Tuesday, 14 April 2015

Monday 13 April

Playing N/S with Adrianne came joint 1st with a not to brilliant Butler score of 11.

There were a number of big hands on the night that were difficult to bid as partner has poor to no values. Assuming you open 2C with these hands it is a good idea to have two negatives.  2H a double negative with 0-3 points and the best possible card a Queen. 2D is then 4 - 7/8 with a minimum of two Queens, preferably a King and and a Queen.  2N can show 8+ with some all round values and a positive suit bid guarantees a King and an Ace and a decent suit.
Often of course partner has 23/24 balanced and what you bid is irrelevant, you either have something and end in 3N or are pretty much pointless and stop in 2N.  However when partner has the big suit(s) hand, they are interested in your top cards and a King or even just a couple of Queens are all that are needed.

Anyway here are three big hands from this tournament:

East has a whopping 26 points and a hopefully running 6 card suit. So just playing Acol twos with a 2D -ve you start 2C - 2D - 3D - 3H.  What do you do now? Partner could easily have KS, or QC, KH etc. Playing Match Points, just bid 3N, you won't get a bottom, but playing Butler you must be tempted to go on, surely you can stop in a making 5D?
However this just doesn't work.  3N is the only making game.  If you had that 2H double negative you would never be tempted.
Maybe there is something to be said for rebidding East 3N and showing 25/26 points but that would miss a lot of diamond slams.

Only 21 points but North has a massive hand and should open 2C, 2D from partner, 3C and South should now bid 3H.
Partner is not showing any values at all, however with say:
xxxx  xxxx xxx xx you have play for 6H.  In fact if partner has next to no values, a club shortage is fairly certain (partner didn't bid 3D or support clubs)
I would just bid 6H.
Using a double negative the bidding would start 2C - 2H - 3C - 3H.  Now you know for sure partner has 0 -3 points but still 6H is too tempting.
As it turns out partner has 3 clubs and apart from the 3-1 heart break you can't find other information about the distribution and should just fall back on a 2-2 split to luckily drop the Queen.

Another fantastic East hand with 23 points but this time with a surely running 7 card suit and 10.5 tricks.
So 2C - 2D - 3D - 5D.  Are you tempted?  You must be, however partner cannot have AS, you bid 4D if you have an Ace. So it is KH you need, you cannot bid a slam in the hope of a particular card with no evidence that it could be there.  Just pass 5D.
Not even 5D makes!  As followed by a club, diamond to West, finesse 10H.  Win club return, diamond to West, finesse QH. Tough luck but at least you were in the right contract.
Incredibly if you look at the N/S hands, doesn't 4S make?  Just AK clubs and AH to lose.

Adrianne and I nearly found an unbeatable slam on another hand.
Adrianne opened 1D, I bid 1S and Adrianne bid what I think is a sensible 1N.  I liked my JTD and club intermediates and bid 4N.  Adrianne is tempted with her 5 card suit, but being minimum and a singleton spade decided to pass.  12 tricks are off the top after eliminating the AD.
If South rebids 2C I would bid 4th suit 2H and Adrianne 3N.  However I would still feel 6C is a bit of a stretch but would might try 4C.  Adrianne has no cue bid, singleton in my suit and would just bid 5C.  Just as well as there is an unavoidable club loser to go with the AD.  6D also fails on a heart lead, only 6N makes.