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All comments by Craig Zastera
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One can *always* object to “good/bad 2NT” by asking what one would do with a hand suitable for a natural 2NT in the same situation.
That is not to say that is not a valid question. It's just that if you believe in “good/bad 2NT”, you think that the value of assigning that meaning to 2NT outweighs the benefits of having a natural 2NT available.

Even in a classic Lebensohl auction like (2)-DBL-(P)-??,
one could “object” to “bad 2NT” on the grounds of “what does one do with a balanced 10 count with a stopper”?
Such hands where a natural NF 2NT would be useful do occur on that auction type. When they do, you just have to get by with one of:
(a) a “good” 3m
(b) stretching to jump to 3NT
© 2NT then 3N

Same choices on OP auction.
Sept. 1
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I think that on OP auction opener's 2NT rebid has pretty much the same meaning as his jump 2NT rebid would have had if RHO had passed instead of bidding (2).

That is, approximately 18-19 balanced. Not conventional.
Sept. 1
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It is a bit challenging to reconstruct the entire deal as you use too many “x”s in place of spot cards and the hand descriptions are scattered between two postings.

But as best as I can determine:
1. you were -2 in 3NT for -100
2. they can make 2 or 3
3. you would be -1 (maybe 2– spots?) in 3 if they let you play it there

So if this is correct (?), it appears that your -100 is not that bad a result. Surely not deserving banishment.
Aug. 31
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 31
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“Good/Bad” 2NT by opener to distinguish a competitive 3 from a game-invite one could be useful here.

It is important for opener to show support on this auction even with a dead minimum hand. But if there is only one way to do that (without committing to game), then responder cannot tell when opener is dead minimum vs. when he has enough to invite 4 if responder has a little extra.

On this exact OP problem, though, responder probably has enough to risk 4 even if he is not sure whether opener has more than a minimum or not because he has no wasted values in s and just short of an opener. At IMPs for sure, probably even at matchpoints.

Still, it would be comforting for responder to know that opener's 3 was truly “invitational”, as then he has an easy acceptance.

Conversely, if he knew 3 was “just competitive”, he would have to agonize between passing and venturing 4 anyway.
Aug. 31
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Partner is inviting game and I hold this hand? Why would I fool around? Straight to 5.

Give him as little as xx-Ax-AQx-Kxxxxx (and he better have more than that!) and 5 has play.
Aug. 31
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I am a huge fan of “good/bad 2NT”, but (perhaps shockingly) I do not think it applies on OP auction.

The reason I think that is because their last bid was (2).
If I had a “bad” hand with s or a minimum raise, I could simply bid 2 or 2, i.e. opponent's bid is not high enough to force me to bid at the *3 level* as is (or should be) required for “good/bad 2NT” to come into play.

Even if opener happened to have a minimum minor 2-suiter, I do not think he'd want to show his s at the 3 level given RHO's natural (2) overcall.

There *are* some rare auctions where 2NT can be “bad 2N” over their (2) bid, but this is not one of them I think.
An example might be:
1 (1) DBL (2)
2NT
Where opener wants to show a minimum with long s over their Q-bid (so opener's 3 would show a better hand).
Aug. 31
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I don't see why 6 is so safe.

The danger is that partner has longish s without the A.
Then, they might easily get a ruff vs. 6.

We play that 4 is and a minor and that 4NT is both minors. So 4NT seems best, then raise to 6 whichever one partner bids.
Aug. 31
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I strongly dislike 2 last round.

That call probably should show a weaker hand with long s.

Presumably in OP partnership, it shows long s but is ambiguous w.r.t. hand strength.

That ambiguity paved the way for OP problem. Now, not having previously shown that we have a strong hand, I think we have to DOUBLE now to complete the picture–long s, strong hand, flexible (can play in a red suit if partner has length in one).

I would have preferred either DOUBLE or 3 last round (close choice between those two IMO).
Aug. 31
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I don't consider this hand a normal opening bid (fine in 3rd chair of course).

Therefore, I pass 2 as 2 would show a real opener.

In my style, a PH 2 response is also rare. Why didn't parnter open 2 (weak)? If it is because he has only 5 s, then my view is that with most such hands he should simply make his normal 1NT response which would be forcing if he were not a PH. As a PH, it is not forcing but still seems like the best choice on hands that would have bid 1NT opposite a first or second chair opener.

One possible explanation for his bidding is that he has some hand that looks like a weak 2 opener except that it also has four s. Say, x-KQxx-Axxxxx-xx. In that case, I might wish I'd rebid 2.
Aug. 31
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At some other vulnerabilities, I would be tempted to take a shot at 3NT (by bidding 3NT).

At the given vulnerability, DBL seems more attractive.

If they decide to run somewhere that I don't feel like doubling (likely), I would then have to choose between 3 and 3NT.
Aug. 31
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OP auction was poor bidding.
North should show his 5th and offer South a Choice of Games between 3NT and 4.

One way to do this is with “transfers” over opener's
2NT rebids:
1 1
2NT 3 ( transfer–5+ s)
3 3 (offering opener choice between 3N and 4)
3NT P

The 3 transfers to s. Opener must accept as responder
might have a very weak hand with 5+ s.

Over 3, it is better for responder to use 3 (rather than
the more intuitive 3NT) to offer opener a choice of games between 3NT and 4.

The reason for using 3 for the /NT game choice is so
that the auction:
1m 1
2NT 3
3 3NT

can be used for when responder is 4=5 in the majors with
game (only) strength. That way, if opener has four s, he can correct to 4 and that contract will be right-sided.
With fewer than 4 s, opener can bid 4 (with 3 s and a doubleton somewhere) or Pass 3NT (with 2 s or a 4333 hand).
When responder has 4=5 majors with slam try strength, he bids as above but 4NT rather than 3NT.

When responder offers /NT choice of games, he should usually be 5332 with 5 s. Therefore, when opener is 4333, he should generally choose 3NT (at matchpoints).

But when opener has 3 s and a doubleton somewhere, he should choose 4.

For example, using OP North hand, a 1000 deal simulation
where South is 4=3=3=3 or 3=3=3=4 with 18-19 HCPs had:
* 3N beat 4 on 522 deals
* 4H beat 3N on 411 deals
* 3N and 4 tied on 67 deals

But when South hand had 3 s and a doubleton
(I allowed 2=3=3=5, 3=3=2=5, and 4=3=2=4 shapes but not
2=3=4=4 as I thought those would open 1) with 18-19
HCPs in a balanced hand, I found:
* 4H beat 3NT on 549 deals
* 3NT beat 4H on 359 deals
* 4H tied 3NT on 92 deals

This is a typical result for combined game range strengths.
3NT is usually better with 5332 opposite 4333 with a 5-3 major suit fit, while 4M is better with a 5-3 fit when the 3 card hand is not 4333.
Aug. 30
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 30
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Only 4 at other VUL.
Aug. 30
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Raise to 3 pre-emptive last round.
Aug. 29
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was 6 a leap to slam or just a jump?
Aug. 28
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Funny, I thought the issue was between 2 vs. PASS.
I bravely chose to risk 2.
Aug. 28
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Perhaps one issue is whether or not *partner* has done anything other than PASS.
For example:

1. 1 1 PASS 2
2NT??
vs.
2. 1 1 DBL 2
2NT?
“2.” I think is clearly “bad 2NT” for anyone who uses that convention.

But how about “1.”?
Partner has just passed, hence need not have any values.

Should opener's 2NT still be “bad” (clearly for s only, whereas in “1.” it could be s *or* support) so that 3 shows a better hand?

We used to play that for “good/bad” to apply, partner needs to have done something other than pass to indicate at least some life over there.

But we've decided that “G/B” still makes sense even when he
hasn't. The difference is that *any* call forcing our side to play at the 3 level opposite a purely passing partner must show a decent hand. Still there is “decent” and there is “great.”
So we still use “G/B” with 3 showing a really great hand
while 2NT shows a somewhat lesser hand with a long suit willing to compete to the 3 level.
Aug. 28
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I do not think that playing 2NT is “Good/Bad” on this auction is unusual at all.

I would class this as one of the “standard” auction types for “Good/Bad 2NT” once one gets beyond the “classics” for which the (same) convention is usually called “Lebensohl”, i.e. after partner doubles their Weak 2 and after they overcall partner's 1NT (2/2/2).

In fact OP auction is particularly good for “Good/Bad” 2NT because there is no suit ambiguity.
2NT = bad hand with s while 3 = good hand with s. Perfect!

That said, I do not think I would have risked even a “bad” 2NT with OP hand (at least not at IMPs) as the hand and especially the suit seem just too weak to bid again at the 3 level with partner having said nothing. Change the K to the K and then maybe.
Aug. 28
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 28
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Obviously, alternative interpretations are possible.
But to me it seems that with a strong balanced hand (eg. the 21-23 HCP type suggested), the obvious thing to do is to double their (1NT). Why bid a natural invitational 2NT when they have just committed to making 7 tricks in NT?
Aug. 28
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David,
While I definitely would not GF with my example hand in an uncontested auction, in the actual OP auction where RHO's (2) jump has severely restricted our bidding options, I think you are likely right that this hand (my example) should “stretch” to make a (semi-preemptive) jump to 4.
Aug. 28
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disclaimer: I am not a strong guy.

As soon as I read the problem and auction, my “guess” was that partner was showing s and s.

Then I read all the somewhat related auctions whose meanings were defined, looking for something that would make my interpretation unlikely.

I didn't really find anything that seemed to cast any strong doubts on my / interpretation.

So I then narrowed my focus to 3 vs. 4. I rejected the argument for 3 that it leaves more “wiggle room” in case my interpretation of partner's 2NT was wrong. That's not my style–first I decide what I think partner's bid means, then I choose my action on that basis.

Since I'm already limited to 5 HCPs, AND since this is IMPs, I went with 4 as I figure partner was ready to play 3 or 3 opposite “nothing”, so :Kxxx and a doubleton in her other suit is enough “better” than what I might have held to take a shot at game.
Aug. 28
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