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Chew the Fat! => IAC & Master Solvers Club => Topic started by: Masse24 on February 17, 2020, 04:54:05 PM

Title: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on February 17, 2020, 04:54:05 PM
APRIL 2020 MSC

Deadline: March 10 at 9:00 a.m. (ET)

Submit your April responses here: The Bridge World - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB (https://www.bridgeworld.com/indexphp.php?page=/pages/msc/mscentercontest.html)

BWS 2017 System: BWS 2017 (https://www.bridgeworld.com/indexphp.php?page=/pages/readingroom/bws/bwscompletesystem.html)
BWS 2017 POLLS, CHANGES AND ADDITIONS: BWS 2017 - Polls, Changes, and Additions (https://www.bridgeworld.com/indexphp.php?page=/pages/readingroom/bws/bwspolls2017.html)


IAC Forum MSC Scores (https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1whamPj4_SDF3cbYUdGL9dpMX23tpwzUJzUvNoVmip_w/edit?usp=sharing)


*     *     *

Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on February 19, 2020, 11:20:43 PM
I'll get the ball rolling . . .

PROBLEM A: 2 !H. And I do not like it. But I would open this in first seat, so it's an ugly game-force. Although 3 !H seems a good alternative (and probably is), I would want more "stuff" in the heart suit to make the invitational jump.

Did I say I do not like it?
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on February 20, 2020, 11:36:46 AM

PROBLEM A:

Did I say I do not like it?

I wholeheartedly agree!  I was toying with a forcing no trump, with the intent of jumping in heats to suggest a poorish six-bagger and invitational values.  However, I am unsatisfied with my rebid options if partner (not unexpectedly) rebids 2 !S.  I suppose I could rebid 2NT - that should suggest only a stiff spade because I could raise now with two. 

In other words, at the table I would choose either 3 !H or 1NT, because I can't wait several weeks to make a decision.  Here, I can afford additional thought, and I am not ready to decide.  The big difference is at the table I have a partner that I know something about their style of opening bids; in MSC, my partner is how 30+ other people view their own amalgamation of partners.  Therefore, I am not ready yet, and am not happy about the problem.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: blubayou on February 21, 2020, 01:17:18 PM
It's small wonder that the early offerings covered problem A,  and left it at that!   I am finding not a thing to get on a soap box over on any of the other problems in this miserable set:(  ( Well-  maybe problem D has potential.)  If lightning strikes me in the next 18 days,  it had better do it 7 times, or i am a cooked goose,  but here goes...
A:  2 hearts      -  No rebidding problems in the quizz, eh?
B:  1 diamond  -  3 or 4 miserable choices--pick one
C:  pass           -  forced upon us by the system note, though 50 of my Boomer friends are spinning in their grave over it.
D:  4 hearts  -  now, we're talking folks!   only 4 spades and 5 spades  came to mind, then i recalled the suprize winner from last month--a lead  directing advance of partner's noise in a four-bagger.  I reject "3H" because it's not jamming enough
E:  1NT            - pick one again
F:  3NT            -  ditto ,  this time four ungeussable choices,  including leave in the double
G:  2 hearts     - gonna let your 5-3-2  spots frighten you?
H:  spade 10   - no confidence
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on February 21, 2020, 11:55:04 PM
Blu, you may have described Todd’s motivation, perhaps even Ken’s, but not mine.  I only addressed the one problem because Todd brought it up, and so I looked at that one problem.  Up until earlier today, when I went through the all of the problems, I had not looked at, much less considered any of the other problems.  I waited until after my class to begin in earnest.

My initial thoughts:

Problem A:  1NT – With no known fit, I don’t want to treat this as a game force.  There my choices are limited to invitational sequences.  If my hearts were KQTxxx, then I would make the immediate 3 !H bid; it places the emphasis squarely on the heart suit.  Since my suit is actually K9xxxx, I will start with a forcing NT to send a warning to partner to tread lightly, my hand has some flaw.  In addition, I get to learn a bit more about partner’s hand in the process, before I make my rebid.

Problem B:  Pass – A cheesy 11 in 3rd seat with only 13 casino points – NO THANK YOU.  I pass with no second choice.

Problem C:  4 !C – Without the note, I would bid 3 !C without much thought.  With the note, do I lie, taking a chance that partner does not have a 3NT conversion?  Do I pass, leaving the auction wide open for the opponents to enter cheaply?  Or do I jump to 4 !C and lie about my club length?  At this vulnerability, I feel like the least lie is to bid 4 !C, plus it difficult for the opponents to find the right strain and level.

Problem D:  3 !C – My first inclination was to bid 4 !S and just jam the auction, then I got an evil thought.  This might be a good hand to mess with the auction some.  With East showing no long suit, and West a powerful hand, I think they are headed for a suit contract.  On the off chance, the suit is not clubs, I bid 3 !C as a lead director so I can ruff, then when if I get doubled, I will go to 3 !H, to help set the defense if they end up in NT, and then when doubled again, then I finally run to 4 !S.  If we defend, then partner will have to work out what all my bidding was about, but the final contract should help.

Problem E:  1NT – I do not like any of my options.  Rebidding a ratty Q8xxxx is not appealing, and neither is bidding 1NT with a stiff club.  1NT becomes more appealing after reading the note; the chance that the club suit is real increases significantly when the spade rebid denies a 4-3-3-3 type hand.  At least 1NT limits my hand and gives partner a chance to show delayed heart support if warranted.

Problem F:  4 !S – 3 !S feels wimpy, 3NT feels right (but there may be an entry to RHO, which may make the hand go horribly wrong, while 4 !S feels like a slight overbid.  Partner created this bid with a direct seat double, so if they don’t have their bid, then so be it.  I will give myself an additional point for having the fifth spade in a suit that partner hopefully also has four.  By regarding my hand this way, 4 !S no longer feels so much like an overbid. 

Problem G:  Pass – I really want to double to show both round suits.  Unfortunately, that is an inadmissible bid.  I don’t have a stopper for NT, I don’t have a third spade to raise, and I don’t have enough points to bid freely at the two level (not frightened of !H 532, but do not want to over promise when I bid at this level), so that leaves an unsatisfactory pass, and the hope for a reopening bid from lefty.

Problem H: !S T – Dummy’s second suit.  There is an unbid suit, clubs, but my holding does not look good to lead.  Nonetheless, if I were at the table in a desperate situation, I’d be very tempted to try the !C Q as a maybe I can strike gold attempt.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on February 22, 2020, 01:10:27 AM
Getting the ball rolling may have been my motivation.

I probably should have mentioned it.  ;)
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on February 22, 2020, 12:38:04 PM
I may have to rethink Problem B.  I was kibitzing a hand that made me think of this problem hand.

!S 93
!H AQ96
!D KT65
!C Q62

This hand, with identical shape, HCPs and third seat decision, opened 1 !D.  The full auction:

P      P    1 !D    X
XX    P     P     1 !S
1NT   P    P     2 !C
2 !D   P    P       P

Below is a link to the full hand, but 2 !D makes with an overtrick, while the opponents were talked out of their cold spade game.  Even with no defensive help, all it takes is giving up on dropping the !C Q by playing small toward the T9x in dummy to create a sure entry, then once in dummy, lead toward the !H K. 

https://tinyurl.com/u3756rx

Edited to remove the names.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on February 24, 2020, 04:01:20 PM
I have only looked at the first two.

A: BWS stipulates (I had to look it up) that 1 !S - 1NT - 2 !D - 3 !H is a strong raise in diamonds. With clubs it's different.  After 1 !S - 1NT - 2 !C a call of 2 !D is Bart, showing, or they say suggesting, five hearts.
What I would like, with this hand, is for 1 !S - 1NT - 2m - 3 !H to show a hand like this, so that 1 !S - 3 !H could show a similar strength and shape but with the values more concentrated in the hearts, so that partner with good values and a stiff heart can trust that heart suit is productive. 
But that's not the system. So I think I go with 2 !H. A bit optimistic.

B: Pass for me. Shading a point or so in a third hand opening when holding a decent five card major is fine, but a shaded 1 !D on on !D Jxxx? Not my style.

I'll get back for more later.

Added: You can find a few words about BART at https://www.larryco.com/bridge-articles/bart
The main point, for hand A, is that after you bid 1NT there is at least a possibility partner will respond 2 !D, after which 3 !H would show diamonds, not hearts. Not good. I have never played BART but I think those who do try to not respond 2 !D to 1NT, possibly making 1NT more workable.
 Anyway, I go with  2 !H  for A.
And now I just looked up BART in Washington Standard and, as I thought, opener respond to the forcing NT with 2 !C when holding 5=3=3=2 shape. If that is the way BWS does it then 1NT might be safe enough.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on February 25, 2020, 12:01:36 PM
I am giving additional thought to Problem B.    Its funny how a recent result can color your perspective.

With both hands, you are sitting in third seat, all white, with the decision to open holding:
Problem B:   !S K5  !H Q853  !D J652 !C KQT  vs. recent hand  !S 93 !H AQ96 !D KT65 !C Q63

Both have the same shape, HCPs, and LTC.  Qualitatively, I like the recent hand a bit better because the concentration of values is more in the long suits, but in all other ways, the two hands are roughly equivalent.

To me, both are clear passes.  However, the recent hand did open at the table, and in the process (along with their partner), talked a strong player from, not only missing their cold game, but not even bidding past the two level.  The full auction P-P-1 !D-X; XX-P-P-1 !S; 1NT-P-P-2 !C; 2 !D-P-P-P.

So I ran a poll, using the recent hand, with Bridge Winners, and after 41 votes, 28 chose to open.  16 of those 28 did go with 1 !H, which makes sense holding AQxx, but that 68% would open gives me pause to wonder if I am being too hasty with my pass on Problem B.

No decision on the problem hand, but am providing information as food for thought.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on February 25, 2020, 02:47:35 PM
My views:
A. I am not opening 1 !H. I am just not.
B. If I open 1 !D then a likely response is 1 !S. So I rebid 1NT. I am light for this. Or I open 1 !D, partner has a balanced 11 count or maybe a good balanced 10 count and so bids 2NT. Maybe he will make it but we are a bit high.
C. Quite possibly the auction will turn competitive. Do I relish competing in diamonds? Not really. If the opponents but the hand do I want a diamonds lead? Probably not particularly, although it is  the best lead against the sample played hand that you show.

The sample hand (you should probably edit out the names) has a ten count with a strong five card diamond fit.  Well that's great. Also a good deal more than I would expect.

Oddly, opening the sample had 1 !D is probably the best way to beat 4 !S. If pard leads the !D A against a spade contract it is true that they can make ten tricks but you need to play it just right. [Added: As I recall the hands, I think 4 !S would go down on a !D lead. ]

Anyway, opening 1 !S light, but on five cards, in third seat is a lot different. Three spades in pard's hand is enough, 2 might  be enough, you have Drury available to sort things out and so on. It crowds the bidding when it is their hand, and you are more likely to want a spade lead. Opening 1 !D with either B or with the sample played hand will work sometimes, but not all that often in my experience.

So I pass. And if I am voted down by the BWS panel, I still pass.

Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on February 25, 2020, 04:02:24 PM
PROBLEM B:

I agree, I'm not opening 1 !D. And I'm not opening 1 !H. Like Ken: "Just not." Not with this hand. Not with such complete garbage in the red suits. I would, with the "recent hand" Jim mentioned, strongly consider opening 1 !H.

The majority will likely opt for a simple pass with such an ugly hand. Ken mentions that the auction will likely turn competitive. So . . . I would strongly consider opening 1 !C (a possible lead director) with those honors.

So it's between 1 !C and Pass for me.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on February 25, 2020, 05:15:56 PM
Ken,

The 10 count with five diamonds, passed initially, then redoubled and finally raised diamonds at the 2 level.  It was the third seat that opened with 2-4-4-3 11 count.  But do not count out that my first inclination was



Problem B:  Pass – A cheesy 11 in 3rd seat with only 13 casino points – NO THANK YOU.  I pass with no second choice.


Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on February 25, 2020, 06:33:34 PM
Yes, on the played hands the opining diamond bid was on the four card suit.  Although I do not recall the hands exactly, I now think 4 !S would go down on an opening !D lead.

But anyway, back to B. I pass.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on February 25, 2020, 09:24:29 PM
I have restored the link (without the identifying nics).

You are right, Ken, about the hand going down on diamond leads.  An unlikely play is needed to give the contract a chance - lead toward the T9x of clubs, and East has to continue diamonds when in with the club and hop with the HA to lead another diamond.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: hoki on March 01, 2020, 10:53:48 AM
PROBLEM A: 2 !H. And I do not like it.
Did I say I do not like it?
I chose 1NT, planning to bid 3♥ next - but then I could have bid 3♥ anyway according
to BWS since that gives the same message. The only advantage of 1NT is that partner's
rebid might be illuminating. If the hand is a misfit I really don't want to be in game, which
is why I didn't choose 2♥, but hey - you didn't like that bid anyway.  :)

PS Thanks for the info that my planned rebid of 3H over 2D shows good diamond support.
That's a new one on me, so looks like I'll have to tread softly on this site. A pity we can't
use bids that mean what they say.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: hoki on March 01, 2020, 11:15:38 AM
A - 1NT - not prepared to force to game.

B - 1♦ - for me this is "automatic", especially opposite a partner like myself
who likes full values for an opening bid.

C - Pass - forced by the system, would normally bid 2♣ but am guessing
that in BWS that would be "inverted".

D - 4S - but I do like all those fancy alternatives which may work on a good day.

E - 2♥ - not 1NT with an unbalanced hand.

F - 4S - should make even if partner has only three spades.

G - 2S - with 1NT a close second choice.

H - H2 - a spade lead could help a declarer with three spades to an honour; partner only needs
one of the top four heart honours for a heart lead to get our side off to a racing start. Responder is not
promising much in the heart department for an initial 1♥ response on a weak hand (1NT rebid).
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 01, 2020, 01:40:40 PM
"bids that mean what they say".  Yes, some truth to that. I also wished to start with 1T and then bid 3 !H. Not with the agreements at hand.


Part of the fun is getting to see just what BWS conventions are.  We all use some conventions, even Goren used a version of the unusual notrump (Although he insisted that the basic one, (1M)-2NT should be a natural bid with a 21 or 22 count).

I played in the practice acbl tourney yesterday, that's a game where you and three bots are at the table. Red against white, matchpoints, Rho  deals and passes. I hold:

Q2
Q3
AKJ76
KQ85


I suppose 1NT is possible but I opened i !D

Pass     1 !D   Pass  1 !S
3 !D

Huh? That's my suit, and Rho is a passed hand.  So I looked. It's an aggressive "weak jump overcall"
How wrong can it be to double?

Pass     1 !D   Pass  1 !S
3 !D        X    Pass   3 !H.

Now what? Probably 3 !S but I think I will check to see what it means (the bots show you what your bid means to them). Well, 3 !S shows exactly one spade. So I looked back, too late, and saw that my double of 3 !D showed at most one spade, so now 3 !S would confirm that I have one. Also 4 !S would show one spade. Good grief. Well Qx is a lot better than x, so this must belong in spades, or so I hope. I bid 4 !S. Partner passed. That's probably good, but I have no idea if this is where we belong.

Partner is 5=5=0=3, Rho is 2=4=7=0  (maybe bots don't open 3 !D with a four card major, I dunno). Rho leads a small heart, the technology moves me across the table to be declarer, the play goes !H to opponent's A, then the !C A, then a !C ruff, I am getting worried but no more ruffs and I draw and claim. Probably not optimal but to my surprise a good board. Probably nobody else understood what was going on either.

https://tinyurl.com/s8t7dav

Anyway, conventional meanings vary with the person. I am a (retired) mathematician. When I am working in Euclidean Geometry, the parallel axiom holds. When I am working in non-Euclidean Geometry the parallel axiom doesn't hold. I believe Kant claimed that the parallel axiom had to be true on philosophical grounds. Nope. So we go with the rules as they are today.



PS I played in the second day of the acbl thing yesterday. I got a bad score for 3NT making 6 when I am off the !H AK. Apparently they also did not lead a heart against those in 6NT. We need a convention for that.


Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 02, 2020, 07:37:32 PM

D - 4S - but I do like all those fancy alternatives which may work on a good day.


Yup.

It’s an MSC problem, so while raising partner’s overcall to the appropriate level (is four spades high enough?) is the obvious, in-your-face choice, fancy alternatives are also possible.

The “game-force; no long suit” note pertaining to responder, greatly increases the probability of a spade void in opener’s hand. But what kind of hand does opener have?

My !C void would point to a long !C suit with opener, but that is not necessarily so. Does a hand with !S shortness, a long !C suit and secondary red suit open 2 !C? Sometimes, but not as frequently if the suits were reversed since opening 1 !C followed by a reverse or jump-shift will often better describe the hand without the space-eating 2 !C open. Also, staring at a !S void (or stiff), opener knows it is highly unlikely for the auction to die with 1 !C. For the foregoing reasons, I’m banking on a long red suit with opener, probably hearts.

Yes, that’s a lot of supposin’.  ::)

Jim mentions bidding 3 !C to highlight our void. I'm not mentioning it now so that I can later via a Lightner double. So while I like the sexy alternatives, I’m hoping the opps bid all the way to a red-suit slam. Which I double.

In the meantime, I’ll make the pedestrian raise of partner’s bid.

This may be completely off the wall thinking. Help me out here --- is this nuts?
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 02, 2020, 11:04:49 PM
I also just raise to 4 !S on D. And I am not at all sure I want to show a club void. Of course if Lho declares slam in a red suit that might (ok, would be) be good, but it would not surprise me if they landed in 6 !C. Let them figure out how to play their trump suit.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: blubayou on March 04, 2020, 06:10:49 AM




SOLVER: Jock McQuade
        Gresham OR

As i feared, no  "AH-HA" moments will come for me this month..I "know"  4 or 5 spades will score higher  on #F, than either 3NT or leave-in of double,   but I stick with my true at the table choice,  since i am screwed for good score this month anyway. :(
PROBLEM A: 2 Hearts   --( seriously,   no two-over-one???)
PROBLEM B: 1 Diamond
PROBLEM C: Pass  --- 26 of 27 panelists unless some just DEFY the system note
PROBLEM D: 4 Hearts   --   5 spades or mousey 4   will beat this score :(
PROBLEM E: 1 Notrump

PROBLEM F: 3 Notrump -- see top.
PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts not popular in our club--- we shall see how the big boys treat me  :)
PROBLEM H: Heart 4--  (only switch  in 3 weeks  --  From "punting' with spade ten )   


I KNOW one thing only about this month :  750 WILL NOT be the cut-off for getting on the honor-roll!  Thank you for participating in the Master Solvers Club.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 04, 2020, 02:16:53 PM
I have been fretting about F. With 9 highs and a five card spades suit it is hard not to bid game, but the !D Q is of limited value, and spades probably split 3-1. Why? Well, the 3 !D is unlikely to be on 2=2=7=2 shape, partly because that's a very tight shape and partly because it is not a very attractive pre-empt. The death shape I think it is sometimes called. If Lho has a stiff, where is it? In spades if that suit splits 3-1, while in clubs or hearts , where we have lesser fits, the split would be more dramatic. So let's look at a retty good hand for partner:


AKxx
AKxx
x
Kxxx


JT532
432
AQ9
Q2

Can we make 4 !S? Maybe, maybe not, depending on how we play and how the cards lie. Suppose the opening lead is the !H J and suppose we win it and cash the !S AK, Lho throwing a !D on the second !S. Ruffing two diamonds could be a little tricky. Say we ruff a !D and then lead a !C from the board to get back to hand. Rho hops up with the A, plays the !S Q drawing dummy's last trump. Ok now we have two club tricks available but only if we can get to them. After cashing his !S Q now Rho shifts to a !H. If we take the A, that's dummy's last entry, stranding the !C K. Well, maybe !H are 3-3, so after ducking a !H we take the next one and pitch a !D on the last !H.

With a little planning we can handle this, and maybe the cards lie well, but my point is that I have given dummy pretty good cards and still 4 !S is not exactly a walk in the park. If the hearts are AQxx instead of AKxx, I doubt 4 !S is a make.

The defects of the had we hold are clear. The !D Q is at best a so-so value, the preempt suggests suits won't be breaking well, and transportation difficulties are easy to foresee.

Probably I am still bidding 4 !S but I am fretting. One reason for bidding 4 !S is that even if they can beat 4 !S it doesn't mean that they will beat 4 !S. Another reason is that if I settle for 3 !S and it is cold for 4, I will be getting a zero (this is mps and I think the field will be in 4 !S)  while if I am in 4 !S just like everyone else is, then I have a chance for a good board if I can play the hand better than they do. In the recent acbl sectional robot tourney I was in 6NT on a hand that was cold for 12 tricks in NT and 13 tricks in clubs. But few if any were in 7 !C and so, when 13 tricks came my way on a bot mis-defense, I got a very good score, despite the fact that 7 !C would of course been worth more. Ending in the same contract as the rest of the field can be ok.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on March 05, 2020, 01:06:59 PM
I pulled the trigger.  I had hoped for a more complete discussion from Todd and Ken before doing so.  You cannot have everything your way.  The partnership bonus is no longer in effect, so I will no longer declare a partner (I was doing it more to advertise its existence than for the Monster Points anyway).

SOLUTIONS FOR:
James Creech
Fredericksburg VA
U.S.A.
 
PROBLEM A: 3 Hearts
PROBLEM B: Pass
PROBLEM C: 3 Clubs
PROBLEM D: 3 Hearts
PROBLEM E: 1 Notrump
PROBLEM F: 4 Spades
PROBLEM G: Pass
PROBLEM H: Spade 10

I made a couple of changes from my initial thoughts.  Ken's research on Problem A led me to steer clear of a forcing NT followed by 3H plan - it is better to show the invitational values and 6 hearts and feel a little bad about the quality of my heart suit than the other options.  I also changed Problem D's answer; I still want to make a lead director, but I think it likely they will end up in clubs, so why advertise the void and give them that information?  I make the heart bid partly in case partner has a tenace position and needs to have a lead through.  Good luck to all the participants!
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: EddyHaskel on March 05, 2020, 11:08:21 PM
PROBLEM A: 1 Notrump
PROBLEM B: Pass
PROBLEM C: 3 Clubs
PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
PROBLEM E: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM F: 4 Spades
PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM H: Spade 10
 
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 07, 2020, 01:16:33 AM
APRIL GUESSES (with some reasoning--such as it is)


SOLUTIONS FOR:
Todd Holes
Glen Ellyn IL
U.S.A.

PROBLEM A: 2 Hearts
An overbid. But 3 !H (for me) should have a better suit, not this collection of fluff. I have no source to cite for this, it just “feels” right. 2 !H also has the advantage of leaving more room to find our best strain. One additional reason I respond with a GF 2 !H: I would open this in first seat, which is often a deciding factor for me on hands like this.


PROBLEM B: Pass
Pass will be the popular answer, probably a majority. The red suits are too ugly to contemplate mentioning. Also worth mentioning, since I have only two spades they almost surely have the spades. So why open?
The only remotely viable option is to mention the clubs. That club suit has some “stuff,” and opening 1 !C intrigues me. But it would open a can of worms, so I pass. 


PROBLEM C: Pass
Looks like a textbook 3 !C. But the note: “*BWS: 3 ♣ weak, but values for 3NT opposite a balanced hand with 18-19 HCP” differs from my personal methods, and therefore, if I strictly adhere to the system notes, my hand is too weak.

So I pass.

But this “feels” wrong. Often, I feel a though the system notes added to these problems are trying to talk me into an action. Here, it feels as though they want to talk me out of a “normal” preempt. Do I ignore the note and risk partner going on? Or does the preemptive value of 3 !C outweigh the risk?


PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
I already expressed my thoughts in detail upthread. But this one really has me flummoxed. I see several answers as possible, including:
•   Pass
•   3 !H
•   3 !S
•   4 !S
•   3 !C
•   5 !C
•   5 !S --- I like this, but go with 4 !S, which is safe.


PROBLEM E: Pass
Both 2 !H and 1NT will be common. Both of them right on values. But it is quite possibly a misfit, in which case I want to “get out fast.” I can’t get out any faster than the one-level—so I pass.

Yes, it’s an underbid of sorts; I’m a queen too strong for this. But I overbid on “A,” so I’m compensating now. 😊 (Hey, I had to justify my decision with a reason and this is the best BS I could come up with!)

This one is definitely my “out there” decision this set.


PROBLEM F: 3 Notrump
Nine tricks is fewer than ten?
Second choice is 4 !S.
I am not brave enough to contemplate pass, but at these colors at Matchpoints it's a possibility.


PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts
I failed to preempt, therefore this should imply spade tolerance . . . yes? The K&R on this hand is over 10 (yes, even without the !D Jack), so I want to keep the auction alive.

My second choice is pass. It’s close.


PROBLEM H: Heart 4
In case I haven’t made it clear, I hate lead problems. Last month’s debacle should be proof!

I need partner to have any of the A or K or J for a low heart to work. With East rebidding 1NT, then 3NT over his partner’s 3 !D, my guess is he has a diamond filler. If so, it is impossible for East to have all of the missing heart honors.

My initial choice—a safe one—was the !S Ten.

I’m not brave enough to try the !C Ace, which is also a possibility.


Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: bAbsG on March 07, 2020, 04:31:52 AM

SOLVER: Babs Giesbrecht
       Qualicum Beach BC
       Canada

Your Solutions for the April 2020 Contest 
-------------------
PROBLEM A: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM B: Pass
PROBLEM C: Pass
PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
PROBLEM E: Pass
PROBLEM F: 3 Spades
PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM H: Spade 10

I think this is the only month when I haven't been swayed from my initial decisions.  Usually I change at least 1 answer at the last minute which usually results in a 0 score for that question.  ??? ???  We shall see.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: wackojack on March 07, 2020, 10:32:14 AM

A: 3♥
Initial thought was 1NT but after Ken’s BWS research I now go for 3♥
B: 1♦
Green light for 1♦
C: Pass
I don’t want partner to bid 3NT with 18-19
D:  4♠
E: 2♥
I would have liked the rebid of 1♠ to promise an unbalanced hand in which case I would next bid 1NT.  Sadly in BWS it does not so I rebid 2♥.
F: 3NT
Just gets the edge over 4♠
G: Pass
RANT: I just don’t know what to make of this when 2♥ in non forcing in BWS.  I would like advancer change of suit to be forcing as I would play it.  See my views in earlier forum discussions.  Sadly, under the BWS constraints I have to pass.
H: 10♠   
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 07, 2020, 12:17:26 PM
G: Pass
RANT: I just don’t know what to make of this when 2♥ in non forcing in BWS.  I would like advancer change of suit to be forcing as I would play it.  See my views in earlier forum discussions.  Sadly, under the BWS constraints I have to pass.

Forcing--by a passed hand?
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 07, 2020, 01:29:46 PM
G: I think 2 !H probably does suggest a spade tolerance at Todd says. Otherwise, we have a hand where we did not choose to open 2 !H but now decide to bid 2 !H. Running from 1 !S? There is an old adage "Don't rescue a partner who has not been doubled". With, say, a 1=5=3=4 shape I could pass 1 !S.  If the unlike happens and this is passed out, pard may be able to scramble seven tricks. If, more likely, Lho doubles then we can see how it goes. If Rho passes the take-out double then I might want to rescue.

This hand, imo, is an advertisement in favor of 2 !H being non-forcing. 2 !H might well be the right contract. If pard has a 12 count and !H Axx he will raise hearts, and that should be fine, but on many other hands he can pass 2 !H or, if he must, he can return to 2 !S which I will pass. Note that if he returns to 2 !S I will know that he thought this was best. If 2 !H is forcing, a rebid of 2 !S means "Well, the 2 !H was forcing so I had to do something". Same thing if he raises hearts. I can regard that raise as more encouraging if passing was an option.

There was an amusing hand at the club along these general lines of forcing versus non-forcing.  I was dealt a 1=5=1=6 shape with a 12 count and, rightly or wrongly, decided to start with 1 !H. Lho doubled, pard bid 2 !D. Uh oh. First I had to recall whether we were playing this 2 !D as forcing.  I thought it was non-forcing but I still decided to bid 3 !C. A bad choice. Partner has a 5=1=6=1 shape.  And it gets more interesting. My Lho, the doubler, has a 4-1-6-2 shape with a strong diamond suit. However, even though partner would be playing in a 6-1 fit and getting a 6-0 trump split, the double dummy analysis has him off only one in 2 !D.
 

                        ♠KJT72
                        ♥K
                       ♦A87543
                       ♣2

♠AQ85                                   ♠963
♥9                                         ♥QT8642
♦KQJT96                                 void
♣QJ                                       ♣T965


                        ♠4
                        ♥AJ753
                        ♦2
                        ♣AK8743

Yes, passing is very often the right call. Mea culpa. Looking at the cards, I am not sure that partner meant 2 !D as non-forcing but our cc says that it is, and passing would have been good.

Anyway, I am liking 2 !H for G.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: wackojack on March 07, 2020, 05:41:44 PM
Ah thank you Todd and Ken for pointing that out.  So yes I think I can assume that 2 !H will be understood as showing tolerance for spades and not an out and out contract correction.  So I will change my vote to 2 !H.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 09, 2020, 01:28:09 AM
I was going to say "Help me, I am losing my mind, I am bidding 3NT on F with my !D AQ9". But I see that Jack has got there before me. That 9 is an important card. Well, so I think.

I am not at all sure I see 10 tricks in spades but 9 in NT? A good chance I think.

I am also re-thinking A. If I bid 1NT there is a pretty good chance partner will respond with 2 !C rather than 2 D, and while 1!S - 1NT - 2 !D - 3 !H is an artificial diamond raise I think !S - 1NT - 2 !C - 3 !H is natural. I think it is. I have to read a  little more.

I am not so sure the panelists always stick to the BWS agreements when choosing their calls, but I like to. Maybe they do, I have not really looked all that closely.

But I suppose I stick with 2 !H. I can perhaps land on my feet sometimes if I am lucky. If I bid 1NT and pard responds 2 !D, there is no way out.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 09, 2020, 02:33:56 AM
I'm waiting for some brave soul to Pass on "F" with !D AQ9.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: MarilynLi on March 09, 2020, 09:42:08 AM
A. 1NT. 3H by responder should shows 6 cards with AKQ or 2 of top 3 honors with a side thing. 1S-1NT, 2m-3H should show this type of hand. I'm surprised to learn it doesn't, according to the system. But I'll go with 1NT anyway.

B. Pass.

C. Pass.

D. 5S. Preempt to the most.

E. 1NT. With 8 hcp, there should be rebid. Can't rebid 2H with that suit.

F. 3NT. 2/3 of my hcp are in opponent's suit. Partner's double could be as little as 13 hcp with shape, so I'm not risking more for now.

G. 2H. Just show my hand. Non forcing.

H. ST. I'm afraid a Heart lead would give away the 9th trick to declarer.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: DickHy on March 09, 2020, 12:00:40 PM
A.  2H.  I’m with Todd here when deciding whether or not to make a GF response; “would I open this?”  My partner, hoping (usually forlornly) for some consistency from me, might suggest that choosing 2H for Problem A implies 1D for Problem B (and the corollary 1N and pass, respectively).  How to decide when (bad) choices are close?  The weather’s grim, a virus is on the rampage and the cat has pulled down a curtain – nothing else can go wrong.

B. 1D

C.  Pass.  One has to have some standards.

D.  4S.  East’s x denies a “long suit” which suggests something like 1444 or 0(544)*  They could well be heading for a bad trump break, so let’s not get too cute. 

E.  1N.  Is it more important to show long H or a D stop?  2H shows only a 5c suit, so has pretty much the same effect as 2D (4SF) following which N with 3c H will support and with fewer hearts will bid otherwise.  I suppose after 2D – 2N/3C I could bid 3H which must now show 6.  OK, so I prefer 2D (4SF) to 2H to explore a H fit.  However, we could pretty quickly get to 3H, with my 8 HCP opposite a partner who could be 12-14 with 4135.  Then what? A doomed 3N and a lecture on misplaced optimism in the post-mortem.   After 2D (4SF) N with 5xx6 can bid 2S, but he can do that over 1N too.  1N conveys two things; my strength and the D stop; both are probably more important now than long H.   

F.   4S.  3N is tempting but 4S is what partner will prefer when he notices my 5 spades.  But, do I pass, hoping to collect 500 for 3D-2?  With the hands Ken discusses would we win 6 tricks?  Yes, if W is 2272 (2S, 2H, 1D and 1C).  If W is 1273 we can still make 6 tricks – a C ruff replacing the 2nd S.  But with other holdings we take just 5 tricks for +200.  I could dither over this one for yonks.

G.   2H.  If East’s pass is pukka, we might have 24 HCP between us, with my stronger partner over the opening opponent, so 3N is not outlandish.  Partner could hold something like 5x4x, so couldn’t x or overcall 1N.  If that’s right I’d better start showing stops in other suits, so 2H seems fine.  If our situation is not so favourable, I can pass partner’s 2S. 

H.   ST.  East looks a good bet to hold the CK.  If I lead a low H partner may decide to return one when in (with KD?), whereas I would prefer a C.  My partner is the sensible one, so will have no problem at all reading the ST.

SOLUTIONS FOR:
Dick Harvey
Southampton
U.K.

PROBLEM A: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM B: 1 Diamond
PROBLEM C: Pass
PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
PROBLEM E: 1 Notrump
PROBLEM F: 4 Spades
PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM H: Spade 10

Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 09, 2020, 04:03:42 PM
I am still struggling with A major attraction of the msc, for me, is the opportunity to see just what BWS bids mean. The following is a frustrating diary of my thinking, read it only if you have nothing better to do with your time!


 Looking at "After our major suit openings" and then "later actions" we find
"(e) After one spade — one notrump — two clubs — ?, a two-diamond rebid is Bart, artificially temporarily suggesting five hearts and converting natural rebids by responder to showing stronger hands than if the same action had been taken directly."

OK, so BWS plats Bart. Now on the BrdgeWinners for BART(modified), see
https://bridgewinners.com/article/view/bart-modified/
In particular,
"If you do choose to play BART, your partnership should bid 2 !C on a doubleton instead of a 3 card !D suit.  This allows you to take fuller advantage of your gadget and responder also knows that opener’s 2 !D bid promises 4."


So, after 1 !S - 1NT - 2 !D, if it goes that way, partner has five spades and at least four diamonds. I have only two clubs and I am assuming the opponents have not come into the auction. Seems like partner has some clubs.

In which case, maybe the hand actually belongs in diamonds, not hearts.

But usually I will hear 2 !C from pard rather than 2 !D:

Playing BART after 1NT, partner will bid 2 !C  if he holds three diamonds and two clubs, after which my 2 !D is artificial and forcing.  Over 2 !D then, according to BridgeWinners, partner bids 2 !H with "All minimum hands. Opener only breaks with a hand good enough to bid over a natural !H sign off"

Now this is, perhaps, a bit weird. It means that after 1 !S - 1NT - 2 !C - 2 !D - 2 !H, nobody has really shown much of anything in the way of shape.  Still, opener presumably does not have four diamonds since he bid 2 !C and so we can forget about playing in diamonds.

Ah but: Now I would like a bid of 3 !H by me to show the hand that I have. Unfortunately Bridge winners says that bidding 3 !H would be 2-6 in the majors rather than 1-6.

So BART could be useful if I were 2-6, but no, I am 1-6.

Ok, I guess I just bid 2 !H over 1 !S.

I did warn you of the frustration!
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: msphola on March 09, 2020, 09:14:28 PM
April 2020
A. 2H
B. 1D
C. 1NT
D. 4S
E. 2S
F. 3S
G. 2H
H. 10S
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: DrAculea on March 09, 2020, 09:28:37 PM
Wladislaus Dragwlya
Castrum Sex
Romania

PROBLEM A: 1 Notrump
PROBLEM B: Pass
PROBLEM C: Pass
PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
PROBLEM E: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM F: 5 Diamonds
PROBLEM G: Pass
PROBLEM H: Spade 10
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: blubayou on March 10, 2020, 12:25:06 AM
I wish to make use of our moderators' fine idea  that we mayhave 'do-overs'  even though we have sent our "final guesses" to the Bridge World:   So , for  IAC scoring  change the mad scientist  "4 hearts"  to  our WonderWoman--Marilyn's   great blast to  FIVE spades, please.    Also,  late votes for spade ten lead tempt me to change BACK  to that choice,  but i will stand by  the 4th best heart i sent to "Edgar".   
     And by the way,  Ken  don't worry about the BART problem so much  (problem A)---  after all you DO have a max supporting hand for diamonds  if 1NT  gets a 2diam rebid! -- right?   i ran 80 generated deals of  problem A,  letting the 1S opening range from 11 to 19 pts,  and IT DOESN'T MATTER WHICH FIRST RESPONSE WE GIVE--on average!!   go figgure THAT!!
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 10, 2020, 01:29:13 AM
SOLUTIONS FOR:
Kenneth Berg
Sykesville MD
U.S.A.

PROBLEM A: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM B: Pass
PROBLEM C: Pass
PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
PROBLEM E: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM F: 3 Notrump
PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM H: Spade 10
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: wackojack on March 10, 2020, 09:23:51 AM
SOLUTIONS FOR:
Jack Goody
Guildford
U.K.

PROBLEM A: 3 Hearts
PROBLEM B: 1 Diamond
PROBLEM C: Pass
PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
PROBLEM E: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM F: 3 Notrump
PROBLEM G: 2 Hearts
PROBLEM H: Spade 10
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 10, 2020, 11:20:54 AM
I wish to make use of our moderators' fine idea  that we mayhave 'do-overs'  even though we have sent our "final guesses" to the Bridge World:   So , for  IAC scoring  change the mad scientist  "4 hearts"  to  our WonderWoman--Marilyn's   great blast to  FIVE spades, please.    Also,  late votes for spade ten lead tempt me to change BACK  to that choice,  but i will stand by  the 4th best heart i sent to "Edgar".   
     And by the way,  Ken  don't worry about the BART problem so much  (problem A)---  after all you DO have a max supporting hand for diamonds  if 1NT  gets a 2diam rebid! -- right?   i ran 80 generated deals of  problem A,  letting the 1S opening range from 11 to 19 pts,  and IT DOESN'T MATTER WHICH FIRST RESPONSE WE GIVE--on average!!   go figgure THAT!!

I would expect some auctions, after 1 !S - 1NT, to end in a part score..Not the case after 1 !S - 2 !H. So I am pretty sure that it matters. There are other issues as well but part score versus game force seems like a major one.

I expect 1 !S - 3 !H will definitely get some votes. I think of that auction as saying "Pard, if we were playing SAYC I would have bid 2 !H and then, assuming a minimum rebid from you, I would then bid a passable 3 !H".  Now with A, if I were playing SAYC, I would bid 2 !H over 1 !S but then, over a minimum rebid, I would bid 3 !D rather than 3 !H.  That 3 !D call is forcing in SAYC but not game forcing. Although admonitory it's a little tough to see just how we get out short of game after 3 !D. Momentum might put is in game anyway.

I look at this as a hand that would be easier to bid in SAYC, but offers not such great options in 2/1.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 11, 2020, 04:09:58 PM
PROBLEM E: Pass
Both 2 !H and 1NT will be common. Both of them right on values. But it is quite possibly a misfit, in which case I want to “get out fast.” I can’t get out any faster than the one-level—so I pass.

Yes, it’s an underbid of sorts; I’m a queen too strong for this. But I overbid on “A,” so I’m compensating now. 😊 (Hey, I had to justify my decision with a reason and this is the best BS I could come up with!)

This one is definitely my “out there” decision this set.


If only there had been an option that showed six hearts and a weak hand . . .

Like I wrote, this one is "out there."

I've never received a "0" for any of my choices before. Today may be the day.  :-[
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on March 11, 2020, 04:53:27 PM

If only there had been an option that showed six hearts and a weak hand . . .

Like I wrote, this one is "out there."

I've never received a "0" for any of my choices before. Today may be the day.  :-[

I expected to know yesterday - not so much that you got your first 0 (lol), but all the scores.  I guess the BW staff did not transition well with an extra day in February and the time change this weekend.  Perhaps there were also several hands involving winning the last trick with the beer card as well.

As for describing this sort of hand, they had the bidding sequence (and I was prepared to use it), then they redefined it to something that comes up far less often and is generally less useful.  Cest la BW!  Sometimes the problems are ones created by eliminating older options.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: wackojack on March 11, 2020, 06:43:16 PM
BART?  Gazzilli?   

You cannot play both.  So which is more useful.  Anyone care to explain?   And what about the Meckstroth adjunct?   
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 11, 2020, 06:58:48 PM
I have never played any of them so I have no opinion.

I figure they are all still hashing out he answers.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on March 11, 2020, 10:46:33 PM
Scores are out.  Ken led the way, with Masse24 close behind and EddyHaskell third; Ken and Todd made the Honor Roll, so congrats!! 

NAMEBW-SCORERANKMPs
KenBerg     740   1   30
Masse24     730   2   25
EddyHaskell     700   3   10
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Also participating and receiving 1 Monster Point are (alphabetically): BabsG, Blubayou, DickHy, DrAculea, Hoki, Jcreech, MarilynLi, Msphola, WackoJack and one anonymous participant.

We had a nice turnout! Hopefully we can continue to build on this in the coming months!

Commentary is still welcome for this set.  :) There were some interesting problems, solutions, and choices by our members.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: blubayou on March 12, 2020, 03:02:57 AM
anonymous PAT (ccr)?   and my other pal  shawn not evn entering??   come on you two!  GROW a pair  and get into ths great forum!!!!
    And  i am glad so glad to look forward to a ne BETTERbunch of problems.      THESE AS A GROUP  ARE THE MOST SICK THAT I CANRECALL IN60 ISSUES IF Bridge WoRLD  in my possession.   Bar none 
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 12, 2020, 03:15:32 AM
PROBLEM C: Pass
Looks like a textbook 3 !C. But the note: “*BWS: 3 ♣ weak, but values for 3NT opposite a balanced hand with 18-19 HCP” differs from my personal methods, and therefore, if I strictly adhere to the system notes, my hand is too weak.

So I pass.

But this “feels” wrong. Often, I feel a though the system notes added to these problems are trying to talk me into an action. Here, it feels as though they want to talk me out of a “normal” preempt. Do I ignore the note and risk partner going on? Or does the preemptive value of 3 !C outweigh the risk?


I passed. Scored okay, which I figured on this one, so no real complaints. But I allowed the system note to talk me out of a normal action. Even with the note (and potential for partner going overboard), sticking with a normal action--a solid obstructive preempt should outweigh the advertised risk.

Which I knew.

Sigh.

Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 12, 2020, 12:22:17 PM
Yes, I also passed and with the same thoughts that 3 !C seemed like the normal action.

Interestingly, Pass got a top score on both B and G. I did pass on B but went with 2 !H on G.


I was worried about passing on both B and C thinking "Oh, they wouldn't give two problems such that pass is right" But they did, just not the same two as I checked.


When I was in college I of course had to take some of these general courses outside my major. In Psych 1 and 2 they used multiple choice exams and I took some satisfaction in getting an A in Psych 1 and a B in Psych 2 without much reading the book and rarely coming to class [Added: I might be exaggerating some, but not much], I just psyched out the multiple choice exams. It's actually a bad habit. I need to stop thinking that way on these MSC problems.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: EddyHaskel on March 13, 2020, 03:14:16 AM
700. I'm cool with that.
I don't bother with BWS, I just bid what I would actually bid. 
The only answer I would change is F.  I said 4S. 3nt is the better bid there.   
However 3S came in second place and I think that bid is chickensh#t.  4S came in 3rd and got 70 pts, but should be the 90 pointer.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: wackojack on March 13, 2020, 12:14:23 PM
March MSC I scored 2 zeros because I stubbornly ignored BWS and voted for what I would have done at the table.  April MSC I have avoided the zeros.  However, my first choices were made ignoring BWS and would have scored 740.  Then looking at the effects of BWS on my deliberations I changed some of them which reduced my score to 670.  C'est la vie!

Post Mortem


A
♠ 4   ♥ K 9 7 5 3 2   ♦ K Q 10 2   ♣ K 6
SOUTH   WEST   NORTH   EAST
——   ——   1 ♠   Pass
 ?*         
*BWS: 2 ♥ game-force; 3 ♥ invitational

Interesting that 77% thought this worth a game force.  Maybe, that the panel’s requirements for an opening bid are higher than mine.  E.g. 2♠ opening bid includes 10HCP.
I voted 3♥ scoring 60, perhaps reflecting a slightly lighter opening bid requirement than the panel

B
East-West vulnerable
You, South, hold:
♠ K 5   ♥ Q 8 5 3   ♦ J 6 5 2   ♣ K Q 10
SOUTH   WEST   NORTH   EAST
——   ——   Pass   Pass
 ?         


I understand why 50% of panellists voted pass.  BUT why 1♣ the 3 card suit preferred to 1♦?  That is anathema to me. I voted 1♦ scoring 70.

C
♠ J 2   ♥ J 7 2   ♦ 7 6 2   ♣ Q 10 6 4 2
SOUTH   WEST   NORTH   EAST
——   ——   1 ♣   Pass
 ?*         
*BWS: 3 ♣ weak, but values for 3 NT opposite a balanced hand with 18-19 HCP

So 3♣ gets 50% and pass gets 36%.  I constructed some hands and could see that 19 point hands might give you a 50% chance of making 3NT.  But 18 point hands far fewer.  I assume that if all the panellists were mindful of the BWS then they would automatically bid 3N with a balanced 18-19.  Moreover, opposite a balanced 14 with 4 spades should we be pre-empting the opponents?  Perhaps so because it puts the “last guess” in the opponents’ court. 
I voted pass scoring 80.  And perhaps in retrospect 3♣ has more going for it.   

G
♠ 10 6   ♥ A J 5 3 2   ♦ J 6   ♣ K 10 5 2
SOUTH   WEST   NORTH   EAST
Pass   1 ♦   1 ♠   Pass
 ?         

Not sure why pass scores 10  better than 2♥.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 13, 2020, 01:52:28 PM
Some thoughts about C:


You hold ♠ J 2   ♥ J 7 2   ♦ 7 6 2   ♣ Q 10 6 4 2
The auction begins  1 !C - Pass - ?
We are non-vu;, they are vul, it's imps.
The helpful(?)  reminder is: 3 ♣ weak, but values for 3 NT opposite a balanced hand with 18-19 HCP

We could think about how to interpret the reminder. Let's say that, operationally, it means that pard will bid 3NT holding the balanced 18-19. 
With that in mind, we could think:
"Well, maybe pard will make it if he bids 3NT. It will take a bit of luck but it's not impossible. And, any time that he does not bid 3NT y 3 !C bid has probably made life more difficult for the opponents."

My point is that a preemptive bid will, on occasion, give partner the problem rather than the opponents. So we should try not to put partner in a hopeless position. But 1 !c - 3 !C - 3NT might not lead to a hopeless contract.

So the idea would be: In the mall percentage of hands where pard has the values to bid 3NT we will probably go down more often than not, but in the significantly larger percentage of the hands where partner has an opening hand of normal strength the 3 !C call has a good chance of paying off.

I am not so sure this is right, but I am thinking that being non-vul against vul opponents and playing imps all push in this direction.

I was one of the passers. Reluctant, but a passer.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 13, 2020, 08:22:17 PM
A
♠ 4   ♥ K 9 7 5 3 2   ♦ K Q 10 2   ♣ K 6
SOUTH   WEST   NORTH   EAST
——   ——   1 ♠   Pass
 ?*         
*BWS: 2 ♥ game-force; 3 ♥ invitational

Interesting that 77% thought this worth a game force.  Maybe, that the panel’s requirements for an opening bid are higher than mine.  E.g. 2♠ opening bid includes 10HCP.
I voted 3♥ scoring 60, perhaps reflecting a slightly lighter opening bid requirement than the panel
Not "slightly lighter" opening bid requirements, "slightly more." Look at your hand. Just yours. One question to ask, "Would you open this hand in first seat?"

This was the question I asked, and the answer was yes. Do I like it? No, and I said so. But on close hands, such as this, if the answer is "yes," then I make a GF 2/1 response. When the panel opinions are provided in a few days, my guess is that more than one will make a similar observation. I would also guess a few observations will be made about the flexibility afforded by the entire level saved via 2 !H rather than the space consuming 3 !H.


B
East-West vulnerable
You, South, hold:
♠ K 5   ♥ Q 8 5 3   ♦ J 6 5 2   ♣ K Q 10
SOUTH   WEST   NORTH   EAST
——   ——   Pass   Pass
 ?         

I understand why 50% of panellists voted pass.  BUT why 1♣ the 3 card suit preferred to 1♦?  That is anathema to me. I voted 1♦ scoring 70.

Half your values are in the club suit.

Whatever they bid, if they bid, is your intention to try to outbid them?

Of course not. At least, not me. So opening can (and should) sometimes carry an alternate meaning. Like, "Lead this suit, partner!"

If I opened--I pass any response from partner. Yes, even 1 !S.

So although 1 !C looked intriguing due to the lead-directing value, the hand is just too ugly (Jim says "cheesy") to jump in.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: wackojack on March 14, 2020, 10:36:59 AM
Responding to Todd

A
Opposite   !S 4  !H K97532,  !D KQ102,  !C K6

Give partner:  !S AQxxxx,  !H J,  !D Jx,  !C QJxx.  A perfectly sound opening bid.  Yet any game prospect is non existent.  OTOH:
Give partner:  !S AQxxxx,  !H QJ,  !D Jx,  !C Qxx.  Now 4 !H looks good.
The 3  !H response is crucial in opener having the information as to whether or not to go to game. 

The point is that opening bid opposite opening bid does not necessarily mean that game is on. 

B
Yes I can now see the sense in opening 1 !C where the deception to partner will rarely damage.  I normally don't like masterminding because when it does not result in a gain and yet does not result in a loss, partner will notice and may deem you untrustworthy. Here perhaps is a rare exception. 

Responding to Ken: 
    So the idea would be: In the small percentage of hands where pard has the values to bid 3NT we will probably go down more often than not, but in the significantly larger percentage of
     the hands where partner has an opening hand of normal strength the 3 !C call has a good chance of paying off.
   


Yes agree that argument has merit.

Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: kenberg on March 14, 2020, 07:44:45 PM
My April Bridge World arrived today. I immediately looked for their thoughts on A. Danny Kleinman and Brian Glubok were the two panelists who chose 3 !H over 1 !S. Glubok notes that the poor texture of the hearts and the possibility that the hand should be played in !D are drawbacks but he chooses it anyway.  Kit Woolsey is the "Director" of the column, and notes "3 !H should be reserved for hands with which responder can de pretty sure that !H is the right strain, level the only issue. This hand doesn't come close."

That seems to be the trade-off.  After 1 !S - 3 !H the hand will almost certainly be played in !H. Are we willing to commit to that? Of course after 1 !S - 2 !H the hand is going to be played in game. That's not so great either. So it's a trade-off. I went with 2 !H but I thought there would be more than 2 votes for 3 !H.

1 !S -  1NT (semi-forcing) got 4 votes.  Carl Hudecek says (partial quote) : "A !H follow-up should suggest a decent hand with a !H suit inadequate for an immediate jump. Does it?"
I mentioned earlier that I thought panelists don't always go by BWS system notes. According to the notes,   The auction 1 !S - 1NT - 2 !D - 3 !H  shows diamonds, saying nothing about hearts.   But also BWS plays Bart, which both ups the chances that opener will rebid 2 !C over 1NT and, if he should bid 2 !D, it promises four.  But when this 2 !D rebid happens, then what? I was hoping the column would get into that.  And also discuss the Bart sequence 1 !S - 1NT - 2 !C - 2 !D - 2 !H. In this sequence responder bid the 2 !D and with 2 !H opener is just doing what he was told that he should do with most hands. Now what, and what does it mean?

The remaining 20 panelists go with 1 !S - 2 !H.  The general thrust seems to be a best of evils argument. I think everyone realizes this could go wrong.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: jcreech on March 14, 2020, 10:14:00 PM
I think panelists will use the proffered system notes to guide their decisions, but most will go with their general bridge judgment if it would necessitate research into the BWS system notes.  I am certain that there are some who do the research, but most do not.

I am looking forward to seeing the more complete discussion when Todd finalizes his synthesis.
Title: Re: 2020 April - MASTER SOLVERS CLUB
Post by: Masse24 on March 17, 2020, 05:00:56 PM
APRIL MSC SUMMARY – Kit Woolsey Director

A handful of the panel's comments:


PROBLEM A: 2 Hearts
A majority. A huge one, with 20 of 26 panelists choosing the game-force.

Woolsey: “Sure, two hearts might dump us overboard, but we will probably find the right strain. This will make the choice of strain a lot easier.”

Masse24:  “I would open this in first seat. 2 !H also has the advantage of leaving more room to find our best strain.”

MarilynLi:  “3 !H by responder should shows 6 cards with AKQ or 2 of top 3 honors with a side thing,” which echoed Steve Robinson, “The hearts are too weak for three hearts.” And Kit Woolsey, our director for this set, bluntly says, “Calling this heart suit inadequately strong is a huge underbid. . . . Three hearts will be a winner only when North-South can take exactly nine tricks in hearts and not in notrump. . . . Three hearts should be reserved for hands with which responder can be pretty sure that hearts is the strain, level only the issue. This hand doesn’t come close.”

Zia zeroed in on the problem with, “Two hearts. For some reason, players will open a hand but treat the same holding as a non-opener in response. I would call them ‘confused.’ I eagerly await the one-notrump responses.”


PROBLEM B: Pass
Not unexpectedly, Pass was the majority choice for our IAC bidders. Similarly, fully half of the MSC panel chose the low road.

JCreech stated it most eloquently, calling it “A cheesy 11.”

KenBerg, who also passed, stated, “Shading a point or so in a third hand opening when holding a decent five card major is fine, but a shaded 1 !D on !D Jxxx? Not my style.”

Babs kept it brief with, “Pass.”

A close second (one mentioned by several of those who passed) was the lead directing 1 !C. But not one of our IAC solvers chose this. What were the panelists who chose this thinking?

David Berkowitz: “One Club. Must get the lead. If you open any other non-suit, you get what you deserve. Can’t pass at these colors.”

There were, however, three panelists who chose to open 1 !D (along with five of ours).


PROBLEM C: Three Clubs
A close winner over the second place pass. Only three of our solvers chose to ignore the BWS system note and make the seemingly normal preempt of 3 !C, JCreech, EddyHaskel, and CCR3. Well done!

Blubayou, taking full heed of the BWS system note: “Pass  --- 26 of 27 panelists unless some just DEFY the system note.”

I noted the risk of ignoring the system note but chose to pass anyway. Masse24: “Do I ignore the note and risk partner going on? Or does the preemptive value of 3 !C outweigh the risk?” John Diamond thinks so, stating, “Three Clubs, percentage at these colors. Hope that partner does not have a big, balanced hand.”

Bobby Wolff: “Three Clubs. A worthwhile psych . . . with risk.”

And finally, Bramley: “Three Clubs. I’m more scared of LHO than partner. Sometime partner makes 3NT. Pass is not in the game.”


PROBLEM D: 4 Spades
I thought this one to be the most interesting due to the many tactical considerations available.

A plurality chose 4 !S, with 12 of 26 votes not quite 50%. But 5 !S came in second, garnering 7 votes. So 20 of 26 votes (there was one who chose 3 !S) chose to raise partner’s spade bid to a higher level. But what level? And why?

Blubayou meandered all around the tactics with: “4 hearts - now, we're talking folks! Only 4 spades and 5 spades came to mind, then I recalled the surprise winner from last month--a lead-directing advance of partner's noise in a four-bagger.  I reject "3H" because it's not jamming enough.” Then, with a last-minute change of mind, “So , for  IAC scoring  change the mad scientist  "4 hearts" to our WonderWoman--Marilyn's great blast to FIVE spades, please.”

Steve Robinson thought that bidding high as quickly as possible was important: “Five Spades. Lets the opponents guess at the six-level.”
MarylinLi, similarly: “Five spades. Preempt to the most.”

But the simple, game-level preempt of 4 !S was the winner—and also the most popular choice of our IAC voters. DickHy observed: “4S.  East’s x denies a “long suit” which suggests something like 1444 or 0(544)*  They could well be heading for a bad trump break, so let’s not get too cute.”


PROBLEM E: 2 Hearts
Big majority. 17 of 26.

WackoJack chose the basic 2 !H, stating: “2 !H. I would have liked the rebid of 1♠ to promise an unbalanced hand in which case I would next bid 1NT.  Sadly in BWS it does not so I rebid 2 !H.” If unbalanced means possessing a stiff somewhere, then no. Simple nota pancake flat hand.

Mark Cohen: “Two hearts. I do have six.”

The Pollacks covered all the bases with: “Two hearts. Pass is possible with this seemingly-misfitting, soft hand, but it could miss a vulnerable game. One notrump is right on values, doesn’t stress the anemic hearts, and might leave some room to recover. . . .

Hoki agreed, putting it simply: “2 !H. Not 1NT with an unbalanced hand.”

MarilynLi thought the heart suit too anemic to rebid, stating: “1NT. With 8 hcp, there should be rebid. Can't rebid 2H with that suit.”
For me, personally, this was my “out there” decision this set. I feared it might score a zero. Thankfully, three of the “theorists” chose the same bid: Zia, Kleinman, and Rubens. Whew! At leat I’m in good company. Still, it scored poorly, only garnering a 60.


PROBLEM F: 3 Notrump
This was very close, with 3NT garnering 12 panel votes, 3 !S 11.

MarilynLi keenly assessed the location of her values: “3NT. 2/3 of my hcp are in opponent's suit. Partner's double could be as little as 13 hcp with shape, so I'm not risking more for now.”

DickHy went back and forth, finally settling on game in spades.

Interestingly, 3 !S was the second choice—NOT 4 !S. John Diamond, a 3 !S bidder went low because of the !D Q, saying “three spades is clear.”
And Blubayou chose 3NT “since I am screwed for good score this month anyway.”

Interesting logic, Blu!

And finally, EddyHaskel, with a strong opinion that included mention of a farm animal writes: “However 3 !S came in second place and I think that bid is chickensh#t.  4 !S came in 3rd and got 70 pts, but should be the 90 pointer.” 😊


PROBLEM G: Pass
More or less a binary choice, with 2 !H coming in a very close second.
Woolsey mentions transfer advances, but since we are not playing them here, we go with what the system offers.
Kudos to our Passers: DrAculea, JCreech, and CCR3.


PROBLEM H: Heart 4
Clear. At least according to the panel.

Of the 26 panelists, 19 chose the !H 4, and 4 chose the !H 2. Only 2 chose the !S T.

A large majority of our IAC bidders chose the !S T, but that choice was widely panned by the MSC panelists. Why?

There were few mentions of the spade lead and why it was bad, but Berkowitz said the following: “If partner needed a spade lead, where was he after 1 !D ?” Fair point.

Howard Weinstein, too: “Partner did not overcall one spade . . . . If my heart spots were weaker, I might try the spade ten.”

Woolsey and Hudecek, however, were the two !S T leads. Woolsey adding: “Yes, it is possible dummy is a little light and the spade lead chops out a critical entry. Or maybe the spade lead will be productive by setting up defensive tricks. Or maybe the spade lead doesn’t blow a trick, while a heart or club would lose a trick.” Yup. I think the safety of the spade lead occurred to everyone.




ADDITIONAL COMMENTS ARE STILL WELCOME.