Only summaries are included below -
see book for details
Sock It To 'Em
With an Opening
Preempts is a
Weak Two-Bid Ever
Why Not Have a
Sock It To 'Em With an Opening Three-Bid
do you need for a three-level preempt?
You should have less than an opening bid, including
distribution. The following hand is too strong. Open 1,
based on the Rule of 20.
An opening three-bid should contain fewer than 10 HCP. The
exact number is not important.
Suit quality is crucial. The difference between preempting
with QJ76432 (versus QJ109853) can be one or two tricks. A
suit with good texture is a big plus.
However, do not open at the three level with a suit headed by
the AKQ. A
solid seven-card suit is too good. Open 1
Vulnerability is definitely relevant, as it is with all
preempts and overcalls. Avoid making a vulnerable preempt with
a weak suit like K976432. However, do not worry when your suit
is good. Too many otherwise sensible players forget to make
the indicated bid because they were vulnerable!
If you fail to open 3
with the following hand, I would rather be your opponent than
Distribution is also important. 7330
is better than 7321,
which is better than 7222.
Avoid preempting with too many outside honors. Even though I
love to preempt, I would not open 3
with this mess:
© Marty Bergen
openings ususally promise a seven-card suit. The only
exception would be 3,
where you may have only six clubs because 2
is not available as a preempt. Be happy to open 3
The above applies when preempting in first or second seat.
In third seat, you should try harder to preempt. Your LHO
must have a good hand. Make him sweat. Open 3
In fourth seat, there is no reason to preempt with a
weak hand. Pass and take your chances on the next deal if you
fourth seat, only open three with a promising hand. After
three passes, open 3
philosophy of third- and fourth-seat preempts also applies to
weak two-bids: Fourth-seat bids are never weak, while
anything goes in third seat.
Last, but certainly not least, be attuned to partner's style.
Knowing whether partner is aggressive, conservative, or
middle-of-the-road is critical. I believe that knowing
partner's tendencies is as essential as remembering the
conventions you have agreed to play.
© Marty Bergen
Responding to Preempts is a Cinch
should you do after partner opens three of a major? This
question is a lot easier to answer than most players realize,
You know a great deal about what partner has a weak hand
with a good seven-card suit. He is interested in playing only
in his major. You can almost see his hand before you
see his hand.
Unless you have a fantastically strong hand or an unbelievable
suit of your own, there are only two realistic options. Most
of the time you pass; sometimes you raise partner's major to
The Weakest Weak Two-Bid Ever Made
Desperate situations often warrant desperate measures.
I agree! Such was my analysis late in the finals of the 1983
Spingold Teams, a major event that can lead to the world
championships. Time was running out. Our team was trailing by
a significant margin.
Why Not Have a Grand Old Time
are pleased to be dealt a terrific hand:
CHAPTER 11 -
THE RULE OF 11:
CAN YOU SUBTRACT?