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Is the Multi 2 Worth it?

#1 User is offline   32519 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 01:08

The Multi 2 is often the subject of much criticism, including but not limited to -
1.) Most Multi's are a weak 2 in a major. When your major is , LHO is now still able to show a suit on the 2 level. The pre-emptive effect of a weak 2 bid is lost.
2.) The strong balanced hand pattern can be bid with a natural 2NT.
3.) Freeing up the 2NT bid to show both minors 5-10 HCP has also been questioned. Information is given to the opponents on the hand layout and HCP distribution making it easier for them to balance and/or the subsequent play of the hand.
4.) The 4441 hand pattern with 17-24 HCP is so rare that many users of the Multi don't even have it as an option in their 2 structure.

POLL:
1.) What are your thoughts on the Multi?
2.) If you don't use it, what do you use the 2 bid for?
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#2 User is offline   EricK 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 01:51

Against well-prepared opponents, it causes fewer problems than natural weak 2s would (as they have extra room, and an extra round of bidding). Against poorly prepared opponents it will probably give you a few extra good scores!

I use 2 as a weak 2 in . Pre-empts in a minor are surprisingly effective. For instance, if LHO is 5-3 in the majors, he can overcall in his longer one and risk missing a fit in the other, or make a take out double and risk ending up in the wrong major. This is especially true at the 3 and 4 level, but still true at the 2 level.
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#3 User is offline   rhm 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 03:35

View Post32519, on 2011-October-22, 01:08, said:

The Multi 2 is often the subject of much criticism, including but not limited to -
1.) Most Multi's are a weak 2 in a major. When your major is , LHO is now still able to show a suit on the 2 level. The pre-emptive effect of a weak 2 bid is lost.
2.) The strong balanced hand pattern can be bid with a natural 2NT.
3.) Freeing up the 2NT bid to show both minors 5-10 HCP has also been questioned. Information is given to the opponents on the hand layout and HCP distribution making it easier for them to balance and/or the subsequent play of the hand.
4.) The 4441 hand pattern with 17-24 HCP is so rare that many users of the Multi don't even have it as an option in their 2 structure.

POLL:
1.) What are your thoughts on the Multi?
2.) If you don't use it, what do you use the 2 bid for?

The truth is that it depends.
Sometimes opponents gain because a 2 bid is a lower preempt.
The uncertainty of preemptor's suit cuts both ways.
Partner may not know immediately about a major suit fit or misfit, but neither do both opponents know for sure what major preemptor has and have no obvious cue-bid in opponents suit available.

The 2 may or may not be less effective than a weak two in the suit, but it frees 2 and 2 for other purposes.
Whether to pack other hands into the Multi is a completely separate question.

Rainer Herrmann
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#4 User is offline   the hog 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 04:15

I use it. I like it.
You don't have to use 2NT for the minors, nor do you have to include strong options in the Multi/ I must admit I do prefer 2H as weak in either major and 2D as Wilkosz.
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#5 User is offline   ggwhiz 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 08:41

I don't know enough about it but read an interesting thread on opening 2/ to show 10-14 with a 6 bagger.

The ability to play that in conjuction with multi may be the big gain as it seems popular with many strong pairs and has a good structure. I don't play it but defending a multi comes easily and defending against this gives me fits. Of course, playing against strong pairs does too.

I recall Kaplan(?) saying that the big advantage to playing a weak notrump is when you open 1 of a suit.
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#6 User is offline   awm 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 11:22

I like the weak-only version. Basically:

(1) You come out slightly behind when you open multi instead of a weak two against a good pair. However, most of us play quite a number of boards against weaker players and/or unpracticed partnerships, of which there are many even in national/international-level open events. Multi is a huge winner against weaker pairs. In a pairs event especially, multi is probably a net win over opening weak twos, and in any case it's not a big long-term loss.
(2) You free up the 2M bids for another meaning. This is where the big wins come from (especially against decent opponents). Personally I like the intermediate twos, which can really put the screws to opponents (who must guess whether to come in with a strong notrump hand for example, in an auction where they are a level higher than the field and extremely vulnerable to a penalty double). This approach also simplifies your bidding after 1M by taking the minimum one-suiter out as a hand type.
(3) You lose the weak two in diamonds, which is more effective than some people make it out to be.... but you are basically gaining two intermediate twos (2M) in exchange for one weak two (2D) which should be a net win (especially since they should be close to equal in frequency).
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#7 User is offline   Flameous 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 12:39

I agree with Hog that I prefer Wilkoz and multi 2H, but I think that normal multi (especially without strong options) also gives you significant advantages.
It simply comes from that you can open more weak hands with descriptive _enough_ bid. Every bid you use to take room away from opps is good.
Sure you lose compared with W2 opening compared with Multi opening, but multi gives you two weak openings more, and I think it gives you the advantage.

I must admit that playing W2 so that you open it most of the time with 5-4 might make up for it, sure your partner knows less about your hand but so does opps. But it's hard thing to measure, and I prefer to take my constructive gains until someone shows otherwise.
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#8 User is offline   Free 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 13:33

Didn't we have a huge thread about this 1 or 2 months back where we compared the weak two's vs multi. With a weak two you can better open 2M, but the multi has advantages when you don't have a weak two. Most people seemed to agree that you shouldn't include strong versions in the multi to get the best results. I like the weak-only multi.
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#9 User is offline   glen 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 13:47

At top levels, one has to question whether a weak two in a major is necessary. For example the second pair in the Bermuda Bowl Butlers (after 21 rounds) do not play a weak two in a major when not vulnerable. For Fantunes, they have no weak two, and for transnational teammates Meckwell, the opening one bids are so light that the weak two does not get bid that much. Certainly the weak two can get a partnership quickly to 4M, but it can also get the opponents into 3NT playing double dummy.

For further on my opinions on this, please see page 3 of:

http://www.bridgematters.com/6mia.pdf
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#10 User is offline   1eyedjack 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 14:05

You can split your ranges for weak 2 openers. And you can split your ranges of strong balanced 2N hands. The latter point of of marginal utility on frequency grounds. Of just a couple of points I am convinced from practice: Using it as a weak 2 in Diamonds is a waste. Using it as a strong 2 in Diamonds is a waste (actually I think less of a waste than a weak 2 in Diamonds). Using it as a random strong 2 (Benji style) is, well, random. Gotta be something better for it.

Others like Mexican. Not for me, though.
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#11 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 16:29

The great think about this game is that there's room for almost everybody. :D
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#12 User is offline   nige1 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 16:43

Multi 2 is easy to defend but fun to play. The paranoia that it generates in the ACBL is puzzling. It has drawbacks but it does free up 2 and 2 for other purposes. For a long time, with Tsetse Club we've played Trypanosomiasis twos. Their main advantage is that they are so easy to counter that opponents are likely to fall asleep:
  • 2 = Nat 8-12 & 4+ & 4+ .
  • 2 = Multi 5-9 & 5+M or 16+ 4441.
  • 2/ = Nat 8-12 & 4 M & 5+ m.
  • 2N = Art 5-9 & 5+ & 5+ other.

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#13 User is offline   kenrexford 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 19:59

So many options seem better to me, depending on what seems best for system structure. Some of my favorite for 2D are...

Minors and 13-16
Strong with 4 or more spades
5S/4-5H 10-13
5S/4-5D 19-15

When I play multi I like Roman 2M.
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#14 User is offline   inquiry 

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Posted 2011-October-22, 20:13

Don't play multi 2 just to be playing it. You need a systemic reason, so that the gains from using 2 is related just as much, or perhaps even more, due to the other bids that you free up because you have the 2 bid available.

For me, i include three type hands in my multi 2. The typical weak two in one of the majors everyone does, the very strong balanced hand, and a very strong minor one suiter (9.5 to 10 tricks in hand).

Let me say that i don't use 2NT as natural, so having the balanced hand here is important to me. Let me further say that i don't open 2 with a two suiter (defined at two five card or longer suits), and I do open a "forcing 2" on some weaker than normal hands (a benjamin two type hand, 8, 8.5 tricks and a major one suiter is good enough). So if I open 2 and rebid a minor, it is game forcing, since this will be stronger than the minor one suiter that I included in multi 2. I PLAY ritong 2 rebid (after 1M) and to make this clear, i use 2H/2S to show minimum normal opening hand with the bid major and clubs, this frees up the 2 rebid by opener to be artificial and forcing (think like gazilli, but always strong).

i am note fond (sorry guys) of playing the weak only version of the multi-2. The weak two diamonds as a diamond suit is a horrible thing to give up for such a limited purpose. i am surprised the loss of a natural weak 2 wasn't mentioned in the original post.
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#15 User is offline   mgoetze 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 05:06

View Postinquiry, on 2011-October-22, 20:13, said:

Don't play multi 2 just to be playing it. You need a systemic reason, so that the gains from using 2 is related just as much, or perhaps even more, due to the other bids that you free up because you have the 2 bid available.


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#16 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 05:19

is the
Is the Multi 2 worth it?
worth it?
... and I can prove it with my usual, flawless logic.
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#17 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 08:25

In their excellent book Preempts from A to Z, Anderson and Zenkel suggest that while there are many possible uses of the 2 bid, most experts have tried them all, and gone back to the simple weak two. Paraphrasing, "It's kind of like toothpaste", they say. "You might try a new one once in a while, but you almost always go back to the one you grew up with".


That said, I've recently switched from the toothpaste I grew up with and used for many years to the one my dentist recommends. I'd tried it before, and switched back, but I think this time I'm going to stick with it. OTOH, I didn't have to convince anybody to go along with the change, whereas most of my bridge partners don't like changing the bidding system. :P
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#18 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 08:30

That is false. Most experts have not gone through all of them and definitely they didnt go back to natural. Just a 30 second look through the BB CCs will disprove that.
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#19 User is offline   Gerben42 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 09:55

I personally like Multi 2. Our 2-bid structure is:

2: W2 in or strongest opening
2: Multi
2: Weak 5+4+ majors
2: Weak 5+ 4+minor
2NT: 21 - 22

One advantage is here that the argument for a 4th seat Pass is even stronger without . Partner couldn't open a weak 2 or any 2-suiter with . Guess who has them...

Does it work? Well... Recently at a national in Germany we played a top team and in 12 boards they had two disasters against our Multi. So sometimes it DOES work.

One pair in the Netherlands BB team does play natural weak 2 bids. You will notice that this pair plays all nationals and probably doesn't bother to change their system for other tournaments where Multi is allowed. Before their American adventures they played a more Dutch style 2-bid structure.
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#20 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-October-23, 10:07

Gerben when did you chicken out of 2N 12-14? boooo
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