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Cross-IMP pairs, ruling 1 EBU

#1 User is offline   VixTD 

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Posted 2019-March-05, 08:23

In a multi-session club cross-IMP pairs competition with nine-board rounds, converted to VPs:


I was called to this table after South had corrected the announcement of 2 a little late, after West had faced her opening lead and dummy had been spread. Their agreement was to play weak twos. I told them to continue playing and call me back at the end of the round.

West said she would not have led anything different given a correct explanation. Neither West nor East would have bid differently. East tried to interest me in what would have happened if North had bid according to their agreements, but I didn't feel that was relevant.

I tried asking South how he understood a 2 response to a weak 2 opening bid, but he didn't seem to understand. All he could say was "Well, he can't bid 2, the only asking bid he's got is 2NT". I suggested that he could bid 2 if he wanted, just as he could bid 3, or 3, or anything else, if he didn't want to use the "asking bid", but I couldn't get through to him.

I think a lot of club players don't discuss whether a change of suit after a weak two is forcing or not, and (regrettably) the tempo of the response is used unconsciously to decide whether to continue bidding or not.

Result: 4(S)=.

In the end I didn't think South was likely to pass 2, so I didn't adjust the score. Do you think I was right?
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#2 User is offline   StevenG 

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Posted 2019-March-05, 08:56

View PostVixTD, on 2019-March-05, 08:23, said:

I think a lot of club players don't discuss whether a change of suit after a weak two is forcing or not, and (regrettably) the tempo of the response is used unconsciously to decide whether to continue bidding or not.

For a lot of club players, a change of suit after a weak two is an impossible bid.
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#3 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2019-March-05, 09:29

View PostStevenG, on 2019-March-05, 08:56, said:

For a lot of club players, a change of suit after a weak two is an impossible bid.

I think most inexperienced responders use it to attempt to get to a better contract because they have 0-1 cards in opener's suit. I've seen novice auctions like 2 - 2 - 3 - 4 because responder is something like 5=0=3=5. No amount of explaining "When you know you have a misfit, get out early" will get through to them.

But you're right that opener usually has no clue. So asking South what 2 means is usually fruitless.

#4 User is online   gordontd 

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Posted 2019-March-05, 10:14

View PostVixTD, on 2019-March-05, 08:23, said:


In the end I didn't think South was likely to pass 2, so I didn't adjust the score. Do you think I was right?

I don't think the information that partner thinks you have a strong hand suggests bidding on rather than passing.
Gordon Rainsford
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#5 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2019-March-05, 12:01

View PostStevenG, on 2019-March-05, 08:56, said:

For a lot of club players, a change of suit after a weak two is an impossible bid.


In which case I would think that the Logical Alternatives are Pass or perhaps 3, not the repetition of a suit we have already described as 6-card according to our agreements.
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#6 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2019-March-05, 12:33

What was led ? If it was a club, it's very likely that if the auction went something like 2-2-3-4-4 would dissuade that. I think 2N is a candidate bid also to show 1633, this will attract a 3N response where they probably play.

I'd like to see what their system is over 2-2N also, if 2 is impossible "I think he must have meant to bid 2N" is not a ridiculous reaction.

It's a pretty odd 2 bid over a STRONG 2, most people require 5 for this.
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#7 User is offline   paulg 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 02:52

View PostCyberyeti, on 2019-March-05, 12:33, said:

It's a pretty odd 2 bid over a STRONG 2, most people require 5 for this.

Herbert Negatives also popular in the clubs ... which people also play without discussing what to do with spades.
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#8 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 09:05

View Postpaulg, on 2019-March-06, 02:52, said:

Herbert Negatives also popular in the clubs ... which people also play without discussing what to do with spades.

I've never even heard of Herbert Negatives, is that a US vs. UK thing?

#9 User is online   gordontd 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 09:21

View Postbarmar, on 2019-March-06, 09:05, said:

I've never even heard of Herbert Negatives, is that a US vs. UK thing?

From Bridgeguys "Herbert Negatives developed by Mr. Walter Herbert, formerly of Austria and then of San Diego, California, and who became the Director and also Conductor of the San Diego Opera."
Gordon Rainsford
London UK
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#10 User is offline   paulg 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 10:38

View Postbarmar, on 2019-March-06, 09:05, said:

I've never even heard of Herbert Negatives, is that a US vs. UK thing?

Herbert Negatives, the bidding of the next suit to show a negative response, was associated with Acol Two bids. If you've only ever played weak two bids then it is unsurprising you've never heard of them, although I've seen the term used in the sense of a second negative after a two clubs opener, two diamonds negative, suit bid.
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#11 User is online   gordontd 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 10:40

View Postpaulg, on 2019-March-06, 10:38, said:

Herbert Negatives, the bidding of the next suit to show a negative response, was associated with Acol Two bids. If you've only ever played weak two bids then it is unsurprising you've never heard of them, although I've seen the term used in the sense of a second negative after a two clubs opener, two diamonds negative, suit bid.

Also used in response to a takeout double.
Gordon Rainsford
London UK
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#12 User is offline   weejonnie 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 12:01

With regard to the OP. If NS have an agreement that North will only either bid 2NT, raise hearts (or possibly bid 4NT/ 4C asking for aces) then South knows something has gone wrong. Since Law 16 specifically refers to the methods used by the partnership then I think I would have to allow the rebid - although it feels at first glance like 'unauthorised panic'.

South would have to be very convincing though! "You have shown 6 hearts - suppose your partner has 7, 8 or 9 spades, do you have any way for him to show them?"
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#13 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 12:54

View Postgordontd, on 2019-March-06, 10:40, said:

Also used in response to a takeout double.


And over 2-2-new suit (Herbert 2nd negative)
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#14 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 13:08

View Postweejonnie, on 2019-March-06, 12:01, said:

With regard to the OP. If NS have an agreement that North will only either bid 2NT, raise hearts (or possibly bid 4NT/ 4C asking for aces) then South knows something has gone wrong. Since Law 16 specifically refers to the methods used by the partnership then I think I would have to allow the rebid - although it feels at first glance like 'unauthorised panic'.

South would have to be very convincing though! "You have shown 6 hearts - suppose your partner has 7, 8 or 9 spades, do you have any way for him to show them?"


Everything suggests that South is not aware of Law 16 or of his agreements or of hid partners' explanation or what his partner's bid may mean or even what planet he is on.
I can hardly see him being convincing in front of this question.
Are you allowed to ask why he opened 2 with a hand which K&R rates as 12.8 ? :)
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#15 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2019-March-06, 14:37

View Postpescetom, on 2019-March-06, 13:08, said:

Everything suggests that South is not aware of Law 16 or of his agreements or of hid partners' explanation or what his partner's bid may mean or even what planet he is on.
I can hardly see him being convincing in front of this question.
Are you allowed to ask why he opened 2 with a hand which K&R rates as 12.8 ? :)


Because I have an ace, king, queen and jack and that adds to 10 and we play 6-10. tbf because of the 6 card suit most 10 counts with no singleton or doubleton honour will show >10 on K&R I suspect
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#16 User is offline   etha 

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Posted 2019-March-07, 04:39

Reminds me of a comment 30 odd years ago from a student. "The only reason to play strong 2's is so you can psych them with a weak 2".
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#17 User is offline   VixTD 

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Posted 2019-March-07, 12:17

View Postgordontd, on 2019-March-05, 10:14, said:

I don't think the information that partner thinks you have a strong hand suggests bidding on rather than passing.

I think you're right about this, but I didn't get that far with my thinking because I didn't think he'd pass anyway.
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#18 User is offline   VixTD 

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Posted 2019-March-07, 12:20

View Postweejonnie, on 2019-March-06, 12:01, said:

If NS have an agreement that North will only either bid 2NT, raise hearts (or possibly bid 4NT/ 4C asking for aces) then South knows something has gone wrong. Since Law 16 specifically refers to the methods used by the partnership then I think I would have to allow the rebid - although it feels at first glance like 'unauthorised panic'.

South would have to be very convincing though! "You have shown 6 hearts - suppose your partner has 7, 8 or 9 spades, do you have any way for him to show them?"

That's what I thought was interesting about the ruling. How far do you believe that a new suit reponse to a weak two is impossible, rather than just unusual?
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#19 User is offline   barmar 

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Posted 2019-March-07, 15:51

View Postgordontd, on 2019-March-06, 09:21, said:

From Bridgeguys "Herbert Negatives developed by Mr. Walter Herbert, formerly of Austria and then of San Diego, California, and who became the Director and also Conductor of the San Diego Opera."



View Postpaulg, on 2019-March-06, 10:38, said:

Herbert Negatives, the bidding of the next suit to show a negative response, was associated with Acol Two bids. If you've only ever played weak two bids then it is unsurprising you've never heard of them, although I've seen the term used in the sense of a second negative after a two clubs opener, two diamonds negative, suit bid.



View Postgordontd, on 2019-March-06, 10:40, said:

Also used in response to a takeout double.



View PostCyberyeti, on 2019-March-06, 12:54, said:

And over 2-2-new suit (Herbert 2nd negative)


All these replies are from people in the UK. That supports my notion that this is something more well known on that side of the pond. Even though Herbert himself moved to the US, I don't think the convention (or at least the name) caught on here. I'll bet I would stump 90% of my bridge friends if I asked them what it is.

#20 User is offline   paulg 

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Posted 2019-March-08, 02:19

View Postbarmar, on 2019-March-07, 15:51, said:

All these replies are from people in the UK. That supports my notion that this is something more well known on that side of the pond. Even though Herbert himself moved to the US, I don't think the convention (or at least the name) caught on here. I'll bet I would stump 90% of my bridge friends if I asked them what it is.

The replies are also from people of a certain age in the UK. I doubt that any of my juniors have heard of them either.
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