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weak NT players, help! 13-15 specifically

#1 User is offline   scoob 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 06:56

Currently we're using a very basic 2-way stayman, but the fact is that most of our 1NT opens contain no 4-card major, or only a raggy one.

I'm looking for some ideas on a replacement treatment.

Help?
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#2 User is offline   mike777 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 06:58

Almost no 4 card majors or only very poor ones?
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#3 User is offline   scoob 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 07:02

1 4-card major at most, and I can't see us every opening it NT unless it was honorless (because of other opening options).

That pretty much only leaves 5332 & 4432 shapes to work with, I guess.
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#4 User is offline   Chamaco 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 07:21

In an italian system strong-club-based, they open 1NT without 4cM and 1D with 4cM.

When they open 1NT without 4cM major, they use 2D asking for a 3 card Major and 2C as a relay to 2D to: 1) pass or correct to 2M with weak hands; or 2) for slam-oriented hands if responder rebids 2NT or higher.
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#5 User is offline   inquiry 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 07:31

You may want to consider playing invitational 2 with leaping jacoby.

What? you ask.

1NT -
  • 2C = stayman
  • 2H/2S = to play
  • 2NT = what ever you like, I would play as minor two suit (weak or strong). If minor two suiter weak, responder passes, if minor two suiter strong, responder bids above 3.
  • 3C = transfer to 3D
  • 3D = game force jacoby transfer....
  • 3H = game force jacoby transfer to spades
  • 3S = George Rosenkrantz CONFI thing
  • 3NT to play
  • [b]2D = some game invite (can be in either major, NT, or a minor). Use paradoc responses

In response to leaping jacoby, I use keycard showing responses. Complete transfer, 1 or 2 keycards (but maybe no fit), 3NT shows 3 keycards, doubleton, cue-bid cheapest ace = fit and four key cards.

In response to transfer to a minor, responder can pass, a new major by responder if GF and shows 4 cards in bid major and longer minor. Of course, responder may pass the transfer to play in the minor.

In response to 2, opener rebids are paradox... if he doesn't like heart (would not accept game try in hearts), he bids 2. If he would accept game try in hearts, he next decides if he would accept game try in spades, if the answer is no, he bids 2, if he would accept game try in both majors.... well you get the idea.... so, for instance...

1NT-2D
2H-Pass <<---- would be normal game try in heart opener rejects, responder accepts

1NT-2D
2H-3H <<---- Responder has a VERY VERY good game try in hearts and gives responder a second chance to accept.. and if you want to get cute....

1NT-2D
2S-3H <<---- Responder has a weakish game try, and is giving opener (who was going to reject game try in spades) a chance to change his mind. Usually parnters rejection of spades has scared responder on this auction.

These game tries include minor suits as well... responder can bid his minor if necessary to how that (after 2)....

Ben
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#6 User is offline   the hog 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 07:34

Hi Scoob,
I think you need to ask yourself why you are playing a weak NT. If it is to look after the garbage 12-14 (or so) hands, then I think you should consider opening 1N with all balanced hands in your range; that includes all 4432 4333 and 5332 shapes, even includng a 5 card Major. Now you may think that is unpalatable, BUT and this is a big BUT, I guarantee you that your bidding will gain greater accuracy because of when you don't open 1N. Think of the ramifications of failing to open 1N. You onow opener is unbalanced or out of that range. Believe me, this approach gains heaps in the auction!

Sure, you will sometimes play in an inferior contract, but you will gain more often than you lose. At least think about this approach.

Cheers
Ron
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#7 User is offline   inquiry 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 07:45

This sounds like MAtchpoint precison to me Ron...

The idea is if you open 1NT on those hands and the field starts 1C-1M-2M, they are in an eight card fit and you are likely to get a bad matchpoint score on the part score hands... of course what this theory overlooks is the preemptive value of 1NT.... it is better you in 1NT down one instead of 2H that could make, if it prevent the opponets from finding the 3/4Club contract that makes.... So I am not all that sure matchpoint precision allowing at most one four card major and that major must be weak to boot, is such a wonderful idea.

Ben
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#8 User is offline   the hog 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 07:51

I thought MP Precision was opening 1N with NO 4 card M.

Dis you read my post correctly Ben? I think scoob should open ALL 12-14 hands 5332 etc with 1NT. When playing a WNT we allow 5332 with a Major even
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#9 User is offline   luke warm 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 14:09

i think (naturally) like ron, all balanced hands in your range should be opened 1nt... that includes all 4432 and 5332 hands, major or no major

i probably put too much faith in the preemptive nature of the bid, but so far the plusses have outweighted the minuses... i only wish it came up more often :D
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#10 User is offline   jtfanclub 

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Posted 2004-October-19, 18:33

scoob, on Oct 19 2004, 07:56 AM, said:

Currently we're using a very basic 2-way stayman, but the fact is that most of our 1NT opens contain no 4-card major, or only a raggy one.

I'm looking for some ideas on a replacement treatment.

Help?

I like opening 1NT 12-15 with virtually all balanced hands (we don't use it with a 5 card major, but that's because we have rebids to handle that particular shape).

For matchpoints, you've often won simply by opening 1NT, as long as you don't invite. You can bid an unmakable 3NT and make it because you haven't told the opponents what to lead, and you can pass 1NT and make it because you're not at the 2 level like your opponents.

So I like having very few invitational bids, like Inquiry's system. If you force game with most 11 counts, and sign off with most 9 counts, you could do a lot worse.
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#11 User is offline   Gerben47 

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Posted 2004-October-20, 08:06

That makes me wonder if you get enough mileage out of your 1NT opening bid. I'd rather include hands with a 4-card major to

a) Preempt my opponents some more
<_< Relieve the pressure from other opening bids

So what's possible to do is to play 1NT as 11-15 and no 4-card major and 2C response as a range check (so 1D is unbalanced only) or to include 4M in the 1NT bid. The vague Precision 1D bid is a mess anyway, somehow you should take hands out of it.
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#12 User is offline   Antoine Fourrière 

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Posted 2004-October-21, 21:48

I am all for opening a weak notrump with a five-card major, but playing Precision, I would prefer to open 2 with both four-card majors, balanced or not, especially at matchpoints. It would retrieve many 4-4 fits and lead to quick, unrevealing sequences.
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#13 User is offline   Free 

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Posted 2004-October-22, 03:05

I don't care about opening 1NT with a 5 card M, it works as well as other 1NT openings. If I would ban a Major, it would only be s, with s you need the preemptive effect to keep opps out of 'their' s, and win the partscore battle.

In some systems however, it's not a good idea to open 1NT with 5-card Majors in them. My best example is MOSCITO. Since we have an agressive support structure, we want our 5-card Majors bid immediatly, otherwise the frequency of opening with a 5 card will become too low, and our raise structure will not work anymore...

Opening NT with 5-card Majors is a matter of style, prefference, and system. We had some threads about this, and nothing came out as the best. So don't start this discussion again plz...
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#14 User is offline   scoob 

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Posted 2004-October-22, 11:46

ok, i've yet to discuss it with my partner, but i'm fairly positive that he'll agree with keeping 4-card majors out of our 1NT open - but i appreciate your input on that matter all the same, and it will be kept under consideration.

in the meantime, this is what i've come up with:

------------------------------------------------------

1NT: 13-15hcp; balanced 4432/5332/4333 with no 4-card major

Responses:

2: GF with a 5-card major
2: NGF xfers
2: 4/4 minors; poor major stops
2NT: relay to 3c; pass or correct
3: GF with a unbalanced minor

After 2:

2: fragment
2: fragment
2NT: 3/3 majors

------------------------------------------------------

please feel free to rip into this structure mercilessly!
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#15 User is offline   jtfanclub 

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Posted 2004-October-22, 13:59

scoob, on Oct 22 2004, 12:46 PM, said:

After 2:

2: fragment
2: fragment
2NT: 3/3 majors

As long as you're doing Xfer responses, why not take it all the way and no longer have 2 be GF?

With 3-3 in the majors and 4333, you bid 2, not 2NT, with 3-3 in the majors 5332, bid 2NT with clubs and 3C with diamond. Then 3 of a major by responder is a strong invite, game is game, anything else is a slam invite and starts a cue sequence.
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#16 User is offline   Cowology 

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Posted 2004-October-24, 06:18

scoob, on Oct 22 2004, 12:46 PM, said:

1NT: 13-15hcp; balanced 4432/5332/4333 with no 4-card major

Responses:

2: GF with a 5-card major
2: NGF xfers
2: 4/4 minors; poor major stops
2NT: relay to 3c; pass or correct
3: GF with a unbalanced minor

After 2:

2: fragment
2: fragment
2NT: 3/3 majors

S'up Scoob! I wandered in here and your post just happend to be at the top. I read the entire thread and understand that you and your P don't wish to include 4CM, but I'll just go on the record as suggesting that you strongly consider it. Now that we got that out of the way, onto what you're asking for....

I'm unclear why you bother to waste the 2C bid. If you were playing 2H/2S as "drop dead" bids, then it would make some sense, but as long as you're transfering the responder will always have an opportunity to make a GF so you're use of 2C becomes redundant.

When I play with Charles we use 2S as size asking and 2NT as Baron to explore minor suit slams, but you could use 2C as a weaker version of Baron to isolate all minor suit fits.

In order to use Baron responder would need to have at least values to invite slam and at least 2-four card suits. Responding to Baron the Opener is requested to bid 4 card suits up the line.

If the Baron bidder does not have 4 of the suit opener bids, HE now bids HIS cheapest 4 carder (or NT if opener went past both suits).

If the Baron Bidder has 4 of the minor suit the opener bids he can do 1 of 2 things: He can bid 3NT. That shows mild slam interest, the equivelent of a raise of 1NT to 4NT in standard methods, AND it shows he has 4 of the minor Opener bids, since he MUST have 2-four card suits and if Opener did not hit his suit, he would of bid his higher one.

If Responder is stronger he RAISES the minor oper bids to 4. This confirms 4 card support and, as I and most people play, it asks for Key Cards, like RKC.

Examples: 1NT-2NT-3C-3NT

Responder has a hand with which he would of raised 1NT to 4NT in standard methods, but he has 2 4-card suits including Clubs. The opening NT bidder is invited to continue on if this is encouraging him to move towards slam.

1NT-2NT-3D-4D

Responder has a very strong hand with Diamond fit. Opener is now asked to show KC (4H = 0 or 3, 4S = 1 or 4, 4NT - 2 w/o Q, 5C = 2 wtih Q). After the KC response, 5D is NOT signoff, it asks for Kings.

1NT-2NT-3C-3D

NT oper has 4C, Baron bidder does NOT have 4C, he has 4D & higher ranking 4 card suit. If anyone bids 4NT at this point, it can be passed, since the Baron bidder had only the values to INVITE slam. And if Opener does not have 4 of the Baron Bidders D, he bids another 4 carder if he has one. If not, he bids NT. And if Opener has enough to accept, he does not bid 4NT, but he bids 6NT.

Another situation for Baron is as a 3S bid to 2NT. If opening 2NT bidder has minimum he bids 3NT. If he more, he bids 4 carders up the line. If Baron is invite only - pass 3NT.

We also use 2S as size asking bid.
If the opening NT bidder has minimum for his bid (13 or bad 14) he bids 2NT; if MORE then minimum he bids 3C.

NOW, 2S can be used for several purposes. It is how you being a minor suit sign off: the 2S bidder can pass 3C or correc to 3D with diamonds and a weak hand. Using these methods, it has been used in place of a raise to 2NT. Responder just passes if he intended to invite game and openers shows minimum by bidding 2NT. It can be used to replace standard quantitative raise to 4NT. Responder raises 2NT to 3NT. This has the obvoius advantage of keeping the contract 1 level lower.

AND, you can use major suit bids by the 2S bidder for the purpose you choose. Charles and I use them to show minor 2 suiters with slam interest. 1NT-2S-2NT-3C-3H = at least 5/5 in the minors with a singleton or void in hearts; 3S would be singlton or void in spades. But you can use them for another purpose if it suits your fancy.

AND we use jump response to 3H or 3S to show six card or longer major suit with slam interset and shortness somewhere. The openieng NT bidder must bid the next step (3S or 3NT) and responder then shows his shortness. The it's up to opener to judge whether the hands fit well enough and either bid the slam or sign off in 4 of the responders major, or possibly explore with a cuebid.

This goes along with JTB and Texas, as follows:

1NT - 4D or 4H (Texas transfer) shows, FOR THE MOMENT, no interest in slam. Opener just does what he is told, expecting responder to pass 4 of his major. That means that the sequence 1NT-2D-2H-4H or 1NT-2H-2S-4S is a mild slam try. Charles calls this "the Alaska sequence" (bigger then Texas). BUT, it shows no singleton or void, since with shortness, responder would have bid 3 of his major instead to begin with. Therefor, the NT bidder can know that none of his high cards are wasted opposite shortness in responders hand when he uses the Alaska sequence.

OK, back to Texas. IF responder wasts to ask for aces after a transfer, he MUST use Texas first. After the opening NT bidder bids 4 of the agreed major as directed, responder can now surprise him by bidding 4NT, which is RKC for the agreed suit.

Instead of 4NT over the major, responder can also bid a new suit. This is NOT a cuebid to SHOW a control, it is an ASKING BID. If the NT bidder has neither a first nor second round control, he bids 6 of the agreed major. If he has the guarded King, he bids 5NT. And if he has the asked about suit stopped dead, AK or AKQ, he can cue bid the suit at the 6 level.

Now, back to what you proposed. I'm to lazy to do this myself, but you could certainly try and adapt a weaker version of Baron (use GF values instead of Slam invite values) via a 2C bid. I supose you could use 2D to show C, H to show D and so on, or just use 2NT to show C, or possibly even just use 3C to show C. Then you can still employ all of your transfers, use 2S as size asking and then 2NT is free for whatever purpose you desire. You could still use it as a the version of Baron described here to search for slam or perhaps you could use it to show weaker 2 suited hands or whatever floats your boat.

-Hunter
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