Retro Edition

What’s your call?

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

August Boehm, Larry Cohen, Mel Colchamiro, The Coopers, Allan Falk, The Gordons, Geoff Hampson, The Joyces, Betty Ann Kennedy, Mike Lawrence, Jeff Meckstroth, Jill Meyers, Barry Rigal, Steve Robinson, Kerri Sanborn, Don Stack, The Sutherlins, Karen Walker, Steve Weinstein, Bridge Baron

Hope for the best
How surprising that the enemy’s opening salvo is 4♠ rather than a club preempt! With this decent (though not spectacular) two-suiter, all vulnerable, what do you want to do?

“4NT, showing any two suits,” says Colchamiro. “Passing could be right, but there’s more ways to win by bidding. Double and correct 5♣ to 5 is sort of the same thing, but 4NT tells partner the two-suited nature of my hand right away.”

Rigal bids 4NT. “Yes, this could be catastrophic, but facing a minimum,

♠x  Q x x x  A x x x  ♣x x x x,

we are almost cold for 5 and they rate to make 4♠.”

Weinstein bids 4NT. “Having more than half my high-card points in spades makes pass tempting. But we could be making a slam or they could be making 4♠ — or even both. As usual, in close decisions, I take the high road and hope for the best.”

4NT from the Joyces: “If we have a fit, and we hope that we do, this hand has too much offense to pass.”

“4NT, any two-suiter,” suggests Cohen. “Experience says to bid with these hands (two suits and a void).”

“Ugh. I hate to bid and I hate to pass,” declares Falk. “I decided to bid 4NT because as little as K and four cards in either red suit gives us play for 5 or 5.”

Stack, too, bids 4NT, showing two places to play. “Scary, but I can’t see taking the low road with this hand by passing.”

Hampson, Lawrence, Meyers, Robinson, Sanborn and Walker walk the low road.

“Pass,” bids Walker. “I predict a unanimous panel.” (Don’t you love it when panelists call their shot?)

Hampson lets it go. “I am very defensive and need partner to have a reasonable hand with spade shortage to belong any higher than 4♠, so I will pass and hope he has enough to reopen.”

Meyers says, “I have a reasonable chance to beat 4♠ and no reason to think we can make something at the five level.”

Robinson shrugs and passes. “If I bid 4NT, I’ll probably go minus. I play double is takeout here. If partner is short in spades, maybe he’ll bid. Sometimes the preempts get you.”

Sanborn takes the justification for passing a step further. “If we can make five, we will likely wind up in six.”

Meckstroth doubles: “Too much to pass, too much in spades to bid 4NT.”

The Coopers take “hoping for the best” to a new level. “Double. If partner is broke, he’ll pass and we may be able to scramble four tricks. Or we’ll win IMPs because minus 790 or even minus 990 is less than we’d go for in five of a red suit.”

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