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Missed game and even slam spades

#21 User is offline   helene_t 

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Posted 2018-September-13, 00:48

Robots are very conservative as responders. They will generally just invite with 12 and make a weak bid with 10. As opener, you therefore have to accept invites unless you are absolutely rock bottom. This may of course be different with your human partners.

GIB or not GIB, strong notrump players respond a bit more conservatively than weak notrump players because they have to cater to opener having a balanced 12. This may also be something to get used to when you come from an Acol background.

Three aces are great for suit contracts. They are worth more than 12 points.
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#22 User is offline   thepossum 

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Posted 2018-September-13, 21:17

View Postthepossum, on 2018-September-11, 20:41, said:

Hi all

Just playing a few robot IMP hands and was dealt this

Even though I had 3 aces and 14 points I didn't like my trump suit much. The robot jumped to 3S and I should at least have bid 4S which is what almost everyone else did. And most of them made all 13 tricks, but that was due to the wrong lead by the robot. C lead clearly stops slam. There are really only 11 safe tricks I think. My play was bad and I only made 10 but thats a different matter. If I had that hand by the robot I think I would have bid something stronger than a 3S limit because of the good trumps, the long diamonds and the two short suits.

Anyway, I would be interested for any thoughts on this hand. Seemingly nobody else saw the slam to bid it so its probably too risky to bid because of the C losers.

I need to improve bidding and lay to avoid missing this but I think the response could have been stronger too

regards P

Thanks all for the wonderful discussion on this hand and the play. Interesting to see there were different opinions on the 3S bid. Obviously some comes down to style. I should play closer to the rules instead of trying to deviate too much from counts I guess however I used to play quite well a long time ago using ACOL with a different approach and am now learning 2/1. Approach to point counting, limit bids, game force/invitation, law of total tricks (used by robot) and many other conventions. I'm learning some new ones as I go. I think if I had been responder I would have bid something game forcing rather than invitational, or jumped to game myself. 2D, 4H, 4S appeal as possible bids. I think the responder hand is nice enough to be thinking that there may even be a slam opposite the right opener so its up to responder to pass on that good news. But that is my style :)

#23 User is offline   rmnka447 

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Posted 2018-September-13, 23:39

When partner makes a limit raise promising 4 trump and 10-11 value, you should almost always accept the invitation unless you have a really mangy opener with a terrible trump suit (maybe something like Qxxxx). The extra trump in responder's hand tends to reduce trump losers by 1 which is often critical to enabling game to be made.

On the actual hand asked about, the hand has 14 HCP with 3 1/2 quick/defensive tricks. That's at the maximum end of the minimum opener range in point count, but the number of quick tricks is a lot more than the typical 2 quick trumps. So this is a hand you should always accept the invitation on.

Even though you hold a maximum minimum hand, slam is normally out of the question. Opposite a limit raise, opener has to have a big hand, typically 17-18 HCP and/or with lots of playing strength. So, I'd be surprised if any top notch players would even think about exploring for slam with it.

In this case, the only reason 7 was made was because the robot made a terrible lead, trump broke evenly, and sit favorably. At a table with real people, the K would be a normal lead from most players.

I concur with the book recommendations made by others on card play. They will help you a lot.

One of the things they will teach is developing a plan of how to play the hand. Often, this will include setting up one hand or the other to take the remaining tricks. In NT contracts, this often involves setting up the small cards in your long suits as winners by taking or forcing out all the higher cards in the suit and then being able to cash the remaining small cards. In suit contracts, once the opponents trumps are removed, you can often similarly set up one of the hands with the added bonus that sometime you can use the trumps in one of the hands to ruff out any remaining winners the opponents have in the long suit.

So a good question to ask yourself as you try to formulate a plan of play for the hand BUT before you play any card is "What hand am I trying to set up?" Most of the time, the answer to that question will point the way as to how to play the hand. And sometimes, the answer might even be "neither" and you'll have to figure something else out.

For this hand, you've got all the high trump with 9 total trump and a 6-2 fit in with the A and K. So the answer to the question is "Set up the dummy." The robot has led a trump for you and both opponents follow. Only 2 trump remain, when you draw a 2nd round of trumps both follow and the opposing trump are gone.

Next, you can go about setting dummy's long tricks in . Usually you cash the winner in the hand with less cards in the suit first. So you play the A next. You have two ways to continue to play . You can lead the spot card from your hand and finesse the J. Or, you can lead the spot and cash the K and try to ruff out the Q. As it turns out, either method works on this hand. If the finesse would have lost, you could be held to 10 tricks by a switch. If broke 4-1, the finesse would let you set up easier. In any case both opponents follow to the first 2 tricks and the Q is the only remaining in the opponent's hands.

If you finessed, you can now cash the K capturing the Q and cash 3 more tricks in dummy, giving you the opportunity to pitch 4 cards from your hand. Likewise, if you played K on the 2nd trick, you can ruff a in hand which ruffs out the Q and now have 3 good tricks to pitch cards from your hand. You can get back to dummy by playing A and ruffing a in dummy.

In either case, you should pitch the 3 in your hand on the s and you will be able to ruff dummy's 2 remaining with the trumps in your hand making 13 tricks.

#24 User is offline   TylerE 

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Posted 2018-September-14, 10:48

Playing with GIB I upgrade pretty much 100% of my decent/good 14s to a 15-17 NT opening.

#25 User is offline   apollo1201 

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Posted 2018-September-14, 12:04

View Postmiamijd, on 2018-September-12, 23:06, said:

. The bots' limit raises are generally very heavy; they bid 3M with hands that should either bid 2NT, splinter, or else just go to 4S.

Do NOT adopt this strategy, however, over 3-card limit raises (i.e., 1NT followed by a jump to 3M). There, the bots' evaluation is more normal, and is even on the aggressive side.

So true!!😮

#26 User is offline   dokoko 

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Posted 2018-September-18, 06:08

1-3 is a very simple bid. It asks whether you have more than minimum or not. Here you obviously have more.

As long as you don't get this simple answer right, don't care about slam. Sorry if I am a bit harsh, but if you want to improve you should work on the basics. Once you have reached a reasonable level in your competitive and game bidding you may try to bid slams. I know it's fun to do some extraordinary things, but this is not the way to get better.

BTW: Before you talk (or write) about a hand, have at least a second look on it. Talking about slam with two fast club losers is ridiculous.

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