* but only 11% choose the call saying “maybe slam” (5).

So roughly half the people “know” there is no slam and roughly half “know” there is one. But very few think there might be one and want to send that message to partner.
Sept. 21, 2018
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I did a similar simulation (1000 deals) with this North hand.
I gave South 2=5=3=3 shape with 12-13 HCPs, and West 5 s (including K) with 8+ HCPs.

My results for NT played by North showed that
3NT outperformed 1NT by 1758 IMPs (Not VUL).

At Matchpoints, 1NT beat 3NT on only 386 deals.

Since the hands given to South represent those which are real openers yet would pass a 1NT response, this suggests that 1NT will miss too many good games when South has a minimum balanced opener.
Sept. 20, 2018
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I will just note that Bridge World Standard defines a passed hand 1NT response to partner's 1M opening as “6-12” and “semi-forcing.”

I do not believe that they are specifically addressing the case where there is a 1 overcall as here, but I see no reason to think that would cause the 1NT response to be defined any weaker.
Sept. 20, 2018
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I do not think that a free 1NT response to a 3rd seat 1 opener shows “6-10”. I'd say “8-11” would be more like it.
Sept. 20, 2018
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Is there something wrong with this post? I repeatedly get message:
“Unable to get poll results; got a 500 error.”
and (as you might expect) no poll results are shown.
Sept. 20, 2018
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auction 1: 3 is 100% non-invitational. Generally 6 s (I'm not sure about “any 6”). There are plenty of other bids availalbe to invite game.

auction 2: I'd say “9-11” rather than “8-11”, but I count support points adding 1 for each card over 4 in the long suit and shortness in suits *other than the one doubled* as 1/3/5 for 2/1/0.
Sept. 20, 2018
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Playing 2NT (or 2 for the matter) as a strong raise is not a popular treatment BY A PASSED HAND because it is too likely to get the partnership too high when 3rd seat opener is “light.”

What is a popular treatment BPH is 2 Drury to show a strong (passed hand) raise of 3rd seat 1M opener. This allows the partnership to stop in 2M which is often critical.
Sept. 20, 2018
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I like to play “light” 1M openers in 3rd chair, but there is no way I would even consider a 1 opening on that hand as it cannot pass a 1 response, not to mention that, IMO, this goes beyond “light” to “psych.”

2 in 3rd chair would be a more reasonable shot if trying to stir things up.
Sept. 20, 2018
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A better solution is to lose the silly 2NT “raise” (which will likely get the partnership too high if opener really is “light”) in favor of defining 2 as a Drury (strong) raise of opener's major (not appropriate for this hand, of course, since it lacks support).

I believe that PH jumps to 2NT should show both minors (at least 5=5) with just short of opening values.

It makes no sense for a PH to jump to 2NT “natural” when opener could be light.

Given that, responder here seems to have a choice between a negative double and a natural 1NT.

With the strong double stopper in their suit, I think 1NT is more descriptive. A negative double on this auction doesn't even promise 4+ in both minors, so that bid seems less ideal to me (but still acceptable).
Sept. 20, 2018
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