Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Paul Bethe
1 2
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Overall – good report.

Slightly flawed analysis on Diamond-Harris segment 2 board 21.
You wrote “then Diamond made a good lead against a game to win 10 IMPs when declarer went down three”

Diamond did make a great low diamond lead, but Platnick had to find the heart switch and understandably did not, perhaps reasoning that partner might have a stiff-K and a switch might point that out.
The vu-graph commentators seemed to think either major would beat the game, but no…

After the SJ to the A and diamond continuation, declarer needed to just duck one diamond (or duck a spade if that was continued instead), and at that point declarer could have made on a strip-endplay.

On the actual play when declarer won the 2nd round of diamonds, W had to be very careful not to pitch a spade on the 3rd round of clubs… but they did, and now declarer could organize the same strip-endplay by overtaking the CJ, cashing the SK and running clubs.

However at that point perhaps declarer figured a H switch to beat him would have been made when the HK was offside, thus indicating that the HK was actually onside and took the hook to go down many tricks.
May 19, 2017
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
See above (I added a last section)
When E pitches a H down to 3S and 2H, declarer pitches a S instead of a H.
Assuming W is 3-3 in the majors… (a premature H pitch would allow declarer to duck a H in both hands then Ace)
If W pitches a spade: KA of spades, heart to the 8 (or Q if E rises T).
If W pitches a H, then a heart can just be ducked.

Note: this works b/c you gave a holding of Q8xx… Q7xx would be no good, and then my line fails.
Dec. 28, 2016
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
If declarer held that, instead of they could run 8 minor cards double-squeezing the defenders in the same 2 suits!
In the 5 card ending, if E keeps 2S and 3H, then AK and a spade finishes it.
and if E keeps 3S and 2H, then W gets squeezed in the majors, a H pitch down to 3S and 2H allows a heart to be ducked, after which hearts run.

With that available, why would declarer lead a at trick 2?

Note E could pitch down to 3S and 2H, in which case declarer pitches a spade instead to keep 3H.
W must pitch a spade, as a heart pitch allows a heart duck, but now declarer cashes 2 spades ending in dummy and leads a heart to the 8, W wins and has to lead a heart at trick 12.
Dec. 28, 2016
Paul Bethe edited this comment Dec. 28, 2016
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Nope. If you discard the K on the 4th club, declarer leads a to their T setting up dummy's 9.
Dec. 28, 2016
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Well suppose you play 4 rounds of diamonds. RHO wins and returns a heart (since a spade is fatal).
You may have to make a decision on which squeeze to play for.

I think the ‘best’ approach is after the DA reveals the 0=4, to play SA and then run the T of spades. Even if it loses, there must be a squeeze with hearts in the middle.
Oct. 7, 2013
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Echoing previous comments:

In my partnerships, 2H would be the standout 80% blame, but 3N is a close 2nd at 15%. When I am unpassed and you are vulnerable - I expect a real 2H bid. However, I would have had no problem with a 3H preempt on this hand.

Over 3D, E should work out that 3N will not have play, and either pass or correct to 3H. Although I think W should bid out to 3H, not 3D (last 5% of blame), this is the weakest possible action, and must be right with this hand.

While 2N is pushy, with some of my sound partners it would make lots of sense as they might hold x KQJTxx AKJx xx, so I have no problem with that bid.


Aug. 3, 2012
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I would switch to the heart Queen. Same reasons as mentioned for the heart switch, but also catering to declarer holding: xxxx AKx QJx Qxx where a low heart is the only card which allows declarer to make.
July 9, 2012
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Q: with minors, couldn't you start with X, and pull partner's 2S to 2N?
May 24, 2012
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Ahh the great 1 & 7.30 versus 10 & 3/4.

Most of the comments here use personal opinion (which is fine), but also use over general conclusions with no statistical basis like:
* Local players overwhelmingly prefer earlier times
* old people like earlier
* West coaster like later
* Partiers like later

In NYC 5 or so years ago we had the same debate as relates to regional start times for our December and May regionals.
So we compromised and held our May tournament at 1 & 7 and our December tournament at 10 & 3, plus a 7.30pm session (including evening horizontal 2 session pairs for working types).

The conclusion: About the same number of people played 1 & 7 as 10 & 3. (comparing previous years December 1& 7 versus the next few years December 10 & 3)
As far as revenue, 10 & 3 made more, as we were able to hold a 3rd session with many more attendees than a 9am morning game had under a 1&7 schedule.


Aug. 9, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Sites: I agree with all the previous posts about split sites. At other NABCs, after failing to qualify for the next day of a national event, I often would enjoy grabbing a beer and playing the midnight game - which as pointed out was not possible.

Rooms: I guess I was lucky, as my 8th floor room at RY was clean and very nice (but too expensive).

Coke/Coffee: @Bob - same for me but with Coke. I often look for one right before the evening session or around the first hospitality break, and it was particularly annoying not to find one on Monday.
Drinks:On Saturday night we were at the RY bar, and there were 2 very useless bartenders, and after failing to get a drink after 20 minutes, we gave up.
ACBL: How is it that the ACBL does not produce a schedule of logistics for the host hotel, e.g.:
* have many good bartenders available every night around 11.30 - they will all make good tips.
* have coffee/soft drinks somewhere until 10pm
* have enough attendants around between 3pm and 7pm on the first Thursday for checkins.

Swiss Events: I played in 2 day long Swiss events (Sunday, Wed daylight). I was very annoyed that they both used the 30 VP scale. Sometimes you play good bridge at both tables and lose by 2 IMPs, but this scale penalizes all losses. (please any other scale: 20VPs, WBF 25 scale, USBF fractional 20)

Times: I like sleeping in, so 1 and 7.30 is fine by me, but… I also think that having Spingold matches played until 2am is ridiculous. I think specifically the Spingold and Vanderbilt should play a 10 and 4/5 schedule.


Aug. 3, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.

Declarer played the H3.
If the ruff was bad for him, why not play the 6 to create the possibility that partner has lead from a 53 doubleton (3=2=4=4)?
The answer is: declarer WANTS us to give partner a ruff.

Therefore determine which minor is better and lead that.
My first thought was clubs, so as not to blow a trick if declarer has Q9x of diamonds.
July 5, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
@Bob

“I don't think any game really makes, …”

I think that 4H by N is cold, as the only way to defeat it, is if E leads a low spade from KJx. And 4H by S similarly needs the A of spades to defeat.

On a likely diamond lead, it is ruffed, a club ruffed, 2 rounds of trump via a finesse, and then clubs run pitching spades. On the actual layout, either declarer comes to 11 tricks.
June 24, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
My understanding is that historically this balancing cuebid was as you describe - strong hand not suited for a double.

But Michaels came in favor well before I learned the game (in the 90s), and that is all I have ever played in balancing seat. I don't know the history of when the change happened, but I would guess the 60s or 70s.

Comments about why you can double with the hands you worried about:
* partner is not allowed to sit unless they had a trap-pass of 1H.
E.g. a 9 count with 3=4=3=3 after (1H)-P-(P)-X-(P)-? - must bid something. Either 1N, maybe 1S.

So if balancer is strong or has a void, if partner sits the double, we are getting a telephone number.



June 7, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Dad,

Nice analysis of the potential ruff to indicate which way to safety play.

“I am a decent bridge analyst”. Nice modesty.

-Paul
May 20, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
John,

This is some interesting work you are doing, so keep it up please.

As to your question #3 “Is double dummy analysis even useful?”, I am doing some research on this very question, and will report results soon.

-Paul
May 17, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
Well played.

While the criss-cross is cute, it seems that in the NY Times article, declarer knew west had long clubs and spades, so east must have both red-suits guarded.
Why not simply Vienna-coup by unblocking the heart Jack and crossing back to diamonds and finishing trump?
The criss-cross requires declarer to have exact count, so as to figure out which suit east unguards.
My line, requires simply looking for the T of hearts. If it appears, the H7 is good; if not, try running diamonds.
April 6, 2011
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I agree w 2, but I would plan to rebid 3 over 2.

What would I do with xxx Qx Kxx AKTxx ?
I would bid 2, then after partner's 2 rebid I would… preference to 2.

I think the given hand clearly has extras, so we should bid 3, to set trump, and suggest cuebiding.
Aug. 25, 2010
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I would bid 2NT here as well.

Without the J, I would preference to 2.

And of course, the opposite of false preference: without a round King, I would pass 2. Even at matchpoints. Although a 5-2 can play better than a 3-4, or just the major scores better for +2 over the minor at +3. I pass so as to prevent partner from bidding again and taking us too high.
Aug. 20, 2010
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
We all agree that if spades are dropping or 4-3, or 2=5, 1=6 – we are gin.
So Bryan's line certainly covers that, but then only provides a very slim squeeze chance otherwise.

Espen's initial line gets all of the ‘good’ spade breaks, losing only to LHO with 10-cards in the round suits, 1=2 in spades and diamonds. Since we know that W passed after 1 or after 1-P-2-? – then it is much easier to discount this possibility.

However, when RHO shows out in spades, you can try to make via a crossruff, which must be higher odds than the squeeze line.
You only make now when RHO started with 4+ clubs, or mis-discarded with 2=6=2=3.
At some point You may have to guess whether RHO started with 2=4=2=5 or 2=5=2=4.

Aug. 19, 2010
You are ignoring the author of this comment. Click to temporarily show the comment.
I am not sure I like 2 on as few as 1. with 4=5=3=1, I would stretch to reverse, or bid 2 with an honor, or rebid 2 with KJxx AKJxx xxx x
Allowing as few as 1 club leads to headaches.

On to the problem at hand:

I will admit that I would probably pass 3 with the South hand.

However, from North's perspective, South's hand is limited by not doing more after 1N or 2. So the only reason to all of a sudden come alive and bid on, is that when partner has shown a good raise to 3, we have a fit.
Once South bids 3 as a game try, North should probably bid game.

Aug. 13, 2010
1 2
.

Bottom Home Top