The No-trump Fixation (Part 2)

At his third turn, West was following a "herd instinct" when he bid 3NT : "bid no-trump at your earliest convenience."  There was no hurry to select a game option.
 

T852
752
T85
K62
AQ73
KJ98
KQ43
4
K64
AQT
A972
J97
J9
643
J6
AQT853

SouthWestNorthEast
---1
Pass1Pass1NT
21Pass2Pass
3NTPassPassPass

 

The No-trump Fixation (Part 1)

Holding a stopper in the opponent's bid suit, you often feel obligated to bid No-trump at your earliest convenience.  After South overcalled the marginal 1 opener, West's double showed values and at least 4 hearts.  Now East was forced to temporize with 2.  At his second turn, West could either show his spade stopper or show his diamond support.
 

4
QJ832
97
K9732
K862
AK95
532
J
J53
T74
KQ86
AQ6
AQT97
6
AJ4
T854

 
SouthWestNorthEast
---1
1XPass2
Pass3PassPass
Pass

 

THE REOPENING DOUBLE

When you add any bid to your repertoire, you give up something. When you play negative doubles, you give up the ability to double some low-level bids by opponents for penalty. 
 
Even a lot of experienced players aren’t aware of the fact that the reopening double is an integral part of the negative double system. What if you’re in third seat and the bidding goes 1 by your partner then 1 by your RHO?  It’s now your bid and you hold the following cards:

986
T54
AQT75
J8

The Diamond Option

Playing in 6, South won the opening spade lead, drew three rounds of trumps and discarded his diamond loser on the A. Unfortunately the clubs broke badly, and South had to lose two club tricks. Down one.

A4
AJ8
T752
KT73
JT832
653
Q983
9
Q9765
94
64
QJ86
K
KQT72
AKJ
A542

South misplayed the hand.  He should discard a club on the A and try the diamond finesse. Even though the diamond finesse loses, South can clear the Ace and King of diamonds and discard a second club on the ten of diamonds.. South wins 5 hearts, 2 spades, 3 diamonds and 2 clubs.

Lead-directing Doubles

When South opens 1, North can describe his hand best by a Bergen mixed raise (artificial and forcing). Now East must be able to double that artificial club bid as lead-directional if he wants to prevent North-South from recording +170 or 620+ in hearts.
 
Check board 7 of the ACBL-Wide Seniors Pairs :
 

Q962
Q873
T4
K98
JT85
4
J9865
J53
743
T5
AKQ
AQT76
AK
AKJ962
732
42

SouthWestNorthEast
1Pass31Pass
4PassPassPass

1. Mixed raise in hearts (4-card support with 8-10 playing points)
 

Risk-Aversion

On Monday, March 2nd, the North Bay Duplicate Bridge Club participated in the ACBL-Wide Seniors Pairs Game.
 
At Board 1, you have an immediate important decision to make.  Which choice would you make playing in 3NT?
 
A. Take a sure 430 or
B. Take an extra chance to make another overtrick and 460.
 

THE HALO EFFECT

Ever wonder why certain players always seem to do better than others. They win or place on a consistent basis, while you languish in the middle or bottom tier. In fact you tend to be intimidated by their stature or knowledge or ability.
 

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