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All comments by Wayne Burrows
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In reverse order:

6 is too much. If south has AKxxx then we still need good breaks and something good in clubs. With much more than AKxxx then south would have bid over 4.

5 is trying to land on a pinhead. I can't see how it can be long run winning strategy to offer a four card suit at the five level even vulnerable where the payoff is good if you are successful.

Double of 5 seems normal. As does pass of 4.

Double of 3 is okay but I would prefer 3NT with a balanced twenty and no ruffing value when partner is forced to bid one of your three card suits.
Jan. 11, 2019
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An overtrick is worth less than one IMP - there is a chance of some aberrant result at the other table. Making our game vulnerable is usually worth nine or ten IMPs. Therefore, we have to make a lot of overtricks to justify going down once when we should have made on a line where there was a higher probability of making.
Jan. 9, 2019
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I do not have time to flesh out the details but

1. At MPs I take the spade finesse. I might need to take it twice so I do not cash the ace or king first. If this wins then I can play a top trump and then if trumps are three two I can play two rounds of diamonds ace then queen in case they are 5-0. If diamonds are 4-1 then the hand with four diamonds might have three trumps. If trumps are not three two then I need to go to the diamond queen and repeat the trump finesse. I make if diamonds are not 0-5.

2. At IMPs I give some consideration to cashing AK now I make if trumps are 3-2, and diamonds are no worse than 4-1 or 5-0 onside. If there is stiff or doubleton queen then I can cope with a diamond loser. I haven't checked the numbers. Finessing spade makes if spade queen is onside and there is no diamond loser.
Jan. 8, 2019
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Quite right. I did realise there was a sure trick in hearts.
Jan. 5, 2019
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No partner has no extras to convert 7 to 7NT.
Jan. 5, 2019
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South did not pose a problem to me. South simply told me that they bid 7 and I asked for the auction.

I am not sure what you are referring to by “heavy burden”?
Jan. 4, 2019
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It was not my auction and I was not at the table but it was reported to me by the south at the table. He described 3 as fourth suit and he bid 3NT with a stopper. They were not a very regular partnership so it is possible they did not have a firm agreement.

I am not sure what he would have done with no heart stopper and especially if he had a singleton spade.

I have not had a strong well discussed precision partnership for many years. We played a version based on Alan Sontag's book. I am not sure what that says if anything about this sequence. In casual partnerships I play precision reasonably often and have had an in depth discussion but think that it would be commonly assumed among those partners that this was a version of fourth suit forcing.
Jan. 3, 2019
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Probably a good move. 7 was making but even 6 scored 73% in this field.
Jan. 3, 2019
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Jeff, “class of player” is a test applied to the definition of logical alternative it is not applied to the test of whether or not something is demonstrably suggested.
Jan. 3, 2019
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“5-0 diamonds and RHO holding the black guards seems insurmountable. But that is about it.”

You need more than that.

1. If either player has JTx then you are still cold.

2. If north has four or more hearts with the jack or the ten then there will be a three suit squeeze operating on the penultimate diamond.

Say with dummy having KJ9 KQ9 and declarer x x Jx Q then north will be ruined on the J with QT Jxx K.

So we need diamonds 5-0 so that hearts are blocked and north with both black suits held and south with a heart hold - four or more with the jack or ten.
Jan. 3, 2019
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I would play some system of transfers of 3NT which helps solve this problem.
Jan. 3, 2019
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Except that “class of player” is nowhere defined.
Jan. 3, 2019
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I did some simulations a while ago and I thought I found on the assumption that south had a heart stopper about 50-50 that south had the K and Q and then you needed another trick which was likely but not guaranteed. So I got something between 40% and 50% that 7 was making.
Jan. 3, 2019
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Maybe the title is misleading. The auction was as reported or so I am told. I wanted to know specifically about the 7 bid but happy for the discussion of the rest of the auction. I was browsing through old polls and saw one of mine, where I asked a similar question about a grand and I, had had this auction in my mind for some time.

As to your suggestion, after 3 you might not be able to bid RKB, Bill Jacobs alluded to that earlier. Say partner bids 3NT for example but 4m will also cause you problems.
Jan. 3, 2019
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It was matchpoints sorry Steve. I did comment somewhere but could not see how to edit the original post.
Jan. 3, 2019
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Because south is a passed hand.
Jan. 3, 2019
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It is definitely true that a shortage is a good discriminator between a minor contract and no trumps and it is also a good discriminator between game and slam when we have a minor suit fit.
Jan. 3, 2019
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South has four clubs.
Jan. 2, 2019
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Sure a suit setting 3 is great for this hand but this is a rare hand type compared with splinter raises of partner's diamonds.
Jan. 2, 2019
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Sorry good point.

It is matchpoints.
Jan. 2, 2019
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