Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Mark Bartusek
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In general you don't preempt over an opponent's preempt;
but, I remember an “exception” in the USBF team qualifying when Kit picked up
KQJxxxxxxx Jxx. – –

after RHO opened 3D he overcalled 4S
Oct. 21
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My Santa Barbara Bridge Center has turned it on and I believe that most people like it (and it only takes about 10-15 seconds longer on average per hand).
I think it definitely eliminates some scoring errors which makes the director's job easier since ACBL Score doesn't catch all the erroneous results.

Additionally it facilitates analyzing the results and determining why some people made/failed due to different leads (admittedly not everyone looks at the website results).

I sincerely doubt that occurrences of cheating occur in sufficient quantity to outweigh the benefits of having the additional information.
Oct. 4
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Thank you !!

This works great as a double-dummy analyzer of hands for my IMAC desktop!!
Oct. 3
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I noticed that this app does NOT provide a double-dummy playing option…..

Does anyone know a site for MAC that provides a FREE double dummy analyzer??
Oct. 3
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I generally agree…..that's why I've only played it in partnerships which had explicit notes (with the treatment being highlighted!!) that were constantly reviewed by both partners prior to playing.
Aug. 26
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Michael:
It's ironic that one of your long-term partners (Jeff) introduced it to me and wanted to play it. Did you ever play it with him??
Aug. 26
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My Santa Barbara club has kept raising the upper MP limit seemingly because players don’t wish to compete against the better players (and they want a better chance to win masterpoints). 
Management has also designated many more games as Club Championships or charity games in order to award more masterpoints. We now sport the following weekly games:
1 0-299 game
2 0-499 game
1 0-1500 game (which probably eliminates about 25 area players )
4 open games

AND, needless to say, all the EVENING Open games have died making it more difficult for 9-5 workers to participate. We average anywhere from 7 to 18 tables for the games.

Admittedly each Open game usually has a pair that scores in the low 30 percents. Occasionally we’ve seen a 20% score. Robert can confirm these details.
July 5
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To avoid playing a 4-3 heart fit at the 3-level I prefer to play:
X = minors
2NT = exactly 4 hearts and presumably a minor
Dec. 20, 2018
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I ended up with four 8's once in a national event several years ago (I seem to remember on defense!). Some people may remember that it was written up in the NABC daily bulletin with the title of “Crazy Eights”.

Obviously 4 aces is much more difficult. Once in an NABC event I succeeded is coming down to 4 aces and 1 spare card as declarer in a game contract…unfortunately I had to play an Ace on the 9th trick.
Nov. 13, 2018
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The recent August 2018 issue of The Bridge World (TBW) magazine contained a Master Solver’s Club (MSC) Problem H addressing the same issue.
i.e. 1NT passed out and you’re on lead with:
J986
A1074
J10
1093

The expert panel voted as follows:
Lead Score #votes
9 —- 100 —- 8
6 —– 90 —- 7
8 —– 90 —- 3
10 —- 70 —- 5
J —— 60 —- 2

Experts clearly disagree, but as long as partner can work it out the 9 handles a few more situations. The moderator said that those advocating the 9 lead made a strong case.

Note: There was also a groundbreaking article by Marshall Miles entitled “Leading the Nine” in the July 1955 issue of TBW.
Oct. 3, 2018
Mark Bartusek edited this comment Oct. 3, 2018
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Perhaps my summary was a little bit too casual regarding that…
but, it seems to me that cashing the trump Ace (as indicated by the polling) to cater to a stiff trump queen with LHO is higher percentage than immediately hooking the heart Jack at trick 2 catering specifically to a club void with RHO (i.e. not requiring the use of a club entry for the 2nd trump finesse). Additionally, this assumes LHO doubled instead of overcalling 1 with 5=1=4=3.
Sept. 26, 2018
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As stated above
“For the purpose of this survey please assume that you do NOT play Kickback”
Sept. 25, 2018
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Thanx to everyone for voting and commenting.

Imho, you either play West’s take-out double for an extreme distribution like
4=2=6=1
5=1=5=2
or a more balanced hand like
4=3=5=1

Thus, if you play East for the heart queen it is clearly best to cash the heart ace first to cater to a stiff trump queen (and then after hooking the heart jack you get back there with a club to take a 2nd hook.
Note: you are never succeeding against 3-0 club breaks
Unfortunately Declarer played for the more balanced Take-out double.

As it turned out the West defender was 5=1=5=2.
Kxxxx
x
KQxxx
Qx

Why did West make a passed hand double instead of overcalling 1S or an unusual 1NT???
So, Heart Ace at trick 2 was the winner.

Note: Auction proceeded
4 4NT
5 5
6 6
Where the lack of clear notes led to a misunderstanding
Sept. 23, 2018
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If you cash a high club first then both opponents follow with small clubs.
*** This information added to post after 25 people had already voted <–
Sept. 22, 2018
Mark Bartusek edited this comment Sept. 22, 2018
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The rest of the bidding is irrelevant to the play of the hand with the opponents passing throughout. Yes, we should have gotten to 6 instead.
Sept. 21, 2018
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Thanx everyone for their votes and comments…

My view and the actual hand -
(my thoughts most closely aligned I believe with Mr. Reitman)

Imho:
1) Opponents are not going to be out of line here vulnerable, so a double here should not be penalty (especially at IMPs). It should generally be take-out, with something like a 2=3=4=4 pattern.
2) Partner could have anywhere from 0-7 HCPs (he’d have competed with 8+)
3) With your length partner is very likely to have a singleton since the auction seems to scream a 9-card fit. Partner's most likely pattern is probably 1=3=4=5 (hope he isn't 1=4=4=4). He is not going to sit for the double with a stiff spade, so a double by you is safe.
4) 3NT is extremely unlikely to have 9 tricks after your single stopper is knocked out.
5) With the vast majority of HCPs on my right most finesses are working.
6) We might even have a game if partner has the right stuff. e.g.

x Jxx xxxx Q10xxx
x xxx J10xxx Qxxx

x xxx Jxxx Axxxx

Whether we get to the game is another matter.
7) 4 of a minor rates to make with most of the key cards onside; but even if we can’t make 4/ it might be down only 1 against a making 3.

Unfortunately…..partner held:
Q
9xxxx

xxx

10xxx

Our contract was not a success going down multiple tricks vulnerable; although 3 would have made despite a trump lead.

My RHO was approximately:
Jxxx
KJ9xx
A10
Ax
Sept. 21, 2018
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Double (by partner) would show values and an interest in competing (allowing you to either pass for penalties or bid a suit). Partner probably doesn't have much though.

The actual bidding question addresses what patterns you expect partner to have and what your sides offensive / defensive prospects are.
Sept. 19, 2018
Mark Bartusek edited this comment Sept. 19, 2018
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I would say that 5 guarantees 6+ support because you eliminate the opportunity for partner to bid a natural and non-forcing 4 over a 4 raise.

And whether you have 0, 1, or 2 s also plays a role.
Aug. 29, 2018
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Clearly this question generates added complexity if you’ve tacked on XYZ to this auction.

I believe what the OP is simply trying to ask is “what makes sense in a Walsh context without XYZ, where 4SF is required to force to game”?
Thus, to answer this carefully worded question, I would respond as follows citing a well-known bidding principle:

Higher bids (which take up bidding space) should show a more clearly defined hand. Thus, a jump to 2 should be game-forcing with 5+ s and 4+ .
Therefore, 1 is 4SF to allow as much bidding space as possible to figure out what the optimal contract is.

Note: in Max Hardy’s Standard Bidding for the 21st Century he addresses this auction and states:
“Since Responder may wish to bid notrump but not have a stopper in spades, one spade should be fourth suit forcing, and a jump to two spades should be a natural call, showing diamonds and spades and a hand with good values”.
Aug. 26, 2018
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4NT.
Then over the expected 5 call my 5 correction will be a slam try (stronger than an immediate 5 bid by me)
Aug. 23, 2018
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