Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - WEEK IN MOVIES - with DOU­GLAS NEW­LANDS

De­fence to the op­po­nents’ 1NT open­ing is an area fraught with haz­ards: some in the bid­ding and some in the the­ory of it. This hand is a typ­i­cal ex­am­ple where East opens a strong 1NT. You might not like the five card ma­jor but that’s a com­mon ex­pert treat­ment when it’s in the 1NT range. You may not like the king-jack dou­ble­ton di­a­mond but this is what hap­pened at the ta­ble with a well known Syd­ney pro sit­ting East. Now there are a num­ber of play­ers who see the South hand as beat­ing 1NT but they can’t dou­ble be­cause that shows a sin­gle suiter. Their first ac­tion is to pass, as here, but when the op­po­nents run, they have a prob­lem. When South emerged from the bushes with 3H, North thought this was a pro­tec­tive ac­tion based on an as­sump­tion of val­ues in his hand since West had not in­vited game. There is also the mat­ter of the com­mon be­lief that if they open a strong 1NT, our side can­not have game val­ues.

It was a poor out­come when the op­po­nents played the safe 3NT in the other room. 4H also makes, ex­cept on a di­a­mond lead be­cause you lose? The en­tries to play spades twice. Th­ese hands are so much eas­ier to han­dle if you can bid 2H or 2S to show that long ma­jor rather than hid­ing sin­gle suit­ers var­i­ously in your dou­ble, 2C or 2D bids. The de­fence is pressed for space and, if the auc­tion is com­pet­i­tive, ei­ther-or bids just cause self-in­flicted prob­lems. If you are com­fort­able with this then you can use 2C and 2D to show hearts and an­other and spades and an­other re­spec­tively. Th­ese hands can be 5-4 or 4-5. This method be­longs to the ASPTRO fam­ily and Mr. Google will tell you all about it. The ad­van­tage is much larger rel­a­tive to DONT when play­ing pairs since you tend to play in the ma­jor rather than the mi­nor. Con­sider hold­ing a 4243 hand when part­ner bids a DONT 2C. You have to play 2C be­cause it might be your best spot and can­not look for the ma­jor fit in case part­ner has hearts and clubs!

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