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RKC showing voids

#1 User is offline   Stephen Tu 

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Posted 2017-December-01, 03:20

So a lot of references describe void showing responses to rkc, starting at 5nt. But none really describe when a void should be considered "useful". Has anyone come up with some good systemic guidelines as to when it is safe to show the void? Always seems to me that I splinter, don't have way to distinguish between void or stiff, partner asks, then I don't know whether that is based on xxx in my suit where the void saves a trick, or Axx where it usually doesn't. So I can't remember any time I showed 1 key and a void. 3 keys seems safe to show, 2 is usually but not always?
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#2 User is offline   nige1 

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Posted 2017-December-01, 03:38

If partner asks for the trump queen or specific kings after a key-ask, then you can show your void as a King.
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#3 User is offline   sultro 

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Posted 2017-December-02, 09:54

a void in the splinter suit is considered useful. partner knew when he asked for aces that it was a possible response and should not have asked if it wasn't useful. a void in a suit partner has bid naturally is usually not considered useful. no comment on all other situations.
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#4 User is offline   Stephen Tu 

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Posted 2017-December-02, 10:38

So partner with Axx in the splinter suit, one other key card, and an otherwise suitable hand, is not allowed to use rkc?

How is he supposed to find out you have two key cards if that is all he needs when you have the more common hands with stiff instead of void?
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#5 User is offline   msjennifer 

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Posted 2017-December-03, 01:19

As one can arrange various combinations with the partner of the player who makes a splinter bid when the Void may be or not useful,and if that partner makes a RKC bid ,we stick to the good old times bids.It will take an expert in the panel to suggest a new foolproof way of dealing with situations like these when the RKC bidder 1) has the Trump Q and 2) when he does not have it .
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#6 User is offline   Vampyr 

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Posted 2017-December-03, 02:28

View PostStephen Tu, on 2017-December-01, 03:20, said:

So a lot of references describe void showing responses to rkc, starting at 5nt. But none really describe when a void should be considered "useful". Has anyone come up with some good systemic guidelines as to when it is safe to show the void? Always seems to me that I splinter, don't have way to distinguish between void or stiff, partner asks, then I don't know whether that is based on xxx in my suit where the void saves a trick, or Axx where it usually doesn't. So I can't remember any time I showed 1 key and a void. 3 keys seems safe to show, 2 is usually but not always?


One solution that will help in some situations is an immediate void-showing raise of a major-suit opening bid. In my regular partnership this is 3 after a 1 opener and 3NT after a 1 opener. Naturally not all hands with voids will be suitable for this treatment, but if does have the advantage that you can find out the location of the void at game level or below, so opener will know whether it is useful.
I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones -- Albert Einstein
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#7 User is offline   Vampyr 

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Posted 2017-December-03, 02:29

View Postnige1, on 2017-December-01, 03:38, said:

If partner asks for the trump queen or specific kings after a key-ask, then you can show your void as a King.


Is this a wise idea? If partner is planning to place the final contrct in NT, she may seriously miscounted her tricks.
I know not with what weapons World War III will be fought, but World War IV will be fought with sticks and stones -- Albert Einstein
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#8 User is offline   nige1 

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Posted 2017-December-03, 12:28

View PostVampyr, on 2017-December-03, 02:29, said:

Is this a wise idea? If partner is planning to place the final contract in NT, she may seriously miscount her tricks.

Assuming that you have already splintered to show a shortage, there should be no ambiguity. Experts seem reluctant to splinter with a singleton ace -- and even more reluctant to splinter with a singleton king.
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#9 User is offline   msjennifer 

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Posted 2017-December-03, 13:33

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#10 User is offline   msjennifer 

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Posted 2017-December-03, 13:34

As an addition to my earlier comment I have to make a clarification.We play Superprecision and our splinter bid promises a 4card support headed by at least two of the four top honors.A five carded support has to be headed by either the Ace or the King of the major suit opened by partner. Of course playing any standard system it may or may not be possible to be so rigid in making a splinter bid.
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#11 User is offline   Left2Right 

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Posted 2017-December-04, 12:16

The answer here is Duplication of Value -- a void opposite partner's first-bid suit being the worst case scenario. For other non-trump suits, we tend to downgrade our hands less when partner has bid a Suit of Convenience (such as the convenient minor) or when a suit has not been bid at all.

Navigate to a bidding or teaching table and use my constraint file Charles's Shortness Constraint

To force hands where one partner will have a void, change line 13
from ( shape(south, any 0xxx + any 1xxx ) or shape(north, any 0xxx + any 1xxx) )
to ( shape(south, any 0xxx ) or shape(north, any 0xxx ) )

You'll often sing the sad song of Duplication: "Oh woe is me, if only the x of y were the x of b."

For example http://tinyurl.com/y7hxa9tv
If only that ace of hearts were the 2 of hearts and the 9 of spades were the ace of that suit. You'd make seven instead of having to settle for six.

And BTW, we never show a void as if it were a king. That's a sure fire recipe to find yourself in a 7NT that doesn't make where the ruffing value opposite of the void allows 7 of a suit to make in a walk.
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#12 User is offline   fromageGB 

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Posted 2017-December-05, 10:20

View Postnige1, on 2017-December-01, 03:38, said:

If partner asks for the trump queen or specific kings after a key-ask, then you can show your void as a King.

The problem with this approach is that having asked and heard of your meagre real aces, partner may not ask further, but sign off.

* * *
My partnerships' approach is that after a splinter, if partner has slam desires he will always bid the next step as a singleton or void ask, with next step reply being singleton, and void being higher, an ace response if 2-steps up would have been your ace asking bid. This method is no good if after a round of bidding your splinter is itself the suit beneath trumps, eg 1 2, 2 4, but there is no problem with other splinter suits. Also no problem for an immediate splinter, say 1 4, that is defined as singleton because a separate sequence is used for a specifically void hearts (Similar to Vampyr's idea, but just the one suit.)

If your splinters may be strong, such that the splinterer may wish to slam if partner fails to ask, then we utilise an alternative "ace ask" that defines the void. Therefore in fact my example "problem" sequence above is not a problem, and must be a singleton.

* * *
However, I cannot answer the OP question because I do not myself play RKCB void responses. I have no way to show a void as teller if I have not previously splintered.
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#13 User is online   johnu 

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Posted 2017-December-05, 13:50

View PostStephen Tu, on 2017-December-01, 03:20, said:

So a lot of references describe void showing responses to rkc, starting at 5nt. But none really describe when a void should be considered "useful".


The reason nobody defines a useful void is that you usually can't be reasonably sure, and if the void isn't useful, you could end up in a slam with too many quick losers.

Vampyr mentioned separate splinter like sequences for voids and singletons which solves this particular problem, but if you aren't playing that method, or there is a different bidding sequence then you are out of luck.

You could incorporate some more complicated methods.

e.g.



Bidding RKC immediately after splinter shows no interest in a club void



Cue bid then RKC shows interest in club void (and allowed responder to cue bid 5 as a void with a suitable hand)
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#14 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2017-December-12, 11:55

View Postjohnu, on 2017-December-05, 13:50, said:

Vampyr mentioned separate splinter like sequences for voids and singletons which solves this particular problem

We too distinguish between voids and singletons, both directly over a 1M opening and immediately after a simple 1M-2M raise. In practice our splinters are ambiguous in only a few clearly identified situations, such as a splinter by opener showing fit in responder's suit. We're still shaking this down, but it seems to work well.
When any kind of shortage has been shown we tend to prefer Control-bidding (Control-showing Cue bids) rather than RKC asking and this too helps avoid dangerous confusion; with Control-bids it's relatively simple to figure out if partner's ambiguous splinter is actually a void or not, and a second void held by either partner will not cause disasters either.

View Postjohnu, on 2017-December-05, 13:50, said:

You could incorporate some more complicated methods.
...
Bidding RKC immediately after splinter shows no interest in a club void
...
Cue bid then RKC shows interest in club void (and allowed responder to cue bid 5 as a void with a suitable hand)

Makes sense, of course like all such sequences it has to be carefully agreed with partner: for many of us you can't even RKC at all once both partners have made a Control-bid.
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#15 User is offline   jeffford76 

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Posted 2017-December-12, 12:44

In one of my partnerships we play "Inclusion RKC" after a splinter - So 1S - 4C - 5C is RKC for spades, asking for the club void to be treated as an ace. If it is 1S - 4C - 4N, then we don't show the void. Obviously there's more room for this the lower the splinter.
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#16 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2017-December-12, 13:22

Another way to handle it is to cue the next step above an ambiguous splinter to ask if it was singleton or void; this looks like a great and simple solution but in practice it eats up precious bidding space, singletons are much more likely than voids and it is not always the most important thing to know.

In my main partnership 1S-4C is a singleton in clubs and 4NT is RKC for spades with 5 KC; 1S-3NT is an undisclosed void and 4 clubs asks, then 4NT is RKC for spades with 4 KC.
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