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Puppet Stayman Is it worth it?

#1 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 04:35

For every gadget that you include in your system agreements, there is a price to pay somewhere else. Puppet Stayman is no different.

Convince me why YOU use it.
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#2 User is offline   Codo 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 04:55

I doubt that I can convince you but:
Without PS, I have two possibilities:

1. I am not able to open a 5332 hand with the right NT range in NT. This is particular ugly, if I hold 22+ HCPS and will fear that my 1 bid may be passed out. Another solution would be to open such a hand with your equivalent of an ACOL two. This is possible, but will burden these handtypes into your ACOL two. In the system I play, all these bids are bundled together with all even stronger hands in my 2 opening. So, even now, there are too many hand types for one opening, I am happy about any hand type, I can exclude.

2. You may open 2 NT with the 5332 hand without the possibility to ask for a five card major. This is what GIB is doing. This is entirely possible, but sometimes you pay for just being in the wrong game/slam.


You may argue that this price is low. But what exactly do I miss, if I play PS compared to normal stayman? To me, there are so low, that they do not count a lot in real life.
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#3 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 05:44

View PostCodo, on 2012-March-15, 04:55, said:

I doubt that I can convince you but:
Without PS, I have two possibilities:

1. I am not able to open a 5332 hand with the right NT range in NT. This is particular ugly, if I hold 22+ HCPS and will fear that my 1 bid may be passed out. Another solution would be to open such a hand with your equivalent of an ACOL two. This is possible, but will burden these handtypes into your ACOL two. In the system I play, all these bids are bundled together with all even stronger hands in my 2 opening. So, even now, there are too many hand types for one opening, I am happy about any hand type, I can exclude.

2. You may open 2 NT with the 5332 hand without the possibility to ask for a five card major. This is what GIB is doing. This is entirely possible, but sometimes you pay for just being in the wrong game/slam.


You may argue that this price is low. But what exactly do I miss, if I play PS compared to normal stayman? To me, there are so low, that they do not count a lot in real life.


How do you treat your 5332 hand in the 1NT range (15-17 HCP)?
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#4 User is offline   Codo 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 06:51

The modern approach is to use 1 NT for these hands without using puppet stayman.

I do not play this NT range with any standard partner, but if I would, I would look at my hand and bid 1 NT if it feals right and 1 M if the hand looks suit orientated.

With one of my partners I play a weak NT with puppet stayman. Works surprisingly good. But this is as far from mainstream as possible.
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#5 User is offline   G_R__E_G 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 07:13

Over a 1NT opener you can have the best of both worlds. It's quite common these days to play 2 as Stayman and 3 as Puppet. Whatever you were using the 3 response for before probably hasn't come up in three years but hands where Puppet is useful come up on a somewhat frequent basis. Shapes like 33(1)(6) or 33(2)(5) where your singleton or doubleton are weak and you've got 10 or 12 points would probably play better in the major if the NT opener happens to have a 5 carder. Even on hands where you're (4)(3) in the majors I find it useful to check when you've got a weak doubleton in a minor.
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#6 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 07:53

I play Puppet because I think it is more efficient and because it allows me to play 1 and 1M openings as unbalanced. There is (just) enough space to manage almost all of the common hand types. The main exception (garbage Stayman) is made up for by usually being able to get out in 2 and by having a new (albeit less common) version of garbage with slightly different shapes. For what it is worth my preferred structure is listed in this thread. Also in this thread is some discussion about the plusses and minuses. As you can read Free disagrees pretty much fundamentally with using 2 as Puppet and there is no consensus on this matter at all as far as I can tell.
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#7 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 07:56

View PostG_R__E_G, on 2012-March-15, 07:13, said:

Over a 1NT opener you can have the best of both worlds. It's quite common these days to play 2 as Stayman and 3 as Puppet. Whatever you were using the 3 response for before probably hasn't come up in three years but hands where Puppet is useful come up on a somewhat frequent basis. Shapes like 33(1)(6) or 33(2)(5) where your singleton or doubleton are weak and you've got 10 or 12 points would probably play better in the major if the NT opener happens to have a 5 carder. Even on hands where you're (4)(3) in the majors I find it useful to check when you've got a weak doubleton in a minor.


Is this the regular treatment when bidding Puppet Stayman over 1NT?
1. With 8-9 HCP, bid 2 as standard Stayman?
2. With 10-12 HCP and 3-3 or 4-3 in the majors, Puppet Stayman?

It's starting to make more sense now. The first sequence is game invitational. The second sequence is obviously game forcing.
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#8 User is offline   jjbrr 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 08:35

View Post32519, on 2012-March-15, 07:56, said:

Is this the regular treatment when bidding Puppet Stayman over 1NT?
1. With 8-9 HCP, bid 2 as standard Stayman?
2. With 10-12 HCP and 3-3 or 4-3 in the majors, Puppet Stayman?

It's starting to make more sense now. The first sequence is game invitational. The second sequence is obviously game forcing.


Yes your conclusions are correct.

I don't play puppet over 2NT for a lot of reasons, but do play 3C/1NT as puppet.

In addition to the 33 and 43 major hands, you should include 42 major hands as well.

Also 1NT 3C 3NT shouldn't exist.
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#9 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:06

If you allow 5-card majors in your 1NT 15-17 HCP range, what does one do in this bidding sequence?



You have a good 5-card suit.
Partner is asking you to transfer into your worst suit. Do you pass 2 or do you complete the transfer?
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#10 User is offline   wyman 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:28

I don't like to play partials when we might have a game on, so I obviously complete.
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#11 User is offline   mgoetze 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:38

I hope you are all feeling good about yourselves helping a famous bridge author get to the bottom of such difficult questions as "should I pass a forcing bid?"
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#12 User is offline   G_R__E_G 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:41

In bridge there are two things you always accept from partner; a transfer and an offer of a breath mint.
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#13 User is offline   Quartic 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:46

View Post32519, on 2012-March-15, 09:06, said:

If you allow 5-card majors in your 1NT 15-17 HCP range, what does one do in this bidding sequence?



You have a good 5-card suit.
Partner is asking you to transfer into your worst suit. Do you pass 2 or do you complete the transfer?


Complete the transfer of course - partner doesn't have to be weak with 5 spades - we could miss 4 or 3NT if I pass. (And yes, I realise the question was probably rhetorical.)
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#14 User is offline   G_R__E_G 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:52

View Postmgoetze, on 2012-March-15, 09:38, said:

I hope you are all feeling good about yourselves helping a famous bridge author get to the bottom of such difficult questions as "should I pass a forcing bid?"



I actually lol'd on that one. Is it really the same person?

PS I've checked my calendar, it is not April 1st.
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#15 User is online   aguahombre 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 09:54

I thought Andrew was joking, and people were going to bite/ answer seriously. I was half right; Michael cleared up the first part for us.
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#16 User is online   barmar 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 10:52

Don't forget the old rule of thumb: it's usually better to play in the long suit of the weaker hand.

#17 User is online   aguahombre 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 11:16

View PostG_R__E_G, on 2012-March-15, 09:52, said:

I actually lol'd on that one. Is it really the same person?

PS I've checked my calendar, it is not April 1st.

I don't think it was published on April 1st, either.
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Posted 2012-March-15, 12:38

IMO, the main reason why people play Muppet (or some version of Muppet) over a 2NT opening is that they only know three main ideas -- Regular Stayman, Puppet Stayman, or Muppet Stayman. When considering these three, Muppet seems best.

What I mean is that this is a sequence (2NT-P-3) where there are not a large number of alternatives that are well known out there to weigh against each other. So, when a convention is weighed against what you give up, but no one has a club what is actually being forfeit, then your weighting is fairly easy to work out.

Now, this is not to say that there are not alternatives that are not so well known that might be interesting alternatives to Muppet.
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#19 User is online   Vampyr 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 13:16

View Post32519, on 2012-March-15, 09:06, said:

If you allow 5-card majors in your 1NT 15-17 HCP range, what does one do in this bidding sequence?



You have a good 5-card suit.
Partner is asking you to transfer into your worst suit. Do you pass 2 or do you complete the transfer?


This hand is much too good for a 15-17 1NT, but even if it were a bit weaker the hearts are, in many people's opinion, too strong as well.
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#20 User is online   aguahombre 

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Posted 2012-March-15, 13:24

View PostVampyr, on 2012-March-15, 13:16, said:

This hand is much too good for a 15-17 1NT, but even if it were a bit weaker the hearts are, in many people's opinion, too strong as well.

All very true. For some 5cM notrumpers, they don't do it with 17, whether upgraded to more or not.

Also, all very irrelevant to this thread; and I apologize for continuing the hijack....sort of :rolleyes:
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