BBO Discussion Forums: Robson and Segal's structure - BBO Discussion Forums

Jump to content

  • 2 Pages +
  • 1
  • 2
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

Robson and Segal's structure

#1 User is offline   straube 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 3,986
  • Joined: 2009-January-18
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver WA USA

Posted 2010-November-07, 01:00

I was reading Partnership Bidding at Bridge by Robson and Segal and they had an interesting idea and I wonder if it's still in use. They use 2N as a raise of partner's major after an overcall. The raise promises four trump and at least mixed raise strength (roughly 8 losers).

For example after 1S (2C)

2D-nat, f
2H-nat, f
2S-raise, usually 3 trump
2N-mixed raise or better
3C-limit raise or better with only 3 trump
3D-FSJ
3H-FSJ
3S-less than mixed raise
3N-natural and could be straining with a hand that preferred 2N
4C-splinter
4D-FSJ
4H-to play

We play limited opening hands and it seems like 2N as a natural invite has just a smidge less value for us. We can overbid a little and sometimes we'll be able to force with 2D or a negative double and sometimes we can pass and decide what to do if partner reopens.

I think their structure fills a hole in the FSJ raise structure. Basically most of these have 2 bids (2M and 3M) to distinguish three sorts of raises...simple raise, mixed raise, and preemptive raise. In a way, they accomplish even more because their cue bid now denies 4 trump while their 2N bid handles mixed raise plus. 2N can intend a game force or slam inquiry.

My other thought was that their structure was less useful vulnerable as the raise to three is likely not very weak.

Of course, their structure creates a hole in missing a natural NT invite. Is it worth it? Thinking yes.
0

#2 User is offline   glen 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 1,635
  • Joined: 2003-May-11
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Ottawa, Canada
  • Interests:Military history, WW II wargames

Posted 2010-November-07, 07:34

View Poststraube, on 2010-November-07, 01:00, said:

... I wonder if it's still in use. They use 2N as a raise of partner's major after an overcall. The raise promises four trump and at least mixed raise strength ...

At the top levels 2NT as a raise continues to grow in use. If it goes Any-Bid-Any-2NT, often that 2NT is alerted, even when "Bid" is a one or two level o/c.
'I hit my peak at seven' Taylor Swift
0

#3 User is offline   kenrexford 

  • Brain Farts and Actual Farts Increasing with Age
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 9,586
  • Joined: 2005-September-21
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Lima, Allen County, North-West-Central Ohio, USA
  • Interests:www.limadbc.blogspot.com editor/contributor

Posted 2010-November-07, 07:55

Very common to give two "cue raises" of the true cue and the 2NT call. Some have 2NT as a 3-piece raise (limit+) and the cue as a 4-piece. Some have 2NT as a limit raise (3-piece or better) and the cue as GF (my preference).

This resulted in two strange discussions for me in Philadelphia.

One was just weird. I explained 2NT as "Three-piece or better limit raise." The opponents understood this as 3+ support with limit values. For some strange reason, my partner thought I was confusing and wigged out. That was just weird.

The other discussion concerned what to do next if fourth hand (Advancer) passes. We were using a structure over a 2Nt call that out of comp showed various possible holdings, always raise, and we ultimately decided to keep it intact for memory reasons. Not sure if it makes ideal sense in the abstract, but FWIW:

3 by Opener is asking bid. Responder bids 3 as 3-piece with shortness (3 asks where); 3 minimum lim; 3 4-piece with shortness (3N asks); 3N as high control count 3-piece; 4M as balanced poor control max limit (3 or 4); 4-bid as cue with max limit and 4-piece support.
"Gibberish in, gibberish out. A trial judge, three sets of lawyers, and now three appellate judges cannot agree on what this law means. And we ask police officers, prosecutors, defense lawyers, and citizens to enforce or abide by it? The legislature continues to write unreadable statutes. Gibberish should not be enforced as law."

-P.J. Painter.
0

#4 User is offline   inquiry 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Admin
  • Posts: 14,564
  • Joined: 2003-February-13
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Amelia Island, FL
  • Interests:Bridge, what else?

Posted 2010-November-07, 09:37

i use it, and I like it.
--Ben--

#5 User is offline   straube 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 3,986
  • Joined: 2009-January-18
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver WA USA

Posted 2010-November-07, 11:02

I think I like how they split up 2N from the cue. It leaves strength ambiguous (as are the FSJs) but it prepares partner better for a competitive auction. They're very much focused on telling partner what the "law level" is. The cue says they've already exceeded the law level and that the opponents might need to be penalized if they bid too much. The 2N bid has a wider range of stength but it encourages partner to bid one more level with a six card suit (or perhaps a 5/5).

I understand that the LOTT has been under criticism for some time, but after making adjustments for minor honors, quality of trump and shortness, I think the idea of "law level" is still a useful term.

Thanks for the replies thus far.
0

#6 User is offline   Zelandakh 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 10,663
  • Joined: 2006-May-18
  • Gender:Not Telling

Posted 2010-November-07, 15:46

Over a major suit from partner it is (imho) definitely an improvement. When partner's suit is a minor then not really. Of the 2 competing ideas for this raise (splitting shape or splitting range) then I personally prefer splitting shape. An interesting diversion is whether you should always use 2NT as the 3 (or 4+) card raise or whether to use the lower of 2NT and cue for 3 card and the higher for 4+.
(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
0

#7 User is offline   awm 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 8,231
  • Joined: 2005-February-09
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Zurich, Switzerland

Posted 2010-November-07, 17:10

This does leave you without a natural 2NT bid. It seems to suggest that somehow it's important to be very accurate in evaluating your fitting games (i.e. you need to know 3- vs. 4-card limit raise, 3- vs 4- card constructive raise) while "guessing" on non-fitting hands is okay. My experience has been somewhat the opposite of this -- playing in random 23-point 3NTs (or missing 25-point 3NTs) has rarely fared well for me at the table, whereas fitting games often have more to do with holdings opposite partner's shortage and such things that are hard to evaluate in a competitive auction regardless of methods. In all I'd rather be "guessing" on my fitting games and be more precise on the non-fitting ones.
Adam W. Meyerson
a.k.a. Appeal Without Merit
0

#8 User is offline   straube 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 3,986
  • Joined: 2009-January-18
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver WA USA

Posted 2010-November-07, 21:32

View Postawm, on 2010-November-07, 17:10, said:

This does leave you without a natural 2NT bid. It seems to suggest that somehow it's important to be very accurate in evaluating your fitting games (i.e. you need to know 3- vs. 4-card limit raise, 3- vs 4- card constructive raise) while "guessing" on non-fitting hands is okay. My experience has been somewhat the opposite of this -- playing in random 23-point 3NTs (or missing 25-point 3NTs) has rarely fared well for me at the table, whereas fitting games often have more to do with holdings opposite partner's shortage and such things that are hard to evaluate in a competitive auction regardless of methods. In all I'd rather be "guessing" on my fitting games and be more precise on the non-fitting ones.


I think a primary way that Robson/Segal solves the loss of their 2N bid is through use of the negative double. Say the bidding goes 1H (2C) and I'm looking at Kxx Kx Axxx Qxxx. I can make a negative double and gain some (although not wholly trustworthy) information about partner's hand before bidding again If partner bids 2S or 3S I will convert to notrump. If he bids 2H I can decide between 2N and 3H (probably 3H). This would be much more dangerous if opener had a range of 12-22 or so but when he's 10-15 he is unlikely to bid more than 3 of the other major. Not saying that the negative double solves every problem, but the bid itself communicates something approaching invitational strength (when we're forcing partner to help us find a fit at the 2-level) and it saves some room before we have to commit to 2N. In a sense, the dbl no longer promises 4 of the other major. It simply gives partner the permission to describe his hand, even to reverse.

The point of Robson/Segal isn't to differentiate limit raises from mixed raises or GF raises. The point is to give partner a picture of the trump fit/law level so as to prepare him for a competitive auction. That's why they want to know 3 vs 4 trump (for instance). If the auction goes 1H (2C) 3C (5C) they want to be well-positioned for whether to take the push to 5 or double.
0

#9 User is offline   Free 

  • mmm Duvel
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 10,728
  • Joined: 2003-July-30
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Belgium
  • Interests:Duvel, Whisky

Posted 2010-November-08, 02:54

View Postkenrexford, on 2010-November-07, 07:55, said:

One was just weird. I explained 2NT as "Three-piece or better limit raise." The opponents understood this as 3+ support with limit values. For some strange reason, my partner thought I was confusing and wigged out. That was just weird.

English is not my native language, but your explanation is indeed confusing. You can interpret it as:
- "Three-piece or better" limit raise
- Three-piece or "better limit raise"
The second one doesn't make much sense to me because there's no strength described for a 3-piece, so I'd also interpret it as limit values with 3+ support. If you want the latter, it's much more clear when you explain as "better limit raise of three-piece".
"It may be rude to leave to go to the bathroom, but it's downright stupid to sit there and piss yourself" - blackshoe
0

#10 User is offline   Free 

  • mmm Duvel
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 10,728
  • Joined: 2003-July-30
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Belgium
  • Interests:Duvel, Whisky

Posted 2010-November-08, 02:55

I use the structure, but 2NT is INV+ with at least a 4 card support. With limited openings, the difference between mixed and preemptive raise isn't really important. So I'd just play 1M-...-3M as signoff, pre or mixed.
"It may be rude to leave to go to the bathroom, but it's downright stupid to sit there and piss yourself" - blackshoe
0

#11 User is offline   straube 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 3,986
  • Joined: 2009-January-18
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver WA USA

Posted 2010-November-08, 08:42

View PostFree, on 2010-November-08, 02:55, said:

I use the structure, but 2NT is INV+ with at least a 4 card support. With limited openings, the difference between mixed and preemptive raise isn't really important. So I'd just play 1M-...-3M as signoff, pre or mixed.


But you feel that distinguishing the 3 from the 4 cd limit+ raises is valuable enough to give up the natural 2N? Do you negative dbl with the natural 2N and if so, how does it work out for you?
0

#12 User is offline   Free 

  • mmm Duvel
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 10,728
  • Joined: 2003-July-30
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Belgium
  • Interests:Duvel, Whisky

Posted 2010-November-08, 09:32

View Poststraube, on 2010-November-08, 08:42, said:

But you feel that distinguishing the 3 from the 4 cd limit+ raises is valuable enough to give up the natural 2N? Do you negative dbl with the natural 2N and if so, how does it work out for you?

Yes, showing a 9th trumps is imo very important! Opener with a singleton knows he will be able to safely play a dummy reversal.
When we have a natural 2NT we Dbl (because of the limited openings we play optional doubles, not negative doubles). Even when playing a natural system, the natural 2NT is too rare to bother (and in this case we pass and hope partner doubles for takeout, so we can convert)
"It may be rude to leave to go to the bathroom, but it's downright stupid to sit there and piss yourself" - blackshoe
0

#13 User is offline   phil_20686 

  • Scotland
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 2,754
  • Joined: 2008-August-22
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Scotland

Posted 2010-November-08, 09:32

the number of times that you actually want to bid 2N is limited - if you have a fit for partners suit better to play there, if you dont, and you also dont havea suit worth bidding, you normally can pass safely and wait for a reopening dble. Bidding 2N tends to only float if partner has a weak nt, in which case you were probably doing better defending. Also, most people play 1N in thes auction as 8-11 eg 1h 1s 1N = 8-11, as you can pass with less, so you dont really need an invitational 2N bid there. If they have overcalled at the 2 level they normally have a decent enough suit to set up tha tit is unlikely you have cashing tricks in 2N unless partner has extras, so you can pass in safety.
The physics is theoretical, but the fun is real. - Sheldon Cooper
0

#14 User is offline   phil_20686 

  • Scotland
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 2,754
  • Joined: 2008-August-22
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Scotland

Posted 2010-November-08, 09:36

the biggest gain in the structure, imo, is the improved accuracy in sacrificing and dbling. Esp at matchpoint, as partner shows a high odr or low odr raise. Thus you can judge to defend more accurately. Also, they use fit jumps to all levels, and of purely defined strength, which is a big improvement. Am less sure of the value of the non-jump fit bids. In auctions like 1h 2s 3c, they advocate that 3c shows a limit raise in hearts with a clubsuit ( may be 4 cards) with the aim of both improving partners lead. It means you ahve to pass with hands like
Kxx
x
xx
KQJTxxx

but they argue its right on frequency, and I am not really in a position to argue with them :)
The physics is theoretical, but the fun is real. - Sheldon Cooper
0

#15 User is offline   straube 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 3,986
  • Joined: 2009-January-18
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver WA USA

Posted 2010-November-08, 12:08

View PostFree, on 2010-November-08, 09:32, said:

Yes, showing a 9th trumps is imo very important! Opener with a singleton knows he will be able to safely play a dummy reversal.
When we have a natural 2NT we Dbl (because of the limited openings we play optional doubles, not negative doubles). Even when playing a natural system, the natural 2NT is too rare to bother (and in this case we pass and hope partner doubles for takeout, so we can convert)


What do optional doubles show?
0

#16 User is offline   mgoetze 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 4,942
  • Joined: 2005-January-28
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Cologne, Germany
  • Interests:Sleeping, Eating

Posted 2010-November-08, 12:09

View Postphil_20686, on 2010-November-08, 09:36, said:

Am less sure of the value of the non-jump fit bids. In auctions like 1h 2s 3c, they advocate that 3c shows a limit raise in hearts with a clubsuit ( may be 4 cards) with the aim of both improving partners lead. It means you ahve to pass with hands like
Kxx
x
xx
KQJTxxx

but they argue its right on frequency, and I am not really in a position to argue with them :)


Please do not misrepresent the teachings of the masters. :P
They advocate this treatment only for passed hands, and if you are passing that hand initially, you obviously have different frequencies than they do.
"One of the painful things about our time is that those who feel certainty are stupid, and those with any imagination and understanding are filled with doubt and indecision"
    -- Bertrand Russell
0

#17 User is offline   straube 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 3,986
  • Joined: 2009-January-18
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Vancouver WA USA

Posted 2010-November-08, 12:12

View Postphil_20686, on 2010-November-08, 09:36, said:

the biggest gain in the structure, imo, is the improved accuracy in sacrificing and dbling. Esp at matchpoint, as partner shows a high odr or low odr raise. Thus you can judge to defend more accurately. Also, they use fit jumps to all levels, and of purely defined strength, which is a big improvement. Am less sure of the value of the non-jump fit bids. In auctions like 1h 2s 3c, they advocate that 3c shows a limit raise in hearts with a clubsuit ( may be 4 cards) with the aim of both improving partners lead. It means you ahve to pass with hands like
Kxx
x
xx
KQJTxxx

but they argue its right on frequency, and I am not really in a position to argue with them :)


Three clubs as a fit bid surprises me because the defenders are weak here. Are you sure you have that right? I think in general that Robson/Segal use non-jump fit bids by passed hands or when the opponents are strong (in which case they also are sometimes lead directing).

They do use 1H (2H) 3C as a fit bid. With real clubs they have to double or bid 2N (and I'm not sure how they continue after a 2N bid).

Best bidding book I've read in some time. It reminds me of Mansfield's Bridge World articles on high level bridge.
0

#18 User is offline   gnasher 

  • Andy Bowles
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 11,993
  • Joined: 2007-May-03
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London, UK

Posted 2010-November-08, 13:46

View Postphil_20686, on 2010-November-08, 09:32, said:

the number of times that you actually want to bid 2N is limited - if you have a fit for partners suit better to play there, if you dont, and you also dont havea suit worth bidding, you normally can pass safely and wait for a reopening dble. Bidding 2N tends to only float if partner has a weak nt, in which case you were probably doing better defending. Also, most people play 1N in thes auction as 8-11 eg 1h 1s 1N = 8-11, as you can pass with less, so you dont really need an invitational 2N bid there. If they have overcalled at the 2 level they normally have a decent enough suit to set up tha tit is unlikely you have cashing tricks in 2N unless partner has extras, so you can pass in safety.

You can't measure the benefits of a natural 2NT by how often you want to play there. A natural 2NT is useful because it describes your hand and helps you to reach the right contract.

If you jump to 3NT instead of bidding 2NT, you lose the ability to use the three level to investigate the right game. You also can't stop in three of opener's major.

If you pass instead of bidding 2NT, and opener backs in with a double, it's OK if you're happy to pass, but you may not be well placed otherwise.
1 2 pass pass
dbl pass 2NT
isn't usually played as natural, so there's no obvious way to show your invitational values in this sequence.

I'm not arguing against using 2NT as artificial here - I do so myself - but I don't think that the loss of 2NT is insignificant.
... that would still not be conclusive proof, before someone wants to explain that to me as well as if I was a 5 year-old. - gwnn
0

#19 User is offline   gnasher 

  • Andy Bowles
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 11,993
  • Joined: 2007-May-03
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:London, UK

Posted 2010-November-08, 16:04

View Postkenrexford, on 2010-November-07, 07:55, said:

This resulted in two strange discussions for me in Philadelphia.

One was just weird. I explained 2NT as "Three-piece or better limit raise." The opponents understood this as 3+ support with limit values. For some strange reason, my partner thought I was confusing and wigged out.

How was your partner able to read your explanation from the other side of the screen?
... that would still not be conclusive proof, before someone wants to explain that to me as well as if I was a 5 year-old. - gwnn
0

#20 User is offline   mikestar13 

  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Full Members
  • Posts: 637
  • Joined: 2010-October-27
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:San Bernardino, CA USA

Posted 2010-November-08, 16:26

RS is well-thought out method but I don't use it--like other LOTT-based methods, it clarifies the trump position for both sides, making competitive decisions easier for both sides. That's why I like some anti-LOTT methods like 1M-2M on three or four trumps opposite frequent four-card majors--the opponents are likely to make a mistake with their balancing decision. :) Not saying RS shouldn't be used--it's a fine method.
0

Share this topic:


  • 2 Pages +
  • 1
  • 2
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

1 User(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users