Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Jan Sohl
1 2
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We had a similar auction the other day:
1 (11-15) - (1) - 1NT - (2) X (p) ?

We agreed that 2NT should be minors (no -fit, not having passed 2X).

At the table we had no agreement but my partner still bid 2NT thinking that I would likely have a 4card minor for my double and it worked: I bid 3C and we found our better minor suit fit.
Feb. 10
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So one answer from one in the minors camp: I found it convenient for double to show both minors and some strength (say 9+) and 2N to be weaker. With a constructive minor suit freebid just bid 3m and on weak minor suit hands just pass, usually you are not going to win the bidding and if partner has 16+ or so he might risk another double if it is passed out to him.

Not necessarily optimal but simple.
July 4, 2015
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Martin,

I do not know how much sense it makes to cater to a hand that is exactly inviational and wants to improve the contract at the 3-level. A bit weaker and you might just bid 3H over 1S to show 7 and a weak hand. You might very well be right though, especially if 3 clubs is often a 5 card-suit. I do not know much about this since I play forcing 2 bids only for quite a short while. I just imagine that if partners minor was diamonds, for instance, you only had 3 spades forcing and 3N showing a spade stopper, totally forgetting about clubs and the chance to show a 6th heart.

Sean,

it seems like we have different methods here. If 3 spades asks for a stopper that is an interesting idea in oder to look for slam opportunities. Still, there is some risk: How about partner having xx(x) x KQx(x) AKxxxx (I just moved the Queen of spades in your example hand to diamonds). Seems to be quite tough, after all.
June 16, 2015
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Fair point! I agree that 3S shows more naturally what you have (Spade stopper, no stopper) and lets partner still bid a doubleton heart or rebid good clubs or 3NT with a diamond stopper. Thus, slam should be reached more easily if partner skips 3NT. But why should he bid 4H and not 3NT with diamonds stopped and heart Ax, after all you might just have 5 hearts and be looking for a diamond stopper from his point of view? Overall, now I also like 3S better than 3H because 3NT will usually make if partner has H Ax and will only be bad if there is slam for our side. Adter 3S partner should not worry about spades whereas after 3H he might.
June 12, 2015
Jan Sohl edited this comment June 12, 2015
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3 should be forcing here (With a Min just pass 3C) so I bid that hoping to find a fit there. 3NT can still be reached after a 3S cuebid by partner.
June 8, 2015
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I learned that 2 is inv.+ asking for further description (If invitational, responder must have 5+ hearts). So opener should tell by his rebid whether he is min or max but ofc other treatments are possible. The jump is certainly space-consuming.
Dec. 2, 2014
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We open only good 11s (usually have a 5 card suit or some useful spot cards). I like your idea of betting on some diamond length in partner's hand. What I do not like is wrongsiding NT, but there is clearly no perfect bid.

At the table I thought that 2 would only show values because opener has denied 4 but partner thought I must have 5s for this bid. Therefore the poll which showed to additional alternatives 2NT and 3 (3NT might come to mind, too).

Dec. 2, 2014
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OK, makes sense, there will probably be trouble in 3NT in or if partner has 3 cards in hearts. I am curious if it is possible to find out if partner stops diamonds since I expect him to show card support first.
Dec. 2, 2014
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I only claimed that it will help defense on average. Whether it will win in the long run depends on how often they make 3D XX and how often you will end up making the wrong decision whether to sacrifice or not.

As for the void, I did not think about this possibility, since in similar auctions (Say doubling stayman or the like) a lead-directing double will rarely be made on a void because ops might well end up in notrump.

Here the is some merit to doubling on a void but I would only do this if partner was barred from bidding on after my double.

Good point about having clear agreements! Guess I will return to having a suit (4+ maybe) for the double after the comments so that partner can bid on.
Dec. 1, 2014
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For example, if he has 5 diamonds and some shape (say 55). He would have a cheap defense to 4S or even make 5D in case I had normal lead-directing double (with 5+ in the suit). But, he would go for a number opposite the hand that I hold here.

If he passes and I happen to have 5+ diamonds, we lose IMPs because we did not defend. If he bids and I hold my hand we lose IMPs because we will go for a number.

Therefore, he has to guess what kind of hand I hold. Bidding can be as wrong as passing can be.
Dec. 1, 2014
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Well, I would also double with a hand that has length so partner is on a guess whether it is right to compete. Just because I might double with 3 cards does not mean I would pass with 5+ and a normal lead-directing double. Still, I agree that opponents might redouble you more often if they know about it.
Dec. 1, 2014
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Thanks for all the valuable input! Experimented with doubles when quite short in the suit but 2 out of 3 Honors and nothing else in orhter suits. So far partner could not take the joke so it seems prudent to have at at least 5+ in the suit to allow for reasonable competitive bidding. I personally think that it will gain about 0.25 to 0.5 tricks on average on defense but this seems to risky in general.
Nov. 28, 2014
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How should one reasonably define such a double? Some cards? Partner will then pass unless he has extra distribution. I thought it would rather show some more distribtion inviting partner to bid on. I might pass with those cards after 4S, after all ops might make it. Comments welcome!
Nov. 6, 2014
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What do 4H bidders do over 4S by ops?
Nov. 5, 2014
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Great article as usual! I like this raptor-like 1NT-overcall over a grunt-opening. How do you bid after it with all suits unknown?
Oct. 28, 2014
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Does everybody play pass as forcing here? Can't opener jump to 4S with a distributional Hand, making the opponents guess at a higher level?
Aug. 18, 2014
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I find this very interesting. Although it looks crazy, 5 has worked well so often for my opponents that I decided to give it a shot here. After all, we have 8 pieces and if we trust the opponents, partners strength (There must be a little bit bec. ops did not try for slam) is rather in the red suits

Aug. 18, 2014
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I personally play redouble as 5-7 but don't know what is standard
July 22, 2014
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Makes sense to me, as a small caveat this could result in a 5-1 spade fit if partner has 6 hearts and bids 2H.
July 22, 2014
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I've always been interested in what partner would bid over double with say: Qxx KQxxx Ax Kxx ? If he bids 2Spades I would double, else it seems like we are playing 2H in a 5-1 fit too often.
July 21, 2014
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