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Spiral Raises: Now "42 Times and Counting"

Some of you may recall and have an interest in a recent post titled "37 Times and Counting -- Spiral Raises" dated January 19.

Since then, 5 more incidents and, rather remarkably, 3 in one match point session. These 3 occurred in last Monday's The Common Game and give me (and perhaps you if you participated) an opportunity to observe results over a broad sample of users (over a thousand I think).

The boards were 11, 9 and 24; my partnership was N-S.

The results for us were respectively, 52%, 68% and 92% -- incidental, helpful, and decisive.

The 68% resulted from my capability of showing a good "minimum" 4-card holding (3S) as opener with KJ72-K10-AJ84-Q75 opposite partner's passed hand (a hand some might open). Yes, good bridge bidding would get you there regardless of Spiral. As a researcher, I'm aware of possible spurious correlations. I'm sure we didn't need Spiral and neither would most of you to get there either, but it's availability to slice/dice major suit raises is helpful.

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The 92% score -- see Common Game for detailed distribution of percentage results -- is illustrative of the treatment's virtues.

West
1054
QJ8
84
AK653
North
A83
A10542
A32
72
East
K97
763
J1075
QJ8
South
QJ62
K9
KQ96
1094
W
N
E
S
P
1
P
1
P
2
P
2NT
P
3
P
3
?
D

You may note that the hand plays like a dream -- 10 tricks are easy, everything's right, the moysian and the 3-3 split.  Two percent of all contracted for four spades, for 99% of total field bidders.  Good luck rather than good bidding.

Note, too, that Flannery players may be hampered.  I so play with a few partners and, as South, I would have bid 1NT rather than 1S.  I'll never know what may have happened, except my semi-forcing partners would pass and we wallow in 1NT.  Such is bridge.

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My non-scientific sample of 42 Spiral auctions now shows 17 average boards and 21 decisive good+ boards.  The remaining four are two forgets, 1 spiral of questionable use, and one where I came up short in 3NT because rho hand an appropriate double of my partner's 3C response (imo, the only real downside of a spiral treatment is a lead-directing double).

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