Monday, December 17, 2012

Jennbridge: Don't Just Sit There!

We had an interesting bidding situation in the first qualifying session of the Senior Mixed Pairs in San Francisco recently. LHO opened 1♣, partner overcalled 1, RHO bid 1NT and I passed with this hand:


LHO rebid 2♣ and it was passed around to me.  I hated to sell out, so I considered my options.  The main argument against bidding was the vulnerability--unfavorable.  On the other hand, we probably had close to half of the points based on the bidding.  I liked my diamond holding and my club shortness.  Where are the majors, I wondered?

They must be evenly divided around the table.  Can we find our way to a major suit part-score?  What would a double by me mean?  Takeout for the unbid suits--the majors?

I couldn't bear to pass and let them play at the two-level, so I hazarded a double.  Partner, to my relief, bid 2!  I was pleased when everyone passed. A club was led.

NABC 11/28/2012

Board 2
East Deals
N-S Vul
♠ K 6 5 3 2
J 10 7 4 2
Q 7
♣ 2
♠ Q 10 4
9 6 3
A 10 5 3
♣ K 10 4
♠ A J 8
K 8
6 4
♣ A J 9 8 7 3

♠ 9 7
A Q 5
K J 9 8 2
♣ Q 6 5


1 ♣1
1 NTPass2 ♣Pass
All pass
2 by South
Made 3 — +140
Partner managed to make 3 for a great score of plus 140.  This was worth 36.5 matchpoints out of 39.  As it turned out, any plus score our way would have been a big score as the opponents could make 2NT (W) 4NT (E) or 4♣.

As you can see, the opponents' bidding left something to be desired.  East could certainly have passed 1NT.  West would have played it there and probably taken a lot of tricks. On the given auction, West should have competed to 3♣ over 2.

Unwilling to sell out over 2♣, I competed with an unusual balancing takeout double and it paid off. I tell my bridge students:  Don't just sit there!  Find ways to get into the auction.  Good things can happen.   

See partner's comments on the auction following this post.

See you at the table! 

1 comment:

Jennifer Jones said...

In discussing this bid my partner had this to say:

Hi Jennifer,

Although this is never discussed in literature as far as I can see, this sure felt kind of like a balancing responsive double. 1C - 1D - 1Nt - P - 2C - P - P - dbl
with no attempt at bidding a Major, responder should have some support for his partner.

Matchpoint Style says we should not allow the opponents to play on the 2 level, unless we have a trump stack or we feel the opponents are highly underbid.
With opener rebidding C's, the opponents have a high probability of an 8+ card fit. 2 suits remain unbid. One of the opponents has my suit covered.

How could you have enough of a trump stack to beat this contract at the 2-level, when I'm looking at Qxx?

Bridge bidding is not a formula, but rather a conversation using the language available and trying to interpret the conversation.

Interesting auction.