Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Nicely bid hand on BBO

Meg and I get a lot of our practice at Bridge Base Online. BBO is the world's premier bridge site... but we've talked about that before.

We were in the Partnership Bidding Room, working on our new big club structure. One of the very first hands was this one:

I was South, and opened 1C (16+ unbalanced or 17+ balanced). Pard bid 2C, showing a game forcing hand with long diamonds. 2D by me asked about her diamond suit. 2NT showed exactly five diamonds with two of the top three honors. 3C asked about aces and kings outside of diamonds. 3D showed no aces and at most one king. 3H by me was a cuebid, and when she cuebid 3S I knew it was a singleton (since she'd denied holding an aces). I cuebid 4C to get a little more information, and Meg came out with a brilliant bid -- 5C! She had a great hand for her previous actions, and wanted to do something slam-positive... so she cued her 'trick source' in clubs, and I bid the slam, knowing her hand to be x xxx(x?) AKxxx Q(J?)xx(x?).

No, it's not a huge deal to reach a good slam* with 11 HCP opposite 21, but I like to think we would have had the same auction if my SK were the S3. And if the SK was the SA, my bid would've been 7D over 5C!

* Slam should make on 3-2 diamonds, 3-3 hearts, the onside ace of spades, or West cashing the ace of spades at trick one -- I think it's over 80%.

How should this be played? Here's my suggestion: Say they lead a heart or a club. Win it in the closed hand [remember-- the big hand is playing it, I bid 2D], play a diamond to the ace and a spade down. If RHO takes the ace, all is well. If he doesn't, play the king -- if it holds, draw trumps and hope for 3-3 hearts for an overtrick. If the king of spades loses to the ace, win the return in hand, ruff a spade, draw a second round of trumps, and if all follow, play to ruff all three spade losers in the dummy before drawing the last trump. If diamonds are 4-1, draw trumps and hope hearts break.

Do you have a better line of play?


Collins said...

I also play precision with transfer positives. We are still looking for the best sequence of asking bid definitions following transfer acceptance. You appear to be using Trump Asking Bid and then Beta for controls outside of trump?

Do you have any special agreements for how responder shows a side void?..

McKenzie said...

This is Meg's first try at a big club, so I didn't want to throw too many asking bids into the mix. For now, we just use TABs, then relay for controls outside of trumps. After that, we'll cuebid... so if responder cues a suit that opener knows can't be a high-card control. it pretty much has to be shortness.

Noble said...

We play a convention that Mike invented called optional RKC that is a nice solution for this hand in standard bidding. The most common scenario for optional RKC is when responder Staymans over 2n and then bids a natural 4m. We play that opener's responses are: 1st step = bad hand for a slam in this suit (over which 4NT is natural), 2nd+ steps = good hand, responding to RKC. So the auction would be 2n-3c-3s-4d*-5d-6d (* = optional RKC)

We would have an amusing auction on this hand since we would make every bid from 1s to 4c:


$ strong club
* relay
(a) GF balanced or red suits
(b) red suits
(c) longer diamonds
(d) short spades
(e) 1453
(f) not (12+ HCP and 4+ controls)
(g) 21-22 by inference
(h) 3 controls, slam possible

Tommy Solberg said...

We play Precision based on Precision Today (Manley and Berkowitz). I asked the authors about the sequencing of TAB and how they fit with a Beta acceptance. Their opinion was that you use the Beta Accdeptance for the postive transfer and when you get the muber of controls you then repeat the suit for the TAB.Does your experience reflect a different sequencing is better? Do you generally TAB first? Anyway, congrats to both of you, nice informative bidding.

When you play on BBO is there a shortcut to avoid endless alerts and long typing? We are better at Precision than at keyboarding and find the interruptions annoying although alerts are necessary. Do you know of any shortcuts or macros to cut down on this?tommy@rochester.rr.com