Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Gary Ansok
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In short, “Abstain” can be “I don't feel qualified to answer” or “I don't have a preference”, but I still want to see the results.

For bidding problems, an “Abstain” from me often means that I don't think I'm familiar enough with the bidding system to know all the implications of the previous bids, but I'm still curious to know the results. This may be just a subset of your option 1 (or 5), but I don't expect that level of detail.

Occasionally it's been “this same hand keeps coming up in the YouHold app, and I'm tired of hitting ”Skip".
Aug. 16
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Having 4-card spade support has improved your hand so that it is worth a full opener. Had partner bid 1, I think a case could be made for passing, but I'd still make a support double (if available).
Aug. 14
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The Summer NABCs do seem to have most of these events – the 0-6000 and 0-2500 Life Master Pairs, the 0-6000 and 0-2500 mini-Spingolds, and the Red Ribbon Pairs are all at the Summer.

Was this deliberate, to try to concentrate these events so that one could fill one's schedule with these at the Summer, and leave the Spring and Fall tournaments to those willing to play with the big boys?

Personally, I thought the Red Ribbon Pairs went well when it essentially served as the 0-2500 mini-Blue Ribbon (there is a 0-6000 running alongside the BRP in the fall).

I'd like to see the NABCs offering more of the kinds of events that most players rarely encounter, even if they're not “NABC”-level events. A place where one could try out Board-a-Match, even if you're not up to entering the Reisinger. Swiss Pairs might be another such event.
Aug. 7
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Had one not too long ago that went like this:
Me: 1NT (“15-17”)
LHO: 2 (“Alert”, partner did not ask)
Pard: Dbl (“Alert”)
RHO: “What did your partner's double mean?”
Me: “That depends on what your partner's bid meant… what was 2?”
RHO: “You can't ask that, it's not your turn to bid.”
July 29
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Is this North's hand we're looking at, or West's?
July 15
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With the Stratified Swiss proposal, I could see a Strat B team that finished fourth in the Swiss KO being unhappy with that result – they would rather play in the Bracket 2 KO against other Strat B teams instead of feeling like a long shot in the Bracket 1 KO.

Such a team might even be tempted to deliberately lose their last match, which would be a Bad Thing.
July 15
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My partner and I distinguish between a “could be short” bid and a completely artificial bid (like a strong 1).

Over the “could be short” bid, the opener often has that suit (just as a normal “3+” minor often has 4 or more), so we bid as we normally do over that opening (including Michaels). Perhaps not the best, but keeps things simpler.

Over an artificial bid, everything is natural with a few specific exceptions.
July 11
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I was considering bidding 2, but decided to pass. But I was wondering (even before I saw partner's hand) for how many people this might be a third-hand favorable weak 2. 1 didn't even cross my mind.

One hand doesn't prove anything, of course, but on this specific hand you find partner with 5-card support and the AK of , and even with the almost mirror 1=3=5=4 distribution you should take 8 tricks (DD). N-S will find their spade fit whether or not you bid, but a 5 sacrifice is par and N-S will likely take the push to 5 and go down.

Jordan – you're correct; I wanted to tell voters that we weren't using Flannery or any other special use for 2, but couldn't find a good way to say that without giving away that bid. Later I realized “All bids are natural” might have been a little better.
July 2
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My original comment was written before I noticed that the hand in question was a passed hand; perhaps I should have removed it.

If 1N isn't forcing (because you're a passed hand or for any other reason), then I wouldn't even consider it here.
April 24
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Just noticed you are a passed hand – in that case I'd use Drury or just bid 4.

Original comment:
Would 1 - 1N (forcing) - 2x - 4 be a possible sequence for you? This is what a partner and I agreed on after a similar hand.

Otherwise, I'd probably bid a simple 2N.
April 23
Gary Ansok edited this comment April 23
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I've been mulling over some possible ways to make the limited NABC championships a little bit more inviting compared to similar Regional-rated events.

1st and 2nd get their pictures in the monthly Bulletin, but what about the rest?

One thought, for games that award gold points anyway, would be to have all section awards be gold, just as all section awards in NABC+ events are platinum. I'm not sure what the equivalent for the NLM events would be.
April 8
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If I was going to do something other than Pass here, I probably should have done that on the last round.
Feb. 7
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The only lead that causes any problems for me is a , so I have to assume that's what W will lead when he finishes spades.

If I throw two from dummy, then E-W can force me to use my A before I have the clubs unblocked – so I won't do that. Similarly, to preserve the dummy entry I need to keep all of S's diamonds.

Other than that, I want to keep all my tricks (I can cash all the rest once I get the lead) and the first option seems the safest to me. If I could persuade W not to lead a diamond, that would be nice, but if E has been signalling for a diamond lead he'll probably get it.
Dec. 20, 2018
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Robert, midweek I see the D21 regionals have “Open Pairs 5000/+”, “Midflight Pairs 1500/3000” and “Gold Rush Pairs 300/750”. I don't know how successful they are, but I like the idea too.
Nov. 6, 2018
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On that one, my LHO opened 7 and partner overcalled 7 – so that's 77 “bits of card” in the first two calls.
Oct. 26, 2018
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Is a C pair scoring 49% in an open game less of an accomplishment than winning the 299er (or Gold Rush, or 99er) game? Why shouldn't the pair in the open game get points?

To my mind, we should be encouraging pairs to get exposure to better (or at least more experienced) opponents, and stratification is one way to do that.

Denying points to pairs that do well within their strat suggests that we should replace stratified games with flighted ones, and I don't think that's desirable or, in most cases, practical.

We can (and often do, here) talk about how many flights and/or strata there should be, and the relative sizes of the awards. But if you're going to have stratified games, I don't think there should be an overall score minimum to earn points.
Oct. 22, 2018
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People who never bother to alert until it's their turn to bid.
Sept. 14, 2018
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I ended up passing, not being sure what XX would show and thinking that since we did not appear to have a fit and the points were evenly split, bidding might help the opponents more than our side.

As it turned out, we can make (DD) only 2 or 2, while the opponents can make 3 or 2. North has six good spades (AKQxxx) and four poor hearts, and an interesting decision of her own.

We were fortunate that our opponents blazed ahead to 4, which we set for a tied-top board. Whether my pass had anything to do with their overbid, I can't say. I didn't feel comfortable passing with that many points and thought I'd see if I'd missed anything.

This was board 13 of the Sat 11 Aug Common Game.
Aug. 20, 2018
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Partner didn't open 1, we did.
Aug. 9, 2018
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I think bidding 3 is questionable, but possibly allowed (if partner had read 2 as a transfer, would passing deny 3-card support?)

Correcting partner's 3 to 3 seems right out to me, though. You have to assume partner already knows you have 5 hearts, and if she chooses to bid diamonds in spite of that (3=2=6=2?), you probably have to respect that choice.

But overall, I think Pass is what you'd probably do if the transfer was announced. The UI makes you want to do something different, so you shouldn't, and other action is likely to dig the hole even deeper.

Also remember, if you're in a similar situation and end up defending, you tell the opponents at the *end* of the hand. If you tell the opponents at the end of the bidding, as you do when declaring, you wake up partner and that might affect her play.
July 17, 2018
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