Club News Sheet – No. 246        22nd July 2007

My home phone is 038 422924 and my mobile number is 083 6066880

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Mon 16th          1st  Dave & Kenneth                  57%         2nd Torbjorn & Gunn                  55%

Wed 18th          1st Eddie & Terry                      66%         2nd Jean-Charles & Paul K         58%

Fri  20th            1st  Paul K & Sean B                  67%         2nd Jan v Koss & Paul Sav     58%



Bidding Quiz                           Standard American is assumed unless otherwise stated.


Hand A           Hand B           With Hand A RHO opens 1, what do you bid?


A4                -                

KQ8752       Q753            With Hand B you open 1 and partner responds 1. RHO

J9                 AQ864         then comes in with 1, what do you bid?

Q86             AK108


Hand C           Hand D           What do you open with Hand C?


KJ6              KJ6           

KQ7             KQ               What do you open with Hand D?

AKQJ          AKQJ74    

K94             K9            


Hand E            Hand F            With Hand E partner opens 2NT (20-21), what do you bid?


974               KJ62            With Hand F you pass as dealer and this is passed round to RHO

10985           10763           who opens 1. You pass and LHO bids 1. This is passed

8                   K109            round to you, what do you do?

AQ1085       84



The Club Championships       The current standings are: -

Gold Cup = Best 30                 Silver plate = Best 10      Bronze medal = Best 5


1816.8  Janne Roos                  666.8  Janne Roos                    350.4  Janne Roos

1789.7  Jan v Koss                  650.5  Jan v Koss                    340.2  Jan v Koss

1763.4  Dave Cutler                 634.5  Lars Gustaffson             336.2  Bengt Malmgren

                                                631.9  Paul Savelkral                332.9  Paul Savelkral

627.2  Dave Cutler                   325.6  Gunnar Barthel


Please note


My mobile phone number has recently changed. It’s now 083 6066880.

This week’s silly double                                      Board 7 from Wednesday 11th


This East made a really terrible double. It cost 350 points or so and I asked him if he reads the news-sheets. He said yes, but does not agree with what I say. Fair enough, I just love playing against people who double (to show an opening hand) instead of bidding a 5 (or 6!) card major. I know that N-S (Torbjorn/Gunn) found the hand amusing.


Dealer:             Q10973                                      West          North         East(A)      South

North               J96                                             -                 1    (1)      dbl   (2)      3  (3)

N-S vul            AK4                                           4     (4)    pass           pass (5)      pass


(1)  A somewhat light opener.     

86                      N             A4                  (2)  What did you bid with this East hand A in

A3                 W    E          KQ8752               this week’s quiz? Double is a terrible bid

10752                 S             J9                          and 2 is totally obvious.

AK1095                            Q86               (3)  Pre-emptive. If it were not for the adverse

                        KJ52                                          vulnerability South would doubtless have

104                                             bid 4 to make it even more awkward for

Q863                                          East-West.

J74                                       (4) This is a free bid at the 4 level and shows values.

(5)  But East incorrectly assumed that West was weak


And what happened? 4 made exactly for a poor score. Two East’s bid to 4 (making and making + 2) and one East bid 3NT + 3. The bottom lines: -

-         A take-out double should be playable in the unbid suits.

-         Do not make a take-out double if an overcall describes the hand perfectly.


An Impossible Bid                                                Board 12 from Wednesday 18th


E-W missed a comfortable game/slam on this board (Torbjorn/Gunn bid and made 6 at another table).


Dealer:             J105                                          

West                K53                                            West          North         East(C)      South

N-S vul            63                                              1              2             pass (1)      pass

                        KQJ103                                     2    (2)      pass          3    (3)      pass  

  4              pass           pass           pass

A4                     N             K732                   

AQ2              W    E          J1094             (1)  What did you bid with this East hand C in this

AQJ1087            S             K942                    week’s quiz? With values and both majors a

74                                      A                          negative double is obvious.

                        Q986                                    (2)  I would double – but then I expect my partners      

876                                             to understand negative doubles.

5                                          (3)  This is the impossible bid – if East has a hand

98652                                        worth a raise then why did he not bid last go?


And what happened? 4 made just +2 because the K was offside. Only one pair bid the cold 6 slam. 3NT was bid twice (+1 and +3). But the silly 4 contract did not get a total bottom as one E-W pair managed to land up in 4-1. The bottom lines: -

-     If partner opens and RHO overcalls, do not pass with 8+ points unless you have a penalty hand.

-     With both majors after 1 and a 2 overcall, a negative double is perfect.

This week’s silly non-double                               Board 9 from Monday 9th


I often feature what I consider to be silly doubles when an overcall or pass is a better bid. Of course not everybody agrees with me and here we have two of our regular ‘silly doublers’. But neither of them could find a double when it would have been a good bid – they let the opponents play in an undisturbed 1 contract and they got a total bottom as a result: -


Dealer:             KJ62                                          West          North(F)    East            South

North               10763                                         -                 pass           pass           pass

E-W vul           K109                                          1             pass           1              pass   (1)

                        84                                              pass   (2)    pass (3)


973                    N             104           (1)  Double here would be take-out and showing the

KQ54            W    E          A982              pointed suits. It’s a bit dangerous in the Sandwich

Q75                  S              J83                  seat (West is unlimited and may produce a redouble

AJ10                                  KQ95            if he has a big hand). I would, however, double

                        AQ85                                   if my partner does not understand balancing.

J                                     (2)  2 is best here – stop North entering the

A642                                   auction cheaply.

7632                              (3)  What did you bid with this North hand F in this week’s quiz? This pass is feeble. The opponents have stopped at the one level and have a fit – thus you probably have a fit and you know that partner has shortage.

1 or double are the sensible options.


And what happened? 1 made exactly for a complete top to E-W. 2 by N-S was making or making +1 at other tables. Incidentally, this N-S pair, who both failed to find a double, are the same E-W pair as this week’s ‘silly double’ pair and they believe that my writings are nonsense. It seems that they double on any hand that is 12+ points and pass on anything less.

The bottom lines: -

-         Understand balancing.

-     It’s rarely correct to let the opponents play at the one level when they have a fit.

An easy game missed                                          Board 23 from Friday 20th


E-W at table A missed an easy 3NT (+2) on this deal, who would you blame?


Dealer:             1032                                           Table A

South               J643                                           West(D)     North         East(E)       South

both vul            96                                               -                 -                 -                 pass

                        7643                                          2NT   (1)    pass           pass (2)      pass


KJ6                   N             974                       Table B

KQ                W    E          10985                   West(D)     North         East(E)       South

AKQJ74           S              8                           -                 -                 -                 pass

K9                                     AQ1085               2NT  (1)     pass           3   (2)      pass

                        AQ85                                         3              pass           3NT           all pass


10532                                         Sensible Tables

J2                                               West(D)     North         East            South

-                 -                 -                 pass

2   (1)      pass           2    (3)      pass

2NT (4)      pass           3   (5)      pass

3              pass           3NT           all pass


Table A:     (1)  What did you open with this West hand D in this week’s quiz? This hand if far too good for 2NT, a balanced 20-21 (or 20-22, depending upon how you play it). If you think that this is a balanced 22, so 2NT in your system, then compare it with Hand C.

(2)  What did you bid with this East hand E in this week’s quiz? Obviously you should go to game. This really is too trivial for the quiz but I put it in as I know of two players who got it wrong. This East who passed is presumably a complete beginner?

Table B:     (1)  This West also chose the pathetic 2NT opening – but that’s because he had just gone down in 7NT (missing an ace) having opened 2 - he thought it safer not to risk another 2 opening with this partner.

(2)  This is obviously the correct answer to question D. But this East making the correct bid was a complete fluke – he later asked if he did right to show his suit!

Sensible      (1)  So, enough of the silly beginner’s stuff. This West hand is worth far more than

Tables:             22 points and 2 (or your strongest bid) is clear.

(3)  Waiting.

(4)  2NT is clearly best now. I would like to be playing Benjamin twos when it’s game forcing (i.e. open 2). 3 is not a good bid here as partner may then end up in a possible NoTrump contract and this hand needs to be declarer to protect the black suits. Playing traditional Standard American 3NT here is an alternative but it is generally a poor treatment as it precludes transfers (4 from your hand may be best if partner has a suit).

(5)  Stayman, just as if partner had opened 2NT. Totally obvious.


And what happened? Just table A missed game; all of the other 4 pairs were in 3NT and three made +3 when South did not cash his two aces.  The bottom lines: -

-         Upgrade a hand with a suit like AKQJxx

-         With an excellent 6 points, do not pass partner’s 2NT opening!

-         Play Benjamin twos (in which case I would open 2 and rebid 2NT – game forcing).

A Forcing Pass                                                     Board 6 from Monday 16th


There are various definitions of a forcing pass. One good one is that when you/partner have clearly got the balance of power and have freely bid to game and the opponents sacrifice, then a pass is forcing – partner must either double or bid on.


Dealer:             AKQJ743                                   Table A

East                  9                                                 West          North         East(B)       South

E-W vul           K7                                              -                 -                 1              pass

                        543                                            1              1    (1)      4    (2)      pass  

  pass           4    (3)      pass (4)      pass

92                      N             -                           pass   (5)   

A1062           W    E          Q753                   

J953                  S              AQ864                 Table B

J72                                     AK108                 West          North         East            South

                        10865                                         -                 -                 1              pass

KJ84                                          1              4    (1)      pass   (6)    pass

102                                             pass   (7)



Table A:     (1)  I guess that at this vulnerability anything from 1 to 4 is reasonable.

(2)  What did you bid with this East hand B in this week’s quiz? This 4 bid shows a good hand – around 18-19 points with no shortage. This hand is worth game, but the best bid is 3 - showing game values and shortage. It makes no difference on this deal but if West had better red cards it would help a slam to be reached.

(3)  North now decides it’s worth 4 - I would have bid that last go.

(4)  East has shown a very powerful hand but is unsure what to do, either pass or 5 could be best and it probably depends upon the quality of partner’s ’s. Pass (forcing) is the best bid here – leave it up to partner, he will bid 5 if he has good ’s or else double.

(5)  Unfortunately West did not realize that he had to say something.

Table B:     (1)  This North jumped straight in there. I think that this bid is fine at this vulnerability opposite a passed partner – you will not miss anything but the opponents might.

(6)   And, indeed, it’s difficult for East now; he decided to pass.

(7)   And West does not know that East has a big hand.


And what happened? 4 went one down at both of these tables for a good score to N-S. One N-S pair were pushed to 5 doubled going for 500. Just two E-W pairs were in 4, but it’s a very tricky contract on the obvious lead. On player made it for 620 and a top and another went four down when he lost trump control. The bottom lines: -

-         Understand the forcing pass and understand splinters


Dave’s Column     Here is this week’s Dave input involving the best play for the contract.


North               South                  

AJ4               53                     You are North, playing in 3NT after East had made an opening

AK3             Q54                  lead of the 6 and West played the Q. How should you play?

J932             AQ106                                      

K62             A984

Dave’s Column answer                      Board 9 from Wednesday 18th



Dealer:             AJ4                                             West          North         East            South

East                  AK3                                           -                 -                 pass           1

E-W vul           J932                                            pass           3NT           all pass            


This was the bidding at most tables, and just for

Q97                   N             K10862          a change every pair reached 3NT. The one

10862            W    E          J97                 ‘exception’ was our precision pair (Torbjorn/Gunn)

K84                   S              75                   who reached 3NT by South, presumably when

Q107                                 J53                 South opened a weak 1NT.


Q54                                      Anyway, Dave’s problem this week is to make 3NT    

AQ106                                 from the North hand on the 6 lead.



You have 7 tricks on top and will have to take the finesse in order to set up the extra tricks that you need. Which defender might gain the lead when you do this? West! So you should hold up the A until the 3rd round, aiming to exhaust West of his holding. When you take the finesse, it loses; but since you made the ducking play in ’s there is no problem. West has no left to play and you make the game easily. If West had held another then the suit would have hopefully broken 4-4 (unless East led from a short suit) and you would lose only one and three ’s.


And what happened? One pair made 3NT + 1 when South was declarer. Two others made exactly and two went down (they did not duck the ’s).

The bottom lines: -

-         With an AJx stopper, see which defender will get the lead and duck or not accordingly.




Bidding Quiz Answers


Hand A:    2, obviously. This is only in the quiz because a player won the prize for this week’s silly double by doubling and subsequently having partner play in 4 with ’s never being mentioned (4 either made or made +2 at other tables).

Hand B:    3. A splinter agreeing ’s and showing shortage. If you do not play (or do not understand) splinters then bid 4.

Hand C:    2NT. Even if you play 2NT as 20-21 I would downgrade to 2NT because of the totally flat shape, but 2 (followed by 2NT – 22-24) is reasonable I suppose.

Hand D:    2 (or 2 if you play Benjamin twos). It’s the same point count, but this hand is worth 1½ tricks more than Hand C.

Hand E:    3, Stayman, and then bid game. It’s obvious I know, but one player who believes that he is one of the club’s top players and has been with the club for donkey’s years found a pass; another bid 3 thinking that it was natural.

Hand F:     1 or double. The opponents have a fit and insufficient values to even make a game try. Partner has points (probably about 10-11) with shortage and almost certainly has 4 ’s. I would bid 1 but dbl is equally good. Pass is pathetic.