††††††††††††††††††††† Club News Sheet Ė No. 8†††††††††††††††††††††††††††††† †† 17/12/2002†††††


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The rule of Eleven


This is a request. One member asked me if I could explain the rule of eleven and the significance of 4th highest leads against

No Trump contracts. I can certainly do no better than simply quote from probably the best book on card play ever written: - Card Play Technique, by Victor Mollo and Nico Gardener. It was written in 1955 and is considered a classic. Unlike bidding, playing technique has not changed over the years. Itís in the Club Library if you wish to borrow it.


††††† In the defence to NoTrump section, the book covers all sorts of leads (leading honours from honour sequences and interior sequences etc.) against NT contracts. It then goes on to say that from a holding such as AKxxx(x), AQxxx(x) lead the 4th highest. Partner will then apply the rule of eleven. If you want to borrow it, let me know.


Bidding Quiz


KQ10†††††††††† This is a hand from last Friday. You are playing 5 card majors and a

85†††††††††††††††† 15-17 NT. Partner deals and opens 1. What do you bid?

AJ654†††††††††† Perhaps this sort of hand is easier when playing a weak NT; 2 is then

832††††††††††††† Ďobviousí as it promises only 9 pts. Playing a strong NT, things are different. A 2NT bid is 11-12 pts, 1NT is 6-9 and 2 is 11+. With a 10

point hand, you must evaluate whether the hand is closer to 11 or 9. So what would you bid? 1NT, 2 or 2NT? Answer (and the reasoning behind it) next week. If you really canít wait that long, then ask me. If you have a definite opinion, then let me know and I will include it in next weekís answer, especially if it disagrees with the opinion of Chuck and myself (yes, we totally agreed on this one).


Letís finish off with a hand type that is impossible to bid using traditional methods: -


75†††††††††††††††† Your partner opens 1. No problem, you simply bid 1 (you would not,

AJ96††††††††††† ††††††††††† of course, even dream of bidding 1NT and suppressing the 4 card suit).

Q4††††††††††††††† Unfortunately, life is not always that simple, and RHO intervenes with†††

98732††††††††† 1. So what do you bid now? You cannot support partnerís ís with a doubleton. 2 would show a 5 card suit and 11+ (or 9+ if you play a weak

NT) points. The suit is too anaemic to bid and you are not strong enough to make a forcing bid at the two level. So 1NT? Does not seem right with a small doubleton in opponents suit and with an undisclosed suit. So that just leaves pass? Now it really would be sad to sell out to 1 when you know that your side has at least 19 points (but I saw this happen with a similar hand last week). There is no sensible solution unless you play negative (Sputnik) doubles. More next week.


Now one thing has come up in both of the above hands. Why does the point requirement for a two-level response depend upon whether you play a weak or strong No Trump? Answer next week.