Join Bridge Winners
All comments by Mike Gill
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I would have opened 2 and rebid 2NT
June 3
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I agree it's normal to bid 4 with 6-5 you're worth another call, but some 6-5 hands worth a bid are doubling 4 - maybe the most defensive 10%? Partner is going to pull with 3 spades unless he has defense and missing a 6-2 isn't so bad.

We agree 5 is too much.
May 25
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Haven't we sort of already implied a void (or at least a lot of extra offense) with 4 instead of doubling over 4. I think partner will often pass the double (and I think it's completely clear here to pass even with 3-4 in partner's suits given no high cards). Getting 500 (which you should against a reasonable declarer) seems way better than a not-even 50/50 5 contract.
May 24
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Wouldn't you bid 4 with this hand if the spades were KQJT instead of AKQ? That hand feels like a non-forcing pass to me so it seems like this hand with an extra offensive and defensive trick has to at least double.
May 24
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If were playing bridge I think the downgrade has a lot more merit, but we seem to be playing all white matchpoints instead.
May 23
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Sure but that doesn't mean you have to make it when presented with new options?
May 22
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Opener has no idea that the opponents are going above 4 and his partner could easily not know which minor to lead against 4M
May 13
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Well, we agree that if your opponents are going to treat any 3rd seat preempt the way a bull treats a cape it will be more effective to preempt on hands where we know they're going to get overboard. You must be playing different opponents than I, and I'll even throw in a suggestion for improving their game - forcing passes over all 3rd seat preempts!
May 11
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My preempting in 3rd seat announces that I don't think our side has game. This is not the same as announcing to the opponents that I think they have game. I know they do on this hand but they categorically don't. In fact, if I'm going to often preempt on minimum opening hands (as you suggest and as I do), the opponents will often not have a game.

For the record I don't think pass is crazy, but I think the disruptive power of 2 (especially given partner might be able to bump) is substantial.
May 9
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Partner can't double again with random balanced minimums - you don't keep announcing the same values twice. Now we have a double fit and roughly half the deck and are letting them play 2. Like, say, AJxx xx AKxx xxx where we're on a King-finesse through the opening bidder for *game*. I know that's perfect cards but we're also only talking about bidding 2 over 2.
May 9
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Well, I agree with us likely having no spade losers. But I would definitely pass that example hand- how on Earth is partner to judge what to do if we could have AKx or a void in their suit?
May 5
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I can confirm that a nonzero number of people have an agreement about this (or any doubles by preemptor actually)
May 5
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It just shows a strong enough hand to commit the partnership to taking some action. You should have extra offense and defense so you're ok with partner passing or bidding on.
May 4
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Well, first off 2 followed by 2 doesn't show AQJTxx or anything like it necessarily. If partner shows a stiff club I can cool my heels and pay off to stiff K. Assuming he bids, say, 3 to deny a singleton and show a minimum, I can just bid 3NT and see if he cues 4. If I want to force cooperation, I could even cue 4 and if he doesn't sign off then he has the K since I denied a control. That's probably not warranted here though.
April 19
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So how is partner supposed to know that AQxxx AKxx xx Kx is good and AQxxx xx AKxx Kx is bad over this?
April 18
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This seems like a game of finding out what you need to know. I want to ask not tell, and I don't want partner to waste his time telling me about his overall shape. Standard Jacoby actually works out great here. I get to find out if partner has a singleton club, then hand strength and controls, and keycard if all goes well.
April 18
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I happen to agree that both of these calls are enough within the realm of possibility that probably no action is warranted. West could have added 3 points for a 7-card suit and some more for shortness, and a conservative East might think they only have 13 points and all these heart losers to deal with or maybe they've just seen West's “invitational” raises before. People have to be allowed to make mistakes and (over)compensate for their partner.

But, saying there's nothing to discuss doesn't seem right either. Surely there's a point at which if both partners happen to take offsetting views on the same that are “absurd enough”, it smells fishy. I mean keep taking away HCP from West and giving them to East until basically East is essentially fielding West's psych. If it's past the point for you, then file a player memo, that's what it's for! As others have said, calling the director seems out of line.

Now, if the whole rest of them match East was the aggressive one and West the conservative one, I might file one anyway.
April 11
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If we're not bidding over 4 then we have two options for a message to send to partner. It seems clear that whichever way you want to arrange them, one means “I think maybe we should bid” and the other means “I don't think we should bid”. That part seems uncontroversial, but the poll choices also bake in judgment about when one should bid or not. I would guess that nearly all balanced hands would double, but that part seems less clear.
April 10
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I guess my source is experience? But I suppose pointing to Culbertson sounds way more solid!

If the 7-card suit is strong then it's usually better to declare it trumps so you don't have to worry about it getting shut out. Drawing trumps and getting back to the long suit winners is often a bit dodgy since you usually don't have a side entry that you can keep til after trumps are drawn. If they can tap the 7-4 hand twice it's pretty much over (and they do have 2 suits to maybe do that in), it's difficult to maintain control. It's just a lot of work for 8 trumps to do to set up the long suit with ruffs, draw trumps and presumably guard one or more of the 7-4 hand's short suits.

The times when I think it's right to pursue the 4-4:
* At the slam level it's usually better to play in the 4-4 since one extra loser in the long suit is a huge deal
* If the long suit has too many losers
* If the 7-4 hand is very strong then there are usually enough entries that you don't have to worry about your long suit getting shut out.
April 10
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It seems wrong to bid 2 on some random 6322 11 count and this hand with arguably several additional tricks of playing strength. With a few exceptions, 7-4 hands don't play very well in 4-4 fits, so I don't even feel bad about burying the hearts.
April 9
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