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Thoughts—and a new quiz—on correct bidding
Charles Goren
April 06, 1959
Bidding is a question of deciding the price you are willing to pay—here are eight tests of your skill in appraising the risks
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April 06, 1959

Thoughts—and A New Quiz—on Correct Bidding

Bidding is a question of deciding the price you are willing to pay—here are eight tests of your skill in appraising the risks

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No doubt you have heard the report of the bridge game in which Adolf Hitler's left-hand opponent, the dealer, bid one heart. Hitler's partner passed and the next player jumped to three no trump. Adolf then bid one club which was followed by three swift passes.

I can assure you that this story is absurd. It couldn't have happened that way because any time Adolf was dealt only a measly one-club bid, the hand was declared a misdeal!

The reason for reaching into left field for this ancient wheeze is to make the point that bridge would be an easy game if the opponents never dared to bid. Easy—but dull. One of the most exciting aspects of contract bridge is the competitive auction in which each player tries to determine the price he can afford to pay for the privilege of naming the trump suit or the declaration at which his side will gain the most points or lose the fewest.

When an adversary has opened the bidding and you contemplate participating in the contest, you should first determine what type of action is best suited to your hand. Then you must decide how risky it will be for you to "come in." With an eye to strategy you should interview yourself, asking: "How big a loss am I risking and, on the other hand, how much have I to gain by bidding?" In this connection, it is a good idea for the player to bear in mind that his initial move may be only a link in a chain—so he must not "get partner excited" without good reason.

Generally speaking, a defender should avoid any action which will subject him to a loss of 500 or more points. When you compete against an opening bid you must consider the likelihood that you will be doubled.

Here then are a few examples of competitive auctions. Test your skill in appraising the value of your hand in each of the following situations:

1 Your right-hand opponent opens with one spade. What action do you take?

[Ace of Spades]
[Queen of Spades]
[King of Hearts]
[4 of Hearts]
[9 of Diamonds]
[4 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]
[2 of Diamonds]
[Ace of Clubs]
[King of Clubs]
[Jack of Clubs]
[9 of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]

2 Your right-hand opponent opens with one diamond. What action do you take?

[Ace of Spades]
[Jack of Spades]
[9 of Spades]
[4 of Spades]
[Ace of Hearts]
[King of Hearts]
[Queen of Hearts]
[8 of Hearts]
[2 of Hearts]
[6 of Diamonds]
[3 of Diamonds]
[10 of Clubs]
[5 of Clubs]

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