What’s your call?
For yesterday’s It’s Your Call deal (from March 2009’s Bridge Bulletin), 5♦ was named top bid.
It’s not a question of whether to bid again, but what to bid. All seventeen experts bid again. What did the 5♦ bidders say?
“I want to ensure I get a diamond lead,” said Mike Lawrence.
“We may have to decide what to bid over 5♠,” said Kerri Sanborn, “so I want partner to be in on the decision. It could be their deal and we are saving.”
“Besides telling partner what to lead, let’s invite partner back into the decision-making process,” agreed Kitty and Steve Cooper.
Slam could still be in the picture,” said Peggy and John Sutherlin. “5*D* lets partner know this and that we lack a club control.”
August Boehm also bid 5♦, but disagreed with the Sutherlins. “Partner didn’t cuebid 2♠,” he said, “so I’m more concerned with getting the lead than bidding a slam.”
“Although it seems pointless to try for slam because of partner’s failure to bid 2♠, 5♦ is a free suggestion that could hit partner with the perfect hand,” pointed out Karen Walker.
“I may have four tricks on defense or two,” said Allan Falk, “depending on partner’s diamond length, so whatever I do is a guess.”
Others bid a direct 5♥.
“Because we are not going to 6♥,” said Betty Ann Kennedy, “I see no reason to give the opponents extra information.”
Richard Freeman agreed. “I don’t expect the opponents to bid 5♠, so I think it is more important to conceal my diamonds than to bid them for a lead,” he said.
Two experts doubled.
“It does not feel right to bid at the five level with only five trumps,” said Barry Rigal. “If partner has a freak, he can remove the double.”
“Double shows a good hand,” said Larry Cohen. “I’m not unilaterally going to the five level. Partner will not play me for a spade stack and can pull with an appropriate hand.”
Jeff Meckstroth was the lone 4NT bidder. “I will take a chance on slam if partner has one keycard,” he said.
The majority bid 5♦ because they are continuing to 5♥ anyway. It’s a chance to give partner some information, just in case the opponents compete to 5♠.