2024 Retro Edition – June Week 2

What’s your call?

2 2♠ 2NT
3♣ 3 3 3♠ 3NT
4♣ 4 4 4♠ 4NT
5♣ 5 5 5♠ 5NT
6♣ 6 6 6♠ 6NT
7♣ 7 7 7♠ 7NT
Pass Dbl
Click to reveal awards

Wafik Abdou, August Boehm, Larry Cohen, Mel Colchamiro, Allan Falk, Geoff Hampson, Betty Ann Kennedy, Daniel Korbel, Mike Lawrence, Roger Lee, Jeff Meckstroth, Jill Meyers, Barry Rigal, Steve Robinson, Kerri Sanborn, Don Stack, The Sutherlins, Steve Weinstein
Fits like a glove

How do we love partner’s 1♠? Let us count the ways.

The Sutherlins like 4♠ “because it sends the message that we have game values but no diamond control. We expect partner to make a move with two aces, including a diamond control.”

Colchamiro likes 4♠ because of its save-discouraging nature. “I realize we might have slam. 3♠ is just plain wrong since

♠A x x x x x x x x ♣x x x x

would make game. A 4♣ splinter is a possibility, but that could get doubled and lead to five-level complications. If partner moves over my 4♠, expecting more high cards and less shape, I don’t think he will be disappointed. I lose only when partner has five spades to the ace, either the A or a diamond singleton, and he conservatively passes.”

Hampson says, “I would hate to miss game by bidding only 3♠ when partner has:

♠J x x x x x x A x ♣x x x x.

Anything stronger is a big overbid.”

4♠ from Korbel, who says, “My instinct is to bid 4♣, but I am not sure whether that would be natural or a splinter. Sure, we make slam opposite:

♠A x x x x x x A x x ♣x x x,

but I don’t know how to find out.”

Kennedy bids 4♠ saying, “This shows more playing strength than high-card points. If I had more HCP, I would cuebid diamonds.”

Falk notes that in competition, “4♠ doesn’t promise the world’s fair. I have play for 4♠ opposite ♠Axxx and out, so I bid it. If I were to bid only 3♠ and watch it go pass, pass with a shrug by partner, pass, I’d be sick.”

Lee chooses 4♠. “3♠ just doesn’t seem like enough when just the ♠A makes game pretty good.”

Weinstein says he would like to use 4♣ as a splinter, “but I think it would be natural. I don’t like splinters in offsuits unless it’s 100% clear. In competitive auctions, a jump to 3♠ can be a little light, so 4♠ it is.”

Robinson, too, thinks 4♣ would be natural, “showing something like:

♠x x A K Q x x x ♣A K Q x.”

He bids 4♠. “The hand is too strong for 3♠.”

Meckstroth, also unsure of whether 4♣ is a splinter, keeps it simple with 4♠.

Lawrence is quite sure. “4♣. Splinter. Automatic. Especially since it leaves partner well placed to cuebid a diamond control.”

Abdou splinters using 4♣. “I will use Blackwood over a diamond cuebid and respect 4♠ if partner bids it.”

Meyers’s splinter bid translated: “I have a lot of trick-taking potential.”

4♣ by Sanborn, too. “Can’t think of another bid.”

Cohen wimps out with 3♠, which even he admits feels like an underbid. “But who is to say partner doesn’t have something like:

♠10 x x x x Q x x ♣K Q x x x?

Even if he does have ♠AJxx, we will likely need good major-suit splits to make game. If you switched my minor-suit shape, I’d bid more.”

Rigal also looks at his doubleton diamond and his singleton club and settles for 3♠. “With a singleton diamond and a doubleton club, I might do more, but as it is, I’ll let my partner make the final decision and explain why he did the wrong thing later.”

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