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All comments by John Portwood
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The question is: what does the pause indicate?

Clearly it shows values and thus that the pass was not clear cut. The pause therefore suggests some action. No matter what the action chosen (5 or double) passing is a ‘Logical Alternative’ and so must be chosen.
Sept. 2, 2013
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I think it is important for people to realise how cheating occurs - so they can spot and stop it.
Sept. 2, 2013
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I simply spread the remaining cards evenly between the opponents (and partner). If you have 6 cards there are 7 out making the most likely distribution 3-2-2, if you have 5 there are 8 out (3-3-2) 4 cards 9 (4-3-2) 3 cards 10 (4-3-3) 2 cards 11 (4-4-3), 1 card 12 (5-4-3) and 0 cards 13 (5-4-4)

Note how few times there are 5 cards. Even holding 1 or 0 cards the odds are better than even that partner has 3 or 4 cards in the suit (given these most likely distributions).

This can be useful when protecting - having a 5-card suit means that there is a very good chance that you will be playing in a 5-3 fit, for instance.
Sept. 2, 2013
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Opponents probably have 26 high card points (expected). You and your partner have close to the same number 7-7.

As everyone now knows, failure to bid Stayman indicates that NS probably have more cards in the minors.

So there are two choices:

A (Sorry Yuan) playing for partner's 5 card major suit)
5 playing for your own suit.

Note that if partner has QXXXX in spades and dummy KXX then the spade lead and continuation still works.

My grandmother would lead 4 (4th highest) despite the risk (leading from a Queen). At IMPS I think this is the best lead - after all we KNOW we have a 5-card suit, we HOPE partner has a 5-card spade suit.
Sept. 2, 2013
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But very often it won't be the 12th. And you would look pretty sick if declarer had

XX
AKJX
AX
AKQJX

opposite
QXX
QXXXXX
KX
XX

Just remember that the slam hasn't been bid ‘rationally’, rather like a punt. It is also easy to imagine two aces missing but declarer discards one set of losers on the solid side suit.
Sept. 2, 2013
John Portwood edited this comment Sept. 2, 2013
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If you have bid what you feel the hand is worth then there is no alternative but to pass. I cannot imagine any circumstances where an ethical player (having pre-empted 3 of 1) would unilaterally bid again.

And after all - for your bid you do have some defensive values QTXX and QX could easily bolster partner's holdings and a 4-0 split (if such is the case) won't help.
Sept. 2, 2013
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Am I missing something here - you open a limit bid, partner shows a minimum of 6 HCP and 5 hearts and you go charging off into a slam!

All I can think is that declarer must have a long strong minor suit - in which case we have to take 2 tricks quickly - and this suggests A
Sept. 1, 2013
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Giving preference to 2 seem obvious - but if partner's diamonds are weak then a heart lead and continuation leaves a lot of losers.

Playing in 2 - well you will make a couple (3 of you're lucky) hearts, 3 tricks in the minors and a few spades. In other words - more of your cards are helping you in 2 than 2. Against that, partner could be 0=5=5=3 or 1=5=4=3. It is therefore likely that partner will be holding honours in other suits than spades

But it isn't 100% 2 by any means
Aug. 31, 2013
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Pointless bidding 1 as it just lets opponents get in at the 1 level (with to beat your and to beat your ) so the choice is : pass (rule of 15) or try and pre-empt and get +110 (partner of course may be able to bid 3NT as he rates to have some points somewhere)
Aug. 31, 2013
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I would double (with fingers crossed). As West I would balance with 4 (as I would with 3 P P ?)
Aug. 31, 2013
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Nice joke(r) by LHO. I assume the hand was scored with the squeeze having taken place.
Aug. 31, 2013
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There are 4 aces missing and 29 high card points. These days if anyone has 11 points they will open - so the points MUST be split 10-10-9. (so the odds are 2:1 that partner has 10 HCP). (Also note that people open more aggressively in 1st and 3rd position but are more cautious in 2nd)

With a 5-loser hand I only need partner to cover two losers with his 10 points to make 4.
Aug. 31, 2013
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I think East should have done something. East can deduce that West has a void or singleton Spade and hence probably quite a few cards in the other suits. Given that 3 is pre-emptive there must be chance of game. I will admit it is risky though and at MPs there is a case for not bidding - but at teams . . .
Aug. 31, 2013
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I expect W to hold KTX so I'll hope partner can set this with a decent or suit - in which case I lead A to find out which. If I am wrong then I would be on a 50-50 chance anyway (would prefer to lead J in that case.)
Aug. 30, 2013
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Can I bid 3 slowly or with an inflexion in my voice - or are we limited to bidding boxes.

If I bid game I stand to gain 10 imps (V 3S+1) and lose 6 (-1 V 3S=). Even against a 4-0 trump distribution I would expect to lose 1 and 2.
Aug. 30, 2013
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I would open 4 - best chance of a game, stops oppos competing in Spades (rule of 15 anyone?) and good chance that points are divided and suits relatively even.

Non Vul - I may be more circumspect and open 3.
Aug. 29, 2013
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Congratulations to those who tried the unbid suit. The Q (or A) gets the contract down easily, the 7 blocks the club suit but it can be unblocked.

North

AT5
KQJ84
Q5
J64

South

KQJ87
A3
J743
83

and partner

9432
-
A982
KT952

(I think the 3 bid is an overbid and, once it has been made, North should surely bid 4) 1st rule of advanced bridge bidding - if partner doesn't bid no trumps they usually have a good reason)
Aug. 28, 2013
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if you do then the bidding will start off

1 3
3 4 - which must be a GOSH.

If partner then bids 4 (Redwood) the response is 5 (AKQ)
5 asks for Kings - I assume that the response would be for 1 King 5NT - but you are still uncertain about the 13th trick as you don't know partner has 8 clubs. Is it now 6 or 6N?

PS - As I understand it, you are not supposed to bid any variety of Blackwood with a void. Is this a record, bidding it with a void in the trump suit?
Aug. 28, 2013
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If the auction goes
1 2
2 3

What would you bid (if anything) on

AXX
AXXXX
AQXXX
-

Aug. 28, 2013
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Technically no - we play it as forcing to 2NT only for responder (opener can pass 2 preference bid) - so would expect 2 | 3 (preference) 2 (4SF) 2NT Balanced hand about 10-12 3N = Balanced 13-14 (We play Baron (15+ Balanced), not Jacoby over 1 as we use different methods to show a major suit fit).

If it were GF (and if partner remembered!) I assume you would treat 4 as showing a solid suit. This would make life easier admittedly to get to 6

After 4 would 4 be Redwood?
Aug. 28, 2013
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