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All comments by Michael Rosenberg
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Seems unfair that some not “ absolutely world class” sponsor might be rejected, whereas a professional, who is a lesser player, might be acceptable….
May 9, 2014
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The second South passed 2, he was taking advantage of UI. But E-W can successfully claim damage only if it is believed they would have defeated 4. The “terrible” defense to 3 is not necessarily relevant (and, in any case, I doubt it rose to the level of egregious - it rarely does).
A pity North didn't have red suits of x and xxx. Then, maybe the ruling could be 4 doubled down 8 or something like that….
The messages I want to send are (a) not knowing your system is bad - and creates unfair difficulties and (b) Taking advantage of UI is not a good thing…

The question players ask themselves is “what do I know”. The question they must be educated to ask themselves is “what SHOULD I know”
May 9, 2014
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I think 2 is pretty badly misdirected. If partner is 5-1-3-4 we will play 2 down instead of a clubpartial making. If partner is 5-4-3-1 he or she can bid 2 over 2.
If Partner has a good hand, the bidding over 2 might proceed (us only) 2-2, 2(or 3)-3.
So I think it's misguided to bid 2 - which is trying all out to reach a NV game - instead of 2 which I think offers a far superior chance of reaching the best partial; and this rates to be a partscore deal.
May 8, 2014
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D
May 6, 2014
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Perhaps rather than following the rules of another game, we should prefer to make rules that we think are fair for our game.
I wouldn't mind if other games decided to follow us. But I don't see why we should want to consider what the golf legislators think or do.
April 30, 2014
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No. It was in my house, and I've never read it. I've like several other Dickensian novels. But I doubt I'll gt through this one….
April 29, 2014
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I just started reading “Little Dorrit”, and I'm having trouble deciding which is the tougher read - that or these series of articles.
Ok, I admit I haven't really read these articles. I think the combination of them and “Little Dorrit” may have given me ADD
Having said that, I am truly impressed by Kit for attempting this job, and doing all the work it entailed. To repeat, i haven't really read this, but I doubt if Thomas Gotard's criticism of Kit is fair. Kit attempts to approach problems with less bias than anyone I know - including myself. That's not to say he didn't make an error or errors - but I doubt that bias was the basis for it.
One thing Kit said bears repeating - in fact part of it was quoted (I think slightly misquoted) by Mr. Gotard. But I think it's so important, I'll repeat it again:

“Statistics can never absolutely prove anything. They can simply show what the probability of an event occurring is under certain assumptions. It is then a matter of judgment as to whether these assumptions are accurate.”

April 29, 2014
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“ A spade lead might set up 4 immediate spade tricks. The question is which honor to lead.”

For me, the question is whether to lead an honor or LOW. I think it's quite a likely scenario that dummy has four and partner has 10x, or that dummy has A10xx or 10xxx and partner has 9x.
Even if their spades are 3-3 or 3-2, partner may have the ten - or it may not occur to declarer to play the ten from A10x or 10xx.
Against 3N, I'm pretty sure I WOULD lead low. Against 2N, I don't know.

April 26, 2014
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I was just going to say that….
April 23, 2014
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Danny,

That's what I meant when I said reverse Fishbein is the second worst agreement….
April 22, 2014
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That all seems reasonable to me. But it also seems to me to be a very different tone/message from the original quote I was discussing - “What about opening Multi? Why not?”
April 22, 2014
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Kit,

I think you misinterpreted my response - probably my fault.

I did not mean to imply that there were not reasons to open Multi. I merely intended to point out that there could be reasons not to.
And since your article basically made the hand a choice between 1 and 2, and you barely mentioned pass, I thought your followers should hear another side of the coin other than “Why Not”.
April 22, 2014
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Kit,

After explaining the reason for playing 1430 when hearts are trump and one is not playing 4 Kickback, you said “If somebody has another reason for playing 1430, I would be interested to hear about it.”

I gave you a reason. You didn't SEEM interested.
April 22, 2014
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Here'a another reason to play 1430. If clubs are trump and 4N is KC (either because you don't play Kickback or some other reason), you want to be able to stop in 5 opposite 1KC
April 21, 2014
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“What about opening Multi? Why not?”

Well, as Will Hunting said, that's a tough one but I'll take a shot.

1) I'd prefer not to play my slam or grand slam at the 2-level - could happen if partner has —, AKxx, Kxxxxx, Axx

2) With so many outside honors, I might miss 3N

3) If partner is short in spades, I might miss a heart game

4) Partner may mis-evaluate due to my defense strength and loose honors.

5) Partner may lead fatally, say from Kx, against a suit contract

6) Partner may lead spades against a NT contract, when a red suit lead would be forthcoming had I passed.

7) Opposing declarer might guess clubs to make 3N, helped by my bid

8) I might play 2 doubled down 8 with the opponents having no game, double-dummy.

So, as I see it the question should be why open Multi, rather than why not. I pass. The “better description of my hand” might follow, depending on the auction. And sometimes, I'll be better off keeping mum.
April 21, 2014
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Josh,

I totally agree with you about the “weirdness” of some of the strong feelings here.

However, the second worst agreement is not Fishbein but Reverse Fishbein - (3)3 for penalty….
April 21, 2014
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Agreed - as long as partner's second bid is NATURAL. You ‘can’t' pass, say, 1m-1, 4 - a splinter. Similarly, I can't pass a reverse, because I play it MAY be artificial. But I CAN pass a jump shift, which I play must be a 4(+)-card suit.
April 14, 2014
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This whole idea of a “sub-minimum” response being a “psyche” highlights a major misconception that many bridge players have - even some ‘experts’.
The misconception is that “a response to an opening bid shows 6(+)-HCP.”. This is just plain WRONG.
The correct (and Standard) rule is that “With 6(+)-HCP, you MUST respond.” Clearly, this is far from the same thing.
It might be reasonable to violate this rule, but this is the correct rule.
The rule says nothing about hands with fewer than 6 HCP, except for the implication that you CAN pass.
Experts have many different theories about which hands ought to respond.
Personally, I feel strongly that, at imps, any hand that can bid a 5-card major at the 1-level ought to respond - even with zero HCP. And that passing with a 6-card major is ridiculous.
I have many other theories here. But the important message I am trying to impart is that the idea that bidding with fewer than 6 HCP is a 'psyche" is nonsense.
April 14, 2014
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5N is presumed to be a 2-suiter.
6 is also presumed to be a 2-suiter, but is stronger. Basically wants partner to bid grand with an ace (not the A) and any kind of fit, whereas 5N needs 2 high cards to even consider a grand.
Usually would double with a 3-suiter, especially at this vul. At unfavorable, I can see it might be desirable to bid 5N or 6 - especially if my 5-card suit is diamonds. But, at least in theory, 5N and 6 show 2-suiters.

The above is what I play, but I would not expect it to be universal (and guess that it's probably not optimal). I would guess some experts think 5N is 2-suiter with , and 6 shows both majors.
April 13, 2014
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A good article with several good points. However, I have three bones to pick.

1)Bidding: “there is no need to correct to 2NT.” Obviously, Kit knows his methods and principles and I don't. But I don't see why 2N should be “corrective”. It seems far more useful to me as forward-going - a natural try for game. You can always pass with no game interest (and hope that West bids 2!).

2)Play: “If declarer had attacked diamonds, he would have had a real chance to make. West would certainly have covered the 9 with the queen, to king and ace.”
I agree declarer should clearly attack diamonds; and that West would probably cover. However, I don't think East should win the ace on the first round. Ducking looks routine to me, all things considered.

3) Bidding (again): You discussed the bidding of South, North and East, and I agree with most of what you have to say. But if you discussed West's double, I missed it. I found this surprising because I think the double was the most clearly wrong action taken in the auction. Unfavorable vulnerability facing a passed partner. I don't tend to worry about going for numbers, but this is one of the situations where it actually happens in real life.
And aside from anything else, I'd worry that declarer might get a count on my shape and high cards and drop my Q. If your answer is that you'd also double with same hand and xx, I believe you - but maybe the declarer you face won't think that. (In fact, I slightly prefer double with K653, AJ94, xx, Qxx to the double on the actual hand - but I would not double with either hand.)
April 13, 2014
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