Seven Notrump

In which some people who play bridge blog about it.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

A nice psych bid


North
East
South
West
PassPass♥ ♠ 
♣ PassPassPass
Vulnerable: E-W
North
♠ Q 3 2
♥ 7 4 3
♦ K 7 5
♣ A Q 7 3
West
♠ A K J 8 5
♥ A J 10
♦ Q 4 2
♣ J 6
East
♠ 10
♥ K Q 8 6 2
♦ A J 6 3
♣ 8 4 2
South
♠ 9 7 6 4
♥ 9 5
♦ 10 9 8
♣ K 10 9 5



Sitting South, with 3 points and a sense of foreboding, I made a rude and risky fake-out bid, very successfully derailing the opponents. Partner and I were set two tricks in our nonvulnerable 2C contract; the E-W pairs at several other tables made 6H, often with an overtrick. Would I do it again? I'm not telling.

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Tuesday, May 08, 2007

First-round responses

I deal and open 1H. The opponent passes. Here are the possible responses you can make, and what they mean to me:

Pass You have fewer than 6 points, no heart length to speak of, and don't think we can construct a worthwhile contract, even though I might have 18 points.

1S You have five spades or four excellent spades. I will bid again; every new suit named by responder is forcing for one round. Probably you have fewer than 10 points and don't have three hearts; at least, that'll be my assumption until your rebid.

1NT You have less than ten points and fewer than three hearts. You might have balanced distribution, or you might have length in a minor suit that you're too weak to mention.

2C You have 10 or more points. The surface meaning of this bid is that you have fewer than three hearts and prefer clubs, but you might have more hearts and make this bid as a coy way of showing your point count, since a simple raise in hearts would imply fewer than 10 points. You'll mention your hearts later.

2D You have 10 or more points. The surface meaning of this bid is that you have fewer than three hearts and prefer diamonds, but you might have more hearts and make this bid as a coy way of showing your point count, since a simple raise in hearts would imply fewer than 10 points. You'll mention your hearts later.

2H You have three hearts and fewer than 10 points. I will probably pass unless there's something cool in my hand I haven't told you about.

2S A jump bid showing possible power for slam. Probably you have 16+ points and 6+ spades. Forcing to game.

2NT Jacoby 2NT, showing 12+ points and four-card trump support. We'll almost surely play a hearts contract; let's figure out if it should be a game or a slam.

3C A jump bid showing possible power for slam. Probably you have 16+ points and 6+ clubs. Forcing to game.

3D A jump bid showing possible power for slam. Probably you have 16+ points and 6+ diamonds. Forcing to game.

3H An encouraging bid, showing more than 3 hearts and less than opening points.

3S A splinter bid, showing strength, trump support, and a singleton or void in spades. Looking for slam.

3NT Intended as the final contract; denying possibility of slam. Shows a balanced hand, with two hearts and 16+ points.

4C A splinter bid, showing strength, trump support, and a singleton or void in clubs. Looking for slam.

4D A splinter bid, showing strength, trump support, and a singleton or void in diamonds. Looking for slam.

4H Intended as the final contract; denying desire for slam.

4S I don't know -- maybe a splinter showing a spade void (not singleton), or sufficient spade power for an instant game in that suit.

4NT Blackwood, supporting hearts and looking for slam.

5NT "Grand slam force," asking me to bid 7H if I have two of the three top heart honors; you have winners everywhere else.

Suit bids higher than that are probably showing extreme length or bravado.

Please comment. These meanings are ripe for tweaking, especially the jump responses.

6 comments:

  At Thursday, May 10, 2007 3:34:00 PM, Anonymous Anne said:

Suppose that I have 16 points and a balanced hand (e.g. 3s-2h-4d-4c). How should I respond to a 1H opening? 3C or 3D suggest especially strong clubs or diamonds.

Maybe 2NT should be reserved for 16+ pts and a balanced hand, rather than this Jacoby 2NT business, according to which 2NT indicates 4-card trump support and 12+ points. To indicate 4-card trump support and 12+ points, rebid the opening suit at the 3-level, rather than bidding 2NT (Jacoby 2NT).

  At Thursday, May 10, 2007 3:53:00 PM, Blogger Paul said:

I see your point. I'm hesitant though to give up the handy J2NT method of finding slam-conducive distribution which otherwise wouldn't be discovered.

Holding the hand you describe I would bid 2C and keep bidding. But maybe 3NT would be useful instead to describe a balanced hand with 2-card support and 16 points.

  At Thursday, May 10, 2007 4:14:00 PM, Anonymous Anne said:

But 3NT is, according to these guidelines, a final bid.

  At Thursday, May 10, 2007 4:17:00 PM, Blogger Paul said:

What are you talking about? It doesn't say that at all.

  At Friday, May 11, 2007 8:52:00 PM, Blogger Mark Leonard said:

Here are my suggestions:

1S - does not need 4 excellent spades and the number of points is unlimited...merely forcing for one round. Responder to clarify strength going forward

As for a balanced 15+, start with the most descriptive suit bid, 1S, 2C or 2D. Then with a balanced 15-17 jump to 3N. Very important that jumps to 3N be limited and descriptive. Otherwise, opener doesn't know when to bid and when to pass over it.

Balanced 18+ hands are difficult for Standard American. You want to be able to force to game and then bid 4N as a slam invitation. This is one of the reasons that 2 over 1 game forcing was invented.

  At Thursday, July 05, 2007 12:01:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said:

The most important thing to remember is that all new suits by an upassed responder are forcing. I almost never make a jump shift response. Even with a monster, i would start with a new suit at the cheapest level and allow parter to describe his hand. He may limit his hand (bid NT or rebid his own suit) or he may show something extra (make a reverse, jump in his suit). No need to rush. You'll get to bid again.

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