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Weak only multi

#1 User is offline   DavidKok 

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Posted 2023-March-03, 06:05

I'm picking up the weak only multi soon, and have scoured the web looking for a good set of agreements on it. Below are links to discussions I've found with comments on response structures, costs and benefits.



I'm both interested in
  • Finding a relatively simple set of strong agreements.
  • Discussing what very good (or even optimal) agreements might look like.


For now I am planning on using the weak-only multi as garbage preempts, usually a 5-card suit but may be a bad 6-card suit. This has some consequences for the response and rebid structure. Based on the above the basic response structure that I am thinking of is:

  • Pass - prepared to play 2 undoubled. May run if doubled. Usually responder will have (4)5+ diamonds for this action and shortage in at least one major suit, judging that the diamonds are not much worse than the probable 5-1 fit.
  • 2 - Pass or correct to 2. May be a runout to 3m (even diamonds) when prepared to play 2 opposite hearts but preferring a minor suit facing spades. Can also contain hands that would raise spades but have heart shortage, or weak hands with a long heart suit ('gambling' that partner doesn't also have hearts, intending to rebid them at the 3-level).
  • 2 - Pass with spades, bid 2NT (minimum) or 3 (maximum) with hearts. May be a runout to 3m with hands that cannot stand playing in hearts, similar to the above. Also contains hands with a long spade suit and willingness to play it at the 3-level.
  • 2NT - Strong asking bid. I'm still looking for a good response structure, see end of post. It is somewhat popular to psych this bid, I have never done so and don't really see the appeal.
  • 3 - Artificial inv(+) with 5(+) hearts, asking about opener's heart holding. If you want to simplify, instead use this as a NF natural bid.
  • 3 - Artificial inv(+) with 5(+) spades, asking about opener's spade holding. If you want to simplify, instead use this as an invitational bid with both majors (relieving some pressure from 2NT).
  • 3 - Pass or correct, promises at least 3-3 in the majors and no game interest opposite hearts. Hearts are not better than spades.
  • 3 - Pass or correct, promises at least 3-4 in the majors and no game interest opposite spades. Hearts are better than spades.
  • 3NT - To play.
  • 4 - Transfer me into your suit. Does not promise or deny strength (although it does deny slam interest).
  • 4 - Bid your suit.
  • 4 - To play, do not correct.
  • 4 - To play.

In light of the aggressive competitive nature of the bid I think the agreements over interference are equally important. I was thinking of the following:

2-(X)-?
  • Pass - asks opener to pass with at least 3 diamonds (promises 4(+) diamonds).
  • Redouble - asks opener to bid 2, responder has their own suit and will place the contract.
  • 2 - Pass or correct to 2, system on.
  • 2 - Identical, system on.
  • 2NT - Strong asking bid, system on.
  • 3 - Natural NF.
  • 3 - Does not exist.
  • 3 and up: system on (including 4 and 4).
Since 2 and 2 are system on we don't really need 3 natural NF - we already have ways to run to that suit. There is some benefit to getting there early, and in theory we can pick up (say) 1-1 in the majors and not be willing to play in partner's suit ever, but I'm prepared to lose on those hands.

2-(2M)-?
  • Pass - Weak. We are off the hook. Please do not bid.
  • Double - "I would have made a 2M bid" - i.e. pass if this is your suit, system on if it's the other one. This is nearly identical to a takeout double.
  • 2 (over 2 only) - To play, do not correct. We could play system on, but if you have some heart tolerance and are prepared to play 2 opposite spades a double should work just fine.
  • 2NT - Strong asking bid, system on.
  • 3 - Natural NF.
  • 3 - Natural NF.
  • 3 and up: system on (including 4 and 4).
Similar to before, immediate 3/3 bids aren't that useful.

2-(2NT)-?
I don't know what to play here. My first thought was pass = weak, double = bid your suit, any suit = NF constructive. But having 3 pass/correct applies more pressure than a double, so maybe that should be retained. Maybe it is a good idea to play the same as over 2-(X)-?, i.e. X = bid 3, I will place the contract and all other bids are system on(?). Alternatively just copy the structure below over 3m interference for consistency.

2-(3m)-?
  • Pass - Weak. We are off the hook. Please do not bid.
  • Double - Bid your suit.
  • 3 (over 3 only) - Natural, forcing.
  • 3 - Natural, forcing.
  • 3 - Natural, forcing.
  • 3NT and up: system on.
Note that we don't have a way to show strong clubs on 2-(3)-?. Oh well.

2-(P)-P-(X); ?
Pass always, partner will run if it is right. Perhaps redouble should show some specific diamond length (either shortness, i.e. S.O.S., or length).

2-(P)-any bid-(X); ?
System on, redouble does not exist.

2-(P)-(any bid)-(any different bid); ?
System on as much as possible, if the systemic call is still available make it (including stolen bid doubles). Pass is a catchall for lower responses.

There are a few more sequences that require specific agreements, I've included them below.
Spoiler


Based on the above I still have a number of questions.
  • What are some good answering schemes to 2NT? Some popular ones I've seen include:
    • 3 any medium hand (3 asks for the suit while 3/3 are P/C. Over 3 opener bids the major they don't have); 3 weak with hearts, 3 weak with spades (responder's rebids are natural), 3 strong with hearts, 3NT strong with spades.
    • 3 weak with hearts, 3 weak with spades, 3 strong with spades, 3 strong with hearts.
    • 3 any 5-card suit (3 asks, similar to above), 3 minimum with 6 hearts, 3 minimum with 6 spades, 3 maximum with 6 hearts, 3NT maximum with 6 spades.
    Our multi will contain a lot of really lousy hands, we really don't need bids showing AKQxxx or the likes (we won't have that hand).
  • What do you use 2-(2M)-3M/3oM for? Playing, say, 2-(2)-3* as P/C seems strange.
  • What (if anything) should 2-(X)-3 show?
  • What is a good structure over 2-(2NT)-?
  • This one varies by region, which common artificial overcalls and defences is it worth preparing for?
  • If we get overcalled at the 3M-level or higher, are there some simple meta-rules on the meaning of our bids? Which bids are P/C or help us identify opener's major suit?
  • There are multiple auctions (especially competitive ones, e.g. 2-(X)-?), where there might be merit to using a jump to 4 as P/C to apply maximum pressure. Between 2NT and 3 we already have two ways to get to 4 without it being P/C. Would it make sense to swap a direct 4 for a P/C bid? If so, in which situations would this (not) be a good idea?
  • This structure is relatively restrictive on opener, assigning systemic bids to most auctions. Would it make sense to include some jump bids for 6-5 or even reasonable 5-5 hands somewhere, for example over 2oM (where we are running anyway) or a 2NT ask?
  • I've given up on penalty doubles pretty much everywhere - if second hand interferes I think making descriptive bids and/or learning about opener's major suit takes priority. If fourth hand sticks their neck out the situation is different. Which competitive auctions with fourth hand interference, if any, are common enough to make special agreements on?
  • There are a few more situations where opener's specific calls have no assigned meaning in competition (notably redouble). Is there a good use for these, depending on the auction?
All ideas, suggestions and comments are welcome!
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#2 User is offline   nullve 

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Posted 2023-March-03, 07:40

View PostDavidKok, on 2023-March-03, 06:05, said:

For now I am planning on using the weak-only multi as garbage preempts, usually a 5-card suit but may be a bad 6-card suit. This has some consequences for the response and rebid structure.

The main reason I don't like "standard" Garbage Multi that much is the frequent Burn's Law violations after 2-2M; P.

Here is an idea I had for avoiding 5-1 and 5-0 fits when Opener's major is spades.

Edit: The 'Multi 2d' thread mentioned in that thread.
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#3 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2023-March-03, 08:00

What we use for our multi (it's wider ranging than yours I suspect) over 2N. Where I refer to ranges 1-4, 1 is the weakest, 4 the strongest.

2-2N-3 ranges 1/2/4
2-2N-3 ranges 1/2/4
2-2N-3 hearts range 3
2-2N-3 spades range 3
2-2N-3N solidish major no singleton

over 3m:
3 of our major is signoff opposite ranges 1 and 2, you bid on with range 4
the next suit up asks for clarification, 3 of our major is range 1, 3N/4 of our major is range 2 and you bid a new suit as a cue with range 4
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#4 User is offline   awm 

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Posted 2023-March-04, 04:16

Elianna and I have been playing this for a while, and our non-competitive responses are similar to yours. We do play 2-4M as pass/correct (hands with their own major either bid 3m or 2M). Other differences in what we play:

2-(2NT/3m): We play double as penalty; you occasionally catch opponents out on these auctions and responder having her own suit that she wants to compete in on a possible misfit is relatively rare (probably more unusual than the penalty double). We play major suit bids as initially pass-or-correct here, but if responder continues it shows that the original suit was natural. So for example:

2-(3)-3-(Pass)
3-(Pass)-3NT/4/4 = natural and hearts were a real suit

Over 2-(X) we actually play the reverse of what you play, where 2M is natural (my own suit) and XX is "bid your major"; I suspect the way you have it is very slightly better, but our approach is more consistent with other sequences that we play.

We also prefer that 2-(X)-Pass is more of a real diamond suit so that opener passes most of the time (in our style, the pass shows 5+ and usually 6+, and opener should pass on doubleton diamond routinely and possibly on singleton if holding a weak five card suit).

Our general agreement is that if opponents have not shown a specific major suit, our major suit bids are pass or correct. So for example 2-(3)-4 is pass/correct. However, when opponents bid a major at the three-level or above, we generally assume partner has the other major and bids become natural (so for example, 2-(3)-4 is to play often assuming partner has spades, and 4 is a slam-interested raise of spades).
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#5 User is offline   dokoko 

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Posted 2023-March-08, 12:47

If you open Multi with 5 and 6 card suits you may like this: https://docs.google....W_MqMadpAU/edit
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#6 User is offline   awm 

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Posted 2023-March-08, 15:56

We indeed open multi with both 5 and 6 card suits, and we dont even have a way to check openers length. Certainly its possible to find this out on the way to game with a bit more complexity, and we have played 4-major in a 5-2 fit because of this a half dozen times.

However, none of these 4-major contracts have lead to a bad result, with several of them being huge wins with other tables in 3nt failing. So were not in a rush to adopt more complex sequences to distinguish 5 vs 6!
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#7 User is offline   DavidKok 

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Posted 2023-March-08, 16:39

View Postdokoko, on 2023-March-08, 12:47, said:

If you open Multi with 5 and 6 card suits you may like this: https://docs.google....W_MqMadpAU/edit
Thank you, Nigel Kearney's notes are under the fifth link in the first post. I'd looked at them but don't like them much - they are very much in the style of an 'old' multi, focusing on how to handle the situation when opener has a monster hand. The example auctions also happen to feature remarkably passive opponents.

We've slightly simplified and adapted the system in the first post, and will start playing this weak only multi soon. On the first few rounds of testing the scientific auctions over 2NT haven't really come up, so we're sticking with a simple scheme for now and focusing on our competitive agreements first. We've kept penalty doubles over 2-(2NT/3/3/higher) but 'stolen bid' (i.e. 'pass if this is your suit, otherwise system on) over 2-(2M). Also a direct 4 is P/C in all situations now.
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#8 User is offline   nullve 

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Posted 2023-March-09, 02:39

View PostDavidKok, on 2023-March-03, 06:05, said:

Based on the above the basic response structure that I am thinking of is:

[...]

  • 3 - Pass or correct, promises at least 3-3 in the majors and no game interest opposite hearts. Hearts are not better than spades.
  • 3 - Pass or correct, promises at least 3-4 in the majors and no game interest opposite spades. Hearts are better than spades.


Too aggressive unless you rarely open 2 with only a 5c suit.
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#9 User is offline   DavidKok 

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Posted 2023-March-09, 03:16

Our multi will usually be a 5-card suit (I haven't run a simulation but I expect it to be a 5-card suit maybe 80+% of the time). The raise is not LAWful, but I think it is also not too aggressive. I'm starting with this agreement and might tone it down if we get caught speeding too often.
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#10 User is online   jillybean 

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Posted Yesterday, 18:49

View PostDavidKok, on 2023-March-03, 06:05, said:


For now I am planning on using the weak-only multi as garbage preempts, usually a 5-card suit but may be a bad 6-card suit. This has some consequences for the response and rebid structure. Based on the above the basic response structure that I am thinking of is:

Does this mean you are keeping 2M as a sound preempt and not using 2M as 5M+4/5 other suit preempt? why?
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And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH
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#11 User is offline   DavidKok 

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Posted Today, 02:09

As an experiment, to see how low we can go with the multi. So far the results are incredibly positive. However, making the multi range all the way from Qxx, JTxxx, Txxx, x to x, KQJxxx, xxx, xxx makes it very difficult for responder with a strong hand, so we split them. Besides, we tend to open the 5(+)M4(+)m hands anyway - we just make a judgement call whether they are 'pure' weak twos or 'impure' weak twos and open accordingly.

Our 2M openings aren't sound in any real way - they can be 5-card suits and very aggressive. But they are pure preempts. Vulnerable against not, second seat, we'd open KQTxx, x, xxxx, xxx with 2.
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