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hideous bridge evening possibly my least enjoyable

#1 User is online   AL78 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 11:39

Random teams, a slip-up resulting in a 45 minute sitout because the movement had four teams playing and one sitting out, for a six board round, and a hand directional bias which had partner and I defending 13 out of the remaining 18 boards, all conspired to produce a -77 imps performance, a whopping 70 imps behind the next team, and a hideous embarassment as far as I was concerned.

There were two hands I, or we could have done better on in the bidding, and I'd be interested in your thoughts.

Hand 1:

We took it one off for an 11 imp loss. Opponents bid and made 4 at the other table. Partner claims I should have bid 3, and her 2 promises a five card suit. I thought I was minimum for the double and could not justify bidding again, and thought 2 could have been bid on a four card suit (otherwise how do you compete with a 4-4 fit). What do you think?

Hand 2:

4 is cold for 14 imps out. Teammates were pushed up to 6X-2 so it looks like their EW bid to a slam. I thought for a bit in the passout seat and nearly doubled again, but I chickened out on the basis of a passed hand opposite and no action over 4. My gut feeling said pushing on was asking to turn a plus score into a minus score, shows how crap my gut feeling is, I should stop listening to it.
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#2 User is offline   manudude03 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 12:15

Board 1, East has a 3 bid, though it's not a great game (and no, 2 doesn't promise 5).

Board 2, I think East should bid over 4 and failing that, West has a second double anyway.
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#3 User is offline   apollo1201 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 12:59

You should check E for a pulse🤣

Hand 1, 2S could be sth like a maximum weakish hand, competing for the part score, letís say the same hand with a S less and a small C instead of the A. The HK is a clear liability so a voluntary bid of 3S could be enough but the hand is worth almost 4 at teams, expecting a better hand opposite. I quite donít understand, though, why S thought he could venture at the 3 level, whereupon she could bid 3S.

Hand 2, an easy 4NT bid planning to correct 5C to 5H to show 5 ę†and a half†Ľ H. Raided to 6 by you. And thanking S for his extreme shyness this time (Iíd open 4S). Still, not all is lost as you could X again on the balancing seat but it is not cut clear. Facing a conservative partner, as it seems you have, chances are in your favor.
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#4 User is online   AL78 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 13:12

View Postapollo1201, on 2021-February-28, 12:59, said:

I quite donít understand, though, why S thought he could venture at the 3 level, whereupon she could bid 3S.


My club has some very aggressive players. Unfortunately I often seem to come out worse against them, it is as if they are excellent at judging when an aggressive action has a good chance of stuffing their opponents or inducing a mistake.
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#5 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 14:51

View PostAL78, on 2021-February-28, 13:12, said:

My club has some very aggressive players. Unfortunately I often seem to come out worse against them, it is as if they are excellent at judging when an aggressive action has a good chance of stuffing their opponents or inducing a mistake.


4 card majors, expecting 4 for the raise so bidding 3 as the level of the fit ?
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#6 User is offline   DavidKok 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 15:01

Which action do you think was aggressive? West's double?
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#7 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 15:25

Hand 1: West doubled with a balanced minimum. That's fine, but West shouldn't make another forward-going move. In fact, if East invites West should reject it with only three trumps and soft values. East would bid 2S with a weaker hand, say without the CA and with only four trumps, so 3S here at their first opportunity looks normal. After only bidding 2S, East should compete to 3S the second round. In any case, I don't think I would get to 4S on the hand.

Hand 2: East's first pass looks an underbid, but I can live with that as a style question. The second pass is not justifiable - apollo's sequence to show a slam try looks right (and West should accept). West has a second double in the pass-out seat as well with such good playing strength in any of the suits as well as good defence if partner passes it.
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#8 User is online   smerriman 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 15:27

If your club has very aggressive players, South in board 2 certainly isn't one of them.. just 3 with a 9 card suit?
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#9 User is online   AL78 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 15:49

View PostDavidKok, on 2021-February-28, 15:01, said:

Which action do you think was aggressive? West's double?


South bidding on to 3.
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#10 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 16:24

View PostAL78, on 2021-February-28, 15:49, said:

South bidding on to 3.


I find North's 2 more aggressive/unreasonable than that.
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#11 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 16:27

View Postapollo1201, on 2021-February-28, 12:59, said:

You should check E for a pulse��

Hand 2, an easy 4NT bid planning to correct 5C to 5H to show 5 « and a half » H. Raided to 6 by you. And thanking S for his extreme shyness this time (I’d open 4S). Still, not all is lost as you could X again on the balancing seat but it is not cut clear. Facing a conservative partner, as it seems you have, chances are in your favor.


I would have opened the E hand playing pretty much any system, the two 10s make it worth at least an 11 count which I'm opening with that shape.

Slam is actually not that good, but it does the job of getting them to bid 6 over it.
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#12 User is online   AL78 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 17:16

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-February-28, 16:27, said:

I would have opened the E hand playing pretty much any system, the two 10s make it worth at least an 11 count which I'm opening with that shape.

Slam is actually not that good, but it does the job of getting them to bid 6 over it.


The slam is good, but it has to be the diamond slam. In the heart or club slam it goes diamond, diamond ruff. It is funny that the two slams with nine card fits go off, but the slam in the eight card fit is cold on the layout. There is a risk of a singleton club lead and a club ruff when in with the ace even in 6, but not on this deal.

It reminds me of a hand I played in a mixed pairs competition where we had two eight card fits in the majors, we were in a slam which looked great when dummy came down, and we were missing the ace in one of the majors. We were in the slam strain with the ace, the defence led the other major to the ace and got a ruff thanks to the 4-1 break, that was a near or complete bottom. The slam in the other major was cold.
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#13 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 17:58

View PostAL78, on 2021-February-28, 17:16, said:

The slam is good, but it has to be the diamond slam. In the heart or club slam it goes diamond, diamond ruff. It is funny that the two slams with nine card fits go off, but the slam in the eight card fit is cold on the layout. There is a risk of a singleton club lead and a club ruff when in with the ace even in 6, but not on this deal.

It reminds me of a hand I played in a mixed pairs competition where we had two eight card fits in the majors, we were in a slam which looked great when dummy came down, and we were missing the ace in one of the majors. We were in the slam strain with the ace, the defence led the other major to the ace and got a ruff thanks to the 4-1 break, that was a near or complete bottom. The slam in the other major was cold.


I meant single dummy, since if you can see your two hands and the opps bidding at your table, you know opener has more than 7 spades (or his partner raises to 5 or 6 first time) hence he has a singleton or void in one of the side suits. You need to guess which (and he may have 2), and clubs 4-0 beats you anyway. In practice you're probably playing in clubs.
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#14 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 18:34

View PostAL78, on 2021-February-28, 17:16, said:

The slam is good, but it has to be the diamond slam.

In practice, the heart slam is 50% on the actual layout. South won't have any indication which minor to attack and could easily try a club instead of a diamond.
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#15 User is offline   mikeh 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 18:44

Itís important, if you want to become a better player, to stop focusing on the results on any one hand and start thinking about how the hands should be bid. In other words, sometimes good bidding leads to a bad result but the lesson to take from that is to simply accept that sh*t happens. The worst possible Ďlessoní is to let the occasional bad result cause you to start bidding badly. I promise you: youíll get even more bad results.

On the first hand, your double of 1H was borderline. I would not object to either double or pass. Double would be clear if you had some 4234/4243 with the same hcp.

Your partnerís 2S did not show 5. I suspect that she felt put guilty about passing 3H out...she has the worldís easiest 3S given that she bid only a very conservative 2S originally. You, having doubled, could hardly have less, so for you to even consider bidding over 3H is a huge overbid.

Also, and reread my first sentence, game is bad. So it makes. Thatís no reason to think that staying out of game was a poor decision. Eastís passing 3H was a terrible decision, but missing game was a good decision. Sh*t happens...bad contracts sometimes make. Big deal.

On the second hand, south needs to learn more about preemption. One rarely gets a good 9 card suit....bidding 3S is just silly.

You have a clear double of 3S.

Your partner has zero clue about the game. Passing 4S is incredibly weak.

If I had to make only one bid as east....if somehow there was a rule that I couldnít take 2 calls...it would be 5N....pick a slam. Thatís how different my view of the east hand is from that of your partner.

Since no such rule exists, m not sure exactly what Iíd do...I canít be objective because I know the hands.

The choices are the aforementioned 5N, which is aggressive...or 5H....which is unilateral....or 4N....ostensibly 2 places to play.

On an advanced level, 4N then pulling 5C to 5H should be a slam try and, yes, I see that a diamond lead beats either 6C or 6D but I donít care. Re-read my first sentence.

Iíd rather go down in 6H or 6C than defend 4S!!!!! Not because they make 4S but because selling out is embarrassing.

As it is, after your partnerís extraordinary pass of 4S, I do think that you should double again. North is a passed hand. The odds are high that your partner has some values and either a 5+ suit or at least some 4=4 holding in two of your suits.

Of course, thereís always a risk, when playing with such a partner, that she might pass 4 s doubled.

If you are going to continue playing with partners like this, you are not going to improve. Bridge is a partnership game, and your partner has no clue at all.

But....if you want to keep playing with her, at the very least get her to read a beginnerís book on bidding. I sound harsh, but in virtually all of your tales of woe, the bidding you show is beyond bad....often including the opps, as with the 3S bid.
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#16 User is online   TylerE 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 20:21

View Postsfi, on 2021-February-28, 15:25, said:

In fact, if East invites West should reject it with only three trumps and soft values.


It's IMPs and we're red. Passing an invite is a hanging offense. Only pass if you psyched your double.
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#17 User is offline   Stephen Tu 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 21:07

View PostTylerE, on 2021-February-28, 20:21, said:

It's IMPs and we're red. Passing an invite is a hanging offense. Only pass if you psyched your double.

That's taking things way too far. A good way to get to < 25% games which are bad in long run even if red at IMPs. You are essentially saying that invites are actually GF if red.
*Partner also sees the vul*. If he wants to be in game opposite an absolute min double he could have bid game himself.

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#18 User is online   TylerE 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 21:38

W doesn't actually have a minimum double.

No 3rd heart, AQxx !D likely in the right spot..., Hxx support

It certainly isn't *extras*, but it isn't minimum.
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#19 User is offline   morecharac 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 22:41

View PostAL78, on 2021-February-28, 11:39, said:

Random teams, a slip-up resulting in a 45 minute sitout because the movement had four teams playing and one sitting out, for a six board round, and a hand directional bias which had partner and I defending 13 out of the remaining 18 boards, all conspired to produce a -77 imps performance, a whopping 70 imps behind the next team, and a hideous embarassment as far as I was concerned.

There were two hands I, or we could have done better on in the bidding, and I'd be interested in your thoughts.

Hand 1:
We took it one off for an 11 imp loss. Opponents bid and made 4 at the other table. Partner claims I should have bid 3, and her 2 promises a five card suit. I thought I was minimum for the double and could not justify bidding again, and thought 2 could have been bid on a four card suit (otherwise how do you compete with a 4-4 fit). What do you think?

The double was suboptimal, especially with only three .

Does your system allow partner to use a negative double over 2? If yes, then 2 should promise five .

I don't know whether your system would allow partner to have a weak stack for 2. If it does, she should be the one bidding 3, not you.

I'd say the blame is shared. Your system might even get a share, depending on what it is.

View PostAL78, on 2021-February-28, 11:39, said:

Hand 2:
4 is cold for 14 imps out. Teammates were pushed up to 6X-2 so it looks like their EW bid to a slam. I thought for a bit in the passout seat and nearly doubled again, but I chickened out on the basis of a passed hand opposite and no action over 4. My gut feeling said pushing on was asking to turn a plus score into a minus score, shows how crap my gut feeling is, I should stop listening to it.

Would partner's double of 4 be definitely penalty or is a DSI double possible? If DSI isn't available then Pass is probably her best option.

You could double a second time in case she has some good or you could just take your lumps. This feels like a lump-taker to me after partner's pass; any way other than double dummy this looks like a self-sacrifice if you continue.
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#20 User is offline   mikeh 

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Posted 2021-February-28, 23:32

View Postmorecharac, on 2021-February-28, 22:41, said:

The double was suboptimal, especially with only three .

Does your system allow partner to use a negative double over 2? If yes, then 2 should promise five .

I don't know whether your system would allow partner to have a weak stack for 2. If it does, she should be the one bidding 3, not you.

I'd say the blame is shared. Your system might even get a share, depending on what it is.


Would partner's double of 4 be definitely penalty or is a DSI double possible? If DSI isn't available then Pass is probably her best option.

You could double a second time in case she has some good or you could just take your lumps. This feels like a lump-taker to me after partner's pass; any way other than double dummy this looks like a self-sacrifice if you continue.

At the risk of being too pedantic, (1H) x (2H) x is not a negative double. In truth, in my view, terminology matters. Without an agreed terminology, discussions are difficult, because we would need to explain what our idiosyncratic usages are or risk misunderstandings.

Negative doubles are made only by responder: a similar, but not identical, double by advancer, as of 2H here, is a responsive double.

More importantly, a common practice is for such a double to imply both minors. This is based on the assumption, common amongst good players, that the double of 1H always delivers some spades (usually 4 but can be, as here, 3) unless very strong (thus with a 19 count notrump hand or a good 17+ with a 6+ suit).

Thus it is common, at least in expert circles (I am not saying this is universal, merely common) for 2S to be 4+ and double typically 4-4 or better in the minors.

This proves useful, since advancer is rarely three-suited with short hearts. If double promised 4 spades, advancer is stuck over 2H with, say, Qx xxx AJxx Kxxx


On the second hand, I donít think any good player would even think pass of 4S was forgivable and the idea of a double makes me feel ill.

After all, itís not as if the auction suggests they hold 13 spades, or even 12, and so often the Ďsomething intelligentí that west may do is to pass! Obviously not on this hand, if west thinks the double is DSIP, as opposed to penalty. But on many typical doubles west should pass. After all, east has a takeout bid available with a purely offensive hand.

East has a simple 4N if she wants to be flexible, including Apolloís 4N then 5H to hint at slam. Note that doubler, with 2=4=4=3, will bid 5D and now 5H has no slam connotations, since advancer might be, say, 2=4=3=4 or 1=5=2=5 etc, intending to pass 5C but to pull 5D to 5H
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