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Dummy points versus declarer points

After a trump fit has been found, as far as I know, it was Bergen who first wrote about the idea of counting points differently for the hand that will be trumping in the short hand versus the hand that will be drawing trumps. When trumps are not 4-4, the long trump hand counts less for shortness, but adds more for extra trump length and for extra side suit length. The dummy hand is the hand that counts the traditional way for shortness. A singleton with four trump, for example, equals three points.

Here is my interpretation of Bergen in action:

Dummy: Kxxx   x   AQxx   JTxx      Declarer: AQxxx   Ax   KJxxx   x

After the spade fit has been uncovered, I believe Bergen adds three for the singleton heart in dummy, plus adds upgrades for the double honors in diamonds and clubs.  For declarer, the singleton club drops to one point, the fifth trump doubles in value, and the fourth and fifth diamond each gain a point. 

That would make dummy 10 HCP plus 3 SP for 13 total points. Plus a couple of pluses, adding maybe an additional point to the total. 14 TP.

Declarer points: 14 HCP. But after a nine-card fit has been found:

Two for the fifth spade, one each for the fourth and fifth diamond, only a point for the singleton club (voids, even in the long hand still receive substantial point awards, I believe 3 is his valuation). Plus lots of upgrades: All those aces and kings, honors with other honors. That's 4 LP, 1 SP  plus extras. 19TP ++.

Notice that "old methods" would also have the declarer hand's valuation come to 19: 14 HCP, 2 for length, and three for the singleton.

In both cases, 19 TP plus 14 TP plus extras is what puts this hand in the slam zone. 

What I like so much about the Bergen method is that it helps the student understand that tricks are created through length and through trumping IN THE SHORT HAND.

Do you use Bergen's methods? Have you tweaked them? Do you have your own point count structure? 


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