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Matchpoints Bid or Not Possible Tank

Poll: Matchpoints Bid or Not (38 member(s) have cast votes)

Bid or no Bid

  1. 2S regardless (22 votes [57.89%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 57.89%

  2. 2S with a tank, pass without (0 votes [0.00%])

    Percentage of vote: 0.00%

  3. 2S without a tank, pass with (1 votes [2.63%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 2.63%

  4. pass regardless (14 votes [36.84%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 36.84%

  5. Abstain (1 votes [2.63%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 2.63%

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#21 User is offline   0deary 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 04:46

Can I offer three further points:
A
“Part score must be contested” Maurice Harrion-Gray”
In 1951 Boris Schapiro wrote an article giving his opinion of the top players of the day. This was his assessment of Gray:
"Brilliant dummy player, very good defender, inclined to overbid in competitive situations but always liable to 'slip a contract through'. Concentration poor; difficult to play against

My view: If you want to model your bridge career on Gray and play bridge in the fast line don’t be surprised if you end up with too many broken bones
B
LOTT. Lets go back to basics here. A statistician look at the hands during a decent standard Congress and concluded that there was a fair correlation between total tricks part score hands from both sides of play. Hence Joe Amsbury’s book (we ate it when we was young) on total tricks. Our conclusion then was that it was just a useful guide, not quite as useful as Milton Work points but better than nothing for part score tussles. Now I understand Larry Cohen has taken the work further and polished it and offer the law. One output seems to be “8 fit- bid to 2 level etc”
Now I honestly accept that I haven’t read his book and I might well be worse of for it. But the reason is that I doubt if there can ever be compelling law between our scoring system, players judgement and computer generated hands
In my view you just have to think about everything at the table. A simple law is going to get your into trouble, sometimes
C
The example is great to bring this out! We are in a congress and Brian sits down and I know he will relies on LOTT. I’m in East and he bids 2S after the initial pass. Partner has 12-14 for the 1NT and I have 10 points. I know south is relying on an 8 fit. What do I know? We have quite a points advantage here. My partner has a useful S suit. That suit might be badly placed but North might long to reach dummy but can’t- dummy is too weak. Its match points. OK, I might catch the odd 2S doubles tick with a very useful side suit and or shape, but I’m going for the match points now and double. I find that quite an easy decision. I expect +300 for 90%
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#22 User is online   rmnka447 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 06:26

2

At both Matchpoints and IMPs you need to contest the part scores. At IMPs, you need to temper that because of possible number sets.

This hand is an absolutely clear cut 2 bid at Matchpoints at this vulnerability. Your initial pass showed 0-4, but an unknown number of . 2 shows a fit and the 3-4 hand.
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#23 User is offline   Tramticket 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 06:27

View Post0deary, on 2018-February-01, 04:46, said:

Now I honestly accept that I haven’t read his book and I might well be worse of for it.


The book has been around for over 25 years and really is worth a read :)

View Post0deary, on 2018-February-01, 04:46, said:

Its match points. OK, I might catch the odd 2S doubles tick with a very useful side suit and or shape, but I’m going for the match points now and double. I find that quite an easy decision. I expect +300 for 90%


Good luck with this strategy. Most players don't double enough part-score contracts at pairs and you probably should double on those occasions when you hold a ten-count (and presumably a spade shortage).

But even if you defeat 2 by the two tricks required to yield your +300, the LoTT tricks suggests that +400 would likely be available to you 3NT (again, refer to Mr Ace's table). But I suggest that you will usually be disappointed in your expectation of +300. Partners will often bid 1NT in the protective seat with a rather skimpy stop and even a robust stop will be sitting under declarer. I expect that your partner will often be unable to sit your take-out double and instead bid his suit at the three level. I will expect to be the long-run percentage winner by biding 2.
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#24 User is offline   msjennifer 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 08:05

It is to be noted that those who could not respond 2S on the first round are now brave enough to do so and get penalized with a resounding double and lose a few imps.Perhaps they are underrating opponents .The auction is very clear.East realizes from his hand that game is not possible but a competitive reopening 2S by S would be juicy by doubling it.Try and get those 300 by passing and enticing S to bid .
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#25 User is offline   Tramticket 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 08:19

View Postmsjennifer, on 2018-February-01, 08:05, said:

and lose a few imps.


I think that you also missed that it is matchpoints.
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#26 User is offline   MrAce 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 08:19

View PostGrahamJson, on 2018-February-01, 03:36, said:

Incidentally, the LOTT only applies when comparing two suit contracts, not a suit vrs NT.


Well... 99% of the people in this forum uses the word LOTT a lot but each time something really comes about the LOTT, from the comments I gather that most of them do not even have a clue about LOTT.
What I wrote about comparing NT vs suit is not made up by me, it's written in the book that introduced LOTT to people.
It is important because LOTT and its accuracy is at top when it comes to 1 NT vs suit contracts. (excluding the NT contracts that are being played by a long suit trick source, and if that is the case it works for the favor of bidding, not passing :)
Where do you think the convention "DONT" came from? It aims to find ANY 8 card fit and play at 2 level instead of letting them play 1 NT.
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#27 User is offline   GrahamJson 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 08:56

View PostMrAce, on 2018-February-01, 08:19, said:

Well... 99% of the peoplele in this forum uses the word LOTT a lot but each time something really comes about the LOTT, from the comments I gather that most of them do not even have a clue about LOTT.
What I wrote about comparing NT vs suit is not made up by me, it's written in the book that introduced LOTT to people.
It is important because LOTT and its accuracy is at top when it comes to 1 NT vs suit contracts. (excluding the NT contracts that are being played by a long suit trick source, and if that is the case it works for the favor of bidding, not passing :)
Where do you think the convention "DONT" came from? It aims to find ANY 8 card fit and play at 2 level instead of letting them play 1 NT.


I stand corrected regarding LOTT and NT. I’ve just perused my copy of “To bid or not to bid” and indeed it does recommend giving a total trick count of 7 plus the number of trumps, which in this case comes to 15. However it also recommends subtracting a trick for a holding of QJxx, giving a total of 14. This suggests that if 1NT makes then 2S is off and vice versa. So whether to bid on depends on vulnerability, which I can’t see mentioned anywhere. Perhaps I’m being affected too much by a recent hand in which p contested the part score by balancing, only for oppo to bid and make game. Fortunately our team mates made slam, so we still gained.
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#28 User is offline   JanisW 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 09:41

I think the LoTT is not applicable to this deal.

Partner might hold
  • KJxxx,Kxx,AJx,xx where 2 potentially goes for quite a number or
  • KQJxx,Qxxx,x,Kxx where 2 could make

In both cases E-W might make 3NT so the LoTT is just wrong...

The reasons are:
  • 3 small is no support, which it really isn't...
  • our 3 Points are slow tricks and need support by Partner, our hand value greatly increases with -Honours in Partners hand


If E thought for some time I would never dream of balancing because they might have just missed a cold game. If E passed really quickly I might bid 2.

reagrds
JW
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#29 User is offline   0deary 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 09:55

Here is a typical layout I generated:

I've saved the layout but I'm not sure how to display it here. Its called this http://tinyurl.com/yck8td23

North: AJTxx,Axx,Kxx,xx

West KQxx,KQx,Axxx,xx

South 654,J8,6542,QJ93

East x,xxxxx,QJT,AKxx

N/S are going for -2 for +300 (6 tricks)

E/W can't make 3N but 3H is best: 3H tick (9 tricks)

East gets the +300 in 2S* cf +140, or +90/120 in 1N
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#30 User is offline   Tramticket 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 10:06

View PostGrahamJson, on 2018-February-01, 08:56, said:

So whether to bid on depends on vulnerability, which I can’t see mentioned anywhere.


The standard convention on BBF bridge diagrams is to show vulnerability in the bidding table - the column heading is red if vulnerable, white if non-vulnerable. Here, both sides are non-vulnerable.
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#31 User is offline   miamijd 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 11:20

View PostGrahamJson, on 2018-February-01, 03:36, said:

I notice that I missed a key fact; that we’re playing pairs, not teams. Given this I agree that 2S is reasonable. However I don’t think I would bid it if RHO had had a long think.

Incidentally, the LOTT only applies when comparing two suit contracts, not a suit vrs NT.


I think 2S is right at teams as well:

1. It might make
2. If you play 2S it fails, it won't be down much, and the opponents almost surely would have made 1NT.
3. The opponents might bid to 3 of a minor, which could go set (more likely to go set than 1NT).

Much more likely to go plus bidding 2S than defending 1NT, and the risks are pretty small.

Cheers,
mike
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#32 User is offline   GrahamJson 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 11:45

View Post0deary, on 2018-February-01, 09:55, said:

Here is a typical layout I generated:

I've saved the layout but I'm not sure how to display it here. Its called this http://tinyurl.com/yck8td23

North: AJTxx,Axx,Kxx,xx

West KQxx,KQx,Axxx,xx

South 654,J8,6542,QJ93

East x,xxxxx,QJT,AKxx

N/S are going for -2 for +300 (6 tricks)

E/W can't make 3N but 3H is best: 3H tick (9 tricks)

East gets the +300 in 2S* cf +140, or +90/120 in 1N


Back of the net!

Mind you, I think most Easts would have introduced hearts on such a hand. Maybe that’s what he was thinking about.
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#33 User is offline   JanisW 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 12:43

View Post0deary, on 2018-February-01, 09:55, said:

Here is a typical layout I generated:

I've saved the layout but I'm not sure how to display it here. Its called this http://tinyurl.com/yck8td23

North: AJTxx,Axx,Kxx,xx

West KQxx,KQx,Axxx,xx

South 654,J8,6542,QJ93

East x,xxxxx,QJT,AKxx

N/S are going for -2 for +300 (6 tricks)

E/W can't make 3N but 3H is best: 3H tick (9 tricks)

East gets the +300 in 2S* cf +140, or +90/120 in 1N


And 3NT is making, too
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#34 User is offline   0deary 

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Posted 2018-February-01, 13:59

View PostJanisW, on 2018-February-01, 12:43, said:

And 3NT is making, too

True, so even clearer not to bid 2S? :)
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#35 User is offline   Tramticket 

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Posted 2018-February-02, 10:20

This will be my final posting and attempt to help you on the LoTT.

You have selectively produced a hand to support your case, which is always a poor approach - it would be easy enough to produce counter-examples. The hand that you have produced does have defects of course - surely east will use a transfer response holding a five-card major over a 1NT overcall?

But let's go with your example (for the moment) and show that even here the LoTT is working! In Mr Ace's excellent post above, he explained that the LoTT predicts that an eight-card trump fit compared with a no trump contract should mean that 15 tricks are theoretically available. Mr Ace gave a table comparing how the 15 tricks would divide:

- 7 vs 8 = which means they make 1 NT and you make 2M. (-90 vs +110)
- 6 vs 9 = which means they go down 1 while you make 2M+1 (+50 vs +140) or +100 vs +140 if you double their 1 NT.
- 5 vs 10= which means they go down 2 while you make 2M+2 (+100 {+300 if you dbl them} vs +170 or +420 if you actually bid the game)
- 8 vs 7 = they make +1 vs your down 1 (-120 vs -50/100 if doubled)
- 9 vs 6 = they make +2 vs your down 2 (-150 or -400 vs -100 or -300 if doubled)

Where does your example hand fit on the chart? Look at the bottom row. If we take your assessment that 2 will fail by two tricks (and this is far from certain - defence is much tougher than declarer play and defenders tend to under-perform compared with the theoretical optimum) then the LoTT tricks suggests that 9 tricks are available in NT - exactly as suggested in the above posts. North/South will concede 100 in 2 if un-doubled compared with conceding 150 or 400 in no trumps (depending whether East/West bid to 3NT). Of course, if West passes the take-out double they will be able to collect 300. This penalty pass relies on West electing to pass a two-level take-out double with only four trumps including two honours, sitting under North who has shown a five or six-card spade suit. This is a brave judgement, but maybe it is just about possible when West has a well constructed maximum for the bid.

All in all you have had to construct a hand where East is close a maximum pass (10 count) over the 1NT overcall, has the shape for a take out double, finds partner with a maximum and four spades with two good honours ...

Match-point pairs is a game where you need to take the decisions that will be successful most frequently. As I have shown above, the LOTT works - even on the most unfavourable layouts. But look again at the table - it suggests competing on each row. It really will be the long-run winner to bid 2.
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#36 User is offline   ggwhiz 

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Posted 2018-February-02, 11:24

I think the most important safety valve is being ignored and that's the tank by east that actually makes it a bit safer to bid (which I would do anyway).

It comes with a ? attached but if east bids over 2 I don't see how west can have enough to bid to game without confirming that it is based on the tank and having the Director roll it back if it makes.

Granted, my partnership doesn't open as many 11 counts as most but the main downside looks like them playing in say, 3 and scoring better than 1nt and that's an unlikely parlay. I guess 2 doubled with a 4-1 trump split is possible too but my glass is 1/2 full.
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#37 User is offline   JanisW 

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Posted 2018-February-02, 12:13

The LoTT, as I understand it, is used to give you a hint at how many tricks might be available on a certain deal, then you use the vulnerability and the scoring table to decide to where you should bid. But the LoTT most certainly is no LAW:

And the statement that based on the LoTT there should be 15 tricks available on this deal is just as good a guess as any.
There are easily 17 tricks available or only 13. And I do not need to take any drastic measures to produce these numbers, just look at the 2 hands I gave above.

In my opinion, it is too simple an approach to add 8+7 without any adjustments. To rely on the LoTT to some degree of accuracy you need to take into account
  • how good is your trump fit, especially the trump honours greatly influence the number of tricks available on a deal -> you just don't know
  • your hands shape: in 3244 opposite 5332 situations there are usually less tricks available than in 3154 op. 5431 -> you just don't know
  • working honours: I don't need to tell anyone that a black K is much more imortant than a red K for N-S suit contract, while it might be completly irrelevant to E-W in NT


So if N produces the magical ♠KQJxx,♥Qxxx,♦x,♣Kxx there might be 16-18 tricks available depending on the -split and if N produces the dreadful ♠KJxxx,♥Kxx,♦AJx,♣xx there might only be 13 tricks available on this deal. (note that in both cases both sides have an 8-card fit)

I don't disagree with 2 but I disagree to justify it with the LoTT. And especially if East had some thought, I would be cautious, too give him a second chance.
He might not bid 3NT, but if he had a 1-4-5-3 9count he might easily double 2 and West is swinging the Hammer with AQ10x in ....

2 might easily be a very good call, but it might as well be disastrous. And I feel you don't have enough information to rely on the LoTT.

I would appreciate it to get some comments on my thoughts, what is your oppinion? Am I wrong? And if I am please tell me, I want to become a better player

regards
JW
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#38 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2018-February-02, 13:21

View PostMrAce, on 2018-January-31, 05:24, said:

Never/Ever leave opponents to play 1 NT when your side is known to hold 8+ fit in a major suit.
In LOTT (Law of Total tricks) when they play NT, their trumps are considered to be a 7 card fit (at least) even though they are not playing a trump suit. (According to Larry Cohen, the author of the LOTT book)
7+8 =15, which means there are 15 available tricks theoretically.

How do these 15 tricks divide?

7 vs 8 = which means they make 1 NT and you make 2M. (-90 vs +110)
6 vs 9 = which means they go down 1 while you make 2M+1 (+50 vs +140) or +100 vs +140 if you double their 1 NT.
5 vs 10= which means they go down 2 while you make 2M+2 (+100 {+300 if you dbl them} vs +170 or +420 if you actually bid the game)
8 vs 7 = they make +1 vs your down 1 (-120 vs -50/100 if doubled)
9 vs 6 = they make +2 vs your down 2 (-150 or -400 vs -100 or -300 if doubled)
etc etc..

Nothing works % 100 of course. So when you ask why this was posted as a problem, I expect bidding 2 was a loser on this particular deal, but predicting this never changed my replies in BBF. Because as you see above, leaving to 1 NT is a big time loser in long run.

I hope this helps how to use the LOTT and why people create so many convention to find a major fit over their NT. (And do not forget, your side may have more than just 8 card fit, pd may hold a weak 6 carder that he did not want to bid again or side double fit)
Add to this other factors, such as comfort of declaring vs defending (especially low level contract defense and how hard to defend 1 NT contracts) etc etc...

BID!!!


If one is to compete to 2S, I would say it should be done without passing. Once passed, two or the 4 hands have been categorized as to their strength: balancers 1N and opener's partner who does not have enough to respond to a 1-bid, while opener's did not double 1NT or bid a second suit. With this much information, opponents have at least 2 ways to compete, either double or bid on at their choice. A pickpocket shouldn't wear a mask - likewise, a contract stealer shouldn't first pass.
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#39 User is offline   SimonFa 

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Posted 2018-February-03, 14:42

What Mr Ace said, plus 1NT has to be one of the hardest contracts to defend against.
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#40 User is offline   kuhchung 

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Posted 2018-February-06, 14:58

I've had bad experiences competing with these sorts of hands (weak with absolutely zero controls) so I'll just pass. Interested to see the result. The tank only helps with this decision :P
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