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Not another Zebra

#1 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 13:05



Staying away from play of the hand problems, would you bid this hand any other way?
Searching for your own mistakes is the only way to learn this game. - Fluffy

And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH

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#2 User is offline   AL78 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 13:34

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-24, 13:05, said:



Staying away from play of the hand problems, would you bid this hand any other way?


With my partners, no. This is the classic two suited hand where partner is stacked in the other two suits. You are probably in a poor game that will be tough to bring in, but that is misfits for you.
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#3 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 13:41

View PostAL78, on 2021-June-24, 13:34, said:

With my partners, no. This is the classic two suited hand where partner is stacked in the other two suits. You are probably in a poor game that will be tough to bring in, but that is misfits for you.


The danger is partner has something like A, AJxx, Axxxx, J9x and 6 is good, not sure if he bids 3 or 3 with 0454 particularly if the hearts are much better than the clubs.
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#4 User is offline   Gilithin 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 14:21

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-June-24, 13:41, said:

The danger is partner has something like A, AJxx, Axxxx, J9x and 6 is good, not sure if he bids 3 or 3 with 0454 particularly if the hearts are much better than the clubs.

If you play the style where a 3 rebid shows extras you are supposed to rebid 2NT with this. If you play the style where a 3 rebid can be a minimum if 5-5 then 2 was incorrect on Opener's hand.
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#5 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 14:27

I am inclined to wonder why partner avoided the space saving bid of 2nt? Did 2s promise 6?

Assuming 2s shows no more than 5, partnerís 3h bid only makes sense with a 56 or 57 hand as a forcing 3D is available with 1462 or 0463.

I think this hand plays poorly in nt so will give it one more stab at a suit with 3S in case of 2561 or even 1562 with stiff Q or A.

This would not apply if 2S showed 6 or more.
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#6 User is online   DavidKok 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 14:44

Partner's rebid of 3 shows at least 5-6 red for me. After all, you have bypassed hearts at the 2-level, typically denying 4 (and if you do have 6-4 or longer you will bid them over 2NT/3m). I agree with AL, the misfit is evident. I have no idea whether 3NT is better than 4 or the other way around, though presumably partner would correct 3NT to 4 with 2=5=6=0 if the diamonds are solid or almost solid. I guess I'll punt 3NT.
There is an additional downside of not bidding 3NT, partner will play you for no wasted club values opposite their shortage. This may push you into a disastrous slam.

It is also worth pointing out that partner may have a legitimate problem over 2 with 2=4=5=2 with two weak clubs (the raise still promises 3 spades, if 2 did not promise or deny anything) or even 1=4=5=3. 2NT is the correct bid despite the club weakness, but this is something a partnership should agree on.
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#7 User is offline   AL78 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 14:47

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-June-24, 14:27, said:

I am inclined to wonder why partner avoided the space saving bid of 2nt? Did 2s promise 6?

Assuming 2s shows no more than 5, partnerís 3h bid only makes sense with a 56 or 57 hand as a forcing 3D is available with 1462 or 0463.

I think this hand plays poorly in nt so will give it one more stab at a suit with 3S in case of 2561 or even 1562 with stiff Q or A.

This would not apply if 2S showed 6 or more.


This is going to depend on your system. I'm only familiar with Acol and 5CM that isn't 2/1 forcing, but in Acol land and I think many who play 5CM, 2 could only be five (otherwise what do you do with 5S+4C and a minimum?), and 3 would show a minimum 2/1 (9-10 HCP) and a long suit. This is a problem hand because opener is too weak to show the second suit which partner might have a fit with and where 5 or 6 might be the best place to play. I guess if you are playing 2/1 GF responder can bid 1NT first which gives opener room to show the club suit. I would guess a lot of people would play 2NT by responder on the second round as invitational with a heart stop. If responder wants to force to game, they have to find a game forcing bid, such as bidding a new suit at the three level, FSF here. I don't claim this is optimal but if I were playing with a pickup partner at my club, I would assume this bidding structure.
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#8 User is offline   AL78 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 14:51

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-June-24, 13:41, said:

The danger is partner has something like A, AJxx, Axxxx, J9x and 6 is good, not sure if he bids 3 or 3 with 0454 particularly if the hearts are much better than the clubs.


I agree, I considered the problem when responder has club support and 5 or 6 might be the optimal contract. With the bidding systems I play with people locally, this sort of hand where opener cannot show a suit which responder has support for is a problem and there is the risk of ending up in a horrible NT contract with a club game or even slam excellent. There are probably ways of tweaking the system to alleviate this kind of problem.
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#9 User is online   mikeh 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 15:42

I donít understand why anyone thinks 3H shows a 5 card suit. It might, but it is far more frequently a probe for 3N.

I also donít understand why people are puzzled by responder not bidding 2N. I would think our club holding would afford a clue.

2N grabs declaring rights in 3N. Say you held xx AQxx AKJxx xx

Anyone who, in a method where 2S is the default bid (as it is in my partnerships) bids 2N deserves to have opener raise to 3N with AKxxx Kxx xxx Kx and face the club Queen lead. Now, 3N may make and, when it doesnít, maybe it wonít make from his side, but we all know that partner should be declaring 3N.

3H will sometimes not even be a 4 card suitÖ.after all, responder isnít expecting a raise!

As for the OP, Iíd bid it the same way, though I wouldnít be happy.

Over 3H, partner is usually hoping we can bid 3N, so we have to bid it. 3S would show better/longer spades and/or an inability to bid 3N or 4D.

Sometimes bridge logic is actually pretty simple. When, in a constructive gf auction somebody bids the first (natural) notrump, they should have at least some semblance of stoppers in the unbid suits.
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#10 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 15:46

View PostAL78, on 2021-June-24, 14:47, said:

This is going to depend on your system. I'm only familiar with Acol and 5CM that isn't 2/1 forcing, but in Acol land and I think many who play 5CM, 2 could only be five (otherwise what do you do with 5S+4C and a minimum?), and 3 would show a minimum 2/1 (9-10 HCP) and a long suit. This is a problem hand because opener is too weak to show the second suit which partner might have a fit with and where 5 or 6 might be the best place to play. I guess if you are playing 2/1 GF responder can bid 1NT first which gives opener room to show the club suit. I would guess a lot of people would play 2NT by responder on the second round as invitational with a heart stop. If responder wants to force to game, they have to find a game forcing bid, such as bidding a new suit at the three level, FSF here. I don't claim this is optimal but if I were playing with a pickup partner at my club, I would assume this bidding structure.

I do not know Acol other than reading Reese. Personally I think 3c should show at least 5 in this auction, but that is based on 2/1 gf
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#11 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 15:51

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-June-24, 14:27, said:

I am inclined to wonder why partner avoided the space saving bid of 2nt? Did 2s promise 6?

Assuming 2s shows no more than 5, partnerís 3h bid only makes sense with a 56 or 57 hand as a forcing 3D is available with 1462 or 0463.

I think this hand plays poorly in nt so will give it one more stab at a suit with 3S in case of 2561 or even 1562 with stiff Q or A.

This would not apply if 2S showed 6 or more.


Partner would bid 2nt if they could, I guess with club holding here, 2nt is not an option.

2 does not promise 6, it suggests a minimum hand after 1 2
Searching for your own mistakes is the only way to learn this game. - Fluffy

And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH

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#12 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 16:03

If East couldn't stomach a NT bid, 3 would have been ok, but that isn't what happened.



Poor West has no option other than 4 now?
Searching for your own mistakes is the only way to learn this game. - Fluffy

And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH

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#13 User is offline   Winstonm 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 17:36

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-24, 15:51, said:

Partner would bid 2nt if they could, I guess with club holding here, 2nt is not an option.

2 does not promise 6, it suggests a minimum hand after 1 2


In 2/1 whether 2N is available with this hand is totally at the partnerships discretion - there is a lot to be said for its room-saving use over stopper showing in the unbids.

There is not much reason to bid 3H with West. I would have mixed a heart in with my diamonds and rebid 3D - as long as it was forcing. If not, I would still bid 2N over 3H.

4S looks like the best contract.
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#14 User is online   mikeh 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 18:20

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-24, 16:03, said:

If East couldn't stomach a NT bid, 3 would have been ok, but that isn't what happened.



Poor West has no option other than 4 now?

I really donít understand 4C. There is zero chance of a 9 card club fit, since xxxx is usually considered enough of a semblance of a stopper (given silent opps) that responder should bid 2N with 0454 or (my preference with weak hearts) 3C, so opener cannot expect better than 1=4=5=3 in terms of clubs (and not Qxx either) and 5C rates to be worse than either 3N or 4S

But it actually works well here! Sometimes bad bridge leads to good results, which is why all of still play. If every bad action we took got punished, very few would play the game. Over 4C, responder has a trivial 4S.
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#15 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-24, 22:21

View PostWinstonm, on 2021-June-24, 17:36, said:

In 2/1 whether 2N is available with this hand is totally at the partnerships discretion - there is a lot to be said for its room-saving use over stopper showing in the unbids.


Ok, I don;t play 2nt that way. For me, 2nt would be an offer to play in NT.


View Postmikeh, on 2021-June-24, 18:20, said:

I really don’t understand 4C.

Neither did I
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And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH

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#16 User is offline   paulg 

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Posted 2021-June-25, 01:30

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-24, 22:21, said:

View Postmikeh, on 2021-June-24, 18:20, said:

I really don't understand 4C.

Neither did I

I think David Burn would call it "authorised panic".

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#17 User is offline   fromageGB 

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Posted 2021-June-25, 02:58

Yes, I would bid it differently.

For me the key is the strange 3 bid. Partner knows I do not have 4 hearts, and he does not have a good 5 card heart suit, because if he was a red 55 or longer he would bid hearts first. It seems to be showing values for a NT bid if I have that sort of hand, and his shape seems like 2353 or 1453. I do not have that sort of hand to play in NT. Two singletons make a terrible NT contract, with perhaps a loss of 4 or 5 hearts. 4 is my only option.

At the same time, I resolve to discuss with partner the benefits of a waiting 2NT that would have let me bid 3 in peace. Having said that, over a continuation of 3 from partner (needing some help in hearts) I will bid 3, but if he then bid 3NT over that I will pass 3NT, having I think explained my hand in 4 bids. If over my 3 he was happy enough with his hearts for a direct 3NT, I would again bid 4. I don't know where we are going, but a 6115 will never play 3NT willingly.

One thing for the partnership to discuss is "is 2/1 GF literally true", or can we stop in 4m in a situation like this. 4 could be the right contract, and if he then bid 4 I would want to pass.
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#18 User is online   DavidKok 

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Posted 2021-June-25, 03:06

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-24, 16:03, said:

If East couldn't stomach a NT bid, 3 would have been ok, but that isn't what happened.

Judging by the other comments this is not a common treatment, but we have the partnership agreement of not introducing the fourth suit natural on the 4-level. For me 4 would show a control for hearts, 'partner you've hit gold!', a hand like 6=4-(21). I'll gamble 3NT over stopping in precisely 4m any day of the week on this auction.
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#19 User is offline   fromageGB 

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Posted 2021-June-25, 03:06

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-24, 16:03, said:

If East couldn't stomach a NT bid, 3 would have been ok, but that isn't what happened.
Poor West has no option other than 4 now?

Absolutely. It looks like a clear 4 contract. On this bidding you may not have definitively shown a 6 card spade suit, depending on methods (hence my previous preferred bidding) but you would prefer 4 to 5, and cannot bid 4.
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#20 User is offline   fromageGB 

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Posted 2021-June-25, 03:08

View PostDavidKok, on 2021-June-25, 03:06, said:

Judging by the other comments this is not a common treatment, but we have the partnership agreement of not introducing the fourth suit natural on the 4-level. For me 4 would show a control for hearts, 'partner you've hit gold!', a hand like 6=4-(21). I'll gamble 3NT over stopping in precisely 4m any day of the week on this auction.

But surely when you have already had a third suit unnatural bid of 3 you do not need another?
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