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All comments by Simon Mostyn
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I was North at the other table. My partner also opened 4 and it went all pass. I briefly contemplated advancing, but as slam requires partner to have a 1st round control in one minor and 2nd round control in the other (assuming they find the right lead), I didn’t.
Jan. 17
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After 2NT, I play in all my partnerships that 3 is a game force (at least) with both minors and with a single-suited hand interested in slam, 2-under slam tries at the 4-level. Thus:-

2NT - 4 shows slam interest with 6+ card hearts. Opener can co-operate with 4 (last train) or attempt to sign off in 4. Of course, sometimes responder will be good enough to bid again over opener’s attempted sign-off.

2NT - 4 shows slam interest with 6+ card spades. Now 4 = last train; 4S = discouraging.

2NT - 4 shows clubs and slam interest. Opener can co-operate with 4 (encouraging), bid 4NT (attempt to sign off) or with a moderately fitting hand bid 5.

Similarly 2NT - 4 shows slam interest with diamonds.

I would be nervous about adopting any method where 2NT - 3NT was non-natural as the risk of a memory lapse is high (the sequence “sounds” so natural).
Jan. 13
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I am not going to comment on the politics but on the logistics/ admin. The venue was originally Opatija (Croatia), then moved to Kusadasi and now it’s apparently going to be Istanbul. Very interesting city but I might delay booking until a week before the event in case there’s a further change of host city. Has the EBL offered any guarantees this won’t happen?
Dec. 13, 2018
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This one looks familiar - is it from the ECL vs Northants at the weekend? I rebid 3 - 7th club and partial spade fit swayed me.
Dec. 13, 2018
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Sorry for some reason when I posted initially, all of my carefully prepared text disappeared! Now edited.
Sept. 27, 2018
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In the bidding, would it be completely reckless at these colours to try 3NT over 3 suggesting values just shy of a game force with at least 5-5 in the minors?
Sept. 9, 2018
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A good hand for playing (uncontested) 1 - 3 as natural invitational. If not playing that method, I’m sure I would stretch and respond 2 rather than 1NT as game could easily be cold opposite a suitable weak NT.
Sept. 9, 2018
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David Gold recently wrote an article in English Bridge recommending 1NT as 11-16 after 1 any - pass - pass. Advancer’s 2 acts as a shape and range enquiry. After which, the rebids are as follows:-

2 = any 11-12, no 4-card major;
2M = 11-12, natural;
2NT = any 13-14 (now 3 = a shape enquiry);
3 any = natural, 15-16

I have now adopted this treatment with a couple of partners.
Aug. 16, 2018
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I’m not going to comment on the specific allegations against Mr Horton, but on the subject of plagiarism and on a lighter note, I’ve just come across the following:-

“To an aspiring author who had hoped for praise, Dr. Johnson wrote: ‘Your manuscript is both good and original; but the part that is good is not original, and the part that is original is not good’.

(quoted in “The Book of Snubs” edited by Gyles Brandreth, Robert Hale Limited, 1994)
Aug. 16, 2018
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I voted for 5. Let’s give the oppo the last guess.
July 23, 2018
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Frances, this seems a good agreement, but how do you modify it after (2) - pass - (2M)? Passing with a big 2-suiter with diamonds and a major is less attractive now given the risk that 2M ends the auction.
July 23, 2018
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Indeed! Now corrected.
July 22, 2018
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What is the time interval between the European Championships just concluded and the Bermuda Bowl? A good performance by a given pair in the former should certainly be strongly taken into account in determining selection for the latter.

However, the longer the gap between the 2 events, the more discretion the selectors should have. They will need to factor in current form and the possibility of a pair which were not involved in the Europeans having a stellar 12 months. To use a football (soccer) analogy, not all those who played for England in the World Cup qualification games have made the final “cut”, i.e. the squad for the actual World Cup. Of course there is also the potential for partnership splits.
June 17, 2018
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I agree with the above comments. With a stronger 5-5 shape, opener may bid fourth suit forcing (3 in this case).
April 15, 2018
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For the record, partner’s hand was JT9862 KT962 D Q C 6 and South’s hand was AK7543 J JT85 J5
Jan. 1, 2018
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My thought process at the table was that with a void it was quite likely that LHO would raise. I thought I would be better placed after p - (2) - 3- (3! / 4) - p - p (when I can describe my extra values and approximate shape nicely with a double) than after 2 - x - 3 - p - p. In the 2nd sequence, I am more or less commmitted to following through with 4C which doesn’t get across my suitability for other strains.

Of course, once dummy hit, I wished that I had doubled! Surprisingly, we gained 5 IMPs on the board as teammates managed to take 3C 2 off.
Dec. 31, 2017
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I let North change their bid unless I am certain that North would not allow me to change my call had the situation been reversed.
Nov. 20, 2017
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Brett, if you don’t open a strong NT with Andy’s hand, assuming natural rebids, you have created a difficult (some would say impossible) rebid problem for yourself after 1 - 1M. Nor do you have a clear-cut rebid after 1 - 2.
Nov. 12, 2017
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Andy,

I have an agreement with at least one partner that 4NT in your 1st sequence should be natural. On the basis that a forcing 3 is available with 3-card spade support and that if responder wishes to set diamonds as trumps, responder bids 4.

I haven’t any firm partnership agreements about the 2nd sequence so absent prior discussion would assume 4N to be RKCB. I suppose to a large extent it depends on whether 4 by advancer agrees spades as trumps or is simply a “choice of games” cue bid.
Oct. 31, 2017
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Sorry I should have been clearer and have now edited the article. In the version of Bergen which I play, major suit raises become progressively from 2NT (GF/ Jacoby). So 3 is the limit raise and 3 is the mixed raise in each case with 4+ card trump support. 1- 2 and 1 - 3 are 3-card limit raises.
Sept. 24, 2017
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