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Session Notes
Club Manager and Director Materials

Articles

All articles are PDFs. Levels are Intermediate (I) and Advancing/Advanced (A). Articles with Bold Titles are of ongoing importance.

Be sure to see Printing Media J Documents before printing one.

Date Media Title (Level), Summary & Notes
May 2020 J Intervene over an Opening Bid with a Strong Hand (A)
In order to establish a framework for discussion, this article starts with the essence of the standard takeout double, one- and two-suited overcalls. Modern expert methods to sort out hands where doubler has 3-card support for partner's suit bids are then introduced. These methods start with and extend those of Mike Lawrence in Chapter 12 of The Complete Book of Takeout Doubles, 2nd Edition.
May 2020 J Leaping and Non-Leaping Michaels (A)
Leaping Michaels and its extension to Non-Leaping Michaels allow you to bid strong two suiters after the opponents preempt the bidding. These tools are part of a system to cope with such preempts, including the jump to four of a major based on distributional values. [Updated from 2015 version.]
Mar 2020 J Fragment Spiral (A)
A spiral inquiry is often used when opener may have raised responder's major suit holding only three card support. This article describes a better system than basic "3-3-4-4" spiral raises. Charts compare these with other methods. A major rewrite for clarity, with few changes in methods from the Jul 2019 version. This conventional inquiry has been renamed from semi-natural spiral.
Deals for practice bidding (cut in half vertically).    Corresponding Hand Records.
Feb 2020 J Practice Deals & Opening Leads (A)
This article describes using free and low-cost software to: (1) create deals to practice bidding for a specific situation or convention, and (2) perform simulations to determine what the best opening lead is, with a specific hand and auction.
Supporting files.
Dec 2019 J The Imprecision Bridge Bidding System (A)
Imprecision is a variant of Standard Modern Precision with the one diamomnd system replaced, multi-range 1NT openings, and a version of Bart to find a safe partscore (or game) after this auction: 1C [strong, artificial, forcing] — 1D [0-7 HCP]; 1M [4+ cards, forcing] — 1S or 1NT.
Jul 2019 J Inverted Minor Raises (A)
Expert standard bidding uses inverted minor raises. This article describes the entire system, including two competing styles for continuations after the single raise: (A) forcing to 2NT or three of the minor, which the author plays; or (B) forcing to three of the minor, a newer, more complicated method.
Apr 2019 J An Overview of the Use of Transfers in and out of Competition, by Marc Smith (A)
This series of 13 articles describes methods to extend the use of transfers far beyond the usual direct responses to a notrump opening bid. The series is part of a trove of 54 articles at https://sites.google.com/site/bridgequarter/home, edited and stashed there by Steve Turner in 2007. No contact information was provided. Pete has formatted and edited the series for clarity, with little impact on the content itself. It should now be far easier to comprehend or print, while working well on a tablet or smartphone. Pete gave part (6), the most important, extra attention.
Feb 2019 P Major Suit Game Tries and Raises at Bridge (I/A)
The author leads with his tried-and-true principles of game tries over standard raises and responding to them, but shows their shortcomings. He then proceeds to modern methods, which aim to avoid game tries when possible, and to conceal potentially damaging information from the opponents. Losing Trick Count is discussed and sure cover cards, aka winners, are introduced. The slow-down raise, mini-splinters by responder, and jump mixed raises are recommended. Reverse two-way reverse Drury is introduced, with full game tries available to both partners. The limit raise is merged with the forcing raise both to gain space and for competitive advantage. Important ideas by Marty Bergen, Ken Eichenbaum, Andrew Gumperz, Lew Gamerman and many others are considered in the Appendix, plus tests of specific game try methods. Three pages of annotated references are included. There are lots of ideas and arrangements of ideas here.
Dec 2018 J Improving 2/1 Game Force, Part 1, by Fred Gitelman (A)
This article was originally published in Canadian Master Point, November 1993; repaired by Pete Matthews Jr from available sources and posted with permission of the author.
Topics: PROBLEM 1: The lack of definition of the 2/1. PROBLEM 2: The (misguided) principle of fast arrival, Serious 3NT, Picture Bids. Likely the earliest published, useful description of Serious 3NT methods.
Dec 2018 J Improving 2/1 Game Force, Part 2, by Fred Gitelman (A)
This article was originally published in Canadian Master Point, January 1994; repaired by Pete Matthews Jr from available sources and posted with permission of the author.
Topics: Likely the earliest published, useful descriptions of Last Train to Clarksville (LTTC) and Lackwood.
Dec 2018 J Improving 2/1 Game Force, Part 3, by Fred Gitelman (A)
This article was originally published in Canadian Master Point, June 1994; repaired by Pete Matthews Jr from available sources and posted with permission of the author.
Topics: Responses to cheapest jump shift, used as replacement for Jacoby 2NT. Improving Forcing 1NT Auctions.
Oct 2018 J Disrupting Precision Minor Suit Openings (I/A)
In the Precision bidding system, the one club opening is used for most strong hands. When this comes up, it offers an opportunity to get in the way.
The most common Precision opening is one diamond. The opponents may try to use it to eat your lunch. Be prepared, or go hungry!
Jul 2017 P Roman Keycard Blackwood, Delayed Kickback and Crosswood (A)
Asking for aces or keycards is a major tool in bidding sound slams at bridge. Roman Keycard Blackwood (RKB) is the prominent such tool. This article introduces Crosswood, where the other minor is used to ask for keycards, when a minor suit is trump, and Delayed Kickback, which usually lets you ask with 4 spades, when hearts are trump. Exclusion Keycard Blackwood (Voidwood), void-showing responses, Gerber & Super-Gerber, the Queen Ask, responding to 4NT quantitative, Reverse Baze, and more are here. The 6trump response to the Queen Ask, to show a source of tricks, is introduced. This is a full, playable keycard system in twelve pages, including several options. Slip out pages 9 and 10 for a portable reference. 2016 version
May 2013 P Bridge Playing & Simulation Software Review (A)
This article surveys the top five bridge playing programs for Windows computers: Jack, Wbridge5 (free!), Shark, GiB and Bridge Baron. Two more programs are considered for their capability to let you design your own bidding conventions: Bridge Buff and Blue Chip Bridge. Finally, tools for for performing bridge simulations are evaluated, including a simulation to evaluate three dealing tools: Bridge Buff, Dealmaster Pro, and Deal (free & best!)
Mar 2013 P Anatomy of a Bridge Deal (A)
This article presents a deal with a somewhat unusual bidding decision. More than just providing the correct answer, it show methods to determine that answer.
PDF  Deals analyzed: GiB plays 3 diamonds doubled, by East. PBN 
PDF  Deals analyzed: GiB plays 3 notrump, by North. PBN 
PDF  Deals analyzed: double dummy, North may hold 5 clubs. PBN 
PDF  Deals analyzed: double dummy, North plays 3NT without competition. PBN 
PDF  Spreadsheet of results. XLSX 
Oct 2012 P Opener Rebids 2NT (A)
Years in the making, the author presents his survey of available methods and those he recommends — slip out page 4.
Mar 2012 P After One Diamond - Two Clubs (A)
The author describes his system of playing a two club response to a one diamond opening as forcing to game, if either partner raises or bids notrump. (The system also works with two clubs always forcing to game, but that is a slightly inferior method.) The crux of the system is a key bidding trick.
Jan 2012 P The Raptor and Roadrunner 1NT Overcalls (A)
The Raptor 1NT overcall and its Roadrunner derivative promise a major suit and a longer minor, typically 4-5 or 4-6. High card strength is usually that of a normal opening bid. Evaluation of the systems through 40 deals is followed by a one-page description of each convention. Defenses are provided. The main advantage of these conventions is that they are fun to play, as they appear to be results-neutral, or slightly better - with the loss of the natural 1NT overcall. The author has only played Raptor, and only at Matchpoints, where a single board won't swing an entire session. Supporting materials for this article include:
PDF  Detailed analysis of 40 deals, 34 for Raptor, and 6 "Flannery" deals where East opens in front. PBN 
Nov 2011 P Flannery and Major Nightmare Solutions at Bridge (A)
This is the definitive article on the web about bidding systems for deals where the opening bidder has five or more hearts and three or four spades. The Tucker 1NT rebid is introduced and recommended over approaches based on standard methods, the Flannery Two Diamond opening, the Kaplan Interchange, Opener's Transfer Rebids, Opener's Gazzilli Two Club rebid, and Kaplan-Sheinwold Updated (KSU). This sixth version of the article adds evaluation of Transfer, Gazzilli, KSU, and Extended Flannery methods, more Tucker context deals, and Extended Flannery context deals. Want to start playing Tucker? Just pull out page 2. Also see A Major Nightmare below. Supporting materials for this article include:
PDF  Detailed analysis of 36 "Non_Tucker context" deals, plus 22 deals where responder has a game-forcing hand with spades but not hearts, two per page. PBN 
PDF  Detailed analysis of 53 "Tucker context" deals, two per page. PBN 
PDF  Detailed analysis of 51 "Flannery context" deals, two per page. PBN
PDF  Detailed analysis of 18 "Extended Flannery context" deals, plus 24 more, four per page. PBN
PDF  Spreadsheet summarizing bidding evaluation results. XLS 
Oct 2011 P Explorations of Roman 3-Suited Openings at Bridge (A)
This is the definitive article on the web about specialized openings for hands with 4-4-4-1 distribution. Conventions analyzed that are already in use include: Blue Team Two Diamonds, Mini-Roman Two Diamonds, and Split Roman Two Diamonds. The author also describes and analyzes new conventions: Triple Roman Two Diamonds (in two point ranges), and Quad Roman Two Clubs. These conventions are considered in the context of Eastern Scientific (similar to 2/1 Game Force) and Unbalanced Diamond (a system with artificial openings). This second version of the article adds the Miles Roman Two Diamonds and supersedes the Quad Roman Two Clubs with Triple Roman Two Clubs. The first set of extra deals is evaluated with the main contenders. Supporting materials for this article include:
PDF  Detailed analysis of the original 49 deals, one per page. PBN 
PDF  Double spreadsheet summarizing bidding evaluation results. XLSX 
PDF  North-South hands from the bidding evaluation, for practice bidding.
PDF  Notes on interference by opponents, for practice bidding. DOC 
PDF  Extra deals, set 1, from the bidding evaluation. PBN 
PDF  Extra deals, set 2, for practice bidding and possible analysis. PBN 
Mar 2011 P Legal and Illegal Switches (A)
Switches in meanings of bids can improve normal usage and conventions. Unfortunately, the ACBL General Convention Chart interferes with some, such as three of the five switches described here: Brozel (Pete-zel is OK), Cappelletti (Hamilton, Pottage), NAMYATS, the Kaplan Interchange (a Flannery alternative), and the Tucker 1NT rebid (OK, and better than the Kaplan Interchange).
Dec 2010 P Leong Transfers after Opener Rebids 1NT (A) ... by Eric Leong (assembled by Pete Matthews Jr).
Dec 2010 P Bridge Bidding Systems for Finding Major Suit Fits (A)
Montreal Relay, Transfer Walsh, Crowhurst, New Minor Forcing, Checkback Stayman, Two-Way NMF, Leong Transfers [rev. Dec 2010], Morgan Transfers, Fourth Bid Transfers, Fourth Suit Forcing, X-Y-Z.
Dec 2010 P The Unbalanced Diamond System by Marshall Miles (A)
This article provides a detailed summary of the bidding system, as described in Miles' book. It fills in some gaps, and discusses potential improvements.
Nov 2009 P Bridge Scoring, Strategy, and Tactics (I)
This article describes bridge scoring and its impact upon play, essential information for intermediate and novice players.
Jul 2009 P Miles Responses to a Strong Two Club Opening (A)
Provides an overview of popular methods of responding to a strong two club opening, and a breakthrough by Marshall Miles: artificial two heart bids by both responder and opener.
Jul 2009 P Morgan Transfers after Opener Rebids 1NT (A)


Session Notes

Levels are Intermediate (I) and Advancing/Advanced (A).

Date Location Media Title (Level)
2020-03 Birmingham Regl P Trump lead; Double & Bid; Responsive Double; 2 NT Rebid; Slamming! (I/A)
2020-02-29 Calendar P It's Your Lead! (I/A)
2020-01-15 Westwood P What Finesse?; Heavy Traffic (A)
2019-12-20 Westwood P Bumble Stop (I)
2019-12-18 Westwood P Autofix (I/A)
2019-12-14 Watertown P Responder Transfers, Jumps to 5NT; The Pip II (A)
2019-12-10 MIT P Preempt at MIT Indy (A)
2019-12-06 Westwood P 39 Results (I/A)
2019-11-25 Westwood P Nebulous Double; Five Hearts; Diamonds on Dummy (I/A)
2019-11-13 Westwood P Heart Suit (I/A)
2019-11-06 Mansfield Regl P After Jacoby 2NT and Opener's Jump Rebid (I/A)
2019-10-23 Westwood P Invitational with Minors; One and a Half Suiter; Three Suiter (I/A)
2019-10-16 Westwood P Spades! (I/A)   [updated 2019-12-15]
2019-09-13 Westwood P DSI Double Trouble (A)
2019-08-30 Warwick Regl P Eight Ever, Nine Never (A)
2019-08-29 Warwick Regl P RI Squeezer (A)
2019-07 Nashville Regl P Substitute; Which Diamond? (opening lead problem and simulation); Snapdragon Double (A)
2019-06 Nashua Regl P Serious 3NT; Short-Suit Game Try (A)
2019-06-22 Nashua Regl P A Minor Advance (A)
2019-06-12 Westwood P Hearts with Spades (A)
2019-05-17 Westwood P Trouble (A)
2019-05-10 Tampa Regl P Penalty Pass (A)
2019-05-04 Auburn Secl P Wild Weak Twos (A)
2019-05-04 Auburn Secl P Cue Bid Agreements; Irrational Exuberance (A)
2019-05-02 Westwood P Silly Squeeze (A)
2019-04-09 Westwood P Ignorance (I)
2019-02-00 ACBL Bulletin P Bidding Box: Standard Modern Precision Auction (A)
2019-03-00 Westwood P Conflagration (A)
2019-02-04 Westwood P Careful Play; Penalty Card (A)
2019-02-01 Westwood P Free Bid in Westwood (A)
2018-11-21 Westwood P Threading a Major Nightmare (A)
2018-09-17 Provincetown P Unusual Double (I)
2018-08-28 Warwick Regl P Four Deals from Warwick (I/A)
2018-08-21 Westwood P Double and Cue Bid (I/A)
2018-08-09 Westwood P Opening Lead against 3NT (A)
2018-06-19 Nashua Regl P Nashua Deals (I/A)
2018-01-26 Westwood P Defensive Problem (I/A)
2017-10-23 Charlotte Regl P Charlotte Precision Problem (I/A)
2017-10-18 Westwood P Which Major (I/A)
2017-06-06 MIT P Dubious Grand Slam (I/A)
2017-05-02 Westwood P Precision Slam (A)
2017-03-15 Westwood P Two Westwood Deals (I/A)
2016-05-03 MIT P When You're Hot (I/A)
2016-03-26 Westwood P Trumped in Westwood (I/A)
2016-03-15 MIT P Three Slams (I/A)
2015-09-24 Westwood P Low from a Doubleton Honor (A)
2013-11-05 MIT P Redouble Trouble (I)
2013-08-16 Watertown Secl P They Play Flannery (I/A)
2013-04-23 MIT P What do you call an eight card suit? (I/A)
2013-01-29 MIT P Two Deals (I/A)
2013-01-06 Newton Regl P At the Individuals (I/A)
2013-01-05 Newton Regl P Opener Rebids His Minor (I)
2012-11-09 Mansfield Regl P Two Leads from Mansfield (I/A)
2012-08-30 Warwick Regl P Unauthorized Information (I)
2012-07-06 Bethesda Regl P The Tale of the Four of Hearts (I)
2012-06-26 MIT P Preemptive Bidding and Signalling (I)
2012-05-29 MIT P Two in the Glue (I/A)
2012-05-22 MIT P Defending with a Strong Suit (I)
2012-05-08 MIT P Make This Slam (A)
2012-03-20 MIT P Singleton Ace (I)
2012-03-13 MIT P Trump Coup (A)
2012-02-25 Watertown Secl P No Misguess (A)
2012-01-17 MIT P The Rueful Rabbit at MIT (I)
2012-01-17 MIT P Bid Their Suits! (A)
2011-11-22 MIT P It's a Bitch (A)
2011-10-25 MIT P Count! (I)
2011-09-02 Warwick Regl P A Major Nightmare (A)
2011-08-11 Parsippany Regl P Over a Third Seat Weak Two Spades (A)
2011-07-19 MIT HTML Drury and Jump Shifts (I)
2011-07-12 MIT P Opener's Second Suit (I)
2011-04-09 Watertown Secl P Diabolical Lead (A)
2011-04-08 Watertown Secl P Double Restricted Choice (A)
2011-03-29 MIT P Weak 6-4 Majors (I)
2011-03-22 MIT P An Easy Grand (A)
2011-03-01 MIT P Misplay This Hand (A)
2011-02-15 MIT P Almost a Small Nightmare (A)
2011-02-15 MIT P The Five Level Belongs to the Opponents (I)
2011-02-08 MIT HTML J75432-K10-AKQ-J9 after 1NT Forcing (A)
2011-01-25 MIT P 7-5 Misfit (1D - 2C) (A)
2011-01-18 MIT P Easy in Spades, Tricky in NT (A)
2011-01-11 MIT P Suit Combination: A109xx - Qxxx (A)
2011-01-04 MIT P Balancing Preempt (A)
2010-12-28 MIT P Strong Jump Shift (I)
2009-06-02 MIT P Relay Precision Slam (I/A) [posted 2018-02-27]


Club Manager and Director Materials

For the calendar years 2006 through 2016, I was the manager of the MIT/DL Bridge Club. Since I'm much better when I'm prepared in advance, compared to coping with directing issues on the fly, I developed tools that helped to run the game more smoothly. Those tools are still available on the club's site, http://web.mit.edu/mitdlbc/www/contrib.html#Manager:

Since I seldom direct bridge games any more, I am not presenting the materials here, at this time.


Publication Notes

The Publication Notes have been moved to http://3nt.xyz/about.htm#PubNotes.

Most photos © Karen C. Matthews. Unless specifically attributed otherwise, all other content © Pete Matthews Jr.