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Idiotic defense against strong club I thought nothing could surprise me ....

#1 User is online   helene_t 

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Posted 2007-August-06, 03:47

Scheveningse Bridgeweek, 48-board butler. This took place during the qualifying segment where we scored in total 50 IMPs on 24 boards, ending 8th of 51 thereby qualifying for the "Hoofdklasse" segment (highest regional competition level). Sorry for bragging, but as ordinary club players we are very proud of this achievement :( Opps are a regular partnership, not top players but with amble experience from regional competition. (yes the vulnerability is not a mistake!!!!). Board approximate on the basis of loose memory.

Scoring: IMP

1-1-p-2
a.p.


1=Precision
1=13 cards (after a lot of asking I managed to elicit the clarification "tends to deny a 5-card major". They never thought about the difference between 1 and pass, though)
Pass=not sure what a double would mean and a little weak for 2. Maybe it gets easier in next round.
2=unassuming cuebid
Pass=*****, pd will almost certainly protect with a double so they can run.
Pass=2 must be a contract improvement
Pass=I can't show these values anyway, let's go for a plus.
it is amazing to me that over half of declarers in virtually any field would go down in this cold contract. Some things never change, the skill of the "average" bridge player remains well below average. Iandayre
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#2 User is offline   Rossoneri 

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Posted 2007-August-06, 04:23

Well...did W think 2 was meant to be a UAC in s?

I usually play 1 = 3 or 4 s, 9 or 10 other cards. 1 = 13 cards sounds outright ridiculous.
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#3 User is online   helene_t 

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Posted 2007-August-06, 07:28

East alerted 1 as showing 13 cards so it seems strange that 2 could be a constructive spades raise. To be honest I think these two guys just aimed at playing as many and as bizare conventions as possible and didn't care if their bidding system was sensible or even coherent. On another deal they bid

1-1
2-3
pass

1=can be short
1=4+ points, 4+hearts, possibly longer minor
2=apparently forcing for one round only
3=FSF
pass=3 must be a weak canape
it is amazing to me that over half of declarers in virtually any field would go down in this cold contract. Some things never change, the skill of the "average" bridge player remains well below average. Iandayre
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#4 User is offline   keylime 

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  Posted 2007-August-06, 09:59

That's comical Helene. The defense here in ACBL-land would be barred due to the destructive (to them for once!) nature of it.

Thanks for the laugh.
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#5 User is offline   the hog 

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Posted 2007-August-07, 01:41

keylime, on Aug 6 2007, 10:59 PM, said:

That's comical Helene. The defense here in ACBL-land would be barred due to the destructive (to them for once!) nature of it.

Thanks for the laugh.

Dwayne and others, just a quick question as I am unfmiliar with US regs. I thought any defence was permitted to a big C, destructive or not. Is this correct?
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#6 User is online   helene_t 

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Posted 2007-August-07, 02:02

FWIW we don't have any restriction on "destructive methods" (some pairs systematically open 2 with 0-7 HCP and 4+ spades, on anything from 4333 to 7420, because a pass would deny such a holding. I have encountered this several times in low-level pairs events). The issue with this 1=13 cards thing is one of disclosure. They would say that it's completely random if they pass or bid 1 or hands that don't qualify for anything else but some TDs don't buy that. Besides, the negative inference must be disclosed of course.
it is amazing to me that over half of declarers in virtually any field would go down in this cold contract. Some things never change, the skill of the "average" bridge player remains well below average. Iandayre
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#7 User is offline   mr1303 

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Posted 2007-August-07, 06:21

I quite agree that a 1S overcall showing 13 cards should be banned, and for that simple reason; people don't disclose when they make that call and when they pass.
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#8 User is offline   rbforster 

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Posted 2007-August-07, 08:02

The_Hog, on Aug 7 2007, 02:41 AM, said:

I thought any defence was permitted to a big C, destructive or not. Is this correct?

After a careful reading of the ACBL rules, I am not sure about the answer to your question but I would guess yes. On one hand, a rule bans "Conventions and/or agreements whose primary purpose is to destroy the opponents’ methods." I have no idea how this rule is actually applied, since it would seem to apply to almost all weak preempting styles (which are allowed as a matter of practice). On the other hand, another rule specifically allows "[any] defense to a conventional call" (such as an artificial strong club). If I had to guess, I would say that the specifically allowed defense rule would take precedence and you could indeed play (a well disclosed) "spade for a laugh" defense to 1 where you always overcall 1 unless you have a better bid. Be sure to tell the annoyed opps what your pass shows (maybe promises any "good" hand, 13+ or something?).
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#9 User is offline   keylime 

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  Posted 2007-August-07, 09:02

According to the "rules" (yeah I know loaded comment) the ACBL bars any treatment that would be deemed "destructive" to the opponents' methods. There were a couple of appeals from prior casebooks if memory served coupled with other developments that lead to the "13 card bid of 1" being barred.

FWIW, our 1S in our strong defense is the 13 card bid with shortness of spades, thusly "legal" in the eyes of Big Brother.
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#10 User is offline   skjaeran 

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Posted 2007-August-07, 12:12

I agree, it's a stupid defence. But it's nothing new. Some people used the same here some 15-20 years ago. Of cource it doesn't really show 13 cards. They've got other bids to show some hands, and they still pass other hands too. It's bad disclosure - they should always tell which hands they can't have (at least what hands they might/would pass in stead of overcalling this "random" 1).
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#11 User is offline   Bende 

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Posted 2007-August-15, 07:53

I disagree that the nonsense bid 1 is an idiotic defence (the unassuming cuebid doesn't make any sense, though). Personally, I use 1 as a nonsense bid against a big club. When not vul it denies:

a. A strong hand (12+ hcp)
b. A decent two suiter (which is bid by Dbl-2)
c. A decent single suiter (which is bid by 2-3)

If 1 is doubled, a pass by our side promises 3+ spades. Otherise we bid a suit, redouble (SOS) or bid 1NT (scrambling).
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#12 User is offline   EarlPurple 

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Posted 2007-September-02, 11:33

I presume 2 went 5 off undoubled, and 500 wasn't necessarily a bad result because N/S might make 3NT if they don't lose 3 diamonds and 2 aces.

I'd personally like to think that the bridge auction is a fair battlefield and not biased towards those who hold the high cards.
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#13 User is offline   whereagles 

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Posted 2007-September-02, 12:36

Helene, that "1 = 13 cards" is not that uncommon a convention vs a big club. I myself played it at international level. That being said, I find it rather reckless to bid that on the actual hand, but hey we all have different mindsets.. lol.

The defense to it is very simple. Just use your normal defense vs a nat 1 overcall, except any spade bid by our side is natural.
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#14 User is online   helene_t 

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Posted 2007-September-02, 14:30

whereagles, on Sep 2 2007, 08:36 PM, said:

Helene, that "1 = 13 cards" is not that uncommon a convention vs a big club. I myself played it at international level. That being said, I find it rather reckless to bid that on the actual hand, but hey we all have different mindsets.. lol.

But the actual hand did have 13 cards, if I counted correctly. So when you say that you wouldn't bid 1 with that hand (or with an 18-count 5-5 in the rounded suits, or whatever) you actually say that 1 carries much more information than just "13 cards". Depending on what that information is it may or may not be a sensible convention. But that information needs to be disclosed.
it is amazing to me that over half of declarers in virtually any field would go down in this cold contract. Some things never change, the skill of the "average" bridge player remains well below average. Iandayre
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#15 User is offline   skjaeran 

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Posted 2007-September-02, 15:18

helene_t, on Sep 2 2007, 10:30 PM, said:

whereagles, on Sep 2 2007, 08:36 PM, said:

Helene, that "1 = 13 cards" is not that uncommon a convention vs a big club. I myself played it at international level. That being said, I find it rather reckless to bid that on the actual hand, but hey we all have different mindsets.. lol.

But the actual hand did have 13 cards, if I counted correctly. So when you say that you wouldn't bid 1 with that hand (or with an 18-count 5-5 in the rounded suits, or whatever) you actually say that 1 carries much more information than just "13 cards". Depending on what that information is it may or may not be a sensible convention. But that information needs to be disclosed.

That's spot on. If you explain it as 13 cards, it means you overcall 1 on any hand. Which, of course, nobody does, so that explanation is just rubbish. You need to give an as exact explanation to what hand types you could have for this overcall.
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#16 User is offline   Free 

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Posted 2007-September-03, 02:52

"pseudo random" ;)
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#17 User is online   1eyedjack 

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Posted 2007-September-03, 04:14

Unless there are any local SO regulations to prevent it, there is no legal reason (of which I am aware) prohibiting a pair from assigning more than one bid to a particular hand. So, just because a 1H overcall might show (eg) both majors, there need be no specific bar on the player making a "random" 1S overcall on the hand, and it might be wrong to infer that such a hand may not be contained in the 1S overcall for such a reason.

It would be a practice fraught with problems concerning disclosure of habits, frequencies etc, including disclosure of those hands that have no other alternative but 1S (or perhaps/presumably Pass).

Perhaps the fact that it is so hard to monitor disclosure compliance is a justification for various SOs prohibiting the method.
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#18 User is online   helene_t 

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Posted 2007-September-03, 04:30

I don't think it is realistic to expect full disclosue of mixed strategies that come up rarely (strong club is rare in the Netherlands, and this was not a pair with extensive internation expirience I think). Even if they had voluteered a complete explanation of what kind of hands were more likely to be contained in the 1 overcall, it would not help our defense against it much. Do we defend differently against a call that is made with (among other things) 40% of all two-suiters than against one that is made with 10% of all two-suiters? Especially when such estimates are not reliable.

But unless there is a price for the most amusing auction, I think it's against there own interests to play such methods, especially when vulnerable in a butler event.
it is amazing to me that over half of declarers in virtually any field would go down in this cold contract. Some things never change, the skill of the "average" bridge player remains well below average. Iandayre
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#19 User is offline   kenberg 

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Posted 2007-September-03, 08:38

I assume they also then alert 1C-pass as "not having thirteen cards" ?
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#20 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2007-September-03, 09:17

helene_t, on Sep 3 2007, 04:30 AM, said:

I don't think it is realistic to expect full disclosue of mixed strategies that come up rarely (strong club is rare in the Netherlands, and this was not a pair with extensive internation expirience I think). Even if they had voluteered a complete explanation of what kind of hands were more likely to be contained in the 1 overcall, it would not help our defense against it much. Do we defend differently against a call that is made with (among other things) 40% of all two-suiters than against one that is made with 10% of all two-suiters? Especially when such estimates are not reliable.

But unless there is a price for the most amusing auction, I think it's against there own interests to play such methods, especially when vulnerable in a butler event.

Mixed strategies are not the point Helene. If you use 1S for 13 cards then there are probably some shapely hands that you can't show at a convenient level, so you will always bid 1S with those. And if precision has come up against them a couple of times probably there is at least an implicit partnership agreement whether they would do it with spade shortness (will partner pass 1C 1S P P X P P?). Or whether they tend to have a balanced hands because they can show 1/2-suiters and partner always bids the short suit if you bid 1S with a 3-suiter. Etc.

Anyway I don't get your title, your opponents got into trouble because your RHO invented an artificial 2 bid on the spot, not because of their agreement about 1S. And even so, 500 shouldn't have been a terrible result with 3N typically making. Your partner's final pass looks dubious to me btw.
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