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All comments by Craig Zastera
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I sure don't see why. 3 can be up to a minimal LR on this auction and my example hand isn't even quite a LR.
Aug. 28
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David,
I disagree. One of the main reasons for playing “2/1 GF” is that jumps can be assigned special meanings as they are not needed just to show “extra values.”

After 1-2-2, responder already has *2* different ways to show support–2 and 4.

2 is just “generic” support, perhaps with slam interest, perhaps not. It leaves the maximum amount of bidding space available for level (and strain) probes. Cue-bidding can start with 2NT even.

4 is a “picture bid raise”. Good s, good s, no control. Permissable holding dependent on agreements.
I would certainly not bid 4 with A/K/Q in s, but I think it should be OK with a small singleton (but perhaps partnership agrees no control of any kind).

That leaves the jump to 3 to show the important hand type of a splinter with support (4+) and stiff .

Showing that hand type could be key in finding or avoiding 6 depending on opener's holding (Axxxx = good, KJTxx = bad, etc.).

It is very usual nowadays in 2/1 methods for suit jump rebids (by either partner) to be played as splinters.

Now when the bidding goes, e.g. 1-2-2-*4*, that 4 bid is surely a splinter, but it is not clear without agreement which major responder is supporting.

My *guess* is the a majority would play that 4 as a splinter in support of *s*.

I suppose that it OK, but I prefer it to be a splinter in support of opener's *FIRST* suit (here s).

That way, responder can PLAN an auction starting with his first response. He wants to show a good 5+ card suit, THEN support with shortness.
If opener had rebid 2 or 2NT, then there would be no doubt that responder's second round jump to 4 would be a splinter in support of s.

So I do not like to have responder's plans foiled by an inconvenient 2 rebid by opener. So I play that responder's second round jump to 4 is still a splinter in support of openers first suit.

Of course, when responder happens to have a good hand for
a splinter in support of opener's second suit (as in OP), he has to content himself with simply raising to 3 (unless, as with OP hand, he wants to suppress the support and go ahead and splinter with 4 anyway).

But when responder has support for opener's second suit (s here) and shortness in opener's first suit ( here), then he *is* able to splinter in support of opener's second suit because the jump to 3 has no other essential meaning as I explained above.
Aug. 28
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 28
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Bidding again here would be a serious crime against partner.
Perhaps we are seeking revenge for some atrocity he recently committed against us?

Partner's double of 3 is a plea for us to SHUT UP. Do you think he is doubling 3 because he expects them to play there, s having been bid and raised by their side?

No. He knows they are going to 3. Either he expects to beat that contract (likely after doubling it), *or* he misfits our s so badly that he is taking his “free” opportunity to tell us not to bid them a 3rd time.

Besides, we have certainly said everything there is to say about our hand with our previous bids, so to “say it again” would be excessive.
Aug. 28
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I wouldn't jump to 3 here as that sounds like a splinter raise of s with short s.

That's how I play it anyway, so unless I had an explicit agreement to the contrary, I would guess or at least suspect that partner might take it the same way.

A jump to 4 (not appropriate with OP hand obviously) would be a “picture bid” jump showing good s and good s with no control in s and probably no high card control in s either.

I chose 2 to facilitate later RKCB which will find out about Q.
Aug. 28
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What the “upper limit” of 1 might be is not very relevent to this problem.

Opener has simply *balanced* with 3.
His alternative would have been to sell out to (2).
With a long (7+) suit, he is unlikely to want to do that at favorable vulnerability.

So a more relevent question would be “what is the *worst* hand with which it might be reasonable for opener to have balanced with 3 on this auction?”
Aug. 27
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x-Txxx-AKxx-xxxx
is a modest hand for partner's bidding yet we may well make 12 tricks in s if he has that hand.

Therefore, I hardly think bidding 4 is excessive.
Aug. 27
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Seems to me we are (nearly) an ace above a minimum opening bid. Further, we have a good holding for offense as partner likely has a stiff.
Aug. 27
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“Normally” removing 3NT to 4m is forcing.

But I do not believe that general principle applies on this auction.

North has opened a mere 1 (i.e. not 2) and has balanced with an obviously competitive and NF 3 over the opponent's (2).

Somehow, this inpsires South, who has already passed twice, to “take a shot” at 3NT.

Now, North's “pull” to 4 sends the message “sorry, partner, you misunderstood my intentions. I was not trying to get us to 3NT but rather merely competing with a minimum hand with very long s. I am confident we cannot make 3NT and *hope* that maybe we can make 4 (although I wish you had passed 3)”
Aug. 27
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I don't play these methods, so my views aren't based on experience.
But it looks to me like:
(a) I've made a bid showing 11-15 and I have 11, so min.
(b) I've shown 0-1 and I have one, so no offensive
plus here (a void would be much better)
© s have been bid behind me, so my :AQT9 are likely
less valuable than they might have been
(d) partner suggested playing 3, hence he can't have
game interest
(e) I have four s when I might have had only 3.
But I gather four s is not particularly surprising
*and* they are quite weak.
(f) I have only four s when I might have had 5.
(g) We're VUL, so going -1 could be very bad at matchpoints
(particularly if they decide to double)

So I cannot see why I would do anything now over (4). My hand is towards the low end of what I've shown and doesn't appear to have any unusual offensive orientation that partner might not expect.
Partner has a lot better idea what I've got than I have of what he's got.

So pass seems clear-cut to this inexperienced (with these methods) observer.
Aug. 27
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Kit,
I am so stunned by your comment “I do not like the concept of invitational sequences in competitive auctions.” that I am wondering if you meant something different from what you said.

You are a proponent of “relay doubles” and “good/bad 2NT”, both of which conventions are all about having invitational sequences in competitive auctions and the ability to distinguish the “invitational” bids from the merely “competitive” ones.

That does not seem to jive with your above quoted statement.
Aug. 27
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This is a problem?
2 seems totally routine–nothing else would even occur to me.
Aug. 27
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Robin said:
“After an opening that shows a balanced hand in a certain range, it's reasonable to expect a suit bid at the two-level to be ”to play“ (non-forcing).”

What? That seems absolutely crazy to me.

The vast majority play all 2-level suit bid responses to partner's 1NT opening as artificial and forcing:
2 = some kind of Stayman
2/2 = Jacoby Transfers
2 = maybe minor-suit Stayman, maybe a transfer

I am not necessarily commenting on what I think should be alerted, announced, or met with silence.

But certainly “natural NF” for 2-level suit responses will not be “expected” as such are rare.

In my partnerships, after our 1NT *OVERCALLS*, we actually play all 2-level suit advances (except the cue-bid) are natural and “to play.”
You bet that we alert those since “most” play “systems on” after 1NT overcalls, hence most would “expect” these 2 level advances to be Stayman (2) or Jacoby (2/2).
Aug. 26
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When we use minor suit transfer with game-invitational strength hand, it is always a BAD SUIT (typically headed by A or K, no Q, could have Jack but likely not) with one outside high honor.

Thus, partner is going to “super-accept” only with very good support (Axxx, Kxxx, three with 2/3 top honors is typical) and some fast outside tricks.
Thus, the “super-accept” is relatively rare.

So it is better to use “in between” bid for super-accept as this will result in right-siding 3m more often.

The minor suit transfer with a *weak* hand is common.
If opener bids 3m (i.e. non super-accept), we have “right-sided” the 3m contract. This will happen most of the time since SA is rare. When opener does have SA and responder is weak, 3m gets played by responder (not optimal).
Aug. 26
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wow–look up Friday night open pairs results from Lynnwood, board 5
Aug. 26
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Thanks, Leo. That is better.
I've amended the posting to stipulate the 2-2 relay.

Sorry to the person who voted before the upgrade.
Aug. 26
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Thanks for your opinions.

I am gratified to see that 2 was the popular choice.

That was what I chose at the table with this hand.
Partner thought this was INSANE and didn't want to hear my arguments that this was a reasonable action and I was just “unlucky”.
The auction continued:

S W N E
1 2 P P
DBL P P P

The full deal was:
KJT8
95
A82
JT83
Q976543 2
JT K8642
Q63 KJ54
2 A65
A
AQ73
T97
KQ974

I was -2, -500:
I won J lead in dummy, ruffed a , and led a to dummy's J for another ruff. North won my exit and shifted accurately to 9. After south won two s and returned a third, there is nothing I can do to avoid -2.

Yes, they can make 3NT but few bid it and our result was worse anyway.
We scored 9% (2.5 on a 29 top) of the matchpoints.
Aug. 26
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 26
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The longer suit might be s, e.g.:
xx-xxx-JTxxx-AQJ

I voted for “may raise …”, but I should be clear that this would be rare. Our 1 opening guarantees at least 3 s. Partner will have 4+ s well over 80% of the time, so the 3 card raise in an emergency is not likely to result in our playing a 3=3 fit.
Aug. 26
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 26
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Why? 3 is 100% forcing and may well be a better description from his point of view.
Aug. 26
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Ray,
I have only adopted Relay Doubles recently, so I am not
an authority on how best to use them.

What I can say for sure is that opportunities for their use (or non-use 3X bids when double would be a RD) occur VERY FREQUENTLY. So far, I am loving them, although I have had a number of difficult problems, so they clearly are not a 100% win convention.

For example, at recent regional I held:
A9xxx-Jx-AT9xx-x
VUL vs. not. Partner opened 1 and RHO bid 3.

What should I do? Double would be a RD (to 3) while 3 or 3 would be natural and GF.

Not a perfect hand for RD agreements. In retrospect, I believe I should have doubled. If partner rebids the “usual” 3, I will have a difficult 3-way choice between PASS, 3, and 3 (all NF).
But one advantage of DOUBLE is that partner *might* do something other than 3 which would solve my problems. In fact, with his actual hand he said he would have passed the double.
His hand was KT-AKQxx-Jx-KTxx.
3X would have been -3, not as good as we could achieve in 3NT or 4, both of which are makeable.

What I actually did was bid 3 (forcing). Partner chose to bid 3NT. Again, not clear what I should do, but I passed. Low lead to Q. Partner could have made 3NT by ducking. But he thought it was likely stiff Q and he likely had 9 tricks by winning his K. Alas, s were 5-1 so he didn't have 9 tricks. And of course, overcaller's s were AJ9xxx so he went down in 3NT. Both s and s were 3-3 with split honors.

To answer your question, RDs would apply after 1-(3).
But the double wouldn't 100% show s. Responder could
have a weak hand with long s or s where he wants to
play in a black suit partial unless opener has extras.

Also, with a “real” negative double, responder can still
start with a RD. If he converts partner's minimum rebid
to 3NT or cue-bids, that indicates a true negative double
hand (and, obviously, strong enough to bid at that level).

But let me quote from Kit Woolsey as *he's* the authority on RDs:

" "We use this treatment all the time at the
3-level, when partner has opened the bidding,
overcalled, or made a takeout double,
and the next hand bids 3♣, 3♦, or 3♥.

This lets us distinguish between an
invitational hand and a competitive hand.
It is conceptually the same as a good-bad 2NT.
We can't bid 2NT, so we use the double to
show the weak hand.

For example, suppose the bidding goes:
1♠-3♥ to you, and you hold:
♠QJxx ♥xx ♦Kxxx ♣xxx.
You would like to bid the "third and final "
(unless opener has a big hand), but if you do
partner may take you seriously and bid game.

What if you have the same hand with another ace?
Now you would like to invite in s.
If you have to bid 3♠ on both hands, opener is
guessing blind.

We solve this problem. 3♠ is a true limit raise.
If we just want to compete to 3♠ we double,
and opener bids 3♠ unless he has a hand
willing to be in game opposite a weak
competitive raise.

The relay double also allows us to compete at
the 3-level with a weak hand and a long suit.
For example, the bidding goes 1♠-3♦ to you
and you hold:
♠xx ♥QJ109xxx ♦x ♣Kxx
You would like to bid the "third and final ",
but 3♥ is forcing.
We can do it.
3♥ is also forcing with us, but we can double
with the above hand expecting opener to bid 3♥
(the cheapest step) unless he has considerable
extra values."
Aug. 26
Craig Zastera edited this comment Aug. 26
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I expect partner to have at least 10 tricks in hand for his sequence.
Aug. 26
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