Our website is www.pattayabridge.com                             Club News Sheet – No. 287

Our blogsite is www.pattayabridge.wordpress.com                                 

My home phone is 038 422924 and my mobile number is 083 6066880                   11th May 2008

It is best to use my home number to contact me unless I am at the bridge club.

My e-mail is terry@pattayabridge.com or pattayabridge@yahoo.com

My MSN messenger ID is tj_quested@hotmail.com

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Mon 5th   1st               Johan & Dave H              59%       2nd    Ian B & Kenneth              54%

Wed 7th    1st              Alan P & Terje                63%       2nd    Arnawood & Sally            60%

Fri 9th       1st              Johan & Terje                  69%       2nd    Niels & Jan                      58%


Bidding Quiz                   


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


KJ9              AQ54                                  

QJ74            10652           With Hand B LHO opens 1 and partner bids 1NT, what do   

AK6            7                   you bid?          

K95             8763           


Bidding Sequence Quiz


C     1      dbl     pass   1NT       How many points is 1NT? 0-9 or 6-9?

D     2      pass   2                    2 is weak, is 2 forcing or weak. What is it if you play Acol

with weak twos?        

E      1     dbl     pass   1          Is 2 a strong hand or a two-suiter with ’s and also ’s?

pass   2     

General chit-chat                                          

On Monday 5th there was the usual chat over brunch.


2NT over partner’s weak two opening


Dave mentioned a hand where he opened a weak 2 and partner bid 2NT. Having not discussed the meaning of 2NT Dave jumped to 4 as he was maximum with good ’s. This got a good score and the conversation then turned to what 2NT should mean. There are two options here: show a feature or Ogust (show strength).

Somebody then chipped in that 2NT is the only forcing bid over a weak two. I stated categorically that this was untrue, a new suit being forcing. I went on to say that RONF (Raise the Only Non Forcing bid) was standard, is printed on the ACBL conventions sheets and it’s clearly explained in Max Hardy’s book “Standard Bidding in the 21st century” which I always have with me. My adversary then reluctantly conceded that I may be correct but that a new suit is not forcing (but weak) when playing Acol. I disagreed with this statement but did not have an Acol book with me. When I got home I looked it up in Eric Crowhurst’s “Acol Index”. Page 61 clearly stated ‘a bid of a new suit by responder is forcing for one round’.


Double followed by a new suit bid


The conversation then went on to take-out doubles. There was general agreement that a take out double initially shows a hand playable in the other three suits. However, I then had a disagreement with the same adversary about the meaning of a new suit by doubler when partner has responded in a suit (like sequence E). He maintained that it showed a two suiter. I maintain that it shows a single-suiter too strong to simply overcall. This latter statement is backed up in Max Hardy’s book, page 211, but the other opinion does seem to be held by Crowhurst’s somewhat out-dated ‘Acol in Competition’. In my opinion it is bad practice to double with two-suited hands – you are fixed when partner inevitably bids your other short suit.

The 1NT overcall                                                 Board 1 from Monday 28th  

The 1NT overcall is a very informative bid - balanced or semi-balanced, 15-17 or 15-18 by agreement, with a stop in the suit opened. Unfortunately some people feel that they simply must double with a decent hand despite shape totally unsuitable for a double:


Dealer:             87632                                         Table A

North               AK                                             West          North         East(A)      South

E-W vul           942                                             -                 1              dbl   (1)      pass (2)

AQ4                                           1NT (3)      pass           2NT (4)      3

3    (5)      pass           4    (6)      pass

AQ54                N             KJ9                      pass           dbl             all pass

10652             W    E          QJ74                   

7                        S              AK6                    Table B

8763                                  K95                     West(B)     North         East(A)      South

                        10                                              -                 1              1NT (1)      pass

983                                            2   (7)      pass           2              all pass




Table A:     (1)  What did you bid with this East hand A in this week’s quiz? A take-out double should be short in the suit bid! (or very strong).

                  (2)  2 (weak after a double) is an option here.

(3)   West went into the tank here. 2 seems ‘obvious’ but the real feature of the hand is the great stops. He eventually chose 1NT. I would not argue with either bid.

(4)   Presumably East thought this hand too good to overcall 1NT?

(5)   Reluctant to let the opponents play in 3, West now chose to show his poor suit.

(6)   With a couple of stops, 3NT is better. Partner bid 1NT in preference to 1 for a reason; his 3 bid now implies shortage and could easily (most likely) be just 3 ’s or else four very poor ones.

Table B      (1)  This East chose the obvious 1NT overcall.

                  (7)  What did you bid with this West hand B in this week’s quiz? With only 6 points it’s not strong enough to look for a fit and pass is best.


And what happened? Nobody stopped in 1NT which would have scored a top; results were 2-1, 3-1 and 4*-2. 3NT stands a very good chance of making, 4 did not.


The bottom lines: -

-         A 1NT overcall is 15-17 (or 15-18 if you prefer) with a stop in the suit opened.

-         Do not double if your hand fits the description of a 1NT overcall.

-         A 1NT response to partner’s double shows a stop and 6-9 points.

-         Do not criticize partner for your own mistakes – East at Table A thought that his bidding was perfect and tried to blame partner.


Criticising the Opponents                                    Board 2 from Monday 28th   


It is not polite (and against the rules) to criticise the opponents unless they ask your advice. Expect to get written up if you try it with me. This time an opponent criticised my line of play. The criticism was incorrect.


Dealer:             AK10                                         West          North         East            South

East                  AKQ5                                        -                 -                 pass           pass

N-S vul            J109                                          pass           2NT           pass           4NT

K32                                           all pass      


9843                  N             Q752              North passed the quantitative 4NT bid and played

43                   W    E          J8762             in the reasonable 4NT. A was led and this gives

865                    S              73                  declarer 11 sure tricks. He can look for the extra          

Q864                                 A7                  12th trick in either black suit.      

                        J6                                         I led the J at trick two and so got just 11 tricks.          

109                                       At the end of the hand East criticized my play,

AKQ42                                saying that I should have finessed the Q instead.

J1095                                   This statement would have been true had a not

been led, but the lead gave declarer 11 tricks and either black suit finesse working makes 12 tricks.


And what happened? 6NT=, 6NT-1 and 4NT+1 twice, so an average.

The bottom lines: -

-         Don’t criticize the opponents unless you feel that they would welcome your advice.

-         If you do criticize an opponent then you should be sure that what you say is correct.



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


North               South                     You are South and it’s favourable vulnerability.

8742             AQ6                   West passed as dealer but later overcalls 2 and then 3.

A65              KJ4                    You end up in 5 and West leads the AK, plan the play.

83                 7

AJ74            KQ10985









Dave’s  Column answer                    Board 23 from Wednesday 7th   


Dealer:             8742                                           West          North         East            South

South               A65                                            -                 -                 -                 1

Love all            83                                               1              dbl   (1)      pass           3

                        AJ74                                          3              4             4              4

                                                                              pass           5             all pass

103                     N             KJ95             

Q10832          W    E          97                   (1)  Negative, promising 4 ’s.

AKJ96               S              Q10542         

5                                        63                  West leads the A and continues with the K.

                        AQ6                                     You ruff the 2nd and play the AK, West

KJ4                                      discarding a on the 2nd . Plan the play.




You have lost a and have a likely loser as well as 2 losers. Is there any good news?

Yes, West has turned up with the two top ’s and probably has the Q. If East has the K then you have only one loser instead of two. None the less there seems to be three losers.

Let’s check the distribution. West has overcalled twice, the 2nd time at the three level. Certainly West must have at least 10 red cards along with one known and should not have more than two ’s. Are you beginning to see the light?

Cash the K and A and, assuming the Q has not dropped, finesse the Q and cash the A, stripping West of ’s. Now exit with the J.

West wins but has only red cards left. You ruff the red card in dummy and discard your remaining .


In the book West passed as dealer and was vulnerable, so working out that East has the K and West was 5-5 distribution was easier.


And what happened at the Pattaya bridge Club? Nobody was in 5. Results were 3NT=, 3NT-1(twice) and 4=.

The bottom lines: -

-         With too many apparent losers, think of a strip and end-play.



Dave’s 2nd Column   Here is Dave’s 2nd  input involving the best play for the contract.


West                East                  You are East, declarer in 4 and South leads the K, plan the play.

1094             AKQ876   

AKQ7          -

876               A532         

954              A76                                                   




Dave’s 2nd Column answer              Board 22 from Wednesday 7th


Dealer:             5                                                 West          North         East            South

East                  J98532                                       -                 -                 1              pass

E-W vul           KQ10                                         2              pass           3              pass     (2)

                        1082                                          3    (2)      pass           4


1094                   N             AKQ876        (1)  A help suit game try

AKQ7            W    E          -                     (2)  West accepts and so cue-bids his A.

876                     S              A532             

954                                    A76                South leads the K, plan the play.






Counting tricks, you have 6 ’s, 3 ’s and two aces for 11. But of course you might have trouble getting to your 3 tricks. Counting losers you have three possible losers along with two losers.

The problem is how to get to the ’s. If the J falls doubleton or singleton there is no problem, the 10 will be an entry. But what if it doesn’t?

The safest way is to give up a in order to make sure you can get to dummy. Win the A and cash the A and if the J does not fall lead a low towards the 10,9. Somebody will win the J and cash two ’s but that’s all. You win the probable shift and enter dummy with a trump and discard 3 ’s on dummy’s top 3 ’s.


And what happened at the Pattaya bridge Club? Again the vulnerability was different from the book. In the book N-S were vulnerable against not and so North does not bid his anaemic suit. At this vulnerability two North’s bid their suit and the resultant lead gave declarer an easy +1. Another declarer made 4 when the defence later led a and just one declarer went down.



Bidding Quiz Answers


Hand A:     1NT, 15-17 and a stop. Double is a very poor bid.

Hand B:    pass, 2 Stayman (looking for a fit) is a poor bid because if partner does not have 4 ’s you will end up too high as the hand is not worth a 2NT invite.


Bidding Sequence Answers              


C     1      dbl     pass   1NT       1NT is 6-9 and promises a stop.

D     2      pass   2                    2 is forcing in both Acol and Standard American.

E      1     dbl     pass   1          2 shows a hand too strong to overcall a simple 1. It  

pass   2                                       appears that some Acol players play this as a two suiter, which I most certainly do not recommend.