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All comments by David Collier
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What Kieran describes is how I've always played it (this being fairly common round here). You focus on the possibility that responder has a single-suited diamond invite looking for 3NT (3D accepts). This won't always get you to the right suit opposite a weak minor two-suiter, but it's better than guessing if you don't want to waste another bid on that hand.
Sept. 5
David Collier edited this comment Sept. 5
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For me the biggest problem with forcing NT is what should responder do, holding an invitational hand with four clubs, after 1M:1NT,2C. If we're playing 1NT semi-forcing then I know we should be playing in either 3C or game. Whereas if 2C could be a balanced minimum then I need to offer 2NT as a contract, even though 2NT won't be as secure as 3C when partner does have genuine clubs.

Maybe some forcing NTers have some extra system to work around this (presumably involving an artificial 1S:1NT,2C:2D). But even if this can be made to work you're still giving up useful sequences to solve a problem that doesn't exist if you play semi-forcing.
Sept. 1
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Suppose that the ban was reduced to, say, three years, and that after this time they wanted to start playing again. Three questions spring to mind.

1. Would an event organiser (DBV or otherwise) be obliged to accept their entry for any particular event?

2. Would the DBV be obliged to consider them for selection to a national team?

3. What would happen if they did enter an event, but most of their opponents refused to pick up their cards when drawn to play against them?
April 27
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I once came across opponents who were playing a 2D opening showing 27+ HCP. Incredibly, they actually got dealt a 27-point hand that night. Unfortunately their partner forgot what it meant and they played in 2D.
Oct. 27, 2015
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If the player seems confused, I think the TD should say, “You are allowed to take into account the fact that your partner will have to pass: you are not obliged to make the same call you would normally make in this auction.”

Most players will take that for granted anyway, but not everyone realises it the first time they come across it.

Note that this is not a matter of “strategy”, to use Barry's word. It's something explicitly stated in the Laws, and will not be completely obvious to someone who is unfamiliar, so it is perfectly appropriate for the TD to mention it.
Sept. 11, 2015
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The words “to clubs”. I've no doubt that the EBU will ensure the software is free to its affiliated clubs. The question is about non-affiliated clubs and other organisations outside the EBU.
May 17, 2015
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The announcement looks like bad news to me. Up to now, Jeff Smith's programs have always been available to anyone for free. The announcement strongly suggests that this will not be the case in future.
May 17, 2015
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I play at Cambridge (UK) Bridge Club. The club is run by a committee of members. We play two nights a week, hiring a village hall on Tuesdays and a church hall on Wednesdays. We pay £2 or £2.50 a session (that's less than $4, I think?). We have duplimated boards, BridgeMates, and a well-maintained website. The standard of play is good. All in all, we're pretty happy.

And nearly every club is like this. There is no real need or demand here for professionally-run clubs. I don't know exactly how many there are in the UK but it is very few. I don't feel that volunteer-run clubs are a barrier to innovation. Not every club uses BridgeMates (or equivalent), but they are becoming more prevalent as the technology improves and becomes more affordable.

I'm shocked at the idea that a NBO might refuse to sanction a new club on the grounds of competition.

It's always surprising how different bridge is over in ACBL-land!
Jan. 18, 2013
David Collier edited this comment Jan. 18, 2013
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If 1H:2m,2S shows extras, presumably this means you are rebidding 2NT on a minimum hand with 6 hearts and 4 spades? I guess this works OK, it just feels a bit counter-intuitive to bypass the spade bid.

I've not tried this method but I do play 2NT as showing 6+ in the major *and* extra values. So for me 2M shows a minimum hand but could be either 5 or 6 cards. This is on the basis that it's hard to show extra values later in the auction, whereas you can often catch up on showing shape. But I could believe that allowing 2NT on minimum hands is better in pure 2/1. I'll stick to my current method because I have a strong preference for 2/1s not to be an absolute game force (allowing a stop in 3 of responder's suit) and it's useful for 2NT to promise enough extra strength that it forces to game.
Dec. 13, 2012
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I am not convinced. The director needs to ask more questions. The hesitation may be because South was unsure of his agreements. Probably North is also aware that they do not have agreements about this auction. In these circumstances I don't think it is clear that the UI suggests any particlar action.

Not living in ACBL-land I don't know what “2500 masterpoints” means about the standard of the players, but if these people are anything like the club players I know, arguments like “bidding again is more flexible” would be too subtle for them. I am perfectly happy to adjust the score in UI cases at the club when it is clear to do so, but I require a more straightforward argument than those that have been given here.
Dec. 8, 2012
David Collier edited this comment Dec. 8, 2012
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Yes, maybe it isn't the most clear-cut example, but a director shouldn't be afraid to adjust in a case like this.
Aug. 23, 2012
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The first hand looks like over-active ethics to me. Opener can't possibly know enough to suggest playing in 3NT when he doesn't know where the singleton is. I'd have taken 3NT as non-serious, ie. showing a bad hand for a spade slam whatever partner's singleton is, but not actually suggesting playing in NT - it just leaves room in case partner has a huge slam try. So I don't see an alternative to 4S. Not that it isn't praiseworthy for someone to pass 3NT if they think it might be a LA, but you can take these things too far.

Totally agree on the other two hands though, well said.
Aug. 23, 2012
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Strongly disagree re 1NT v 2NT. If I'm playing 1NT as 16-bad 19 and 2NT as 19-21, it's because the partnership has decided that those are the optimal ranges to play. I can't unilaterally decide in the middle of the hand that this was wrong, and merrily increase the 1NT range by a point. You're giving reasons why 1NT might turn out better, but these are reasons to change the system after the session. Bidding 1NT here shows a lack of respect for partner's input into the system discussion.

July 2, 2011
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I still like Cenk's line. SA, S ruff, CA, small C. If West ruffs in front of dummy then pitch a diamond, win the diamond return (say) with the ace, HK, spade ruff, run all the trumps. This beats Henry's line when West has exactly T5 of trumps, I think? And it loses only when East is 1-1 in spades and diamonds, in which case you might expect West to have bid over 1H.
June 18, 2011
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