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All comments by Joe Veal
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lol–oh, the fun I can have to make that system ineffective against me(fake coughs to break the rhythm so code get jammed, ask a question at a cough's point).
April 5, 2014
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Congrats Eric!!!!!!!!!
April 4, 2014
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I agree with Bobby Levin's remarks about this situation. If the WBF truly wants to stamp out the ultimate virus of tournament bridge, the gold medals that the Germans “earned” should be stripped immediately and given to the Lynch team. As far as Eddie Wold goes, I am amazed that he is not in the Hall of Fame and I hope that after WBF does the right thing; this would allow HOF voters to come to their senses about Eddie's candidacy.
April 4, 2014
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Interesting discussion. I agree with Kit's point with some caveats. In a pair event, I would follow my agreements with the Rosenberg adjustment against weaker pairs. On the actual hand, it depends on whom I am playing with at the time. In KO's, for me, the biggest question is what is my opponent's opening NT range at the other table? If it is different, then I follow my agreements regardless of the score because swings naturally occur from the variance of opening 1NT without having to resort to anything unusual. If the opponents have the same range, it depends on how large the deficit is and how many boards are left on whether I start “swinging”. If I know my opponents are extremely aggressive, I pass the given hand in order to create a swing. If I know that they will pass the hand, I open for the same reason. Note, the deficit would have to be pretty big to do these actions(If 12 boards are left about 50IMPs).
March 9, 2014
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Fascinating article by Bocchi.
Feb. 3, 2014
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Interesting topic. Early in my bridge playing career, I was seduced into playing standard Bergen raises and Reverse Bergen raises. All I remember is the bad results through 3 of a major down 1 through the mixed raise option, the constant guessing with 18HCP if pard's preemptive raise was on the good end or not so that I can bid a game, the forgets about if Bergen is on in competition after a double or 3rd or 4th seat, the inherent advantage defense has after a 3 or 3 call by either making a lead directing double or not. Once I gave them up, my results on those boards improved and I profitted off opponents who used Bergen raises especially with lead directing doubles.

In my opinion, the mixed raises are simple raises and I would try to improve my evaluation of help suit game tries in 50/50 spots(aka a little tip, the 4th trump is an auto go in most spots). Also, if one is of a scientific bent,look into Kokish game tries.

PS—I am glad that somebody knows about Max Hardy's Red and Gold Book on 2/1 and uses his major suit raise structure(IJS, over/under jump shifts with concealed splinters)..thought that structure was very underrated.


PSS–It is a little absurd to call Bergen or anything else conventions for B players. For those players who play a version of Bergen, they have their reasons for their particular tastes. It just is not mine.

Jan. 16, 2014
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My ranges that I have played

10-13NV in a precision system in the first 3 chairs
11-13NV in a precision system in the first 3 chairs
11-14In many different systems with a forcing or nonforcing 1 opener regardless of chair or vulnerability
12-14 Same as 11-14
13-15(not a favorite, sorry aviv)in a old precision system
14-16 NV and Vul depending on what precision player I am playing with
15-17 Playing sayc or 2/1
16-18 One time with a gentlemen playing sayc

I agree with Eric's, Kit, and Bob H's comments and the main reason why is that few partnerships have discussed a lot of situations that comes up when a weak NT is opened. For those who want to handle it better, there was an excellent article by Steve Weinstein and Adam Kaplan about this topic a few months back(sorry I do not remember the URL). For me, I have no preference on what the 1NT range is. My only preference is that if I am playing a range other than 15-17, there will need to be a discussion about what is the runout system(aka Moscow Escapes, Astro, or Natural)if doubled?
Dec. 21, 2013
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Interesting carding agreements. I usually see standard carding, standard smith or udca and reverse or standard smith.
Sept. 9, 2013
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A few other things. The problem is that the pass by East is only a unprovable field, but a extremely dangerous play unless they want to sacrifice in 6 or 7 because N/S may find the magical slam depending on what their agreements about North's calls over 2. Is double penalty or a “good” hand? Is 3 strictly competitive or value showing? If they have those questions answered, East may be forced into going for -1100 in 7.
Sept. 8, 2013
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Agree with Kopera on this one. I am real curious, Steve, about your views about the ethics of staring at an opponent to pick up a tell because of your experience as a poker professional.
Sept. 8, 2013
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Interesting hand. To Jim Munday, I agree that it is an opening hand except playing with Jimmy Cayne, which I assume held the South cards. As far as the alleged fielding, I have to agree with Pokorny on this one. East can bid what he likes after 3H. It would be assumed that East would raise spades as a matter of good bridge judgment, but having 7 HCP and making a weak jump overcall opposite a passed hand, one might be a tad reticent to join the party(I wouldn't because of the colors, my call is 4 but that is me). Poor ole Mark would run to 5 after the obligatory double, get doubled and go for -500 which will win some IMPS on the board.
Sept. 8, 2013
Joe Veal edited this comment Sept. 8, 2013
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I loved Garbage Ogust–it reminded of a reasonable pair in my local area who had the same auction against me, one year ago. That pair did not do as well as your teammates or opponents(50 fit, -300 and a big fight at table). As far as the Polish “pros” are concerned, I have a question? On the dicey 3NT, when the Poles attempted a concession, was it clear that 9 tricks were in the bag? As Lynn knows, defenders at times have more information about a hand than declarer, yet declarer has a choice of lines to take to make a contract. I am willing to bet that Polly had this situation and was unsure about the line she needed to take. Lynn's outcry about slow players putting a fast player “in the box” when there is no decision is a reasonable objection(it is a pet peeve of mine as well), but probably unwarranted in this case.
To be honest, Polly's alleged slowroll is a minor offense because it so hard to prove that a declarer purposely played slowly in a autoclaim situation. Coming to the table smelling of cigarette smoke and BO and trying to move boards as East/West without asking permission of North/South is a major offense for ANY bridge player. I may sound naive, but I put professional players at a higher standard than the average player. I am not going to go as far as professionals should wear a suit and tie while playing in a bridge touranment like Grant Baze or Zia, but basic cleanliness that one's mother taught you when you were young should suffice at the table. As far as the Poles's speed of play, I am not buying that they purposely sped up play as a form of intimidation. The likely scenarios are these Poles play at a fast tempo on a consistent basis or they sped up play as an attempt to finish a lousy event in which they probably lost the opportunity for bonus money. If this is the former, that there is no discussion. If it is the latter, I hope that their client does not find out this fact. The reason is that some clients may be highly offended that his/her pros are “phoning” it in for the event even in the last round and may not hire them for future events. If that client knows other clients who may want to hire them for future events, this client may reveal the lurid details of this episode to their possible new employer. If I was a betting person, the former is most likely.

PS–A professional bridgeplayer credo. Your current opponent may be your future bridge sponsor/client.

PSS–Spoken from a person who is not a pro and cannot afford their services at this time.

Sept. 6, 2013
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Very enjoyable article. I have a few queries. I was surprised that you scored only 22.5/25 on this board(3NT nor 4S “should” make). What did +600 score?
Sept. 5, 2013
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I abstained because I do not play 3 is non-forcing in that sequence for exactly that type of hand. If I had a gun to my head and could not claim illness, I would bid 3NT and pray that I did not miss a diamond game or slam. I would not jump shift to 3D because 6 of my points are outside my main suits and for me to jump shift with 17, those suits have to be awfully good.
Aug. 30, 2013
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I thought about abstaining, but I have abstained from too many problems. I chose 2H because this hand is better than 8HCP because of those lovely clubs. I can understand 2C and if was playing 3C as mixed(my preference, but not everybody's), that may be my call(pretty close actually) but I do not like 3C as preemptive(too heavy worried about missing 3NT with right hand).
Aug. 30, 2013
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To Polly,
I enjoyed this article. You have a gift of articulating the common player's frustrations(aka ME) with the process of becoming a better player. It reminded me of my proclivities of analyzing winning games and seeing all of the mistakes I made during the session. Like Henry, I agree that it may be hubris to play only a few years and want to become an expert because of the difficulty level. Unlike Henry, this type of hubris is a necessary component in order to become a strong player. To be honest, I just want to be a better player than the previous day. There are MANY players who are better declarers/defenders/bidders than me. I hope than someday I would be considered to be in their “ranks”, but that is not my immediate goal.

Yours truly,

Joe

PS–I wish that the K and Q of hearts were transposed because two of my favorite defensive Coups(Merrimac or Deschapelles take your pick) were possible at your decision point where you decided to give Eugene his diamond ruff. I would have loved to have seen K of hearts return for down 1 in the annals of Bridgewinners.


Aug. 30, 2013
Joe Veal edited this comment Aug. 30, 2013
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I voted no blame because the “fancy” 3NT is needed in the auction.
Aug. 30, 2013
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David, you pointed out my issues with 2C opener and the non-issue with 1C opener. I can live with 2D reverse especially after the modern tendency is to respond with just about anything , I cannot handle 3 of a major rebid after 2C-2D-3C-3Major.
Aug. 29, 2013
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My reason for abstaining is twofold. The first reason is it depends on whom I am playing with at the time. If I am playing with a pickup, I open the hand because this hand is hard to describe as a passed hand. If I am playing with a Roth-Stone fanatic(one of my current partners is one), I pass because it is aceless despite the texture of the suits(also fails Rule of 22 for those who care). The irony is that I know the hand in which you, Mario, have described and the actual result on the board when this player decided to pass making my second reason to abstain from the problem. If anybody wishes to know the result of the board and who decided to pass, my email is culjoe2012@yahoo.com.
Aug. 29, 2013
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1) Frivolous is better than Serious
2) Not sure since I do not know the entire US–very popular on BBO
3) It depends on certain auctions–fast arrival principle still exists but using picture jumps has been more in vogue these days in certain spots.
Aug. 29, 2013
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