Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Unexpectedly passing partner's mostly forcing bid

I've had several opportunities in the last few days to pass partner unexpectedly. Last night at the club, my partner twice intervened over a 1NT opening. In the first instance, I held QJxxx  A9xx  KTxx  - and after 1NT-P-P, partner doubled, which for us showed 1 suited with clubs or diamonds and a major. I have a decent hand and partner is almost sure to have clubs so I converted to penalty. We were only able to set it 1 because partner couldn't find the difficult shift of a diamond at trick 2 and I would up being endplayed into leading a heart to dummy's good but otherwise unaccessible Q or lead into declarer's AQ.
The second instance of this occurred when partner overcalled 2 over my LHO's 1NT, which shows diamonds or a major-minor two suiter. This time I held Tx  xxx  x  QJTxxxx so I happily passed and let partner play the 7-1 fit.
The most interesting of these was Sunday in the Swiss teams in Spartanburg. I held x  AT9xxx  -  98xxxx and the auction was 1-2-P to me. I really did want to pass this and I think I probably should as bidding anything could easily get us in trouble and get us in a doubled contract. This time I was optimistic so I bid 3, natural. P bid 3 and I tried 4, which got raised to 5. All in all, this was a better contract than 2 (we did in fact get to our only 8 card fit) but were just a little too high. P had a rock: KTxxx  -  AKQJxx  AQ.

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