Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hesitation After a Gambling 3NT

There are some little old ladies who you will never be able to educate about hesitations and the fact that bidding after partner hesitates to clearly show values is unethical. This incident last night is also why bridge games should have non-playing directors. But in a fairly small club with games of normally 6-8 tables such as Warner Robins.

Last night, I picked up xx, xx, AKQJxxxx, x and opened 3NT, alerted and later explained, in 2nd seat both vul. I know this alert might require a little extra time for a beginner and this lady was probably only slightly past the novice stage, but she took close to 1 minute.. much too long. Partner passed and, whether you know the Gambling 3NT convention or not, based on the alert that I have a solid suit with no A or K outside the suit, common sense should tell you that my partner has a decent hand, else he would "correct" to 4 of my minor. Anyway, passed hand RHO chimed in with 4S. Her hand: xxxxx, AKxx, x, Jxx.

Now, a director should have been called after the tank pass over 3NT to protect our side from RHO making a borderline bid, which would likely be based on the fact that the hesitation indicates LHO has a good hand. But I was the only director at the club that night and my partner and I were probably the only 2 people that have any significant knowledge about hesitations and the ramifications thereof. Anyway, dummy wasn't as good as it should have been for the tank but did include 3 spades. Fortunately the contract went down 3 doubled against our non-making 3NT (we could lose 4 hearts and a spade if they lead them immediately).


  1. I think putting up with hesitations is the price you pay, unfortunately, for playing at the club.

  2. Slightly similar - always wondered. If one is playing pairs and your closest rival is actually the pair with the director. What is to stop you harassing and distracting him by making continual and unreasonable calls for the director - especially when he is at a critical stage in his own play!