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Bridge 4/18

The myths continue to explode

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Posted: April 17, 2007 5:04 p.m.
Updated: May 2, 2007 5:00 a.m.
We are looking at the myths that surround a one-club opening. Here is another sentence I have heard numerous times: "I had to rebid my five-card minor to tell partner it wasn't a short minor."
    Wrong! Always try to have at least six before immediately repeating a suit — unless you have nothing else even faintly sensible to do. (There are very few exceptions to this.)
    Here North, after one club — one spade, has three flawed rebid options. He could bid one no-trump with two low hearts, or he could bid two clubs with only a five-card suit, or he could raise to two spades with only three-card support. The last of these is by far the best — least bad. Then South uses Blackwood, keeping his heart suit secret from the opponents.
    Against six spades, West leads the heart two. Declarer wins in his hand, draws trumps, and runs the hearts, discarding clubs from the board. Then he leads a club toward dummy's king-jack. After West plays low, should South call for the jack or the king? Or is it a blind guess?
    Declarer put up dummy's king, losing to East's ace and going down one when West had to score the club queen.
    "It was a guess," commented South. "West was bound to play low even if he had the ace."
    North was unimpressed. "After your use of Blackwood, if West had the club ace, would he have led a singleton heart? Obviously he was hoping to find his partner with either the heart ace or the spade ace. He would hardly have entertained such hopes when holding the club ace."
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