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4-card majors Continuations

#1 User is offline   MickyB 

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Posted 2012-September-03, 18:56

1H = 4+cards [includes any 11-13 NT with 4, otherwise will have 5+]

Any thoughts on continuations? I am aware that the Hacketts play 1M:2C as nat GF or a 3-card limit raise, which seems reasonable, but I am interested in what else is out there.
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#2 User is offline   Quantumcat 

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Posted 2012-September-03, 22:53

I think there's a good reason why Acol uses a weak notrump. If you open 1 of a suit, if you don't have any nice distribution, you at least have some HCP to make up for it. If responder raises opener's major with three cards, opener can always rebid 2NT with a good balanced hand, and if not so good, having 15-16 HCP should help the 4-3 fit to make. However if you could have a weak notrump, you won't ever be able to make an invite when you have the balanced hand, and you will end up playing a lot of 4-3 fits with weak balanced hands. This can be a good thing, if you are confident with 4-3 fits and enjoy making the opponents guess whether they should balance or not, but if you are scared of difficult 4-3 fits then not so good.
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#3 User is offline   semeai 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 00:35

It seems that you could just play 1NT semi-forcing as over a 5 card major opening since you can just pass with all those 4 card major hands. Your choice whether minimum balanced 5-card major hands should pass 1NT or bid on.

Then you can put the 3-card limit raises in 1NT if you want. If not, you do need to keep them in 2 or so I'd think, since you don't want to be getting to the 3-level with a 4-3 fit and less than game values.

Now 2/1 is game forcing and you can go simple or complex. For a really simple approach you can just have 2NT confirm a 4 card major and bid 2M with 5 cards no extras (even bal) or single suited. With this approach, your choice what should happen with 17-19 bal, 5M: put them in 2M, 3NT, or add them to 2NT.

***

The really interesting part is dealing with competitive auctions, of course. I mostly ignored the discussion of strong NT + 4 card majors in Robson and Segal when I read it, but they had some good suggestions I seem to recall.
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#4 User is offline   Zelandakh 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 03:02

Assuming your NT range is 14-16, could you not simply play 2/1 here with a semi-forcing NT? Of course there are lots of other possible approaches too. I agree with semeai that there is more difference for this system in competition than when the opponents pass.
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#5 User is offline   MickyB 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 10:04

View PostQuantumcat, on 2012-September-03, 22:53, said:

I think there's a good reason why Acol uses a weak notrump. If you open 1 of a suit, if you don't have any nice distribution, you at least have some HCP to make up for it.


You have to be very careful with this sort of analysis. It's better to break it down by how well you do on handtypes [weak NTs, strong NTs and unbal hands].

4cM weak NT is the worst of the mainstream systems, it has few advantages over 5cM weak NT, especially if you open the minor with 4M4m. 4cM strong NT certainly has its drawbacks but it at least has a point - open 1M frequently on weakish hands and try to preempt oppo.

Anyway, this isn't really relevant to the system I'm working on, which isn't pure 4cM anyway. Coming to a vugraph near you soon :rolleyes:
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#6 User is offline   hrothgar 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 10:10

View PostMickyB, on 2012-September-04, 10:04, said:

You have to be very careful with this sort of analysis. It's better to break it down by how well you do on handtypes [weak NTs, strong NTs and unbal hands].

4cM weak NT is the worst of the mainstream systems, it has few advantages over 5cM weak NT, especially if you open the minor with 4M4m. 4cM strong NT certainly has its drawbacks but it at least has a point - open 1M frequently on weakish hands and try to preempt oppo.

Anyway, this isn't really relevant to the system I'm working on, which isn't pure 4cM anyway. Coming to a vugraph near you soon :rolleyes:


The only "recent" material that I've seen published on major suit raise structures for 4 card major based systems is a book titled "Major Suit Raises the Scanian Way".

http://shop6.mailord...asp?number=3389

Even this is 20 odd years old...

FWIW, I liked the methods and even switched to a 14-16 NT to take full advantage of them...
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#7 User is offline   MickyB 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 10:12

View PostZelandakh, on 2012-September-04, 03:02, said:

Assuming your NT range is 14-16, could you not simply play 2/1 here with a semi-forcing NT? Of course there are lots of other possible approaches too. I agree with semeai that there is more difference for this system in competition than when the opponents pass.


Yup some form of 2/1 and semi-forcing NT is almost certainly the way to go, unlike 15-17 NT and 4cM which doesn't really work with GF 2/1s unless you open very soundly on unbal hands. I'm mainly just annoyed that my preferred variant of 2/1 GF except rebid doesn't seem to work as well playing 4cM [6m4S invites can't bid 1H:2m, blah:3m if 4-4 majors has to rebid 2NT, and 1H:2C, 2S as 44+ doesn't feel best].
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#8 User is offline   semeai 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 10:22

View PostMickyB, on 2012-September-04, 10:12, said:

Yup some form of 2/1 and semi-forcing NT is almost certainly the way to go, unlike 15-17 NT and 4cM which doesn't really work with GF 2/1s unless you open very soundly on unbal hands. I'm mainly just annoyed that my preferred variant of 2/1 GF except rebid doesn't seem to work as well playing 4cM [6m4S invites can't bid 1H:2m, blah:3m if 4-4 majors has to rebid 2NT, and 1H:2C, 2S as 44+ doesn't feel best].


Just bid like most Americans do now: 1M-3x invitational, and with your 4S-6m hand start with 1S and sort it out later with xyz if partner bids 1NT or cry if partner bids 2om.

I'm sympathetic, though. Not getting to play your preferred way is certainly annoying.

Added: If it's 4S-6D, you can tweak things so 1H-1S;2C-----[something]-----3D means this hand, so with some work you only cry if you have 4S-6C [and fewer than 2 hearts] and it goes 1H-1S;2D.
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#9 User is offline   semeai 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 12:58

View Postsemeai, on 2012-September-04, 10:22, said:

Just bid like most Americans do now: 1M-3x invitational, and with your 4S-6m hand start with 1S and sort it out later with xyz if partner bids 1NT or cry if partner bids 2om.

I'm sympathetic, though. Not getting to play your preferred way is certainly annoying.

Added: If it's 4S-6D, you can tweak things so 1H-1S;2C-----[something]-----3D means this hand, so with some work you only cry if you have 4S-6C [and fewer than 2 hearts] and it goes 1H-1S;2D.


Introducing the worst fix ever:

1H-2S = 4S, 5+C (if only 5C, then less than 2H), invitational. Call it "(Reverse Flannery)++" or maybe "Half Reverse Muiderberg" or "Half Frelling."
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#10 User is offline   PhilKing 

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Posted 2012-September-04, 16:37

2 two-way is best, I think, since it provides enough room to stop at the 2-level with the good 3-card raise without unduly interfering with 2/1.

I introduced the Hacketts to this gadget in 1995, but they play inefficient continuations ...

Best is 2 "bucket" including 1) 11-13 bal, 2) natural or 3) a bad raise to 3. The essence of the structure is that the unbalanced raise simply punts game over anything other than 2 leaving other sequences untainted.

Over 2, responder bids 2M with the 10-11 unbal 3M raise, 2OM as a relay etc.

One could create more ways of stopping below game, but if you aren't happy to punt a few thin ones when both players have a 5431 10-11 count, then I doubt a Hackett-style system is for you.

Also, you should include 10-bad 11 HCP bal with 4 trumps in the 2 response, since you definitely want to stop low opposite the 11-13 bal.
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