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Is the Multi 2 Worth it?

#21 User is offline   Gerben42 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 10:12

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1.) Most Multi's are a weak 2 in a major. When your major is ♠, LHO is now still able to show a ♥ suit on the 2 level. The pre-emptive effect of a weak 2♠ bid is lost.
2.) The strong balanced hand pattern can be bid with a natural 2NT.
3.) Freeing up the 2NT bid to show both minors 5-10 HCP has also been questioned. Information is given to the opponents on the hand layout and HCP distribution making it easier for them to balance and/or the subsequent play of the hand.
4.) The 4441 hand pattern with 17-24 HCP is so rare that many users of the Multi don't even have it as an option in their 2♦ structure.


To your points:

1) This is correct, but 2 can be used for another hand type ( 2-suiter is the best choice I think)
2) A big NT option isn't MANDATORY for Multi. With my partner I actually play a new choice, namely the strong NT version is a strong NT with a 5-card major. This way if partner preempts with 3 after Multi, you have a 5-3 fit. And you don't have to play Puppet Stayman which then improves slam-bidding a bit after 2NT opening or rebid.
3) This convention is not that hard to defend, but at least it DOES take two bidding levels away.
4) Right, for me this doesn't exist. With 17-22 we open a minor, with 23+ probably treat it like a big NT (when it comes up in the next 10 years, don't wait for it though).
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#22 User is offline   whereagles 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 14:08

I would say you should use the multi only if it fits the rest of your system and is used to fix some bug elsewhere.

Other than that weak 2s are probably superior.
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#23 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 14:28

View Postgwnn, on 2011-October-23, 08:30, said:

That is false. Most experts have not gone through all of them and definitely they didnt go back to natural. Just a 30 second look through the BB CCs will disprove that.


Take it up with the authors.
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#24 User is offline   SimonFa 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 16:10

View Postawm, on 2011-October-22, 11:22, said:

I like the weak-only version. Basically:

(1) You come out slightly behind when you open multi instead of a weak two against a good pair. However, most of us play quite a number of boards against weaker players and/or unpracticed partnerships, of which there are many even in national/international-level open events. Multi is a huge winner against weaker pairs. In a pairs event especially, multi is probably a net win over opening weak twos, and in any case it's not a big long-term loss.
(2) You free up the 2M bids for another meaning. This is where the big wins come from (especially against decent opponents). Personally I like the intermediate twos, which can really put the screws to opponents (who must guess whether to come in with a strong notrump hand for example, in an auction where they are a level higher than the field and extremely vulnerable to a penalty double). This approach also simplifies your bidding after 1M by taking the minimum one-suiter out as a hand type.
(3) You lose the weak two in diamonds, which is more effective than some people make it out to be.... but you are basically gaining two intermediate twos (2M) in exchange for one weak two (2D) which should be a net win (especially since they should be close to equal in frequency).

1. I can see that one. It took me 6 months not to be frightened of it when I first started playing in a club and that was with a regular partner. On the other side of the coin I have since learned that if you bid over a multi-2 those bidding it at club level don't have the tools to deal with your interference and can really screw up. My motto - ignore it and get on with your own bidding if you have a good hand.

2. The better players at my clubs use multi-2 to allow them to play Lucas 2. Again this frightens the average club player and again I have found it best to get on with my own bidding.

I should say that when I say get on with my own bidding I am mindful of:

(a) The playing strength of my hand
(b) My partner and the strength of the opposition
© Vulnerability
(d) The bidding position of player bidding Multi/Lucas

But the main thing is not to be intimidated by the bid.

I haven't kept track but just recently I reckon I am up on this approach.
Still looking for a regular real world partner to play 2/1 or SAYC in Dorset area, willing to travel.
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#25 User is offline   Free 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 23:20

Many claim that a weak two in is a great tool. Maybe it is, maybe it isn't, I don't know. But it seems to be something used primarily by USA players, I haven't seen it much in European countries. My limited personal experience is that it's easy to defend against, similar like a 3 opening but with more space to bid. In 3rd seat it may be useful because you can easily bid with a 5 card suit and put up pressure, but in 1st/2nd seat I don't see much advantages.
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#26 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 00:07

View Postblackshoe, on 2011-October-23, 14:28, said:

Take it up with the authors.

I just wanted to point out that the thing you quoted is false. I thought it might be useful for you or for other people. No thanks, I will not take it up with the authors.
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#27 User is offline   whereagles 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 02:35

View PostFree, on 2011-October-23, 23:20, said:

My limited personal experience is that it's easy to defend against, similar like a 3 opening but with more space to bid.


Weak 2s in the minors are far more bothersome than you credit them for. The reason is they preempt BOTH majors, not just one. Take out dbls over a weak 2m (or 3m) are made on 43 in the majors on a regular basis, over which the risk of ending up in a 4-3 fit is considerable.

If you don't believe me, just check the number of threads on 1-2 and 1-2, comparable auctions which show the load of trouble the overcall creates.
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#28 User is offline   fromageGB 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 09:19

I have played a multi for years, but have now dropped it in preference for a natural weak 2 in diamonds (together with natural weak 2s in majors) or (depending on partnership) 4+/4+ in both majors and natural weak 2s in the majors.

I'd say it is worthwhile, especially if you need 2M bids to plug a gap elsewhere in the system, or need 2 to show 3 suited-hands, but I do like the other uses, and natural 2Ms make preemptive support possible, which is a hidden plus point.

While incorporating a weak 2 in diamonds into the 2 open is very good if you play multi, a problem here is the national authority rates it as "level 4", so a number of local clubs don't allow it.

Another problem is that the EBU handcuffs prevent you having a weak only version of the multi. And you can't say the strong option is exactly 30 points in 0067 shape !
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#29 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 10:46

View Postgwnn, on 2011-October-24, 00:07, said:

I just wanted to point out that the thing you quoted is false. I thought it might be useful for you or for other people. No thanks, I will not take it up with the authors.


I think you mean that the authors are mistaken ó and perhaps they are. Keep in mind though that the book was written a couple of decades ago, and what is not true now may have been true then. Or... well, no matter. I don't necessarily agree with them myself. I think that the "best" use of 2 in any particular system depends on the system. In Romex, for example, you need 2 to show certain balanced hands, and to take GF hands with diamonds out of 2. Otherwise, the system doesn't do what it was intended to do. I was going to mention Precision 2, but that's a little different. If the regulators allow it, opening 2 with those hands actually works better.
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I have come to realise it is futile to expect or hope a regular club game will be run in accordance with the laws. -- Jillybean
Factor in Alzheimers, and I can not recall a bad result from aggessive action in this situation. -- Aguahombre
When I look through the hand records after a club evening, the boards I didn't play are always the ones where I would have done great. -- Cherdano
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#30 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 14:13

A to Z: given that one is no longer with us, and the other doesn't use that name any more...

I'm adding to the chorus though, in general:
- Multi 2 is weaker than majors weak 2
- the 2M bids made available by throwing the weak 2s into 2D are, or at least can be, strong; strong enough to make the package stronger than 3 weak 2s.
- 2D is stronger than it looks as a preempt, especially when your opponents at the other table have it available and you have to pass;
- the advantage of mini-multi 2, besides making simpler your sequences (at the cost of making simpler *their* sequences) is that you don't completely lose the weak 2 in diamonds; not when partner passes, at least. It never has to happen in real life, either; just the threat of it means that an entire class of "pass and act" defences have to change to handle the possibility.

I played, when I played it (benefits of playing in the ACBL here):
- mini-multi 2, bid very aggressively;
- 2H both majors, at least 4-4, again, very aggressive;
- 2S bad preempt in a minor (again, a loss to bidding those hands at the 3 level, but in theory gained back by:)
- 3m "if you bid 3NT, you won't be disappointed, pard."

Whether the package was better than "standard" I don't know - not enough experience to determine, really; but we played it more for the joy of it and the learning, than "better system".
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#31 User is offline   Vampyr 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 14:56

View PostFree, on 2011-October-22, 13:33, said:

Didn't we have a huge thread about this 1 or 2 months back where we compared the weak two's vs multi.


We did have that. I remember making the point that a lot of people are making here, that the multi itself is no great shakes but the freeing up of the 2M openers is very useful.

I prefer to play 2 weak, so have not given the matter much thought and don't know whether this question is absurd:

Does anyone play or have ever considered using the multi for constructive or intermediate 2 and opening 2M with a weaker hand, to allow responder to continue the pre-empt when it might be most useful?
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#32 User is offline   mgoetze 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 15:00

View Postmycroft, on 2011-October-24, 14:13, said:

I played, when I played it (benefits of playing in the ACBL here):
- mini-multi 2, bid very aggressively;
- 2H both majors, at least 4-4, again, very aggressive;
- 2S bad preempt in a minor


Huh? I thought these so-called "destructive" methods are expressly prohibited in the ACBL...
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#33 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 15:08

Free and gwnn said:

Don't we have a huge thread about this every 1 or 2 months all the time where we compare the weak two's vs multi.

Yes we do.
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#34 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2011-October-24, 17:00

View Postmgoetze, on 2011-October-24, 15:00, said:

Huh? I thought these so-called "destructive" methods are expressly prohibited in the ACBL...
It's been a while...

When we played this, they were straight-up Mid-Chart legal (with defences). Now, 2H needs 5-4 (at 6 boards; 5-5 for 2 boards); multi needs 6-boards; 2S "bad minor" is also 6 boards.

I see no reason to continue the "what's the Mid-Chart for" discussion here; I'm sure that a quick forum history search will find my opinions on it.
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#35 User is offline   Vampyr 

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Posted 2011-October-30, 14:01

View PostfromageGB, on 2011-October-24, 09:19, said:

While incorporating a weak 2 in diamonds into the 2 open is very good if you play multi, a problem here is the national authority rates it as "level 4", so a number of local clubs don't allow it.


Clubs that are more restrictive than level 4 are not for serious competition; play somewhere else. At the YC in London, the restriction is that you have to submit your forcing pass system in advance...

Quote


Another problem is that the EBU handcuffs prevent you having a weak only version of the multi. And you can't say the strong option is exactly 30 points in 0067 shape !


Again, find a club that plays level 4. Or go to more congresses, which are all level 4 or higher.
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#36 User is offline   Free 

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Posted 2011-October-31, 10:04

And I thought EBU or ACBL regulations weren't applicable in South Africa... :rolleyes:

Stop hijacking threads by uselessly mentioning ACBL and/or EBU please!
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#37 User is offline   shevek 

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Posted 2011-November-02, 00:10

View Postblackshoe, on 2011-October-23, 08:25, said:

In their excellent book Preempts from A to Z, Anderson and Zenkel suggest that while there are many possible uses of the 2 bid, most experts have tried them all, and gone back to the simple weak two. Paraphrasing, "It's kind of like toothpaste", they say. "You might try a new one once in a while, but you almost always go back to the one you grew up with".


That said, I've recently switched from the toothpaste I grew up with and used for many years to the one my dentist recommends. I'd tried it before, and switched back, but I think this time I'm going to stick with it. OTOH, I didn't have to convince anybody to go along with the change, whereas most of my bridge partners don't like changing the bidding system. :P


The 1993 A to Z book may reflect the ACBL jurisdiction at the time. Little has changed there.
Having 40 minutes to spare, I looked at the BBowl cards for Holland

22 teams x 3 = 66. We find

Weak 2D = 17 (26%) majorities of India, Chile, South Africa, Brazil, Canada, USA2
Multi = 25 (38%) didn't split mini-multi
strong = 5
18-19 bal = 5
Flannery = 5
intermediate Ds = 1
short Ds = 2
weak majors = 5
S & m = 1
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#38 User is offline   chasetb 

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Posted 2011-November-02, 00:40

Two of the three USA 1 pairs played Flannery (Fleisher-Kamil didn't). My two cents on the matter is that I hate the weak 2 - it always gives me a bad result whether I use it or play against it. I would like to play Flannery in my casual (SA or 2/1) partnerships, but nobody I know understands it. I have also only had good results playing against it, because the opponents tend not to know it!

What I really would want to play if I couldn't play Precision or Polish is 2 being one of 3 strong hand types; 2 would be forced with 99% of hands. The 3 types are either GF bal (2NT, use Romex Stayman), Strong with (2), or a GF 4441 or 5440 hand (one below). Weak with both Majors might be fun, since you can probably swing it knowing nothing about responses (I would learn the responses, I'm just talking about a pickup partner).

I've also thought about using 2 as a Multi with a GF option, but that isn't ACBL GCC legal. The reasoning is then I can make 2M (9)10-14 with 6M and not have to fake a 3-card minor after 1M-1NT.
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#39 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2011-November-05, 23:19

SUMMARY OF THE FEEDBACK RECEIVED ON THE MULTI 2 (from this thread and other similar threads)

ON THE NEGATIVE SIDE
1.) The loss of a natural Weak 2 bid.
Weak 2s in the minors are far more bothersome than many credit them for. The reason is they preempt BOTH majors, not just one. Take-out doubles over a weak 2m (or 3m) are made on 4-3 in the Majors on a regular basis, over which the risk of ending up in a 4-3 fit is considerable.
2.) 2 is stronger than it looks as a preempt, especially when your opponents at the other table have it available and you have to pass.
3.) The Multi should be more geared towards constructive bidding, because it has less preemptive effect than a natural Weak 2 or 2 bid.
4.) Multi isn't that great a convention. You're often left in the dark yourself what major partner has when the auction goes say 2-(2NT)-P-(3NT).
5.) Natural preempts are more valuable; opponents only get one chance to bid over them. They get two over transfer and artificial preempts!
6.) The majority of Multiís is a weak 2 in either major. When your major is LHO can still bid on level 2. The preemptive effect of the weak 2 bid is lost.
7.) The loss of partners ability to lift the preempt immediately is a big weakness of the Multi.
More often partner than not, partner is able to support only one of the majors. Not knowing which one you are holding restricts his ability to lift the preempt immediately.
8.) A Multi 2 is often much weaker than a Weak 2 or bid.
9.) Many say that it is much easier to defend against than a natural Weak 2 bid. It allows for 3/4 overcall tempos.
10.) Against well-prepared opponents, it causes fewer problems than natural Weak 2s would (as they have extra room, and an extra round of bidding).
11.) The strong balanced hand type can be shown with a natural 2NT opening.
12.) Freeing up the 2NT bid to show 5-5 in the minors and 5-10 HCP has also been questioned. All you have succeeded in doing is convey the hand layout and HCP distribution to the opponents. It now makes it easier for them to balance and/or the subsequent play of the hand. Partner is marked for any required finesse in the majors, opener for any required finesse in the minors.
13.) The 4441 hand pattern with 17-24 HCP is so rare that may players of the Multi donít even bother including it into their Multi structure.
14.) The Multi 2. Does it Really Work? http://www.migry.com...dfs/multi2D.pdf In fairness, this article did attract some criticism.

ON THE POSITIVE SIDE
1.) Against poorly prepared opponents it will probably give you a few extra good scores! Multi is said to be a net win for your side against weaker opponents.
2.) The uncertainty of preemptor's suit cuts both ways. The opponents have no obvious cue-bid in openers suit available.
3.) With the appropriate hand, partner can become declarer keeping the stronger hand hidden. The contract has been "right-sided."
4.) The "big win" through using Multi comes from freeing up the 2 and 2 bids for something else, the most popular being Muiderberg 2s/Lukas 2s.
5.) Muiderberg 2s/Lukas 2s are said to be effective against good as well as weaker opponents.
6.) Freeing up the 2 and 2 bids allows you to open more weak hands with very descriptive bids.
7.) Raising the HCP count of your Multi to intermediate strength increases the pressure on the opponents to enter the bidding or not e.g. They must guess whether to come in with a strong NT overcall in an auction where they are a level higher than the rest of the field and extremely vulnerable to a penalty double.
8.) Every bid that you use to take away room from the opponents is good.

THE FINAL PIECE OF ADVICE FROM MANY PARTICIPANTS TO THIS POLE IS THIS: DON'T PLAY MULTI 2 JUST TO BE PLAYING IT. YOU NEED A SYSTEMIC REASON FOR DOING SO. YOU SHOULD USE THE MULTI ONLY IF IT FITS THE REST OF YOUR SYSTEM AND IS USED TO FIX A BUG ELSEWHERE. OTHER THAN THAT, STANDARD WEAK 2s ARE PROBABLY SUPERIOR!

A BIG THANK YOU TO ALL WHO REPLIED TO THIS THREAD. IT WAS MOST ENLIGHTENING.
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Posted 2011-November-06, 14:07

You forgot a big plus of multi: you can easily make distributional invite in 1 of the Majors, which you can't after a natural 2M opening.

2-2-... (Opener with can show shortage for example)
2-2-2-2NT-... (Opener can show shortage for example)
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