What’s your call?
For yesterday’s It’s Your Call deal (from May 2009’s Bridge Bulletin), 2NT was named top bid.
A good bridge bidding problem is one that has three or more possible calls. In this case, you can raise partner, bid notrump or pass to see what partner wants to do. Most of the panelists chose 2NT.
“With a guarded king in the opponents’ suit, I go out of my way to get notrump whenever possible,” said Larry Cohen. “It’s sort of a variation on Hamman’s Rule (when in doubt, bid 3NT). Hamman told me about this adjunct, so if it’s wrong, I’ll blame him.”
“2NT gets the contract right-sided,” said Kerri Sanborn, “and shows better than a minimum.”
“It’s best to get the notrump bid in now,” said Karen Walker, “or else partner may have an unsolvable problem if left-hand opponent bids 3*S*. The two strong suits would have convinced me to open 1NT originally.”
“2NT,” agreed August Boehm. “I would have opened 1NT. Aren’t the well-placed 10s trick takers?”
“2NT gets the important spade message across,” said Mike Lawrence.
“We have a spade stopper and a club fit, so lets try for the most likely game,” said Kitty and Steve Cooper.
Jill Meyers and Peggy and John Sutherlin agreed with 2NT for similar reasons.
What about raising partner’s club suit?
“3♣,” said Janet and Mel Colchamiro. “We would have opened 1NT, not 1*D*, treating the connected 10s as an upgrade to 15 points. Bidding 2NT now is too narrow a target, especially with no club honor. 3♣ doesn’t preclude 3NT.”
“3♣,” agreed Steve Robinson. “Support partner. If he has extras, he can bid again. If he’s minimum, we belong in 3♣.”
Richard Freeman agreed. “We’re not strong enough to be interested in 3NT unless partner tries by bidding 3♠.”
Three experts felt that when you’re not sure what to do, pass.
“I have a minimum balanced hand without much club support. There’s no need to bid,” said Barry Rigal.
“Passing allows partner to describe their hand more accurately,” said Lynn Deas. “If she just rebids 3♣, I will pass. Over a reopening double, I will bid 2NT, which is natural but denies a great spade stopper because I didn’t bid it directly. I don’t like a 3♣ raise because it tends to show four trumps or three good ones.”
“Pass,” echoed Allan Falk. “If you switched the ♠K for a low club, I would raise clubs. If I had the semblance of a second spade stopper, I might bid 2NT. As it is, I have no compelling reason to bid.”
“2NT seems clear-cut,” said Kay and Randy Joyce, “although lack of a fitting club honor is a concern.”
When you don’t have a major-suit fit, focus on notrump.
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