Mon 7th N-S 1st Jean-Charles/Thorlief 62% 2nd Bob/Monte 57%
E-W 1st Tomas/Philip 61% 2nd Phil/Tom 56%
Wed 9th N-S 1st Chuck/Terry 56% 2nd Alan/Bob P 55%
E-W 1st Bob Short/Jim(Sco) 66% 2nd Gene/Richard 59%
Fri 11th N-S 1st Jim(Sco)/John Gavens 62% 2nd Chuck/Terry 59%
E-W 1st Bill/Bob P 62% 2nd Paul Scully/Keith 55%
The standings in the Gold Cup competition are close; currently we have (best 30): -
1st Chuck 1877.2% 2nd Dave 1864.5% 3rd Bob 1851.9% 4th Clive 1799.3%
Bidding Quiz Standard American is assumed unless otherwise stated
Hand A Hand B A trivial one to start with, what do you open with Hand A?
K4 ♦ Q3 (b)
♣ AK32 ♣ KQJ72
Hand C Hand D With Hand C partner opens 1♦, what do you bid?
♠ Q1054 ♠ AK10 With Hand D you open 1NT. Partner bids 2♣. You bid 2♦.
♥ Q ♥ A105 And Partner bids 2♥, showing a weak hand with 5 ♥’s and 4 ♠’s
♣ AQ432 ♣ AQ97
Hand E Hand F With Hand E partner opens 1NT, what do you do?
♠ J762 ♠ J93
♥ KJ42 ♥
Hand F LHO opens 1♦, partner passes, and
♦ 3 ♦ AK 1♠, what do you do?
♣ 10652 ♣ AK2
Is it forcing? What does 4♠ mean in this sequence, and is it forcing?
1♦ - 2♣ - 3NT - 4♠ ?
♠ K43 pass 1♣ pass 1♥ With this Hand G you are East with this
♥ J109 1♠ 1NT all pass bidding. What do you lead?
With a balanced 15-17, open 1NT! Board 15 from Monday 7th
N-S vul ♦ K4 - - - pass
♣ AK32 pass 1♣ (1) pass 1♥
1♠ (2) 1NT (3) pass pass (4)
♠ AQ1095 N ♠ K43
♥ Q6 W E ♥ J109 Table B
♠ 7 pass 1NT (1) pass 2♦ (5)
♥ K7432 pass (6) 2♥ pass pass
♦ J9873 pass (7)
- Opening 1NT makes it easy for partner.
- Opening 1NT makes it difficult for the opponents.
- Opening 1NT means you never have a rebid problem.
- If you have a Kx holding try to open 1NT so that you can to protect it.
- In Fact – it’s usually best to open 1NT whenever you can! It makes it easy for partner and difficult for opponents.
Double is take-out Board 18 from Monday 7th
N-S vul ♦ Q3 - - 2♦ 2♠ (1)
♣ KQJ72 3♦ (2) 3♠ (3) pass 4♠
♠ Q103 N ♠ K94
♥ 10642 W E ♥ 8 Table B
♠ AJ8742 4♦ (2) 4♣ (4) pass (5) 4♥ (6)
♥ Q975 all pass
- When the opponent’s bid and support a suit then dbl is usually for take-out. It certainly is in both of the situations for North above.
Got no stop? Board 16 from Monday 7th
E-W vul ♦ 8 1♦ 3♣ (1) 3♥ (2) pass
♣ KJ9853 pass (3) pass
♠ A105 N ♠ 73
♥ J W E ♥ AQ762
(2) This is forcing unless you have an agreement (negative free bids) to the contrary.
(3) But West has a problem here, North’s pre-empt has used up space. A cue bid of 4♣ would ask for a stop – but it’s gone past 3NT. One option is to bid 3♠. This is not natural because partner had denied 4 ♠’s (with ♥’s and ♠’s he would have negative doubled). So 3♠ is showing something in the ♠ suit and asking partner to bid 3NT with a ♣ stop. Now this is all very well, but there are a couple of problems. As little as ♣Jxx from partner will do and also if partner has ♣Ax(x) then the wrong hand is declarer – I wrote only last week about Qx belonging in declarer’s hand – and with this hand it would be crucial if there were not 10 top tricks. West has a big hand and cannot pass (even if partner’s 3♥ was not forcing) and I would simply bid 3NT and hope partner has something in ♣’s – but you all know me, if 3NT is a viable option, then bid it. Who knows, even if there was no ♣ stop North may not lead one (hoping to get South in for a ♣ through).
- You can bid a suit that partner has denied in order to get him to bid NT with a stop in the opponent’s suit (this tactic is used when the cue bid ask is above 3NT).
- Qx usually belongs in declarer’s hand, not dummy.
Redouble is for blood! Board 13 from Monday 7th
Both vul ♦ 974 - pass 1♥ dbl
♣ Q975 redbl (1) pass (2) 1♠ (3) pass (4)
3♥ pass 4♥ all pass
♠ 42 N ♠ QJ106
♥ A743 W E ♥ K10862 ‘Expert’ Table
♠ AK73 redbl (1) pass (2) pass (3) 1♠ (5)
♥ Q pass (6) pass dbl (7) 2♦ (8)
♦ J10862 pass (9) pass dbl (10) pass (11)
‘Expert’ (3) This expert knows exactly what to do. LHO normally has ♠’s for his double –
Table so wait for him to bid them and then double him for penalties. Pass is correct.
♠ 9842 Note: This particular deal is not a perfect example of why E-W should look for
♥ A the penalty. But change West’s hand slightly to something like this (a more
♦ Q973 typical redouble) this and it’s a different story, with N-S going for a huge number.
Responding with (sub)minimal values Board 23 from Monday 7th
Both vul ♦ J84 1♠ (1) pass pass (2) pass (3)
♠ KQ873 N ♠ - Table B
♥ K94 W E ♥ Q86532 West North East South
Table B: (1) East got it right – 1NT.
(4) A sigh of relief, 1♠ was not passed out.
(5) But unfortunately this East fell from grace by passing partner’s forcing bid. He should bid 3♥ here.
As nobody found 4♥, I had to call in the experts: -
West East and it’s so simple that I don’t even have to add any comments.
1♠ 1NT Just one pair found the ♥ fit, but I don’t know why they bid 6♥,
3♦ 3♥ especially with 3 aces missing.
Don’t make a weak bid with game-forcing values Board 10 from Wednesday 9th
Both vul ♦ 8 - - 1♦ pass
♣ 85 1♠ (1) pass 1NT (2) pass
2♣ (3) pass 2NT (4) pass
♠ Q1054 N ♠ J3 3NT all pass
♥ Q W E ♥ AK75
♠ K7 - - 1♦ pass
♥ 1092 2♣ (1) pass 2NT (5) pass
♦ A10965 3♠ (6) pass 3NT all pass
‘Expert’ (1) This is correct – bid out your shape. With game forcing values you can bid 2♣
Table and then bid ♠’s next go.
‘Denying’ a 4 card major
As I said above, there’s no problem with by-passing a 4 card major if you intend to bid it next go. But what if partner is inconsiderate enough to rebid 3NT – what would you then bid with this West hand in the sequence 1♦ - 2♣ - 3NT - ?
Actually there is no problem. Partner has shown a big hand (18+ or else a good long ♦ suit) and so slam will be there. So simply bid 4♠, this is natural, absolutely forcing, and looking for slam.
Open 1NT and you’ve said it all Board 7 from Wednesday 9th
Both vul ♦ 982 - - - pass
♣ AQ97 pass 1NT pass 2♣ (1)
pass 2♦ pass 2♥ (2)
♠ Q94 N ♠ 853 pass 3♥ (3) all pass
♥ Q8 W E ♥ 9763
(3) Now South has shown 4 ♠’s, 5 ♥’s and a weak hand. His range is around 0-7 so the average is about 4 points. North decided that his flat hand was worth a try for game. My opinion is that this is not a ‘view’ but simply a very poor bid. Opposite partner’s advertised weak hand you will go off in 3♥ most of the time and partner will need a super maximum to make game. The problem is that this North hand has only 3 trumps and is also totally flat – it is way against the odds to bid on and risk going down.
Being sandwiched – part 1 Board 11 from Wednesday 9th
Love all ♦ 96 - - - 1♦
♣ Q73 pass 1♥ 1NT (1) pass (2)
pass dbl (3) pass pass
♠ 10765 N ♠ J93 pass (4)
♥ 86 W E ♥ J10953
(4) West could redouble here (SOS) but it’s a lost cause whatever he does.
And what happened? It was a disaster for East, minus 3 and 500 away. And at other tables? Two N-S’s bid 3NT making exactly. At another table East decided to double the freely bid 3NT, exactly why he thought he could defeat it is a mystery to me.
The bottom lines: -
Be wary about
bidding in the ‘
- In fact there is a special meaning for 1NT in this position, it’s not surprisingly called the Sandwich NT! It is a take-out bid, not strong enough for double but not shapely enough for a jump to 2NT (the UNT, which would have to be extremely shapely indeed in this position – say 6-6). But it should be shapely (5-5), because as we saw above, you’ll get clobbered if it’s a flat hand.
- Don’t double the
opponents in a freely bid 3NT just because you have 4 tricks unless you think
that you can generate another trick or have reason to believe that partner has
Being sandwiched – part 2 Board 2 from Wednesday 9th
N-S vul ♦ J976 - - 1♣ (1) pass
♣ K7 1♠ 1NT (2) 2♥ (3) pass
♠ AK1042 N ♠ 97
♥ 9 W E ♥ AJ873
(1) Obviously he should have opened 1♥
(3) South did alert the 1NT bid, but East did not bother to ask and simply bid his ♥’s. Had he asked and learnt that North has the red suits then double would have been very profitable.
(4) Quite why West did not bid game is also mysterious – perhaps he thought that North had 15-18 points and partner was a bit light?
And what happened? 2♥ made +2 and scored about average. At other tables 3 E-W pairs found 3NT scoring 400 or 430. Obviously if North was doubled at this vulnerability it would have been a completely deserved absolute bottom.
The bottom lines: -
- If the opponent’s alert a bid which appears to be natural – then ask! Some people do play (and abuse) the weirdest of conventions.
- Be wary of bidding in the ‘sandwich seat’.
- Look for the penalty if somebody bids NT in the sandwich seat.
Being sandwiched – part 3 Board 8 from Friday 11th
Love all ♦ KJ10983 1♣ pass (1) 1♥ (2) 1NT (3)
♣ 2 2♣ (4) 3♦ (5) 3♠ (6) pass
4NT (7) pass 5♦ pass
♠ K106 N ♠ Q876 6♠ pass pass dbl (8)
♥ A3 W E ♥ 10952 all pass
(1) A weak 3♦ is not really a good bid here as the hand has a 4 card ♥ suit.
(2) Correct, always bid 4 card majors up the line
(4) Brushing the overall aside without bothering to ask what it was (North did alert the bid). I would play 2♣ here as a weak bid and would start off with a double.
(5) Pre-emptive, North knows that South has ♦’s and ♠’s.
(6) And this East bid his ♠ suit, oblivious to the fact that South has ‘bid’ them.
(7) With reasonable ♠’s West decided to go slamming. I don’t like bidding Blackwood with a void, but I guess that it’s a reasonable bet that N-S have the ♦ ace.
(8) Since nobody bother to ask my partner what I had, I’ll tell you.
And what happened? 6♠ doubled went 5 down for an absolute bottom to E-W. One N-S pair reached 5♦ which made. One West bid 6♣ but that went one down. The bottom lines: -
- If an opponent alerts, then ask what it means if you are not sure.
- K106 is not a slam quality suit opposite just 4 cards.
1NT in the ‘
Sandwich No Trump – ‘This term refers to the bid of No Trump, generally on the one level, of a player made between two bidding opponents after two suits have been mentioned. This bid describes a distribution of 5-5 in the other two unbid suits’.
We now have a list of some member’s/guest’s telephone/e-mail details on the web-site. When you open the main page there is a ‘contact members’ link in the left column. When you click that you’ll be asked for a password. At the moment it contains 20+ entries, if you would like your details included then give them or e-mail them to me and I’ll include them and tell/e-mail you the password.
Bidding Quiz Answers
Hand A: 1NT. No other sensible option.
Hand B: (a) Dbl or 4♣. I prefer double (take-out).
(b) Dbl. Take-out. You don’t mind if partner bids 4♥, 4♠ or 5♣. In situations like this where the opponents have bid and agreed a suit double is generally for take-out.
Hand C: 2♣. In this situation you can ‘deny’ a 4 card major as you are going to bid it next time. You should only do this with game forcing values.
Hand D: Pass. You have said your hand and partner wants to play in 2♥. A raise to 3♥ is totally unwarranted as it overtreads the Law (without being pushed) and it’s very likely to go down as partner has promised zero points and this hand has the worst shape possible.
Hand E: Pass or 2♣? Pass is the ‘correct’ bid, but won’t you look silly when they run their 5 or 6 ♦ tricks and partner has a 4 (or even 5) card major suit? Now to bid Garbage Stayman here is not perfect – it’s great if partner turns up with a major suit (about a 50% chance) but even if he doesn’t have one then 2♥ may still be the best spot. It’s a gamble, but one that may be worth taking as you have a reasonable spot in 2♥ when it fails (when partner has no 4 or 5 card major).
Hand F: Pass. A traditional 1NT overcall (15-18) is very dangerous opposite a passed partner when both opponents have bid. If you advertise a flat hand then either opponent can easily double you if they know that they have the balance of power; opposite a passed partner you could easily go for a big number.
Is it 1♦ - 2♣ - 3NT - 4♠ ? 4♠ here is natural and absolutely forcing. Responder has 12+
Forcing? points with 5+ ♣’s and 4 ♠’s and is looking for slam. Hand C fits the bill. He bid ♣’s first to show his shape and now bids his ♠’s because opener has not denied 4 ♠’s with his 3NT bid (it could easily be a balanced 18-19 points with 4 ♠’s).
Leading A low ♠. Do not lead the ♠K, declarer is marked with a ♠ honour and if it is Qxx
Quiz or Jxxx then a low ♠ may enable your side to pick up the whole ♠ suit. Don’t listen to people to say to lead an honour in partner’s suit, that’s with Ax, Kx or Qx.