Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Jennbridge: Losing Trick Count in Notrump Auctions

In the Losing Trick Count article in the May Bridge Bulletin, I addressed the topic of using LTC in notrump auctions.  When a fit is found in a notrump auction, after using Stayman, for example, then LTC principles can be effectively employed.

I posited the theory that after a Jacoby transfer, a super-acceptance could be made with a good hand, which I defined as a hand with no more than 6 losers.  I gave an example from actual play where my partner and I bid a 20-point game in a knockout match which was a lucky make. I have heard from a couple of readers who didn't like my example as the hand was so lucky--the game could have gone down any number of ways.

The hands were:  A865/KQJ4/Q108/K3 opposite 73/A9862/J9754/6.  I made a super-acceptance with my 6-loser 15 count and partner bid game with his 8-loser 5 count.  The cards were well-positioned and the game made.  In the article I didn't elaborate on the background, but the hand was dealt during a top-flight regional knockout match; we were vulnerable and we needed (and got!) a good board. 

Here are two additional hands, more traditional in nature, which may better illustrate the point I made in the article pertaining to losers. You open 1NT with each of these hands and partner bids 2, a transfer to spades.  Assuming you play standard "super-acceptances", what do you bid?

1. ♠A1087 KQ6K65 ♣A94
2. ♠A1087 KQ63K65 ♣A9

Both hands have good trumps and 16 points.  Hand 1 has 7 losers so should accept the transfer by bidding 2.  Hand 2 has 6 losers so should make a super-acceptance by jumping to 3.  Partner will bid game with an 8-loser hand such as:  ♠KQ643 109QJ8 ♣762

See you at the table!

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