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www.ebu.co.uk 53

February 2020 English Bridge

W

hich of the following three South hands

would bid according to the sequence

given? What should the other two do

differently? Assume you are playing Duplicate Pairs,

and neither side is vulnerable. Each question is

worth six marks for the correct answer, and a

further two marks for giving the correct alternative

bidding for the other hands - in Andrew's opinion.

Hand C is correct - you simply don't have a bid. You

can't double (negative) as you don't have four

hearts, nor can you can bid 2NT as you don't have a

spade stopper. Pass won't end the auction, as

partner will be duty-bound to re-open with a takeout double when she is short

in spades (as you know

she will be). Your best bid in response to her double

will be 2´ - showing this sort of unbiddable hand

with long, weak spades. With Hand A, you can

scrape up a weak raise to 2t. With Hand B, you are

worth a negative double - minimumish but fine.

Hand A is correct. In spite of holding only six

points, you have decent playing strength opposite a

partner who has advertised some clubs and who

rates to be very short in spades. Further, if the

opponents declare 3´ or 4´, you are very keen for a

club lead. Hand B has fabulous playing strength.

Give partner as little as ´5, ™A753, tJ876, ®A1054

(and she must have more) and 5® is making;

indeed, you're almost worth 5® - not quite - stick

to 4®. Bidding 3® with Hand C is misguided

Hand B is the correct answer. Partner has merely

given reluctant preference back to 2´ - her probable

number of spades is two (with three spades, she may

have raised 1´ to 2´ immediately). So your 3´ bid

must contain six spades. With Hand A, you should

move with 2NT, suggesting a 5·4·2·2 shape, while

with Hand C you should move with 3t, suggesting

a 5·4·3·1 shape. Both these bids show about 16-17

points.

Hand C is correct. Say you pre-empt, then partner

supports you, over which the opponents bid at the

lowest level. It is not sensible to play your double

now as penalties. How can you possibly hold a preemptive

hand that is confident enough to make a

penalty double? Double should say, 'Partner, I want

to bid on but am not willing to break discipline (for

a pre-emptor shouldn't bid again). Please bid on,

unless you really fancy defence.' Hand C fits the bill

nicely. With Hand B, you should pass - for all you

know partner may have nothing and the opponents

may be about to bid 6™. Then you can double!

Hand A is a non-starter - you are much too strong

for a Weak Two and should open 1´. Cont/ . . .

Love All. Pairs.

W N E S

1t 1´ Pass

Hand A Hand B Hand C

´ 4 3 ´ 8 5 4 3 ´ 8 7 5 4 2

™ K 4 2 ™ J 9 3 2 ™ A 8 2

t Q J 10 t K 5 t K 6

® 9 8 7 4 2 ® K 7 2 ® A 3 2

Q5

Love All. Pairs.

W N E S

1´ Dble 2´ 3®

Hand A Hand B Hand C

´ 8 4 3 2 ´ 9 4 3 2 ´ 3 2

™ 7 3 ™ K 2 ™ Q 6

t J 9 t 2 t K Q J 3

® K Q 10 7 3 ® K J 9 8 3 2 ® J 7 4 3 2

Q6

Love All. Pairs.

W N E S

Pass 1NT Pass 2™

Pass 2´ Pass 3´

Hand A Hand B Hand C

´ A K 5 3 2 ´ K Q 8 5 3 2 ´ A Q J 8 2

™ A J 6 2 ™ A K 9 7 ™ K Q 10 3

t K 2 t K 3 t K J 10

® Q 9 ® 2 ® 8

Q7

Love All. Pairs.

W N E S

2´1

Dble 3´ 4™ Dble

1 Weak two

Hand A Hand B Hand C

´ Q 10 9 7 3 2 ´ Q 10 9 8 6 5 ´ K J 9 8 3 2

™ A ™ A K ™ 3

t K J 9 8 2 t 5 2 t A 10 9 3

® 3 ® 9 8 4 ® 3 2

Q8

because it will get partner off to the wrong lead. Best

is to double - a take-out double, denying four hearts

(or you'd simply bid 3™) therefore showing both

minors. Let partner choose.

down (the old Sharples' rule for trying for slam).

Answers: (a) 10; (b) 3; (c) 6.

Index

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