Thursday, September 17, 2009

Defending preempts, part II

In a recent MSC (July 2009 Problem G) the panel had to interpret (2)-X-(4)-P-4♠ by partner. I think the consensus is that it cannot be a solid one-suiter. Rodwell's summary of the possible hands for that auction seems the most accurate -- it is either a 3-suiter, or maybe a 6-card suit where the hand is too good for 3♠ but the suit is not good enough for 4♠.

So, this hand (posted Monday) facing a 2 preempt:

A K Q J 8 3 2
K 9 6 4

...must, I believe, choose between 4♠ and 3. Between those, I have no idea what's right but would probably choose the former. One commenter suggested using 4 to show this hand type, seems like a plausible idea to me.

At the table I doubled and bid 4♠ over more hearts and partner came close to pulling to 5, which would not have been good. One of my first posts shows I've been getting these auctions wrong for a while (I bid 3over 2 with something like Ax/AQT9xxx/Kxx/A, which seems like a clear underbid).

Over a 2 preempt, you might be able to get away with doubling and bidding spades over their diamond preempt or partner's heart bid. This might sound more like 6 moderate spades and 4 clubs, but if partner does pull to clubs you're probably fine. And you might have a fighting chance of reaching a difficult slam.

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