Polling You # 79, Strong Jump Shifts, Suit Quality, Losing Trick Count, Cover Cards

Strong Jump Shifts: Suit Quality, Self-Sustaining Suits, Losing Trick Count

 

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Greetings Bridge Friends,

Special Note: BridgeHands is committed to keep up with the latest internet industry practices, including the ability to view our videos on mobile and portable devices.  Accordingly, for videos going forward we will be supporting the new “HTML 5″ format.  This means for Polling You episodes #79 and beyond, you can watch our videos on your iPhone, iPad, Android or similar devices supporting the latest video standards.

Marching forward with our lessons on Losing Trick Count/Cover Cards and Self-Sustaining Suits/Suit Quality, it’s time to delve into bidding where we have strong hands with unbalanced shape.  Sure, we all love picking up a hand with nearly half the points in the deck, yet it can be a bidding challenge when holding a shapely hand with most of the points in two suits.  So what’s a player to do?  Let’s consider how the strong jump shift can help the opener eloquently describe their hand and drive towards a game contract.  But first, we have a bit of sad news. While our recent three lessons Losing Trick Count and Cover Cards has served us well, we cannot always use LTC/CC hand evaluation criteria to immediately count our winners and losers.  Of course as we’ve previously seen, when you do hold a semi self-sustaining suit then by all means go right ahead and begin using LTC (but use caution when both are minor suits).

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Let’s take a moment for a brief review:

Highlights – Losing Trick Count and Cover Cards

-         Prerequisite: 8+ card trump fit or self-sustaining suit
-         Ace-King-Queen are not losers in 3+ card suits (except Q x x in a side suit)
-         Generally, fourth card and beyond are not losers
-         LTC – CC equals losers, as 6 LTC – 3 CC = 3 losers (major suit game)
-         Extras: 5+4 trump, working Queens and Jacks, shortness

Trump Fit or Self-Sustaining Suit

  1. LTC is normally a 5-3 or longer major suit fit
  2. Occasionally one player has a long, strong suit
  3. We need an independent method to determine the suit quality and LTC when one player has a long, strong suit
  4. When evaluating Suit Quality, we generally assume partner may hold a singleton to ascertain the losers (LTC) in a long suit
  5. Adjust the above when partner bids Notrump, indicating 2+ card support

Self-Sustaining Suit and Suit Quality

  1. Limited to 1 loser when partner holds a singleton
  2. Reserved for situations when a player holds a long, strong suit
  3. Suit Quality equals the number of useful honors plus the suit length
  4. Self-Sustaining Suit usually equals a Suit Quality of 10 or more, lose 0-1 tricks
  5. Semi Self-Sustaining Suit equals a Suit Quality of 9, lose 1-2 tricks

Self-Sustaining Suits – Examples where SQ = 10

A K Q x x x x  = 3+ honors + 7 length = 10+
A Q x x x x x x = 2 honors = 8 length = 10
A K Q J x = 4+ honors + 5 length = 9+
K Q J 10 x x = 4 honors (without Ace) + 6 length = 10
Q J 10 9 x x x = 3 honors + 7 length = 10ish (discount 1 missing Ace and King)
J 10 9 8 x x x x = No! Inadequate with primary honors and Queen

Semi Self-Sustaining Suits – Examples where SQ = 9

A Q x x x x x = 2 honors + 7 length = 9
K Q J x x x = 3 honors + 6 length = 9
Q J 10 9 x x = 3 honors + 6 length = 9ish (body card 9 is helpful)
A K Q x x x = 3+ honors + 6 length = 9+ (count extra for top 3 honors in long suit)

Please refer to our Lessons 76 – 78 for more on LTC and Cover Card hand evaluation.

Since Strong Jump Shifts by opener are easier to grasp than the somewhat mysterious Reverse bid, let’s start here to begin our journey and consider Reverses in our next lesson.   Here are the criteria for opener’s Strong Jump Shift:

- 19-21 points – count distributional points with semi self-sustaining suit
- Responder conjures up a suit or Notrump bid showing 6+ points without showing a fit
- Imbalanced opener hand – Likely a two suited hand or perhaps all honors in two suits
- Thus, rebidding 3 Notrump is not appropriate – at least not from opener’s perspective
- Opener shows a 4-5 Losing Trick Count hand, making a game forcing bid
- Opener’s 3 level jump is in a lower ranking suit than opener’s first suit*
* Exception – As we will see later, a 2 level “reverse jump” also is a Strong Jump Shift

 

Since opener is showing 19 – 21 points and responder has 6+ points, the principle question is, “Play game (or higher) in Notrump or a major suit?”  In rare circumstances the partnership may play in a minor suit game or slam, such as when the pair has a 9+ card minor suit without a stopper in either major suit.  Okay, let’s take a look some hands and bidding.

A K J x x            x x
A Q 10 x           K x x x
K Q x                A x x
x                       x x x x

1S – 1N;
3H – 4H;        Opener’s Strong Jump Shift rebid at the 3 level is game forcing

Q x x                 A x x x
A K Q x x          x x
x                      Q J 10 x
A K Q x            x x x

1H – 1S;
3C – 3N;         After opener’s Strong Jump Shift, responder bids 3 Notrump
with stoppers in the remaining suits

A Q x x           K 10 9
K Q x              x x x
x x                  K x x x
A K Q x           x x x

2N – 3N;       With a balanced 3 suiter, opener should start bidding in Notrump

x x                  1. K Q x x x         2. x x
Q x                     K x x                   A K x x
A K Q x x           x x                       x x x x
A K Q x              x x x                     x x x

Lopsided honors in the minor suits makes for awkward bidding by the opener.  With almost all of the points in the minors, careful bidding is a must.  On the first hand a 3 Notrump contract should easily roll home.  Not so on the second hand should the opponents lead the Spade suit.    Bottom line, with almost all of the points in the minor suits and no effective stoppers in either major suit, opener should not open 2 Notrump.

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Thank you for attending our online Bridge virtual training class.  We appreciate your support and look forward to supporting your Bridge instructional needs.

Happy Bridge Trails,

Michael
BridgeHands

 

 

 

 

Comments

  1. rm123 says:

    I do not find any link to the video for Polling You #79. The text indicates a link should be visible but neither of my browsers displays it.

    Incidentally, it is nice to see Bridgehands back. Michael, I missed your coaching.

    RM

    • BridgeHands says:
      Hello RM,
      .
      Sorry to hear you are unable to view our links for Polling You #79. Even non-members should be able to view the video link here:
      .
      Click here to view Teaser for Non-Members in standard resolution (800×450)
      http://bridgehands-videos.s3.amazonaws.com/Polling_You_79_Part_5_Teaser_Non-Members_800x450/Teaser_Non-Members_800x450.html
      .
      Upon logging in, after clicking on the episode TITLE NAME, the BridgeHands member should be able to view additional links. Free members will see 1 link to the second video Teaser. Premium Members will see an 8 links to the remaining video segments.
      .
      The following links are accessible by those subscribing to BridgeHands Premium Membership:
      Click here to view Part 1 of the video commentary in standard resolution (800×450)
      Click here to view Part 1b of the video commentary in standard resolution (800×450)
      Click here to view Part 2 of the video commentary in standard resolution (800×450)
      Click here to view Part 2b of the video commentary in standard resolution (800×450)
      Click here to view Part 2c of the video commentary in standard resolution (800×450)
      Click here to view Part 3 of the video commentary in standard resolution (800×450)
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      .
      For those with ULTRA Membership plans will see an additional 7 links:
      .
      The following links are accessible by those subscribing to BridgeHands ULTRA Membership:
      Click here to view Part 1 of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      Click here to view Part 1b of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      Click here to view Part 2 of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      Click here to view Part 2b of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      Click here to view Part 2c of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      Click here to view Part 3 of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      Click here to view Part 3b of the video commentary in standard resolution (1280×720)
      .
      I apologize for the extra month to complete the Polling You episode #79 on Strong Jump Shifts. Yet like the prior Part 77-78 combo issue on Preempts, these videos are running over 3 hours in length with over a dozen illustrative hands in addition to the lesson on bidding theory.
      .
      Warm Regards,
      .
      Michael
      BridgeHands

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