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The impossible 2S bid

#1 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 08:28

1:1N
2m:2

Some play this as showing a good raise in the minor (10-11 hcp), the "impossible 2". Is it really an impossible 2 or can it show a hand too weak to respond 1/1, wanting to play in 2?

How do the experts play this?
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#2 User is online   helene_t 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 08:53

1NT denies four spades so yes, it is really impossible. 1 doesn't promise more values than 1NT does so if you have spades and don't want to pass 1 you bid 1.

I think everyone plays it as a good raise of the minor. Haven't heard of any other treatments, at least.
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#3 User is offline   whereagles 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 09:09

You can find a lot of meanings for it if you want, but yeah a good raise seems to be the more common use for it.
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#4 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 10:17

HOW good the raise should be to use the impossible 2 must also be agreed. I think this should be dependent on the nature of 1NT and what a direct 3m/1M means. If 1NT is truly forcing, then 2 to a 2m rebid should be very, very good in dummy points for the minor. But if opener did not have to rebid, then a lower standard would be fine (10-11).
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#5 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 10:18

View Posthelene_t, on 2011-March-29, 08:53, said:

1NT denies four spades so yes, it is really impossible. 1 doesn't promise more values than 1NT does so if you have spades and don't want to pass 1 you bid 1.

I think everyone plays it as a good raise of the minor. Haven't heard of any other treatments, at least.


This is where the confusion is, 1/1 should be a positive response and 1N/1 can be a number of hands, one being a bust hand with no tolerance for 's, intending to play in 2x.
Searching for your own mistakes is the only way to learn this game. - Fluffy

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#6 User is offline   MickyB 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 11:04

View Postjillybean, on 2011-March-29, 10:18, said:

This is where the confusion is, 1/1 should be a positive response and 1N/1 can be a number of hands, one being a bust hand with no tolerance for 's, intending to play in 2x.


This is non-standard and without any merit that I can see, Jilly. For most, 1NT denies four spades.

If you play 1H:2H as showing 8-10 points, you might start with a forcing 1NT with 4S3H and seven-or-fewer points, but on that auction you will rebid 2H over 2m.
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#7 User is offline   nigel_k 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 12:34

I think the 'weak, long spades' meaning is playable but have never tried it. Of course if you 1NT is only semi-forcing you could play there opposite a balanced minimum opening, which is more of a problem when you have spades than when you have a minor.

I actually prefer 2 after 1NT to be either a good raise of opener's minor or intermediate with the other minor. Opener bids 2NT to find out which. So 1-1NT-2-3 is weak and 1-1NT-2-2-2NT-3 is intermediate. This allows you to have both weak and intermediate strength single suited minor hands in the 1NT response. Similarly, 1-1NT-2-2 is intermediate with either minor.
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#8 User is offline   kenrexford 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 12:54

FWIW:

http://cuebiddingatb...impossible.html
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#9 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 12:54

What would 1-2 be? If it's weak, how would it differ from a weak 1-1NT-2m-2?
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#10 User is offline   kfay 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 12:56

View PostMickyB, on 2011-March-29, 11:04, said:

This is non-standard and without any merit that I can see, Jilly. For most, 1NT denies four spades.

If you play 1H:2H as showing 8-10 points, you might start with a forcing 1NT with 4S3H and seven-or-fewer points, but on that auction you will rebid 2H over 2m.


Disagree with you, Mike. I actually think this is a very playable structure:

1-1; bananas-2 = artificial GF
1-1NT; bananas-2 = terrible hand, long spades
1-2 = natural, invitational

Otherwise I really disagree, Jilly. 1/1 is no more a positive response than 1/1.
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#11 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 13:02

We play 1nt forcing, 1M:2M as 8-10. I will forget about this 1:1N 2m:2 as weak and play it as a minor raise, and also sort out the meanings for 1M:2m, 1M:3m , 1M:1N 2m:3m.
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#12 User is offline   ArtK78 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 13:05

1 - 1 (range - from enough to respond up to very strong)
2m - 2 (I want to play in 2 - leave me alone!)

This is the normal way to get to 2 with long spades and a bad hand (but enough to respond to a one bid).

I agree with everyone else that a 1NT response to 1 denies spades (unless you are playing a special treatment), so a subsequent 2 bid is a strong raise of opener's minor suit.

The question was asked "how strong?" It is less than a game force, otherwise you would have made a 2/1 in the minor suit, as you are showing 5 cards in the minor (partner only promised 3 for his minor suit rebid over the forcing 1NT response). Otherwise it is at the top of your allowable range - about 11-12 HCP.
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#13 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 18:03

View Postnigel_k, on 2011-March-29, 12:34, said:

Similarly, 1-1NT-2-2 is intermediate with either minor.


Or, some kind of very fine support for opener's six-bagger. (HX and invite points, or an original 3-card l.r., depending on what you agree.)
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#14 User is offline   the hog 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 18:09

In the old Churchill system, 1x 1NT 2y 2S showed exactly the hand you are describing, Kathryn - weak with long S. This is certainly playable, but I do not know of anyone who does play it today. Today it is generally played as a good raise of the minor, better than a 3 bid.
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#15 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2011-March-29, 20:30

View Postkenrexford, on 2011-March-29, 12:54, said:



Funny, on Monday my parnter gave me a number of papers to read, including this one.
Searching for your own mistakes is the only way to learn this game. - Fluffy

And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH

SLOW DOWN! This is not a speedball :)
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#16 User is offline   jmcw 

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Posted 2011-March-30, 08:26

The "impossible" 2 rebid was part of the original Hardy 2/1 text as part of the Walsh treatment. Here are 2 examples given in the book.





Having had this "on my card" for a number of years I can tell you that it has seldom came up.

Setting the limits for this treatment should be a partnership decision. Example 1 seems clear, but I'm not convinced on hand 2.

Another, possibility is to reserve the 2 rebid to show a strong balanced hand say 16+, I dabbled with this for some time with a former partner (food for thought :) )
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#17 User is offline   Vampyr 

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Posted 2011-March-30, 08:44

View Postaguahombre, on 2011-March-29, 10:17, said:

HOW good the raise should be to use the impossible 2 must also be agreed. I think this should be dependent on the nature of 1NT and what a direct 3m/1M means. If 1NT is truly forcing, then 2 to a 2m rebid should be very, very good in dummy points for the minor. But if opener did not have to rebid, then a lower standard would be fine (10-11).


People not playing (semi-) forcing NT would not have bid 1NT to begin with.
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#18 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2011-March-30, 08:57

View PostVampyr, on 2011-March-30, 08:44, said:

People not playing (semi-) forcing NT would not have bid 1NT to begin with.

Quite true. In that case 2S would be truly impossible. If playing a system where every hand with 10+ points must bid something other than 1NT in response to a major, this thread will not have any use. Let us assume 1NT is either forcing or semi-forcing.
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#19 User is offline   WrecksVee 

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Posted 2011-March-30, 10:27

View Postthe hog, on 2011-March-29, 18:09, said:

In the old Churchill system, 1x 1NT 2y 2S showed exactly the hand you are describing, Kathryn - weak with long S. This is certainly playable, but I do not know of anyone who does play it today. Today it is generally played as a good raise of the minor, better than a 3 bid.


I am glad to see someone else remembers Churchill. I think early editions of the Kaplan Sheinwold book "How to Play Winning Bridge" also included this treatment. I always assumed it was an influence on KS from the Churchhill system as there are others IMO: e.g. weak NT and new sut rebids forcing by Opener. Kaplan wrote an intro to Churchhill's system book and so was aware of the ideas. As Roth also sometimes played with Churchill I felt that Churchill's utility 1NT idea was an influence on the idea of 1NT forcing.
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#20 User is offline   fred 

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Posted 2011-March-30, 10:34

A suprisingly little known fact is that it is possible (and almost free) to make better use of the impossible 2S. A simple example:



You can play that 2S here means either a strong diamond raise or a good 3C bid. If responder has a lesser hand with long clubs, he bids 3C directly over 2D.

Over 2S, opener bids 2NT (no worries about wrong-siding notrump since responder has already bid 1NT) and responder bids 3C with the good club hand and something else when he has a diamond raise.

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