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All comments by Kit Woolsey
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I don't understand. This wasn't given as a UI problem, where the partner of the player who bid out of tempo made a marginal call. It was simply a question about what the slow 3 bid suggested about opener's hand.
March 19
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So what. After I take my aces and kings and my club ruffs in dummy and my 4 trumps in my hand, the defense is welcome to what is left over.

Getting tapped is painful only when you get run out of trumps while the opponents have some trumps left, so your late side tricks won't cash. On this hand with the aces and spaces in the side suits, you don't have late side tricks.

Also, suppose the opponents can tap you in hearts. That means they can run their hearts in notrump. At least your trump suit provides a stopper.
March 19
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If East happens to have found the spade shift from QJx, which isn't out of the question, then overtaking would leave something to be desired.

In real life, West will expect East to routinely continue spades.
March 19
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Not sure I understand your question. I play that a rebid of the major shows 6+, that 2NT ooks something like a 2NT call, and that 3-level bids don't necessarily show extra strength or distribution.

If I did choose to open 1 on this hand and got a 2 response, 3 looks pretty clear.
March 19
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Obviously the hand evaluates as too strong to open 1NT. Whether you should not open 1NT on a hand where you expect the field to be opening 1NT and there can't be that much equity difference between opening 1 and 1NT is a moot point.

Incidentally, I would be very tempted to open 1. This is the sort of hand which will play very well in a 4-3 spade fit, with the powerful trump suit and the late round club losers which can be ruffed in the short hand. If partner responds 1NT, a raise to 2NT does full justice to this hand. My guess is that opening 1 is the winning action on balance.
March 19
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I would pass. South has opened a strong NT, so it is unlikely that we have enough strength for game. I believe the chance that 3 is too high (or that if I invite East will accept and go down) far outweighs the chance that East will accept and make game.
March 19
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I don't think that is completely accurate. What it suggests isn't what North does have, but what North doesn't have. If North had something like: xx x KQxxx KQJxx, there would not have been a huddle before the 3 call, since 3 would be a trivial bid.
March 18
Kit Woolsey edited this comment March 19
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It suggests he doesn't think he has a clear-cut 3 call.
March 18
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Where do you get 11-3 odds against? If the only possible outcomes were making or down 1, that would be true. And of course one wouldn't double 2 if one thought the best the defense could do is down 1. But if down 2 or even down 3 is a real possibility, then the odds against doubling are far better than 11-3.
March 18
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You guys are getting carried away. Just because you might make a tactical bid, telling the opponents that you “might” make the bid is not an accurate description of your methods. Partner isn't expecting the call. By telling the opponents you “might” be making the call, you are having them think about something which almost certainly won't be happening, which would put them at a disadvantage.

I have been playing this convention for about 30 years. I think I might have bid 2M without having a minor maybe once or twice in that time. My partner doesn't remotely expect me to do this. If he has something like xx Kxx Qxxx Jxxx and I bid 2, he will routinely bid 2NT to get to my minor.

There are dozens of situations where I have or might conceivably depart from agreements. While I play strict 5-card majors in first or second seat, I have been known to open 1 of a major on something like xx AKQ10 xxx Axxx. While I play 15-17 1NT openings, I have been known to open 1NT on a 4-3-3-3 18-count or a good-looking 14-count. My partner isn't expecting these hands, and I do so at my own risk. Telling the opponents I might be making such a deviation would be very misleading to them.
March 18
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2 does show 5 spades and a 4+ card minor. That is our agreement. Saying anything else would not be an accurate description of our agreements.

If I choose to bid 2 without having that minor, that is my business. It doesn't change our agreement. Partner will assume I have a minor. The next time the auction comes up, partner will assume I have a minor.
March 18
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I would judge that the explanations are essentially identical. However, if you feel you have to ask the question “should I call the director”, the answer is always yes.
March 18
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I would take an immediate diamond finesse. Then:

1) If the finesse wins, I take enough diamonds to run East out of diamonds, cross to a spade (maybe cashing ace of hearts first), and take a heart finesse. If it loses and East is out of spades, I'm home. If he has a spade to return I have to win, pitch a club, and hope hearts come home, there is a squeeze, or East has the queen of clubs.

2) If the diamond finesse loses, I must have the queen of hearts onside. So I win the return, heart to ace, back to hand, and take the heart finesse. When it wins, what happens in the suit and how the diamonds split will give me a good idea what squeeze might work or if no squeeze whom to play for the queen of clubs.

In the second variation, it would be a great falsecard for West to play the queen of hearts on the second round of hearts from an initial holding of Q10xx. It can't possibly cost since no declarer would then finesse the 10, and it could throw declarer's count of the hand off. Simply a matter of playing the card you are known to hold, but I've never seen this particular falsecard before.
March 17
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Steve,

On your suggested line of play, what are you planning to discard from dummy on the third round of spades?
March 17
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He might. Would East have shifted to a spade from AQJx? From his point of view it would just give declarer a spade trick which would otherwise be inconvenient for declarer to establish with only one dummy entry.
March 17
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That implies that one can't bid RKC with 0 key cards.
March 16
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The leads were described as attitude leads with MUD and 2nd from 4 small. I can't see any combination where South would be leading the 6 of diamonds from Qxxx.
March 16
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Any time responder does anything but pass or opener doesn't pass on his second turn, the raise shows 4-card support and 13 cards. It is too important to both establish the fit and gobble up enemy room before they can find whether or not they have a fit.
March 16
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Perhaps, but it is better than punishing West all of the time when he asks the question, even when he obviously isn't showing values because he doesn't have any values.
March 15
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That probably was my plan, until I saw West's club discard (remember, I didn't know he was going to discard a club when I made my play).

That discard makes it likely that West's shape is 1-4-3-5. So I will instead play heart to queen, ruff a heart, and now put the queen of clubs through. If East ruffs high, I discard my last heart and claim. If East ruffs low, I overruff and throw him in with a spade. If East discards, I pitch a heart, ruff a club, and play AK of diamonds and then trump coup him, which works if he has 3 hearts and 4 diamonds.

The point is that playing the spades in the right order leaves me the option of what to do next, which might be the heart ruff, the queen of clubs, or a third round of spades. Playing the spades in the wrong order eliminates two of those options.
March 15
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