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Hold-up in 3NT problem for N/B

#1 User is offline   ahydra 

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Posted 2018-January-14, 01:22

Problem for N/B, others use spoilers please. I thought this was an instructive deal from the Australian GNT that's currently going on.

You may have heard of the "rule of 7", which states that:
- when you have a suit like Axx vs xx(x) in NT
- and you need to lose the lead to establish enough tricks for the contract

you subtract your total number of cards from 7 and hold up that many times. So with Axx opposite xx you hold up twice (7 - 5 = 2), the idea being to exhaust an opponent of that suit when they split 4-3. When you lose the lead, hopefully the player with 3 wins, and they can't reach their partner's hand to cash the fourth one. With Axx opposite xxx, you duck once, which exhausts an opponent when the cards split 5-2.

So, here's the hand of interest:



West leads the 10 against your aggressively-bid 3NT and East plays the J. How many times do you hold up?

ahydra
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#2 User is offline   NickRW 

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Posted 2018-January-15, 04:32

Spoiler

"Pass is your friend" - my brother in law - who likes to bid a lot.
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#3 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2018-January-15, 05:46

What signals are my opps playing and what card does E play ? Pairs or teams (not sure what GNT is) ?
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#4 User is offline   ahydra 

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Posted 2018-January-15, 17:00

View PostCyberyeti, on 2018-January-15, 05:46, said:

What signals are my opps playing and what card does E play ? Pairs or teams (not sure what GNT is) ?


IMPs (GNT = Grand National Teams I believe, any Aussies please correct me if I'm wrong). East played the J as mentioned in the OP. I'm not sure what the signals in use at the table were, but most likely reverse attitude.

Since I'm here, I'll post the answer in a spoiler:
Spoiler


ahydra
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#5 User is offline   broze 

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Posted 2018-January-16, 15:54

View Postahydra, on 2018-January-15, 17:00, said:

Spoiler




This is shocking!!
'In an infinite universe, the one thing sentient life cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion.' - Douglas Adams
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#6 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2018-January-16, 16:55

I don't think declarer's play was crazy. RHO made a great falsecard playing the J at trick one - there is no four-card holding where this is the normal play. If RHO did that intentionally - well done. What did RHO play to trick two?
Obviously we have a recall bias in favour of the assholes. -helene_t
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#7 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2018-January-16, 17:52

View Postcherdano, on 2018-January-16, 16:55, said:

I don't think declarer's play was crazy. RHO made a great falsecard playing the J at trick one - there is no four-card holding where this is the normal play. If RHO did that intentionally - well done. What did RHO play to trick two?


You'd feel a right lemon if you had the entry and partner actually had 109xxx, partner almost certainly has 4+ hearts so is no lose.
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#8 User is offline   FelicityR 

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Posted 2018-January-17, 05:54

There's a bridge proverb here: Never give the defenders a second bite of the cherry. I am somewhat astounded that a renowned author and international player held up twice. There are additional clues (even without the play of the J which could be a true card, a false card or a brilliant discard). At this vulnerability why hasn't East or West overcalled with a major suit at the one level, or even weak jump overcalled at the two level? There's 19 HCPs outstanding, plenty of major suit intermediates and possible unbalanced distribution unaccounted for. That, in itself, provides possible evidence that the defenders' major suits are split 4-4 in s and 4-3 in s. That evidence is not conclusive as there are many possible distributions where the suit quality of a 5 card major does not warrant overcalling at the one level. But a declarer should be looking at everything, not just what happens at trick one.
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#9 User is offline   broze 

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Posted 2018-January-17, 10:53

View PostCyberyeti, on 2018-January-16, 17:52, said:

You'd feel a right lemon if you had the entry and partner actually had 109xxx, partner almost certainly has 4+ hearts so is no lose.


I agree with you because it is no loss to overtake, partner is not leading from Tx here. However, I would expect partner to lead low from T9xxx.
'In an infinite universe, the one thing sentient life cannot afford to have is a sense of proportion.' - Douglas Adams
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#10 User is offline   cherdano 

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Posted 2018-January-17, 10:58

View PostCyberyeti, on 2018-January-16, 17:52, said:

You'd feel a right lemon if you had the entry and partner actually had 109xxx, partner almost certainly has 4+ hearts so is no lose.

I should have made my point more precisely. If all I tell you is that partner led the T against 3NT, you have KQJx, and there are two small in dummy, then you would probably play low - partner is too likely to have made a passive lead from T9x or T98.

Here in this hand you know declarer doesn't have four hearts, and hence it is right to play the J. But I made my comment without having read that RHO actually had KQJx. I thought it would be a great play on this hand to overtake with the J from QJxx, and play the Q on the second round.
Obviously we have a recall bias in favour of the assholes. -helene_t
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#11 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2018-January-17, 16:29

View Postbroze, on 2018-January-17, 10:53, said:

I agree with you because it is no loss to overtake, partner is not leading from Tx here. However, I would expect partner to lead low from T9xxx.


We'd certainly lead the 10, we don't tend to lead low from 10 high holdings, often treating 10xxx as xxxx and leading second, and leading the 10 from 109...
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#12 User is offline   ahydra 

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Posted 2018-January-17, 20:15

View PostFelicityR, on 2018-January-17, 05:54, said:

At this vulnerability why hasn't East or West overcalled with a major suit at the one level, or even weak jump overcalled at the two level? There's 19 HCPs outstanding, plenty of major suit intermediates and possible unbalanced distribution unaccounted for. That, in itself, provides possible evidence that the defenders' major suits are split 4-4 in s and 4-3 in s.


I'll confess that I simplified the hand to make it more suitable for an N/B puzzle. In the actual auction there was some competition from EW. Here's the actual hand (board 20, closed room, rotated).

ahydra
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#13 User is offline   FelicityR 

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Posted 2018-January-18, 02:39

View Postahydra, on 2018-January-17, 20:15, said:

I'll confess that I simplified the hand to make it more suitable for an N/B puzzle. In the actual auction there was some competition from EW. Here's the actual hand (board 20, closed room, rotated).

ahydra


Whilst I appreciate the +1 for my analysis - thank you - I don't think Mr. Klinger would appreciate that you have changed the bidding and the cards played to set a problem for Novices and Beginners. Mr. Klinger's books have been a fountain of knowledge for me at the bridge table. What you have done is akin to the chess-playing scene in one of the James Bond films that my husband commented on years ago that he noted had invalidated the position.

With the actual hand that you have provided I am not surprised that Mr Klinger held up twice, hoping that the opponents wouldn't find the switch. With the bidding and the cards played it becomes a different hand.
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#14 User is online   sfi 

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Posted 2018-January-18, 02:59

I would have thought 4-4 hearts are very likely on the actual bidding, making the hold-up a poor option.

And I'm sure Klinger changes hands for instructional purposes all the time. He can hardly complain if someone else does it as well.
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#15 User is offline   FelicityR 

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Posted 2018-January-18, 06:19

View Postsfi, on 2018-January-18, 02:59, said:

I would have thought 4-4 hearts are very likely on the actual bidding, making the hold-up a poor option.

And I'm sure Klinger changes hands for instructional purposes all the time. He can hardly complain if someone else does it as well.


I agree with what you are saying, and the defenders have the added advantage of knowing that South doesn't have a 4 card heart suit (because he didn't bid s) on the posted hand so East can always play the J from a holding such as KQJx confident that he is not giving away a trick. On the actual hand South's double of the artificial 1 = 1 bid doesn't necessarily mean he has 4s. North has chosen to bid 2 with not a great collection of cards, and it is fairly reasonable to assume that he has a 5 card suit for his call.

Yes, experts do make mistakes, and authors such as Mr. Klinger undoubtedly change hands for instructional purposes, but to say as the forum poster did that he messed up the play of the hand by holding up twice is a little unfair. He took a view with a different auction and different cards being played that the suit was 5-3, not 4-4. Yes, it was wrong view given the defenders can also attack s, but he put them to a guess whether to carry on playing s to knock out his stopper, or to find a switch after collecting two tricks.
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#16 User is offline   NickRW 

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Posted 2018-January-18, 07:00

While I acknowledge the points various posters have made in this thread, I suggest we are digressing from the main thrust of the OP given that this is the N/B forum.
"Pass is your friend" - my brother in law - who likes to bid a lot.
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#17 User is offline   FelicityR 

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Posted 2018-January-18, 08:55

View PostNickRW, on 2018-January-18, 07:00, said:

While I acknowledge the points various posters have made in this thread, I suggest we are digressing from the main thrust of the OP given that this is the N/B forum.


Yes, you are right. My apologies everyone.
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#18 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2018-January-19, 08:50

View PostNickRW, on 2018-January-18, 07:00, said:

While I acknowledge the points various posters have made in this thread, I suggest we are digressing from the main thrust of the OP given that this is the N/B forum.


Here is a useful and pertinent discussion accessible to N/B:

Larry Cohen on Rule of 7
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