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All comments by Leonard Helfgott
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Najdorf and Reshevsky were easily strong enough to do this, but too young, born ~1910.
Try Abraham Kupchik, 1892-1970.
Oct. 9
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I was 20-21 in 1969 and I hope I wouldn’t have considered 58 old. I did play with David S. Polland in 1967 who was born in 1908 (and GM strength) and looked older to me, but I was informed that the gentleman in question was born in 1892. If you check past winners of Marshall Chess club championship and even tougher events, you could figure it out.
Oct. 8
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“I’ll second that emotion.”
Oct. 8
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I don’t see how a 3D bid by South can be game forcing. Surely North can double with a 4=4=4=1 hand of say 11-13 hcp. Did I misinterpret something?
Oct. 7
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Thanks for posting, Rich. Harold was a truly brilliant man in many areas, and a good bridge friend. We used to trade math problems at the tournaments, and he was usually one-up on me. I will certainly miss him. RIP Harold.
Oct. 7
Leonard Helfgott edited this comment Oct. 7
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I agree that “blame” ro North is unfair. Perhaps 80-90% is just “rub of the green” and the last 10%-20% to North, but even the recommended 3H over 3D poses problems. South would surely take that as a MUCH more oriented heart hand, perhaps even 4=6=2=1 or with a very strong 5 bagger That would expect a raise on Hx, as my partners might expect, so his choice to bid 5D was not unreasonable, just unlucky IMO.
Oct. 7
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Mike: Good point the constructive value of 3D makes 3H a gamefoce, although tou might wind up in a 7 card fit when he raises to 4H on Hx, as he should.
Oct. 6
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The latter.
Oct. 6
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Yes. Showing the strong diamond fragment seems more important than rebiddind clubs, soI agree with this and especially Ed Davis’ conments above.
Oct. 6
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I believe there was a Bridge World article a few years ago that supported your conclusion, 5332 oppos. 4333 fares better in 3NT. However, a 1D opening belies 4333, so presence of a doubleton somewher likely changes that.
Oct. 5
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Richie Schwartz told me the only thing he ever excelled in was horserace handicapping. Many experts attending his funeral in NYC would disagree.
Oct. 2
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I’m sure Nick is right that the disadvantage of a double with a void is inability to lead trumps, or to have 1 less trump than expected. However, this can be offset with sufficient defensive holdings elsewhere or other factors (e,g. Perfect shape, lack of other viable choices), IMO. With 3 quick tricks, a reasonable (Hxx) holding in spades, and a quasi-3 suited hand, the pluses of not bidding it as a 1-suiter may fully outweigh the void issue. If we considered a hand with more diamonds and considerably less defense, e.g. Qxxx —AQJxxx QJx, the overcall would surely have more appeal.
Sept. 30
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In The version of 2-way game tries I learned (called Kokish-Nagy I believe) opener used the next step (2Sover 1H-2H and 2N over 1S-2S) without shortness to ask responder for cheapest fragment he would accept game in and otherwise opener made a short suit try directly (1S-2S- 3C/3D/3H short and 1H-2H- 2N/3C/3D for s/c/d short). This hides opener’s shape when he isn't unbalanced, but flags his shortness. It may be better to invert this to hide opener’s shortness. But Zi do think 2-way game tries are more effective than random tries or bashing, IMHO.
Sept. 30
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BWS has gone through four changes in last 50 years. BWS68, BWS84, BWS2000 and BWS2017. In the 80s my style was pretty close to BWS84 and with the 2000 change I went with the flow and adjusted. However, BWS2017 has many new treatments and wrinkles that I would not be comfortable playing.
Sept. 29
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Richard: I agree.
Sept. 29
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Mike: I do think there should be a name for an invite such as this which essentially says “ get excited if you have a singleton ( or Ax) in this suit, for which xxx is ideal. It’s a fine understanding if you like it. I’m just very surprised the monicker “ help suit game try” ever caught on.
Sept. 29
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Richard: Agree. Once the spade fit is found, making some kind of game try in hearts seems better than trying to improve the strain ( which might happen anyway).
Sept. 29
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Mike: If you have an agreement to call this a “help suit try” , xxx or at most Qxx, that’s fine with me. I just think it’s a misnomer. A good understanding of expectations is always a plus, even if not optimal. I guess Barry was overly impassioned in his attempt to define things, although I agree with his opinions on usage.
Sept. 28
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Barry: Again 200%. I’ve never liked the term HSGT. I’ve always treated These as I would long suit tries. That is, they could be (and commonly are) 3 cards in length, but are often 4 (or even 5) and to me always contain at least one honor. KJx(x) seems ideal. You can call this natural (I do) or LSGT or even HSGT, but that's what I mean. Perhaps the term “fragment game try” is appropriate since fragment is usually 3-4 cards. If partner does this with xxx because he “needs help” I try to convince him to make some other kind of try, ANY other kind of try. I do prefer some type of two-way game try as I think that offers the best of both worlds.
Sept. 28
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What Barry said! Precisely and exactly. 100%, or maybe 200%(!). Thank you Barry for expanding on this most frustrating topic.
Sept. 28
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