Monday Bridge 29 July 2019

Hi All,

It was pretty warm today and the "Dog Days" are yet to come. Congratulations to Marion and Cynthia (69%) and Darrell and Jan (62%) for high scores for the day. You've all done very well.

Next Monday we'll continue with the Competitive Bidding worksheet. There will be no advanced lesson on Thursday.

I'll add some comments on today's boards. Check back tomorrow and Wednesday.

See you soon.


PS  Comments added to boards 2, 4, 5, 6, 7, 9, 10, 12, 14, 15, 16, 18, 19, 20, 21 and 22.

This board stretches our agreements almost beyond recognition. West opens 1 Diamond and North overcalls 1 Spade. East doubles to show his 4 or more Hearts and 6 or more points and South stops to think. Would 2 Spades be inviting or competing? It would certainly be competing over 2 Hearts. He jumps to 3 Spades to hopefully make his invitation clear. 

Now West stops to think. He counts around 19 points in support of Hearts. Partner could have 10 or more points with exactly 4 Hearts or 5 or more Hearts with 6-9 points. He decides to compete to 4 Hearts and North will compete to 4 Spades. Since 4 Hearts can make, N/S hope for a good sacrifice when they go down. Unfortunately for them, no one made 4 Hearts and it turned out poorly.

Suppose South instead raises to 2 Spades. West may compete to 3 Hearts or just go to 4 Hearts. North isn't sure if South invited or just competed, so he may pass.

Tough hand to get right.

North opens 1 No Trump and South raises to 3 No Trump. East will probably lead the Ace of Diamonds, hoping to set them up while he hopefully can get in with the King of Spades to run the rest. He's discouraged when the dummy shows the Ace of Spades, but continues with a Diamond anyway. North makes an overtrick or two for the top.

East opens 1 Diamond and West responds 1 Heart. East jumps to 3 Diamonds to show 6 or more Diamonds and 17 or more points. West stops to reevaluate and think. He counts 14 points in support of diamonds and knows that his support gives partner at least 20 points. He rebids 4 No Trump, Blackwood to check the Aces, planning to pass if partner shows one Ace and bid the slam if he shows two or three Aces. East responds 5 Spades and West bids 6 Diamonds.

The most worrisome lead is a Club, so let's suppose South leads the 10. Declarer stops to think. He must draw the trumps and set up the Hearts to throw his Club losers before he gives up the lead. That means dropping or finessing both red Queens. He has no clue as to where they are, so decides to follow normal practice by winning an honor in the short suit and leading toward the long suit.

Fortunately, both work and he has 15 top tricks. Otherwise, he goes down.

South opens 1 Spade. West can't jump with his vulnerable 6 tricks, but might stretch to 2 Clubs. North counts 19 points in support of Spades and thinks slam. He responds 2 hearts to show his 5-card suit and 10 or more points and to force partner to describe his hand. East knows that his partner can't have much, so passes. South rebids 2 Spades to show his 6-card suit and 13-16 points. West passes and North stops to reevaluate and think. He now sees 16-19 points opposite his 19 and bids 4 No Trump, Blackwood, to be sure that partner has an Ace. South bids 5 Diamonds and North raises to 6 Spades. It makes for the top. 

North opens 1 No Trump and South bids 2 Clubs, Stayman. North responds 2 Diamonds and South rebids 2 No Trump. North raises to 3 No Trump with his maximum and it makes an overtrick or two for a good score.

East opens 1 Heart, South passes and West bids 2 Diamonds to show his 5-card suit, 10 or more points and to force partner to describe his hand. East rebids 2 Hearts to show 6 or more Hearts and 13-16 points. West knows that his support  makes partner stronger, but bids a disciplined 4 Hearts. It makes with an overtrick for the top.

West opens 1 Club and East responds 1 Diamond. West rebids 3 Clubs to show his 6 or more Clubs and 17 or more points. East has the 3 No Trump card out so quick that you can't see his hand move. It makes for the top. I would think that even the No Trump haters would have seen 20 points opposite their 12 and bid 5 Clubs. Apparently a case of the Reevaluation Blues.

North opens 1 Heart and South responds 2 Clubs to force partner to describe his hand. North reverses to 2 Spades to show his two suits and 15 or more points. South stops to reevaluate and think. He counts 19 points opposite 15 or more with a Heart fit. He decides that his 8-card Club suit is self supporting and adds 7 more points. Even if partner has no Aces, he has to have some Kings. He can bid 4 No Trump, Blackwood, but will bid 6 Clubs regardless. It makes for the top when West can't lead a Heart to the Ace and ruff the return. Good job, Marge.

This board was fouled when the North and East hands were switched sometime during the play. Since some played it one way and some played it the other, the results are not meaningful. This is good for most of you in that you can say "If it wasn't for that, we would have won".

North opens 1 No Trump and all pass. It makes for a mediocre score. 

Some players may or may not have done better by departing from the lesson, but it won't pay off in the long run. Take advantage of the gift of No Trump and don't look back.

West opens 1 Club and North doubles (Big). East responds 2 Hearts to show his good suit, but less than 10 points. South could advance 2 or 3 Spades, but I like 4 Spades to shut out the opponents. The computer makes it, but the humans had trouble. A jump to 3 Spades did better in that it either made for a good score or induced the opponents to go down badly at 4 Hearts. C'est la vie!

North opens 2 Clubs and South responds 2 Diamonds, waiting. North rebids 2 Hearts and South rebids 2 spades or 3 Diamonds to say that he has enough for game, but isn't sure about the Hearts. North bids 3 (or 4) hearts to tell partner to not worry about the Hearts and South raises to game. It makes with an overtrick for the top.

Some Norths apparently opened 1 Heart and didn't get to game. You have 22 points and a 7-card suit and only need one trick from partner for game. Either criteria calls for 2 Clubs.

West opens 1 Club and East responds 1 Spade. West rebids 3 Clubs to show 6 or more Clubs and 17 or more points. East has 10 HCPs opposite 17 or more points, must bid something. He tries 3 Diamonds (or 3 Hearts) to force partner to bid again. Surely he'll bid 3 No Trump. It makes for a good score.

Some Easts took the bit in their teeth and bid 3 No Trump themselves. This worked out when partner had a Heart stopper, but it's safer when North leads around to West. 

West opens 1 Spade and East responds 1 No Trump. West reverses to 2 Hearts and East stops to think. He now sees a good fit opposite 17 or more points. He reevaluates to 10 points and raises to 4 Hearts. It makes for a decent score, but two pairs make an overtrick for a better score and two more make two overtricks for the top.

South may overcall 2 Clubs over West's No Trump. West will still reverse to 2 Hearts and East will still stop to think. Now he will downgrade his Club King and only raise to 3 Hearts, but West will reevaluate to 22-23 and go to game regardless.

North opens 1 Spade and East doubles. South raises to 2 Spades and West advances to 4 Hearts, showing his 9-12 points, good suit and trying to shut out the opponents. All pass and it makes for the top. Good job, Darrell and Jan! That's how you win.

Neither East nor South qualify for a weak two bid, so must pass. North lacks the 17 points to reverse, so opens 1 Diamond. East passes and South responds 1 Spade. North rebids 2 Clubs and South stops to think about where this board is going. He's reasonably sure that they're not going to end up in Clubs or Diamonds, but it could go to No Trump. He hesitates to take the points for the void or the long Spades, so might just count 7 points and rebid 2 Spades. On the other hand if he assumes some Spade support or decides that his Spades are self supporting, he would add 3 for the void and 3 for the 6-card suit and rebid 4 Spades. If he compromises with 3 Spades, it leaves room for partner to bid 3 No Trump, but that might go down when he tables only 7 HCPs.

What would you do? I like a disciplined 2 Spades. If North has no Spade support, he can bid 2 No Trump which has a chance. If he has 2 or 3 Spades, He can raise to 3 Spades and South will go to game. When in doubt, make a disciplined bid and trust partner to do the right thing. Good job, Emily and Christine.  

Thursday Bridge 25 July 2019

Hi All,

A lovely summer day with 10 tables. Congratulations to Gert and Judy for a red-hot 72 % and Bobbie Sue for a nice 65 % for high scores for the day. You've all done very well.

Next Monday we start the Competitive Bidding worksheet. Don't miss it. There will be no advanced lesson next Thursday.

See you soon.