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All comments by Craig Zastera
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Ray,
Yes, that would be the normal distinction.

Of course, one is allowed to apply some judgment based on overall strength, suit quality etc.
Deviations based on judgment would be the occasional double with 5 cards in the major. I would never bid 2M with only a 4 card suit under any circumstances.

And of course if advancer were woefully weak, it would not be a crime to pass RHO's (1M) with four cards in his major.
May 23
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I put this hand opposite random 12-13 HCP hands with exactly
4=2=4=3 shape.
5000 deal simulation.
4 made on 55.8% of the deals.

Obviously, opener can have different shapes, but these to me represent typical minimum hands with which he will pass an invitational 3.

The results suggest that this hand is too good for a mere invite.
May 23
Craig Zastera edited this comment May 23
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I do not believe that “double then cue” shows a 2 opening.
To do that, you (1) double, then (2) cue-bid, then (3) bid a new suit.

The usual meaning for double then cue-bid is a strong hand with 3 card support for advancer's suit.

I believe doubler should have at least 19 HCPs for this sequence and can have more–not limited.
There might be a temptation to “cheat” with only a good 18 HCPs for this, but that would really be pushing the lower limit as advancer might have nothing (maybe not even a 4 card suit).
May 23
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I don't think it is about exposing a psych in either case (those are rare). It is simply a way of describing the advancer's hand and possibly finding a fit.
Also helps to differentiate 4 card suit from 5 card suit (at least in the majors).
May 23
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I do not see much benefit in a low level (4 or 4) key-card ask.
After 1N-2-2-?, an immediate 4NT is, of course, natural and quantitative.

But after any agreeing bid (say 3 to show shortness or 4m to show a slam invitational raise without shortness), it seems fine to me to use the usual 4NT RKCB.

But sometimes after 1NT-2-2, responder has a slammish hand with four s (and not four s). If he is strong enough for a key-card ask, it might be useful for him to be able to ask for keycards in s (even though we are not going to play in s) in order to find out about the “key” K and Q.

Thus, after e.g. 1N-2-2-??,
one can use 4 as “reverse Baze” and 4 as key card ask in s.
May 23
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I do not agree that VUL this hand is “too good” for a “pre-emptive” 3. Unless it's that 5th that worries you–3 would normally show only 4.
But strength-wise, I think this hand is fine for 3.
May 23
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Do not agree with 1.
But I do believe North's 4 100% promises at least 5 s.
South's opening is in 3rd chair, hence could be light and a 4 card suit.
Therefore, I almost expect *6* s for the PH VUL jump to 4 opposite a 3rd chair opening.
May 23
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Seems like 2NT now is perfect.
Our double then cue has shown 19+ HCPs with 3 s.

So now 2NT should show *more* (I'd say 21 at least) with a stopper.

Partner should be able to figure out what to do after that.

Perhaps a decision to make if partner removes 2NT to 3.
Bidding “one more for the road” would be tempting, but definitely speculative as partner need not have any HCPs.
May 23
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By an UPH, we play 4 = s & s (at least 5 of each) and *forcing* (non-Leaping Michaels) in both direct and balancing position.

We've never discussed it by a passed hand.
Probably because it doesn't seem to make much sense for a PH to be forcing to the 4 level opposite passing partner.

Still, 4 in this position with *any* meaning seems dubious, so I suppose it would retain the “both black suits” definition. I chose “pass”, but perhaps under the given conditions, a 2-suited 4 *might* be a reasonable gamble.
Presumably, it would *not* be forcing by a PH. :-).
May 23
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I don't require the “+”, but this hand surely has it with *3* 10s (very unusual) *and* a 5 card suit.
May 23
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I primarily considered this a close choice between 1 and 1NT.
I think “DOUBLE” is a distant 3rd.
Double suffers from (a) only 3 cards in each major; (b) not as descriptive of shape and HCPs as 1NT; © too likely to reach the wrong strain.

I chose 1NT as it seems like best description of shape and strength. We play 2 level suit advances as natural.
Thus, will play 2, 2 or 2 *from partner's side* if he has 5 cards in any of those suits.
May 23
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Might it work better to use 3 as the “modified Baze” to show slam interest in s with no shortness?

That way, when opener needs a cue-bidding sequence below 4 (before being able to embark on 4NT RKCB), he can either relay with 3 to force responder to cue-bid, or (perhaps with a different shade of meaning) he can cue-bid himself with all suits available at the 4 level without going past 4.

Then, of course, after 1NT-2-2, responder would show his splinter slam tries in s via 4/4/4 (bidding short suit).
May 22
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But the (or “a”) problem is that if partner has some
8 or 9 HCP balanced hand with 5=(332) shape, you will wind up in 3NT (1-1-2-2-2NT-3NT).

He doesn't have to have one of those hands, but they are the single most likely shape/strength.

Now you might make 3NT, but I wouldn't bet on it.

My simulations opposite the above hand type showed:
with 8-9 HCPs: 3N: 38.6%
with 8 HCPs : 3N: 26.6%
with 9 HCPs : 3N: 48.4%
May 22
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I would play this 2NT as “good/bad” showing a hand with long s but not as strong as I would have if I bid 3.
May 22
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give pard e.g.: x-Kxxxx-xxxx-AKx and 4 is excellent.
That's not even an opening bid in my book.

You've misled pard with your 2 raise (he thinks you've got 3 s). Now, I'm trying to do damage control. Guessing that defending (3) will be a good result for us does not seem right to me.
May 22
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It might be relevent to know if the partnership plays “ELC” (equal level conversion) after (1M)-DBL.

If they do, then doubler need not have 3+ s (he might have 4 s and 5-6 s in a minimum value hand).

That *might* have some impact on whether advancer's double here should be played as showing 4+ s or not.

Still, even with ELC, if doubler happens to have the ELC hand type, he merely removes the double to 2, so I don't see great problem with playing advancer's double as showing s even with ELC agreed.
May 22
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And the stiff is a big minus.
If you reverse with 2, you will reach 3NT frequently when partner has 8-9 HCP blah hands, which I suspect will often not be a winner.
May 22
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Seems unlikely that this could be a practiced partnership, else they would have agreed better methods over opener's 1NT rebids (e.g. “2-way NMF”).

Also, it would have been nice to know whether jumps to 3 or 3 by responder directly over the 1NT rebid would have been forcing (and slammish?) or not. That information might have shed light on what partner is up to on actual OP auction.
But perhaps OPer isn't sure what those jump rebids would have meant either.

Still, despite the poor methods, opener has managed to show a maximum (14 HCPs) balanced hand with 4 s and probably only 2 s, hence 2=4=4=3. Exactly what she holds.

Thus, it seems that it can hardly be wrong for opener merely to continue with 5 now, having already said all there is to say about her hand. Perhaps responder's next call will reveal what is going on.
May 22
Craig Zastera edited this comment May 22
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I chose 3 (oops–seems not too popular).
If partner bids 3NT, I pass.

If partner bids something else (4?), whether to try for slam or just bid 5 is close I think and partially depends on partnership expected min and max hands partner might have for 3.

The A and KQxx would seem like a max to me (else 3), and even that would leave problems in 6 (what to do with my s?), so *probably* would be content with 5.

If wanting to try for slam over 4, I guess 4 Kickback would be OK.
May 22
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I make whatever call shows a control.

In my methods, we play “Kickback” so 4 would be that while 4NT would be the cue-bid.

But as OP made no mention of Kickback, I voted for 4 intended as a cue-bid, whereas playing my methods my call of choice would be 4NT with the same meaning.

I think it is 100% clear to make a move towards slam here after partner shows clear slam interest with his 4 bid.

I believe that the 4 rebid after Jacoby 2NT not only shows a 5 card suit headed by 2 of the 3 top honors, but it also shows an otherwise relatively minimum opening hand (the OP hand here is a fine, sound, example).

Thus, I interpret partner's 4 as promising a hand strong enough to have slam aspirations opposite a relatively minimum (but 5=5 with strong s) opener.

With a very strong hand with a good 5 card side suit, I would not make the 4 level jump rebid, but rather would either show my short suit or take over the auction with a key-card ask at my second turn.
May 22
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