# BBO Discussion Forums: Interference after partner bids Stayman - BBO Discussion Forums

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## Interference after partner bids Stayman

### #1Wainfleet

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Posted 2020-June-30, 01:21

I open 1NT (weak), LHO passes and partner bid 2 Stayman. RHO bids 2.
Partner could have anything from a very strong hand down to a bust with 5-4 in the majors or 4441. What's the best way of dealing with this if you are at improver/low intermediate level?
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### #2Cyberyeti

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Posted 2020-June-30, 02:08

There are several approaches here, I would bid your major if you have one, then assign meanings to pass and double, I'd be inclined to say pass is a penalty double type thing, X is both majors.

If you pass, partner can make a takeout double if he'd pass a penalty double from you knowing you have a weak no trump, but pass if weaker.
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### #3Zelandakh

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Posted 2020-June-30, 03:57

As CY writes, there are a few methods around. One popular one is to use Pass to distinguish whether a stop is held in their suit:-

P = any hand with a stop
... - X = non-forcing re-ask
X = no stop, no 4cM
2M = no stop, 4+M
--

Another popular method is to use Pass and Double to distinguish between primary and :-

P = 4+, no 4cM
X = 4+, no 4cM
2M = 4+M
--

A less common method that I have seen is to use Pass and Double to distinguish between 4 and 5 card majors:-

P = any hand with a 4cM
... - X = re-ask
X = no 4cM
2M = 5M
--

But the most common is for X to show an interest in penalising 2 and Pass no 4cM without that interest:-

P = no 4cM, no strong holding
X = no 4cM, strong holding
2M = 4+cM
--

With a pick-up partner I would usually default to the last option; with a regular partner it is something to discuss at some point.
(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
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### #4Cyberyeti

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Posted 2020-June-30, 04:13

Zelandakh, on 2020-June-30, 03:57, said:

But the most common is for X to show an interest in penalising 2 and Pass no 4cM without that interest:-

P = no 4cM, no strong holding
X = no 4cM, strong holding
2M = 4+cM
--

With a pick-up partner I would usually default to the last option; with a regular partner it is something to discuss at some point.

This is fine if you don't play garbage stayman, but can totally snooker a partner with a bust when you double, particularly when they redouble. This is why I prefer to pass on the diamond hand.
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### #5Zelandakh

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Posted 2020-June-30, 06:42

Cyberyeti, on 2020-June-30, 04:13, said:

This is fine if you don't play garbage stayman, but can totally snooker a partner with a bust when you double, particularly when they redouble. This is why I prefer to pass on the diamond hand.

In this version Opener is only doubling to penalise, which presumably means they think it is a good bet opposite a weak 3352 hand. It is a bigger issue in Methods #1 and #3, where Pass and Double differentiate between a stopper or major length. A "few" years ago Method #1 is one that saw many recommendations on BBF but my impression is that there is currently much less enthusiasm for it. This may well be the reason for that. Method #3 is probably used primarily by pairs that do not use Stayman with weak hands or who play some form of Puppet. For the other 2 methods, the idea is that X shows enough in diamonds that it should be safe for Responder to pass with a weak 3-suited hand. The difference is then just in how -oriented a hand the pass promises. Your method, which I would have included if it had not been posted, trades that definition for being able to show both majors immediately. That is useful if the opps barrage over a 2 rebid, or if Responder holds a weak 4351/4360 hand. The main alternatives are better at penalising 2. So which is best might depend on how good and/or solid your opps are.

My view on this is pretty simple. The differences in practice produce vanishingly small differences in value so you might as well play what the less-experienced member of the partnership is comfortable with. Therefore I have listed the various options I can remember having seen without giving a recommendation while also answering the question as to what I would expect without discussion. If your experience is different and you think that the both majors X offers a big improvement then by all means offer up that feedback. My experience of playing it in a regular partnership was different - it was absolutely fine but not significantly better than other sensible agreements. The main thing is to have an agreement and not to get caught out.
(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
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### #6Cyberyeti

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Posted 2020-June-30, 08:07

Zelandakh, on 2020-June-30, 06:42, said:

In this version Opener is only doubling to penalise, which presumably means they think it is a good bet opposite a weak 3352 hand. It is a bigger issue in Methods #1 and #3, where Pass and Double differentiate between a stopper or major length. A "few" years ago Method #1 is one that saw many recommendations on BBF but my impression is that there is currently much less enthusiasm for it. This may well be the reason for that. Method #3 is probably used primarily by pairs that do not use Stayman with weak hands or who play some form of Puppet. For the other 2 methods, the idea is that X shows enough in diamonds that it should be safe for Responder to pass with a weak 3-suited hand. The difference is then just in how -oriented a hand the pass promises. Your method, which I would have included if it had not been posted, trades that definition for being able to show both majors immediately. That is useful if the opps barrage over a 2 rebid, or if Responder holds a weak 4351/4360 hand. The main alternatives are better at penalising 2. So which is best might depend on how good and/or solid your opps are.

My view on this is pretty simple. The differences in practice produce vanishingly small differences in value so you might as well play what the less-experienced member of the partnership is comfortable with. Therefore I have listed the various options I can remember having seen without giving a recommendation while also answering the question as to what I would expect without discussion. If your experience is different and you think that the both majors X offers a big improvement then by all means offer up that feedback. My experience of playing it in a regular partnership was different - it was absolutely fine but not significantly better than other sensible agreements. The main thing is to have an agreement and not to get caught out.

I don't understand your first comment, why would the opener doubling expect a 3352 opposite, a weak NT can almost never guarantee beating 2 on their own. The NTer's partner can easily reopen if the NTer passes if he has something, presumably with 2N available as something artificial.

The double showing both majors is particularly useful where the next hand bids 3 and responder is weakish but not bust (say 5-7) 54 in the majors, now they know bidding at the 3 level is very likely to be right. This can also occur if it goes 2-X-P-2-P-P-3 where if partner had bid 2 you wouldn't know about the double fit.
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### #7FelicityR

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Posted 2020-June-30, 15:54

With due respect gentlemen - Cyberyeti and Zelandakh - the poster, Wainfleet, has posted this in the Novice and Beginner Forum. So whilst your answers are both intriguing and can be used in good competition, they are probably, in my humble view, for the more intermediate plus/advanced player.

If indeed the auction has gone 1NT - Pass - 2 - 2 it still behoves the NT opener to mention a 4 or 5 card major suit at the two level and ignore the 2 interference. What new(ish) players need to understand is that responder is invariably in control of the auction here. Responder has asked a question through Stayman and opener must bid accordingly. Opener by opening 1NT has already limited their hand somewhat.

Assigning specific sequences for passing and doubling here is perhaps confusing the matter as, I believe, many players, even intermediates wouldn't have come across this topic at this level, and furthermore they would need a partner in tune with these specific bids and sequences, too.

So, to clarify, opener ignores the 2 bid and bids their major suit if they have one, and if they have 4/4 bids 2, the lower suit, here. And without a 4 or 5 card major, just passes.
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### #8Cyberyeti

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Posted 2020-June-30, 16:00

FelicityR, on 2020-June-30, 15:54, said:

With due respect gentlemen - Cyberyeti and Zelandakh - the poster, Wainfleet, has posted this in the Novice and Beginner Forum. So whilst your answers are both intriguing and can be used in good competition, they are probably, in my humble view, for the more intermediate plus/advanced player.

If indeed the auction has gone 1NT - Pass - 2 - 2 it still behoves the NT opener to mention a 4 or 5 card major suit at the two level and ignore the 2 interference. What new(ish) players need to understand is that responder is invariably in control of the auction here. Responder has asked a question through Stayman and opener must bid accordingly. Opener by opening 1NT has already limited their hand somewhat.

Assigning specific sequences for passing and doubling here is perhaps confusing the matter as, I believe, many players, even intermediates wouldn't have come across this topic at this level, and furthermore they would need a partner in tune with these specific bids and sequences, too.

So, to clarify, opener ignores the 2 bid and bids their major suit if they have one, and if they have 4/4 bids 2, the lower suit, here. And without a 4 or 5 card major, just passes.

Sorry, this is something you discuss when you form a partnership at whatever level. What pass and X mean in a scratch partnership are probably double shows diamonds and pass is a 2 response without major diamonds.
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### #9mycroft

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Posted 2020-June-30, 16:15

If you really want to be 'no memory load', then bid a major if you have one that you can bid at the 2 level; or pass otherwise, and find out what partner wants to do. You don't have to have a meaning for double (of course, it's always better if you do, but will you remember it in August when this happens again? Will partner? If the answer is "maybe not", then "opener's double Does Not Exist" is a preferable agreement).

It's nice to have an agreement - it's nice to have meta-agreements that allow you to "guess the same way" when there is no defined agreement. Newer players don't have these, and don't see a need for them. Some never do need them, as newer opponents aren't as "in your face" as The Rest Of Us, so it never comes up (for bridge values of "never"). When you do need them, you develop them, or ask (like here) about good suggestions.

Remember, though, the Bridge Maxims:
• "Always" means almost always;
• "Never" means "unless you know you're right" (and will take all the blame if you're wrong anyway);
• There's always more than "one right answer" to a system question (see 1)

When I go to sea, don't fear for me, Fear For The Storm -- Birdie and the Swansong (tSCoSI)
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### #10nige1

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Posted 2020-June-30, 18:07

Wainfleet, on 2020-June-30, 01:21, said:

I open 1NT (weak), LHO passes and partner bid 2 Stayman. RHO bids 2. Partner could have anything from a very strong hand down to a bust with 5-4 in the majors or 4441. What's the best way of dealing with this if you are at improver/low intermediate level?

After 1NT (Pass) 2 (2), assuming 2 is natural, and without prior discussion, IMO you should bid simply and naturally:
• Pass = NAT Denies a 4 card major.
• 2 = NAT 4 might have 4 .
• 2 = NAT 4 denies 4 .

For next time, you might also agree:
• Double = T/O Denies a stop but shows (43) or 44 in the majors, (to right side a major contract)

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### #11Zelandakh

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Posted 2020-July-01, 04:48

Cyberyeti, on 2020-June-30, 08:07, said:

I don't understand your first comment, why would the opener doubling expect a 3352 opposite, a weak NT can almost never guarantee beating 2 on their own.

We are discussing the case where Responder specifically holds a weak 3-suited takeout and 3352 was about the least favourable shape I came up with for that. Substitute 4441 if you prefer. It makes no difference to the point.

FelicityR, on 2020-June-30, 15:54, said:

With due respect gentlemen - Cyberyeti and Zelandakh - the poster, Wainfleet, has posted this in the Novice and Beginner Forum. So whilst your answers are both intriguing and can be used in good competition, they are probably, in my humble view, for the more intermediate plus/advanced player.

Well I personally do not equate N/B with stupid, so I usually try to present ideas even here when I feel it appropriate. In this case, I suggested what a default agreement might be and added other suggestions that I have seen at various times.

FelicityR, on 2020-June-30, 15:54, said:

So, to clarify, opener ignores the 2 bid and bids their major suit if they have one, and if they have 4/4 bids 2, the lower suit, here. And without a 4 or 5 card major, just passes.

mycroft, on 2020-June-30, 16:15, said:

If you really want to be 'no memory load', then bid a major if you have one that you can bid at the 2 level; or pass otherwise, and find out what partner wants to do.

You are both right that this is also great as a starting point and I feel a little bad that I did not include that option in my first post.

nige1, on 2020-June-30, 18:07, said:

For next time, you might also agree:
Double = T/O Denies a stop but shows (43) or 44 in the majors, (to right side a major contract)

I understand the idea of using X to show 4-4 in the majors and also to show one or both 4+cM without a stop. But I am not sure I really get why we would exclude (42) and 5cM hands. Does your X have any follow-up sequences?
(-: Zel :-)

Happy New Year everyone!
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### #12bluenikki

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Posted 2020-July-01, 05:10

Wainfleet, on 2020-June-30, 01:21, said:

I open 1NT (weak), LHO passes and partner bid 2 Stayman. RHO bids 2.
Partner could have anything from a very strong hand down to a bust with 5-4 in the majors or 4441. What's the best way of dealing with this if you are at improver/low intermediate level?

Of course, you mean RHO bids 2 natural.

And should say so for that level.
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### #13ibm386

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Posted 2020-July-01, 07:21

2, 2 with 4 major
pass-weak
dbl-strong (15PO or 14PO good)
simple the best!
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