Thursday, February 9, 2012

Controls, or Shape? Why not both!

I am of the opinion that cuebidding beats pattern bidding in the long run.  But, some either disagree or simply have their own preference.  It seemed to me that a partnership could opt to use either one, perhaps situation-dependent, by employing a trigger.

Consider, for instance, a classic 2/1 GF auction:


If spades are agreed for your partnership at this point, then some will use my methods and cuebid from this point forward, whereas others will prefer to have Opener complete his pattern and then cuebid from there.  What if, instead, the first step is a trigger?

For those who lean cuebidding but might want to allow a pattern-bidding over-ride, consider this structure:

2NT = complete pattern
3C = club cue
3D = diamond cue, no club cue available

In other words, 2NT triggers pattern bidding, whereas any other call would be cuebidding immediately.  2NT could either ask (please complete your pattern, Responder) or relay (please bid 3C so that I can show my pattern), perhaps with allowance of a relay-override in the latter situation.  You might even have a 2NT asking bid with its own one-step override (after 2NT asking for pattern, Responder bids 3C to override and demand cues whereas other calls show pattern).

If the tendency is instead pro-pattern, 2NT by Opener could override and demand cuebidding (again with a possible override if you want), whereas other calls would be pattern calls.


Glen Ashton said...

You would like the hand that is not going to play it to pattern out. On the given auction, 2NT should ask to pattern out by responder, 3C+ should cuebidding. On an auction like 1C(Polish)-1S-2D(3+Ss, asks)-2S(5Ss, min), 2NT asks for cuebidding, 3C+ patterns out by opener.

Kenneth Rexford, Esq. said...

True, perhaps. A partnership might, however, determine that the partner who has better described thaeir hand should govern the decision as to approach. If, for instance, Opener wants to yield control, he might do that by completing pattern immediately, as he is much closer to that goal already. With extras, however, he might want to demand cuebids from Responder via the 2NT relay.

The point, though, is to each his or her own, but here is an option as to HOW to structure a two-way approach, with a governing switch call.