Monday, June 14, 2010

Bridge Etiquette - Asking About Opponents' Bids

So, this weekend at the D7 GNT Flight A qualifying was not a very memorable experience. One round, however, in the sectional Swiss that we qualified for by placing 8th in the 10 team round robins Saturday, was rather humorous. And it's a good lesson in how not to act at the bridge table. The pair at first seemed to be reasonably experienced.

On board 2, LHO looks at our convention card for about 30 seconds, puts it back where I had it, and asks "Do you play 2/1?" "It's at the top of the damn card that you were just looking at." No, don't respond like that either (a simple yes sufficed).

Third board, white vs. red, it's 2 passed to me and I open a weak 2 on a 2-6-3-2 12 count. They somewhat rationally bid to 4 and go down 2.  Had I opened 1 they may have done 1 trick better and may have stayed out of game. Actually our teammates were making 3 our way so it was a 2 imp gain. Anyway, LHO was visibly upset that I had a little more than anyone else at the table expected me to have. But of course, our card is marked very light 3rd seat and very light preempts so this bid is clearly within range.

Fourth board, I open 1 , LHO passes, partner bids 1, RHO passes, I bid 2, LHO asks if 1 was natural (yes), partner bids 4, all pass. Not surprisingly, LHO has 6 clubs and RHO dutifully leads a . Nothing really mattered on this hand and it was a push and we didn't comment on the unauthorized information given to RHO.

Next board, LHO opens 1, two passes, and I balance with 2. Partner bids 3NT and LHO jumps in his seat and noticeably shakes his head. RHO dutifully leads not a heart from Kx. Again the lead didn't make a difference and he made 5 for a push and no comment was made about the UI. Yes, on this auction, my partner tends to have something like a trap pass (with very good hearts) or a takeout double of 1 (and therefore probably 4 hearts) so a heart lead is often not right in this situation, but LHO's body language conveyed his bad heart suit quite clearly.

Last board of the set, LHO opens 1, partner doubles, RHO passes, I bid 1, LHO asks if the X was takeout. He competes to 3 and I compete to 3 , making. I guess there's not really any unauthorized information given by asking if it's a takeout double, it is just odd. I dunno.