Join Bridge Winners
All comments by David Yates
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This was our first bd. Must have been #10 since we played 3-bd rds. Guess it could have been your last in a 2-bd movement, too. Since you were doing fine coming down to the wire, you do not want to do anything silly.

I generally prefer opening my longest suit. However with 5-6 reds, it is sometimes easier to treat the hand as 5-5 if the hand is suitable. The heart suit is horrible, the diamond suit is great. I see no reason to start with 1H.

The funny part on this hand was my plan during the play.

Interestingly if one does start with 1, the bridge gods will punish you by letting S now double. S held something like AJxx / xx / Jxx / KQJ9. If N/S find four spades, your decent plus is now 50 or 100 if you double.

Over 1 S passed, W now bid 1 shutting us down and it went 2 float.

So here was my plan in the defense.

Partner led top club honors, declarer ruffing the second round. Dummy was 10xxx/AKx/xx/xxxx. Declarer now played AK and partner followed with 9-2 (maybe not 2, but x). Declarer now played a heart up and ruffed a club.

This is the “trying to lose control play” I cannot seem to even beat out of new players. Explaining doesn't work either. I think I need to start stabbing these people with knitting needles. Our opponents were two brave souls from the limited game who moved over to make the movements work. We were chatting with them before the start. They were very nice and mentioned they tried this once before and got slaughtered.

Declarer now led a heart up and exited a heart to me, my partner pitching her club. Now I had to consider what might be happening. Time to play: guess the mistake.

If declarer started with six diamonds, she should have pulled the last trump with AKQ and seemed too bright not to have taken the hook with AKJ.

If she was 0571 we both missed game and spades are irrelevant. If she was 1561, the spade wasn't going anywhere. There was a possibility that she was 2551 because many new players open the better suit, not the higher ranking. (Plus it is hard to see how that is really five hearts.)

If she has something like: KJ / 10xxxx / AKxxx / x, I need to now play the spade and hope for missguess since partner should have shed a spade and kept a club exit. I eventually decided the guess that she had miscounted trumps. If so, play a club and partner might score an overruff if declarer ruffs low.

Ruff low, over-ruff jack. But then partner went wrong, thinking declarer was 3361 and led a low spade. Oops.

One thing players fail to do is test a hypothesis. If declarer has that shape, I have a 1 overcall. I also had an obvious spade play earlier. And I certainly would have led the heart back for the ruff and not the club.

Anyway, the nice things about Deep-F is players can pitch tricks back and forth and say: “oh, makes 130. Next!”

Oh well :)
Feb. 9
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The Great Circle

Our bridge association prefers alerts to announcements, because it is supposed that if, in this example, partner of the 2 bidder simply announced: “game forcing relay”, then N/S would have UI. The nebulous “alert” is supposed to eliminate this possibility. However, if E/W inquire about the alert when they might need to know, then E/W create UI. The solution for E/W introducing potential UI is “obvious”: always ask. Which will now always produce this exchange:

“Alert”
“Please explain”
“Game forcing artificial relay”

And we got right back to the beginning, only with extra time and conversation along the way.

Laws and regulations are in place of common sense, but they never seem to be an adequate substitute.
Feb. 9
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Someone else plays this? :) Not so worried about M, partner wont need much to move forward.

I play 3 as PoC, 3 as one or two 5CM, 3M as 6.

This hand is just too big for a 1NT overcall.
Feb. 8
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A: Drunk guys with name tags.

Convention refers to an agreement or predisposition to handle matters in a particular way. A convention can be informal, implied or habitual. Treaties, contracts and rules refer to more formalized agreements that often contain additional elements.

For example, a valid contract requires competency. Well, in real life. At the bridge table, often times plenty of insanity leads to final contracts and I am sure a good attorney could get some of these invalidated. :)

Artificial bids are, by definition, conventional calls. Not all natural calls need be conventional, but they may be.

If one leads 4th best, one is making a conventional lead. If someone sits down at a table to fill in, he can make a conventional lead without a partnership agreement. Because right now there isn't any. However, the next time leading again at NT, there is now an implied partnership understanding that the opponents are entitled to know.
Feb. 8
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2 for me might not even be balanced - or any clubs. Ironically, every bid but the last would be the same. The start of 1-(P)-2-(2); 4 would be 6-5 minimum. Better hands - in the strong club context - splinter. Over 4, 4 is clubs, extras & nothing about diamonds. 4 would be a slam try in spades- also says nothing about specific controls. 4/4NT/5 natural. XX is first round control, 4 is K, not shortness, denies a heart control.

Hopefully partner would look at his hand before the final decision. I would pass the 5 chicken bid by North because: AQJxxx / Qx / - / Q10xxx is an opener.

What happened on this hand is fairly common. North opens a distributional hand. Bids a bunch because of the fit. Then chickens out at the end because “I have no points”.
Feb. 7
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All roads led to Rome and 5 of the 11 pairs at our club managed to take the road to Morocco.
Feb. 7
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As a visitor to both worlds, when I first started play Precision, the responses were natural. Everyone knew how Precision basically worked. They also knew the basics of Acol, K/S, R/S, Eastern & Western Scientific, Goren, Schenken, etc. Some on this side of the pond even knew what canape systems were.

We actually had CCs filled out and everyone checked because many people played different systems. Then the ACBL went on a mission to make bridge boring. Years later, some people have played for quite a while and do not even know there are different bidding systems.

Many people who play strong club today employ transfer responses. None of my responses are natural, so they must all be alerted.

The real problem isn't that Nouveau Noobie does not understand that in Precision 1-2 is GF, the problem is that he has no idea when he should be bidding.
Feb. 6
David Yates edited this comment Feb. 6
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The ACBL policies have not caught up to reality. When I played 1 with transfers under mid-chart, our 1 could be made on =3352 shape. This does not conform to the (kind of silly) ACBL definition of a “natural club” of 2C and 344 shape.

Technically, our 1 bid required an alert, not an announcement of “could be short”. This seems to me like ACBL sponsored MI, since most people might assume strong club if they did not ask. We made a point of “pre-alerting” just so the “alert” was understood.

A quarter century ago, I started playing 2NT as 4M+ raise. Our auctions started 1M-2NT (alert) just like the 98% of the population that currently plays Jacoby. This is a really stupid scenario on that level and also that 98% of the auctions NOW requires an alert. I play 1M-2NT natural with one partner and the non-alert never helps because they think I forgot and they inevitably ask.

Perhaps the ACBL could have us alert 5-card majors, so when there is no alert I can assume they play 4-card majors.

If I ran things, more alerts would be announcement variety. 1M-P-2NT would be “Jacoby”. The ACBL is historically scared to death of announcements creating UI. All I can say is given their UI procedures and adjustments, rational people might be scared too - if it ever led to a real case.
Feb. 6
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In the WBF, most of our players would have a green sticker on their CC. The strong club people would have a blue sticker. Ed would have a red sticker. General approaches would be pre-alerted with just a glance.

But this must be a horrible idea because it was not invented here.
Feb. 6
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As John notes above, West has an opening hand. This is 14 “Goren” points and “14 points must open”. Re-inventing the rules, like re-inventing the wheel, is not an improvement.

I have some sympathy for pass, but I would not have tried it against white at the table. If the ops were red, greed likely wins out and greed is not always good.

The worst penalty doubles are based on high trumps. The spade suit looks imposing, but the ops have at least two trump tricks and might have three. So if they have 2-3 trumps tricks with 1 HCP in the suit, they must have tricks elsewhere. Those HCP are over pards honors. So they will have tricks in the side suits. Do the math and you will be unlikely to stop 6 tricks on any layout. So the upside to pass is maybe +100. The downside is a bad score.

To visualize, suppose your trumps were QJ1098(x). Now the ops have the same two trump tricks, but with 7 HCP committed to obtaining those tricks. This one will be bloody.
Feb. 6
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Opener could have XX with good diamonds. Bid with short D. I have to do something now and I hate my options. NT from my side makes sense. We could not have a diamond stop and now survive in some layouts, with no chance from other side. (No D lead or guess from W as to card.)

The only other option is 2 and I really do not want to play a Moysian with that suit. If partner has 4 we get there over 2NT. If not, it will be hard to unbid spades.
Feb. 5
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American's have trouble with multi because for some reason they think that initial doubles should somehow now be penalty. (1)-P-(1)-X is not penalty, but this same auction on the two-level should be? When the ops play NF responses, (2 nat wk2) - P - (2 NF) - X is still not penalty.

The suggested defense pamphlets which essentially translate to “double is takeout” are because Americans need their signs. In this country, if a shoe-less, shirt-less man is refused a table at a restaurant, an argument will inevitably ensue. However, if the staff can point to a hand-written notice posted by the register conveying the same message (“no shirt, no shoes, no service”), the person will apologize for offending the Sign Gods and hastily exit.

However, I would note that the Rams scoring once in 60 minutes was equal to what was accomplished by eight teams for at least 90 minutes of play this last Matchday. And more offense than than the seven teams who failed to score at all.
Feb. 5
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While Americans may be more technically proficient in speaking English than the Europeans, the French, Italians and other Europeans make it sound sexier.
Feb. 5
David Yates edited this comment Feb. 5
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Except now I decided to open West 1.
Feb. 4
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While I think it is great that people can and should play up, forced participation is not my idea of customer service.

When did common sense die and can someone e-mail me the obit?
Feb. 3
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Other. I play this sequence as a hand with a long club suit looking for the right strain as the priority. Perhaps: 10x / AKx / J / K109xxxx. I don't bid 3H here because I dont want partner to try a “Moysian” and bid 4H. Note that slam is still possible with a min GF and the right clubs. But mostly the bid says if the clubs aint running, there aren't 9 tricks in NT. If they are running, 10 tricks should be easy.

There are plenty of ways to find out about slam. The long, weak club suit is the problematic hand.
Feb. 3
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Peg, please keep up with the times. Everyone opens that hand 2 these days. (yuck)
Feb. 3
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A hand that could splinter either doubles 1 or overcalls 2m.
Feb. 3
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Though if we could actually train bridge players, we would not have given up on the stop card.
Feb. 3
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pre pos ter ous (adj) - contrary to reason or common sense; utterly absurd or ridiculous.

Steve could be correct in his assessment, but laws are not bound by reason.

David Burn is correct. AI is limited by L40(A)2 “…must arise from the calls, plays and conditions of the current deal.” The only other AI must be specified in the laws as authorized.

In fact L73 specifically defines as UI both questions asked and not asked. Alerts and explanations both given and not given. It seems to me that looking at the ops CC is asking a question and not looking is not asking a question.

If asking (or not) a question is AI, one could legally attach a meaning to such an action. This is the main resons for the laws.

In any event, for nearly all cases, partner's action is not demonstrative. (The real definition, not what some fools assume it means.) But some players fall into habits and that situation needs to be addressed.
Feb. 3
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