Join Bridge Winners
All comments by David Yates
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My formalized rules are that neither a game try nor a slam try promises anything else if it is the only available try. As Frances demonstrates, this is true here. North will cue 4 since he should cooperate below game and S is unlimited. South should cue 4. (RKC is possible, but an overbid). North can now bid 5 which says slam if you have a club control.
4 hours ago
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This poll proves that so far, 30% of respondents hate their partner. West is screaming for a spade and hearts & clubs are coming back from some.

It looks like he led from the worst of his three 4-card suits. If it is Axxx, I hope they didn't find the lead from their strongest suit at the OT. If he has Kxxx, I hope they don't lead 2nd heart at OT and get spade shift.

At the table, I would lead 10 since we play zero or two higher and I don't want W ducking ace.

Not playing this way, the main reason for low spade (other catering to a potential error by W) is to create a losing option for declarer. With Axx/KQxx/Kx/Kxxx, declarer may well duck to insure 10 tricks and 11 if E erred. Say W @ OT leads a spade from Kxxx. (Declarer knows W is 4414 at this point). Since the diamonds do not come home, a probable result is 9 tricks, so ten might be enough.

If you lead the J, declarer knows the K is wrong. He will put up A and just fall into a 3-suit squeeze for 11 tricks.
4 hours ago
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50:50 :)
22 hours ago
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There was a time I would agree wholeheartedly, but then. . .

. . .I had a student who was a smart guy, avid bridge player, decent card player and not such a good bidder. He had places on both coasts. We were playing after he spent a weekend in California and he asked me: “do you play strong club?” I replied that it was my preferred system. But he caught me by surprise by asking if we could play that system today. Confused, I asked him when he learned a strong club system.

“Saturday. Betty Ann (Kennedy) taught me.” I inquired as to how much discussion he had with her about the system and the response was “ten minutes before the game. I like it very much and it was a lot of fun to play.” It was a stripped down Precision structure with a 10-13 1NT at all vulnerabilities. I filled out a new card, he bid fine and we had no problems winning.

Betty Ann Kennedy (who he played with on the W Coast) was a bridge genius. This solved most all of his bidding issues and in 10 minutes she improved his game quite a bit. This approach would have never crossed my mind in a million years.

Though I recall an article by Larry Cohen saying that if he ran the bridge universe, he would teach all new players Precision because it is easy to learn and they can later jazz it up if they want. He said that since everyone else plays standard American he is basically stuck teaching newbies that and he thinks it is a barrier. (Maybe someone in charge in China read that article).
Oct. 18
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It is an option but it would mean that declarer likely made a little mistake at T1 in ducking with the lead from KJ107 or a big mistake in ducking if declarer had A10xx.

I was South so perhaps the error was possible :)
Oct. 18
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Disagree and immaterial to the point.

If this hand came up in some context that there was absolutely no table action (screens or online) the decision becomes a choice of (a) you are wrong that it was M/M (b) N psyched the 1NT or © partner was wrong/misbid or pulled the wrong card. Unless neither your nor partner never got a bid wrong in your life - and there is still a first time for everything - advancer has the legal right to bid anything he wants. And playing partner to have made a mistake (trying to win the board rather than the P.M.) is certainly a logical alternative. If N never psyched in their bridge life it is the obvious % action.

There are two forms of U.I. on this hand. The U.I. to E (explanation of M's) is obvious because there is absolutely no reason to bid again.

There is also U.I. to W which is covered by black-letter law. (73C1 “…UI from his partner, such as from a remark, question, explanation, gesture, mannerism, undue emphasis, inflection, haste or hesitation, an unexpected alert or failure to alert…”

Here, I never have to rule on the UI to W b/c I can roll back the result based on the UI to E.

The point I was trying to make - since 3 only hearts or passing 3 if partner can have 4H/5+C are allowable calls sans UI to W - is that often times players will think about a problem differently because of the UI. If the UI gives us the answer, we can often create the logical thread to get there because we know where we want to go. Players are not always able to do that the other way around.

What motivated this post by Ron was the realization that he had information to which he was not entitled and was not sure how to proceed. The answer is that it is very difficult for a jury to disregard what they have heard and that is always a problem even when an ethical player is trying to do the right thing. By definition, partner's UI has caused you to think differently. You may well not have thought the same way without the UI.
Oct. 18
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This whole ethics thing I think I get. Why anyone thinks 3 shows a 5503 (or 4405) moose when LHO opened a 15-17 NT and you have 14 HCP with major holdings indicating partner's “majors” are spotty as well is beyond me. Either North psyched the 1NT to account for the moose in the room or partner usually has 3 HCP for a DONT bid and thus makes an auto GI with any ten point hand. (Which might explain 2 only spades, obviously W has seen partner's DONT bids).

The reason this is relevant is this relates to an inherent issue with all UI cases. Here, we have an honest player stating that he could tell by partner's reaction that 2 was a misbid. We have some really, really good players here some of whom have not gotten to the part that partner cannot have the moose. (Jeff G shows a hand for 3, but that means 1NT was a psych.)

So color me cynical (I am a colorful guy) but in cases when a TD gets to the table and the partner of UI-er has a detailed analysis of how it is ‘impossible’ that overcaller has not misbid, I have to wonder whether that analysis would have ever happened behind screens had it not been first triggered by the obvious table action.

As far as this case goes, IMO “technically” West is allowed to bid as he wants. (Because, obviously “everyone” can field this without the table action). 4 is OK because that caters to the 4504 (impossible) moose. Pass of 3 is OK too. What I would not allow is a 3 call by E. So I would roll back to 2 and it is probably down 4, but we do not have the N/S hands to know for sure.
Oct. 17
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Often, the commentary associated with a choice prevents me from selecting an option. But (FWIW) I do also agree that last train is a decided overstatement of the value of this hand.

A 5 LT bid makes sense if 5 is a slam try denying a spade control. However, pretty sure most would play 4 by advancer here as natural and not a cue. Maybe the voters did not give the auction as much thought at the computer as they would at the table.
Oct. 17
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It is not clear to me that ‘no’ is the correct answer.

The final part of L23A (hereinafter WT?) states “ or 3. has the same purpose (e.g. an asking bid or a relay) as that attributable to the withdrawn call. ”

It seems to me that 2NT Leb to sign-off in hearts serves the same purpose as transferring via 2 to sign-off in hearts. The fact that other hand types might be shown via 2NT is not relevant as the law is written. Each clause under L23A is separated by an ‘or’ clause making each condition independant. The subset provision is specified in L23A2 and is a separate condition. If any one of the provisions set forth in L23A1, A2 or A3 is true, then the call is considered comparable. They need not all be true.

In Frances' example, a 4 call by opener over 3 would trigger provisions of L23C (as L16C is specifically not applicable). Assistance gained through the infraction certainly led to opener's 4 call and the TD would be directed to adjust the score.
Oct. 17
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What I know about the club finesse is not whether it works or fails, but that I do not need it. There is no useful discard. So a winning hook only matters if RHO has Jxxx because they cannot tap you.

But if you are worried about the tap, the first round heart hook is a much better play. It is 3:1 against the club hook. All the missing A&K will probably not be with E because he might have overcalled 1NT instead of X. (And if he has all 4 control cards, the finesse is 0%). If he has only two control cards, he doesn't have a X. So it looks as though E will have 3 high honors and W just one. Hence 3:1 against or 25% at best since JJ with W is possible and E now only 14 HCP for X. Meanwhile, the J onside is nearly 2/3 - way better than hoping the club hooks works. This assumes the relevant heart distributions are 1-4 or 2-3. (I doubt Chris X's with 4522 and even so, I am dead).

The problem is even given these remaining distributions that slightly increase the chance of the heart finesse winning, playing for the drop is now 75%. But of course this was the other 25%.
Oct. 16
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I didn't think I did either :)
Oct. 16
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It is a support-X with three-card support for partner's pass. The other ten cards should be useful. For me, this is a good 4-6 hand.
Oct. 14
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Without agreement, I would assume partner meant it as natural. But I prefer a cue with agreement.
Oct. 14
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I am not sure that I want to shoot out 4 and see what happens. This is because if it goes P-P-4-P, I am winning. But if LHO makes any other call, things probably wont work out so well because this hand is not good enough to open 4 and then reopen with a X if the ops act.

For me, this is mostly a “who is on my left” problem. I don't have a problem with partner selecting 4. Some days that is my call too. But I think it is a much better call if the ops are red.

I think it is misplaced believing your decisions on this hand will be more difficult opening 1. …4; 4NT-P-5-? you are stuck passing and then guessing what to lead. Partner is on lead if LHO overcalls 5 and this was not a hand I looked forward to defending.

If I open 1, partner will have a chance to speak and I prefer having some information. I am not so worried at IMPs that the ops might “find a sac”. Better ops are less likely to sac at IMPs at equal. If they are slated for -300, +3 is their best outcome and -8 when 4 fails. This isn't MP math.

4 could work. But I generally prefer to make tough decisions with some information as opposed to being stuck with a random decision with no input from partner.
Oct. 14
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That's OK. I blame that typo on the editor, Eugene :)
Oct. 13
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@David, is there an English translation of this American vernacular?
Oct. 13
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Card him! (Appears <21!)
Oct. 12
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Beer him! (7)
Oct. 12
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Maybe that explains why I have old scorecards all over the place.
Oct. 11
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I can understand people overcalling 4. I don't understand why you think you will play there - unless your bidding so scares partner that they would pass the South hand because “it's you”.

North doesn't really have a 4 bid and you still have 11 tricks in NT.

If you overcall 4 on the N hand, you just change the nature of the ATB posts to “missed slam” or “no chance slam”.
Oct. 8
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