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Why was 16 HCP chosen as the magical number to show extras? Just curious

#21 User is offline   Statto 

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Posted 2012-May-18, 19:20

View Post32519, on 2012-May-10, 04:27, said:

So why was 16 HCP chosen as the magical number? Just curious!

16/17+ HCP means you'll have game on approx half the time.
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#22 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2012-June-04, 04:11

View Post32519, on 2012-May-10, 04:27, said:

Big systems open 1 to show 16+ HCP.
Big systems do the same.
Then you have Gazzilli which uses an artificial 2 over 1M-1NT to show extras.
Serious / Non-Serious 3NT in a 2/1 auction also tends to show 16+.
A normal reverse bid also shows 16+ HCP.
So why was 16 HCP chosen as the magical number? Just curious!


Iíll have a shot at answering my own question.

As bridge bidding became increasingly aggressive, the number of combined HCP required for game in 3NT (or 4 of a major) has in some circles between reduced to 24 (I believe it once stood at 25 HCP). So with 40 HCP in the pack, on average each player will be dealt 10. The 16 HCP comes from being dealt your own average quota of 10 plus a further 2 from each of the other 3 players.

View Postbarmar, on 2012-May-10, 08:43, said:

A related question: Why is 8 the magic number for a positive response? It's a game force, but 16+8 is only 24, which isn't generally considered enough for game unless you have some additional distributional features (or you're Meckwell, who seem to bid game with most 23 counts).


Those who have dropped the combined HCP for game in 3NT or 4 of a major to 24 can convey the message in a single bid from each partner.
Opener: I have my quota of 10 HCP plus a further 2 from each of the other 3 players.
Responder: Nice to know! I still have the balance of my 10 HCP. Letís push for game now.
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#23 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2012-June-04, 05:57

View Post32519, on 2012-June-04, 04:11, said:

Iíll have a shot at answering my own question.

As bridge bidding became increasingly aggressive, the number of combined HCP required for game in 3NT (or 4 of a major) has in some circles between reduced to 24 (I believe it once stood at 25 HCP). So with 40 HCP in the pack, on average each player will be dealt 10. The 16 HCP comes from being dealt your own average quota of 10 plus a further 2 from each of the other 3 players.



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#24 User is offline   han 

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Posted 2012-June-04, 07:04

View Posthrothgar, on 2012-June-04, 05:57, said:

Whatever makes you happy...


Well said. Also, note that 21-5 = 16.
Please note: I am interested in boring, bog standard, 2/1.

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#25 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2012-June-11, 00:15

1 was clearly too little and 81 would have been impossible.
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#26 User is offline   han 

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Posted 2012-June-11, 08:53

Nice gwnn!
Please note: I am interested in boring, bog standard, 2/1.

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#27 User is offline   helene_t 

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Posted 2012-June-12, 06:18

View Posthan, on 2012-June-04, 07:04, said:

Well said. Also, note that 21-5 = 16.

Interesting. Maybe it is related to the following:
According to burkes' law, a 2-5-6 shape should be opened at the game level. Assuming that your own hand strength interacts with partner's multiplicatively, you need the square root of that to propose game. sqrt(256)=16.
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#28 User is offline   manudude03 

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Posted 2012-June-12, 07:55

The reason I've always believed is that with a fit, you will need around 24 points combined for game. If opener has 16, the average of the other hands is 8, 16+8=24.
Wayne Somerville
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