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Defending against a 1NT overcall When partner has opened 1D natural/balanced

#1 User is offline   MickyB 

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Posted 2011-February-02, 03:36

Playing 1D as 11-13 balanced or 11+natural, what should responder's bids mean after a 1NT overcall? If 2C shows both majors, should 2D now be natural or "pick-a-major"? I guess the closest comparison would be with Precision, does anyone know how Meckwell play this, for example?

Thanks
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#2 User is offline   Free 

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Posted 2011-February-02, 04:01

We just ignore the 1 opening and play our regular defense to a 1NT opening (but Dbl = penalty).
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#3 User is offline   bluecalm 

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Posted 2011-February-02, 06:15

You cartainly need one bid for majors. Transfers are also very useful because they put overcaller on lead which is desirable.
So:

dbl = 9+, desire to penalize
2 = majors
2 = hearts
2 = spades
2 = clubs
2NT = either 2 minors or dynamic hand with 5 major and 5 minor (you correct partners 3m to 3M with that)
3 = diamonds
3 = hearts
3 = spades

This is from Martens, he comments:
1)transfers at 2 lever may contain invitational+ hands
2)transfers at 3 level are preemptive

This agreement gives up natural 2D bid which is not a lose because competing with weakish hands with diamonds is tactical mistake, it's better to hope to set 1NT. It's more difficult to find majors for them if we pass than if we bid 2D (according to Martens)

He gives the same agreemetns after natural 1. His point about trying to beat 1NT instead of competing in 2m still stands.
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#4 User is offline   Gerben42 

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Posted 2011-February-03, 14:21

I agree with Martens and bluecalm :)
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#5 User is online   awm 

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Posted 2011-February-04, 23:02

I disagree with Martens and Bluecalm.

In my opinion, playing transfers over the opponents notrump (opening or overcall) gives them too many ways into the auction. They can cuebid at the two-level, double the transfer directly, or pass and then bid/double later. This helps them a lot in sorting out their hand types, especially if they have decent agreements. On the other hand, the only real advantage of the transfers is putting the 1NT bidder on lead.. if this is such an advantage, then a natural diamond call (forcing them to play their 2M contract in the weak hand rather than transferring) must be a huge win! In fact I've often gotten good results from the diamond interference, not just because of "wrong-siding" their 2M but also because we can sometimes compete to the three-level, and because it makes it harder for opponents to describe complex hands.
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#6 User is offline   bluecalm 

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Posted 2011-February-05, 05:17

I just want to say that my opinion in this one isn't strong and I usually play 2 majors, rest natural.
I just wanted to quote Martens opinion which I find relevant to this thread.
I tend to agree with him but I haven't thought about it too much and I think awm may well right on this one.
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#7 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2011-February-07, 11:13

I don't know, AWM, I agree with you in general (but played transfer overcalls of NT in direct for 5 years, to great effect and enjoyment *), but in this case, with 12+16+some number (not necessarily <9, there are some hands where you Just Don't Want To Defend), the only "hands they have to work out" in this auction is "oh good, we didn't get doubled", "hard, but possible to compete", and "compete". The only advantage in this mode with transfers is "can double the transfer". In exchange, we get double the bids (so we can show "to play" vs "game bonus better than 1NTx", or even "two places to play, and we're going to get competed to 3 level anyway") *and* we hide the (at least in the "to play" case) strong, not necessarily balanced hand.

I haven't actually played this, but it does make sense.

* For one instance, sure you get "double the bids" after 1NT-2x Transfer, but we overcalled very aggressively, especially NV. You only get double the bids if you get to bid again, and the auction 1NT-2D (Alert-transfer)-p-p (what's that?-Partner's diamonds are better than my hearts) happened more than once. Also, we can psych the pass (although we never did). And it was worth it to have the NT opener on lead.

My favourite, though, were the ones who "took advantage" of not asking about the Alert. 1NT-2H!-2NT!-p; 3C!-p-3NT!. "What does 3NT mean?" "game strength, heart stopper." "Fascinating." -1 or -2 after 4th-best-spade lead.
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