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How to bid this hand? Strong 5-4 in the majors

#1 User is offline   Antrax 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:22

Matchpoints, all vulnerable. You hold:

RHO deals and foils your planned reverse (right?) by starting 1. Now what?
[edit: RHO deals, sorry)
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#2 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:29

This looks suspiciously like the companion hand to:

http://www.bridgebas...__1#entry567967

After doubling 1C and receiving a 1D advance, I would like to have 1H available as showing a hand too strong to overcall and 5 hearts. But those who prefer a 1H rebid to be "ELC" only will have to choose a different course.
"Bidding Spades to show spades can work well." (Kenberg)
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#3 User is offline   JLOGIC 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:31

Do you mean that RHO dealt and opened 1C, or that LHO dealt and opened 1C and it was passed around to us?

In either case I would start with double, with 18+ this is usually the best start as doubling and bidding a new suit shows that suit and 18+. With this hand since we also have a perfect t/o X shape, double is even more clear since we have no rebid problems, and want to make sure not to shut out spades (imagine if we overcalled 1H and everyone passed, and partner had 4 or 5 spades and a little something...we wouldn't be happy! but if we doubled and partner bid 1S we would know about that fit immediately).
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#4 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:31

Double, 1 is best on most hands with 4-5 in the majors, but this is too much, we have a good 18 count. It's really cool that we have diamond tolerance too.

edit: when I implied in this reply that 18 is close-ish to the lower limit, I thought it was RHO who opened 1. I am getting dyslexic on the forums lately, please bear with me.

edit2: if you were wondering about this hand in relation to that other 1-x-p-p hand, I don't think this 18-er is a very likely hand of partner's when we have a 9 count ourselves, so its possibility should not affect our choice very much.
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#5 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:37

View PostAntrax, on 2011-August-14, 08:22, said:

Matchpoints, all vulnerable. You hold:

LHO deals and foils your planned reverse (right?) by starting 1. Now what?

I assumed RHO opened, also. The answer is too easy if it was LHO; I wait for two more calls.
"Bidding Spades to show spades can work well." (Kenberg)
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#6 User is offline   Antrax 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:38

Doesn't ELC only apply to correcting clubs to diamonds?
Yes, I meant RHO deals, sorry. I corrected the OP.
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#7 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:42

ELC could apply to all sorts of situations. If someone wants to play them with you, be sure to ask him/her what situations it entails. There is also the question: ok, so sometimes you pull my answer to another suit to show that you like the other two suits better, but do you still promise some tolerance to my suit? I have a partner who likes doubling with a singleton unbid major (even on 11, 12 counts) because he can correct anyway. I don't like this style at all. To each his own, but it's a good idea to find out which is your partner's :)

Oh and another question to ask your pd about his/her ELC: does the suit he/she pulls to have to be a 5-carder? E.g.
1-x-p-1
p-2

Is this 54 or can it be 45? Some people think it could be either. Whereagles, I think, for example thinks so, at least when you double a preempt.
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#8 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:43

View PostAntrax, on 2011-August-14, 08:38, said:

Doesn't ELC only apply to correcting clubs to diamonds?

Yes, for some of us. But not for Mgoetze.
"Bidding Spades to show spades can work well." (Kenberg)
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#9 User is offline   mgoetze 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 08:59

View Postaguahombre, on 2011-August-14, 08:43, said:

Yes, for some of us. But not for Mgoetze.


As gwnn said, several styles exist. I personally am not set on playing any particular one, I simply pointed out in the other thread that not everyone will play the same as you. I think it is always worth pointing out, especially in the B/I forum, when several conflicting styles exist.

Playing no ELC at all is probably simplest and thus certainly not a bad idea for beginners.
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#10 User is offline   mtvesuvius 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 09:02

Double for me as well, planning on bidding hearts at my next turn unless partner bids spades. The major advantage here is that when partner doesn't bid spades, we have a fairly strong inference that they don't have 4 of them... Meaning that this hand shouldn't feel obligated to "show" spades later, and bidding hearts will solve the problem.
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#11 User is offline   JLOGIC 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 09:25

View Postgwnn, on 2011-August-14, 08:31, said:

Double, 1 is best on most hands with 4-5 in the majors, but this is too much, we have a good 18 count. It's really cool that we have diamond tolerance too.

edit: when I implied in this reply that 18 is close-ish to the lower limit, I thought it was RHO who opened 1. I am getting dyslexic on the forums lately, please bear with me.


With 4-5 in the majors, I think you should be doubling and bidding MORE aggressively (ie with a lower lower limit) than usual. This is especially true with 5431. There is much more chance you have a game, and by overcalling 1 of a major you risk shutting out the other major.

I am reminded of a hand in the cavendish a few years ago where half the field overcalled 1S with a 5431 17 or something, and half doubled. Partner had like 5 of the other major and 5 or 6 points so the 1S overcallers just missed a game for pretty much no reason imo.

I think I would even double 1C with AQxx KQTxx KQx x planning to bid because it is such a powerful playing hand if we catch any fit, and even if 1H doesn't get passed out, by just overcalling and doubling we don't show a hand this good and might feel compelled to bid more after that which implies to me that we should have just Xed to begin with.
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#12 User is offline   JLOGIC 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 09:26

View PostAntrax, on 2011-August-14, 08:38, said:

Doesn't ELC only apply to correcting clubs to diamonds?


This is my impression as well. Being able to show a good hand with a major, too strong to overcall, is too important imo for ELC to apply for majors.
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#13 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 09:44

I think my writing was confused. I was just trying to contradict what many people often do, namely doubling with a weakish 4531 or so with not so good hearts and good spades just because they think it's a better description of the hand. I didn't mean to say that with 4531 you should double less often than with, say, 3541 or 3532.
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#14 User is offline   Quantumcat 

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Posted 2011-August-14, 21:40

When deciding whether to make a takeout double with a good five card suit or to overcall that suit, think about what you will do on the next round, when there is a pre-emptive raise by opener's partner.

-- If you are strong enough to take a second bid, overcall your suit first then make a takeout double on the second round. This will show at least 11 of your cards (five in the suit you bid, between six and eight in the other two). If, instead, you double first, you have to double again on the second round (bidding your suit would convey the impression of a very different hand). Then you've only shown around 10 of your cards, and also less about your shape so partner can't make as informed a decision.

--If you are not strong enough to take a second bid, make a takeout double. Now you have shown at least ten of your cards, and if partner can't do anything himself, you can relax knowing there's no game on and pass. If, instead, you make an overcall, you will have to pass on the next round and have shown only five of your cards.

This is the auction I mean:

(1) 1 (3) pass
pass ???

or:

(1) X (3) pass
pass ???

Obviously with such a great hand, it is good enough for a suit bid then a double on the next round (it would still be good enough for that minus a king).
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#15 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-August-15, 03:09

Quantumcat, it is fine if you play something that is the exact opposite of what the generally accepted style is, but it would be nice if you would specify this in your advice in the B/I section.
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#16 User is offline   MrAce 

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Posted 2011-August-15, 07:51

View Postgwnn, on 2011-August-15, 03:09, said:

Quantumcat, it is fine if you play something that is the exact opposite of what the generally accepted style is, but it would be nice if you would specify this in your advice in the B/I section.


Agreed.
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#17 User is offline   Quantumcat 

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Posted 2011-August-15, 17:03

I don't understand. What I said has no relationship to a particular system, it is common sense - if you have two choices about what to bid, and one shows more about your hand, then you generally choose that one.
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#18 User is offline   gwnn 

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Posted 2011-August-15, 17:53

just to reiterate, you would double on a 4531 11 count, but would overcall on a 4531 18 count, and you think this is common sense? Do you double on a 4531 22 count at least or do you overcall on those hands too?

and clarify to me please your position on hands with 3541 distribution, in the original post it sounds like you like doubling on them too (you just mentioned "a hand with a good 5 card suit")?
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#19 User is offline   Quantumcat 

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Posted 2011-August-15, 18:44

View Postgwnn, on 2011-August-15, 17:53, said:

just to reiterate, you would double on a 4531 11 count, but would overcall on a 4531 18 count, and you think this is common sense?


Let's look at all the possibilities, assuming that partner can have either three hearts, four hearts, four spades, five spades, four diamonds, or five diamonds.

Bold ones are the ones unique to that choice.

If you overcall on the 4531 11-count, you will get a useful bid from partner when:
1. He has 3 hearts and you have a partscore
2. He has 4 hearts and you have a partscore
3. He has 3 hearts and you have a game
4. He has 4 hearts and you have a game
5. He has five spades and you have a game (unless the responder passes and pard can bid 1S with ~9 HCP)
6. He has five diamonds and you have a game
6 1/2. He has four diamonds and you have a game (not too likely you make 3 extra tricks in diamonds than NT, probably won't matter if you miss the fit)

If you double, you will get a useful bid from partner when:
1. He has four hearts and you have a partscore
2. He has four hearts and you have a game
3. He has three hearts and you have a game
4. He has four spades and you have a partscore
5. He has five spades and you have a partscore
6. He has four spades and you have a game

7. He has five spades and you have a game
8. He has four diamonds and you have a partscore
9. He has five diamonds and you have a partscore

10. He has four diamonds and you have a game
11. He has five diamonds and you have a game

Summary:

Overcalling has one good thing going for it: you will find a 5-3 heart partscore where by doubling you won't.
Overcalling has several bad things going for it: you miss all diamond and spade partscores (four altogether) and you will make it difficult to find a 4-4 spade game.

In conclusion, making a takeout double with a takeout double shape, when you are not strong enough for two bids, is the best bet.

(Upon reflection, this is actually quite similar to opening 1NT with 15-17 with a balanced shape, whether or not you have a five-card major - getting ~11 of your cards across and 15 of your points is better than five of your cards and 11 of your points. Aside from the fact that all of your rebids will be lies)

For the rest of what you said gwnn, I guess the overcall first then plan to takeout double if they pre-empt would have an upper ceiling of about 17 or 18, if responder finds a pass, partner would need about 8 or 9 to bid 1 or 1NT, so if you had any more than 18 there is a small danger of missing a game. If you have more than this, 18 or 19+, you'd plan to double and bid/invite game if pard bids your five card suit or cuebid otherwise.
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#20 User is offline   JLOGIC 

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Posted 2011-August-15, 22:16

When you have game with a 4531 11 count in spades and you overcall 1H, you will still find your spade game! You are not barred from finding other fits after a 1H overcall.
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