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All comments by Rosalind Hengeveld
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2 has a wide range from a ‘pathetic’ 5 to about 10 points. Important to set our fit, especially at matchpoints with neither side vulnerable. Partner – mine at least – knows not to bash four on most hands.
May 6
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I would have bid 3NT instead of 3. This must have been the only chance to get to 3NT if that is where we belong. And 3NT may be best even if partner four spades.

We have discussed this ‘guarantees at least four cards in any unbid major’ before. I don’t buy it. Partner will have four spades unless he has neither four spades nor any satisfactory call, including pass. I do, however, agree that double should be forcing to game.
May 6
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As I pointed out above, something has to be ambiguous (unless 3 is played artificially). Of course, you surely want to bid 3NT with both stoppers. And you will have to also bid it with either stopper missing, preferably known which stopper may be missing.
May 5
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Typically ‘The Diamond Problem’: assuming 3 natural, we only have 3 and 3NT to show (1) just a Spade stopper; (2) just a Club stopper; (3) both stoppers. That is irrespective of how we play 3: as showing stopper or as asking for one. I play all such bids as showing stoppers.
May 5
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I play 1NT as 9–13, albeit usually with a stopper.
May 5
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Taking a round of bidding space has a way of creating a problem for opponents, even when you do not expect it to.
May 3
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3 (in opponents' suit over Raptor) would ask for a stopper as I play.
May 2
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4: we play this to show six spades and five(+) of an unknown minor, four or five losers. Note that the K alone is enough for game (and that is the objection to 1). Three out of four of the red aces and AK makes slam. And unanimous bidding polls are rare these days.
May 2
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I once had a partner who had a way of responding to 1 with 1 on three (with enough points but ‘no good bid’). They got it back with a 4 splinter. And a bad result. Not my cup of tea.
May 2
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2NT is Good-Bad (Lebensohl-ish) only if right-hand opponent of 2NT bidder bid something.
April 30
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What is wrong with opener bidding 3 if they have the hand for it?
April 30
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Yes, only the direct redouble is business.
April 30
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2 does not ‘announce the fifth spade’ (as I play), but will serve to find a 5-3 spade fit.
April 29
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I like to play 1NT-(double)-redouble as business, to counter an ‘ill-considered’ double.

1NT-(pass)-pass-(double)-redouble does not make sense as business and neither much as an escape (since it thwarts the distinction between responder's bidding a four-card or five-card suit). I play it as showing an unknown five-card major. Responder bids 2 as pass-or-correct or bids a five-card minor with shortness in a major.
April 29
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That is exactly what I play; also 1-2/-4.
April 28
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Natural with specifically six clubs and five spades – as much we open this 1. (For six spades and five+ clubs we have another solution.)
April 27
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Playing Kickback requires clear rules as to when it is on: as I play, that is whenever a trump suit was set and only then. A trump suit is set after bidding and raising it, showing a self-supporting suit, or a few more well-defined cases such as bidding the same suit thrice or opening four of a major. Going by ‘feeling’, on the other hand, will not cut the mustard. Maybe that makes Kickback more of a tool for rational players than for intuitive ones.

However, all that applies equally to ace-asking with 4NT, or any other method. This very bidding poll is testimony that using 4NT as ace-asking is no less disaster-prone than Kickback.
April 27
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This 2 as ‘Third Suit Forcing (to game)’ is increasingly standard among better players where I live.
April 25
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I play less ace-asking that most, namely after previous suit establishment only, but bidding the same suit naturally thrice establishes the suit, hence 4NT is ace-asking here.

For me 3 is primarily a stopper rather than a suit. Opener, who did not reverse, cannot have four hearts, so 3 as a suit could be useful only with five. That has a lower frequency than bidding a stopper. And with stoppers in both clubs and hearts responder would have bid 3NT over 3. That rules out 4NT now as just to play. A quantitative (invitational) 4NT could have been bid directly over 3. To set diamonds as the trump suit over 3 responder could bid 4.
April 25
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Five(+) in the higher, four+ in the lower unbid suit. The fourth option in reverse. Not at all unusual where I live.
April 25
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