Club News Sheet – No. 253        9th Sept 2007

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Mon 3rd            1st  Phil & Tomas                                 =          Sean B… & Alan                 60%

Wed 5th            1st Lewis & Terry                      71%         2nd Phil & Tomas                       63%

Fri  7th              1st  Bob & Dave                         65%         2nd  Paul Sc.. & Ivy                     55%


Bidding Quiz                           Standard American is assumed unless otherwise stated.


Hand A           Hand B           With Hand A it’s favourable vulnerability. RHO opens 1,

what do you bid?

AQJ10764    754            

10                 K52              With Hand B it’s both vul. RHO opens 1NT and you are

84                 8                   playing Multi Landy (or Cappelletti if you prefer), what

Q94             KQ7643      do you bid?


Hand C           Hand D           With Hand C RHO opens 1, what do you bid?


AKQ            AQ105         (a) What do you open with Hand D? Suppose you pass and LHO

K62              9                         opens 1NT which is passed round to you: (b) What do you do?

863               972               (c)  What would you do if partner had made a long pause before

K732           KQ987              passing the 1NT opening bid?


Hand E            Hand F            With Hand E it’s everybody vulnerable. Partner opens a weak 2

and RHO overcalls 2, what do you bid?

Q9754          A643         

Q                  K9                With Hand F partner opens 1 and you bid 1. Partner then bids

AK105         Q1076543    2, what do you do?

J42               -


Bidding Sequences Quiz        All of these sequences occurred this week


G     1     dbl     redbl  pass  

pass   1      dbl               What is double?         

H     1      dbl     1                Is 1 forcing?

J      1      dbl     2               Is 2 forcing?

K     1      dbl     2                Is 2 forcing?

L      1NT   2     3               2 is Multi Landy, showing the majors. What is 3?

M    1NT   2     pass   2      2 is multi Landy. (a) What is 2, and …

… (b) does the 2 bidder have to alert it?

N     pass   pass   pass   4     

pass   pass   dbl               What is double, take-out or penalties?        

The Club Championships       The current standings are: -

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


1820.8  Jan v Koss                  666.8  Janne Roos                    350.4  Janne Roos

1816.8  Janne Roos                  654.4  Jan v Koss                    343.2  Bengt Malmgren

1809.6  Dave Cutler                 644.2  Dave Cutler                   340.2  Jan v Koss

1748.5  Bob Pelletier                642.9  Bengt Malmgren            332.9  Paul Savelkral

1709.8  Phil Lovell                   634.9  Paul Savelkral                330.1  Dave Cutler



Pre-empt to the limit                    Board 15 from Monday 3rd



Dealer:             K                                                Table A

South               AK9862                                     West(A)     North         East            South

N-S vul            10763                                         -                 -                 -                 1

                        K2                                             3    (1)      4    (2)      pass           pass

4    (3)      pass           pass           dbl

AQJ10764         N             983                       all pass

10                  W    E          QJ74                   

84                      S              Q5                        Table B

Q94                                   10863                  West(A)     North         East            South

                        52                                               -                 -                 -                 1

53                                               4    (1)      5    (4)      dbl             all pass




Table A:     (1)  What did you bid this West hand A in this week’s quiz? Three chaps found this feeble 3 overcall.

(2)   North has a fairly comfortable bid here.

(3)   And would you believe it – this West bid again. Obviously never reads the news-sheets, perhaps I should write them in Dutch as well?

 Table B:    (1)  This was the only West ‘man enough’ to overcall with 4. This is a great suit and at this vulnerability a mere 3 is pathetic – well bid Ivy.

(4)  And here we see the difference – should North venture 5 or not? Not easy. That’s why one should pre-empt to the limit at once and never bid again.


And what happened? 5* by North went down one for a complete top to Ivy & Paul.

The bottom lines: -

-         Pre-empt to the limit at once and never bid again.

-         This is a classic example. The 4 overcall put North on a guess that he got wrong.

-         At Table A North had no guess – he bid his hand comfortably over 3 and then left it up to partner to double 4or bid 5.

Raise partner’s pre-empt to the limit                 Board 10 from Friday 7th 


Much the same applies when partner pre-empts – you should raise his pre-empt to the maximum according to the vulnerability, the Law of Total tricks, and common sense: -



Dealer:             82                                               Table A

East                  AJ1032                                      West(E)     North         East            South

both vul            82                                               -                 -                 2              2

                        K1087                                       4  (1)        4    (2)      all pass


Q9754               N             KJ3                      Table B

Q                   W    E          74                         West(E)     North         East            South

AK105              S              QJ7643                 -                 -                 2              2

J42                                     95                        5  (1)        dbl   (3)      all pass






Table A:     (1)  What did you bid this West hand E in this week’s quiz? You have a total of 10 trumps and ‘The Law’ says that 4 is safe. But there is more to ‘The Law’ than that – see what I bid (and why) at Table B

(2)   Easy-peasy.

Table B:     (1)  This time I was West. Partner has 6 ’s and the ‘simple’ version of the Law says to bid to the 4-level with 10 trumps. But one really has to look a bit deeper. Partner has pre-empted and so the opponents have the majority of the points – so 4 is certainly not making. You are pretty sure that the opponents can make 4 and can reasonably expect minus two in 5 doubled, so 5 is what I bid and is my answer to question E.

(3)  Not so ‘Easy-peasy’. North thought for a while and then decided to double. West’s 5 bid made it difficult.


And what happened? 4 made +1 for +650 at two tables but N-S at Table B scored only 500 for 5 doubled -2.

The bottom lines: -

-         Understand the Law.

-         Raise partner’s pre-empt to the limit IMMEDIATELY and make it difficult for the next player.

It’s penalties!                                                       Board 24 from Monday 3rd



Dealer:             Q103                                          Table A

West                -                                                 West          North         East            South

Love all            K9742                                        pass           1              dbl   (1)      redbl  (2)

                        AQ1052                                     pass           pass           1              dbl     (3)

pass           2   (4)      pass           4      (5)

J82                    N             K9765                  all pass

95                 W    E          Q10632               

QJ1086             S              A                          Table B

743                                    J8                         West          North         East            South

                        A4                                              pass           pass(6)       pass           4    (7)

AKJ874                                     pass           pass           dbl     (8)    all pass




Table A:     (1)  This pair do not play Michaels cue bids.

(2)   9+ points and usually a mis-fit for partner – looking for a penalty.

(3)  But now South has a tricky bid. Should he go for the penalty or go for a game? I don’t really like this choice with just Ax and would bid 3 which is forcing.

(4)  This 2 bid is unforgivable! Partner has said that he wants to defend 1 doubled and North has Q10x and pulls it!

(5)  Desperation.

Table B:     (6)  A clear 1 opener in my book, with an easy rebid.

(7)   An absurd opening of course; but this is not the first time that I have written about this person’s 4/ openings. 1 is obvious but 2 is a good bid if you play it as this sort of strength in 4th seat (a very reasonable treatment).

(8)  South was apparently not impressed with this bid, believing that it should mean take-out. To me it’s clearly penalties as East is a passed hand.


And what happened? 4* at Table B went two down (I believe that declarer thought that East’s double was take-out and played West for the ’s) and at Table A 4 went just one down. Ivy/Paul bid the N-S cards to a nice 3NT+2 at another table but I don’t know their bidding.

The bottom lines: -

-         After an opening, double and redouble; all subsequent doubles are penalties – whether at the one level or not.

-         An opening 4 is a 7 or 8 card suit and pre-emptive. Partners will not trust you if you repeatedly open 4/ with a 6 card suit and 15 or more points.

-         A 2/ opening in 4th seat is up to partnership agreement – it is not the usual pre-emptive 6-9 as you can pass with such a hand, especially if you have ’s and not ’s.


No stop!                                                             Board 10 from Monday 3rd



Dealer:             AKQ                                          Table A

East                 K62                                            West          North(C)    East            South

Both vul            863                                             -                 -                 pass           pass

                        K732                                         1              1NT (1)      pass           2 (2)

pass           2              pass           3NT

108                    N             9743                     dbl             all pass

J1083            W    E          954                      

AKQ109          S              752                       Table B

A9                                      1094                    West          North(C)    East            South

                        J652                                           -                 -                 pass           pass

AQ7                                           1              dbl   (1)      pass           2  (3)

J4                                                pass           3    (4)      all pass



Table A:     (1)  What did you bid with this North hand C in this week’s quiz? It’s strong enough for 1NT but I would not bid that because (a) I knock off a point for 3334 shape and (b) there is no stop. So that leaves double or pass.

(2)  Stayman.

Table B:     (1)  So did you double or pass with the North hand C? I would not dream of doubling with this totally flat hand and would pass and wait and see what happens. But it seems that I am in the minority and most like to (mis)bid their hand by making a bid.

(3)   This jump to 2 is correct.

(4)   I would be happy to leave it in 2.


And what happened? The board was played 4 times and three North’s managed to bid 3NT with no stop; all went two down. 3 made exactly.

The bottom lines: -

-         You need a stop in the suit opened to overcall 1NT.

-         Downgrade 4333 type hands by a point.

-         Don’t make take-out doubles with flat hands.






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


North               South                   You are North, playing in 4 after an uncontested auction.

AQJ65          K102                East leads the K, how do you play the hand?

J87               963                  

A875            KQ2          

3                  A1042



Dave’s Column answer                      Board 5 from Wednesday 5th 



Dealer:             AQJ65                                        West          North         East            South

North               J87                                             -                 1              pass           2

N-S vul            A875                                          pass           2              pass           4

                        3                                                all pass


74                      N             983                 The auction is uninteresting, onto the play.  

AK104          W    E          Q52                     

J964                  S              103                 “One possibility is to draw 2 rounds of trumps 

976                                    KQJ85           and then play the three top ’s. Here East would

                        K102                                    ruff the 3rd and you would go down.





Now look at the deal from dummy’s point of view. What losers are there in the South hand? Three in ’s and three in ’s. If you can ruff all three ’s in the North hand, you will make the game. After winning with the A you ruff a immediately. You play the A and 10, noting the 3-2 trump break, and ruff a 2nd . A to the K permits a 3rd ruff and you return to dummy with the Q to draw the last trump. Ten tricks are made.

This play is known as a ‘dummy reversal’ because you treat your own hand as a dummy, taking ruffs there. On this deal you needed the trumps to break 3-2, otherwise you could not have drawn trumps with dummy’s holding. Had trumps not broken 3-2, you would have had to revert to the alternative line of playing ’s and hoping for a 3-3 split there.”


And what happened at the Pattaya bridge club? 4-1 twice, 3=, 3+1 and 3 by East -2.

The bottom line: -

-         With two top trumps in the short hand and shortage in the long trump hand, look for the dummy reversal if necessary.


A Tartan two?                                                      Board 14 from Wednesday 5th 



Dealer:             KQ10                                         West          North         East          South

East                  KJ3                                            -                 -                 2    (1)    pass (2)

Love all            Q10643                                      2    (3)      pass           3   (4)    dbl   (5)

            J8                                               3              dbl   (5)      all pass


A97653             N             J8                   (1)  Supposedly a Tartan two; in their system a

54                  W    E          9862                     4-card major is apparently allowed.

KJ97                 S              82                   (2)  See below (*) about the defence to Tartan twos.

3                                        K10754         (3)  An automatic relay I believe, although it was

                        42                                               not alerted.

AQ107                                 (4)  2nd suit.      

A5                                        (5)  penalties



And what happened? 3 doubled went three down for a complete bottom to E-W.

The bottom line: -

-         4 points really is too few for a pre-empt, especially when it’s effectively at the three level and just a miserable 5-card suit.

-         Presumably this East took the caliber of the opposition into account (Lewis and myself were E-W) when he decided that 4 points was enough for a pre-empt.

I decided to check up on Tartan twos and have put a page on the web-site. Most play that they are either weak (7-11) and 5-5 in the two suits or else very strong (single suited in the major). This E-W pair apparently play that the first bid suit may be 4-cards. I have no idea if they play that the Tartan two may also be a strong hand (but see p.s. below) and I don’t really care if they continue to dish out free tops like this.

Here is an extract form a publication by a tournament director that I found which discusses whether Tartan twos should be allowed, it certainly applies in this actual case.

“One reason I advise allowing Tartan twos is that I believe it is a pretty ineffective system. If players keep strictly to the strength and suit quality standard it gets very little use; and if they don’t (which seems to be the norm) the disruption of the bidding is more likely to damage their own side than the opponents. There is an effective defence against undisciplined Tartan bidders (*) Let them do all the bidding then double and lead trumps!”

I think that ‘undisciplined Tartan bidder’ is an understatement for this East.


I will, however, have a word with the pair, find out exactly what variation of Tartan twos they play, advise them which bids need alerting, and say that a 4-point pre-empt of this quality is close to a psyche.


Post Script


I did have a word with one of these players; they apparently do not play Tartan twos, but a scheme whereby a 2/ bid is weak with 4 of the major bid and 5-6 cards in an unspecified minor (6-10). What I think of this treatment is unprintable; and quite why East did not pass the apparent natural 2 bid is beyond my comprehension, maybe it was indeed a relay that was not alerted? I know that these two are a new partnership, but they are both very experienced players and … my humble advice is to use the 2/ opening for something sensible – weak twos or Muiderberg spring to mind.

Multi Landy or Cappelletti?                                Board 26 from Wednesday 5th 



Dealer:             K1063                                        West          North         East          South(B)

East                  10864                                         -                 -                 1NT         2   (1)

Both vul            AJ932                                         3   (2)      3    (3)      dbl           all pass


(1)  What did you bid with this South hand B in

AQ2                  N             J98                       this week’s quiz? Playing natural methods I

73                  W    E          AQJ9                   guess a 2 overcall is OK, but if playing 2

1065                S              KQ74                   as conventional then you will be at the three

J10985                               A2                        level. I would pass, especially vulnerable.

                        754                                             Anyway, this South thought that they were

K52                                            playing Cappelletti and chose 2 (a single

8                                                 suited hand).

KQ7643                              (2)  I would play this as natural and forcing – it’s not Stayman if the 2 bid showed the majors, as North alerted South’s 2 bid to be.

(3)   North, however, was playing Multi Landy. As a 3 bid (perhaps showing equal length?) now could be misleading he picked a major.


And what happened? 3 doubled went three down for a complete top to E-W.

The bottom line: -

-         Remember the System. I much prefer Multi Landy to Cappelletti.

-         Whether you play Multi Landy or Cappelletti and you have a suit, be wary of coming in over a strong NoTrump – especially vulnerable – as you will necessarily be at the three level.

-         In fact, I can see little point in showing a long minor via 2 (Cappelletti) or 2 (Multi-Landy) – surely it is better to jump straight to 3/ as this has a good pre-emptive effect. With a minor suit and a hand not good enough to play at the 3-level it’s usually best to pass the strong 1NT.

-         This particular deal has prompted me to write an article, Cappelletti or Multi-Landy? on the web site; it explains why Multi Landy is so much better than Cappelletti.

-     Will people please note that, if they partner me, then I do not like and do not play Cappelletti.


When partner pauses …                                      Board 14 from Friday 7th 


a recurring theme. There was an incident on Monday 27th Aug when there was some friction at the table when a player made a dubious bid after his partner made a long pause.

I did not write it up (maybe I should have) and here we have the same player doing it again.



Dealer:             9763                                           West          North         East(D)    South

East                  72                                               -                 -                 pass         1NT

Love all            K83                                            pass (1)      pass           2   (2)    pass

            10542                                        2              pass           3           pass

      pass           dbl   (3)      all pass

J8                      N             AQ105          

AJ864           W    E          9                    

10654               S              972                      

A3                                      KQ987               






(1)  After a very long pause; it’s not a good Multi-Landy 2 because of the miserable suit.

(2)  What did you bid with this West hand D(b)  in this week’s quiz? I would have opened 1 but that’s not the issue here – LHO has shown 15-17 and the points distributed between West and North are unknown. North may easily have 6 or 7 points. There is no convenient bid to show this shape (having failed to open 1!). To me pass is very clear, if it was not worth an opening it most certainly cannot be worth coming in at the two level with a strong NoTrump on your left! Anyway, East went into a long think; at this stage it would be quite in order for North or South to have called the director (and if so I would have banned East from the bidding without even having to look at his hand – as he is a passed hand). Anyway, I was North and did not want to cause ‘problems’. Eventually East came up with a 2 (Multi-Landy) bid. Was his decision to bid influenced by his partner’s hesitation and the unauthorized information that West has values? Only he knows, but it would appear so; why else is his hand worth a bid now but not worth an opening bid?

(3)  North, however, is perfectly entitled to take advantage of the unauthorized information given by West’s pause. He was pretty sure that West had ’s and ’s and so the opponents were up at the 3-level in a mis-fit and he doubled them.


And what happened? East got exactly what he deserved when 3 doubled went for 300 and a clear bottom.

The bottom line: -

-         If you do make a very long pause then it’s usually best to make a possibly poor bid rather than passing. If you pass then that may cause problems for partner.

-         If you do indeed make a long pause and then pass then if partner bids it has to be very clear. Obviously the 2 bid (2) was not. Had I been called I would have ruled that East had to pass.

-         If one opponent does make a long pause and his partner bids then you can either accept the bid or call the director.

-         West is entitled to think – East is the culprit here.

-         It is a fact that the director is called more times over hesitation than for any other reason.

Another mis-fit – another bottom!                       Board 17 from Friday 7th 


I have often given advice on mis-fits in the news sheets; stay low and do not play in No-Trumps without ample points. This South chose to ignore my advice.



Dealer:             102                                             West          North         East          South(F)

North               A8753                                        -                 1              pass (1)    1    (2)

Love all            98                                               pass           2             pass         2NT (3)

            AK103                                       all pass


KQJ9                N             875                 (1)  A restrained pass that worked out well.

1062              W    E          QJ4                (2)  This is best, the hand is not good enough for 2

AKJ2                S              -                      (3)  What did you bid with this South hand F in this       

94                                      QJ87652              week’s quiz? This 2NT is a poor bid because

                        A643                                          it’s a couple of points light, it’s a mis-fit, and

K9                                              the suit will likely never get set up.

Q1076543                                  It would be nice to be able to sign off in 2 but

-                                                 2 would be forcing, so bid 2.


And what happened? 2NT went -3 for a bottom; N-S should go just one down in 2.

The bottom line: -

-         Beware of mis-fits and stay low.

-         Play in a suit rather than No-Trumps unless you have points to spare.

Bidding Quiz Answers


Hand A:    4♠. 3 is pathetic, but was the bid chosen by ¾ of the club!

Hand B:    Pass. If you compete showing a single suited hand you are necessarily up at the three level and this hand is not good enough over a strong NoTrump.

Hand C:    Pass. You cannot bid 1NT with no stop (and the hand is not good enough anyway) and double is a poor bid with a flat hand and 3-3 in the majors.

Hand D:    (a)  1. The hand conforms with the rule of 20, has nice shape, points in the long suits and an easy rebid.

(b)   Wish you had opened! But seriously, there is no sensible bid now as there is no conventional bid to show this shape if you play Multi Landy. Pass is clear.

(c)    Pass, mandatory. Partner’s long pause has passed unauthorized information that he has values and you cannot bid now even if you would have at (b).

Hand E:    5. 4 is not enough. The opponents are sure to make 4 or more (620+) and 5 is probably going to go two down (500) – so bid 5 and make it uncomfortable for LHO.

Hand F:     2. It’s a mis fit, so stay low. 2NT is a very poor bid because one should not play mis-fits in NoTrumps (unless very strong) and this hand does not have the values for 2NT anyway. Unfortunately you cannot bid 2 as that would be forcing whether you play it as 4th suit forcing or not.


Bidding Sequences Answers    



G     1     dbl     redbl  pass  

pass   1      dbl               Dbl is penalties.         

H     1      dbl     1                A new suit at the 1-level is forcing.

J      1      dbl     2               But a new suit at the two level is weak (redouble with 9+).

K     1      dbl     2                Weak, same as J.

L      1NT   2     3               This is an interesting one. Normally a cue bid of the overcalled suit is Stayman, but if the overcall shows both majors then obviously you do not want to use Stayman – so 3 is natural. If you also play Lebensohl then it’s forcing (bid 2NT with a weak hand with a long suit).

M    1NT   2     pass   2      (a) 2 shows equal length in the majors

(b) Yes, the 2 bid needs to be alerted.

N     pass   pass   pass   4     

pass   pass   dbl               This double is penalties as it’s made by a passed hand so he cannot possibly want to compete at the 4/5 level.