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Slam Bidding By Charles Goren

The Victoria Advocate – 10 Abr 1964

Both vulnerable. South deals.

Contrary to a widely held impression, there is really nothing very mysterious about bidding a slam. The methods employed are similar to those used for getting to game, hower, in the case of a slam—the partnership must not only determine its ability to win 12 or 13 tricks. but also to assure it-self that the opposition is not in position to sink the contract, at the opening gun.

While the Blackwood convention may be useful in ascertaining the number of controls held, many slams depend on the possession of specific controls. Even all the aces and kings will not spell a slam without a long suit or some distributional values. A thorough exchange of information may be required, as in the case of today’s hand, where North and South were able to go all the way once they had become aware of every feature held by the partnership South opened the bidding with one heart and West overcalled with one spade

The North hand was worth 13 points in support of hearts, and he decided in favor of an immediate jump raise in hearts in preference to making a temporizing response of two diamonds. South’s hand had an original valuation of about 22 points and, with all four aces, he knew that the partnership had enough for a small slam when North was able to jump in hearts. However, if the latter had sufficient trick taking power on the side, a grand slam might well he in the offing, and South resolved to embark on an extensive bidding campaign in order to determine the full potential.

Over three hearts, South made a cue bid in spades—the opponent’s suit — North was obliged to sign off at four hearts since he had nothing additional to show at this stage. When South persisted with a further slam try by cue bidding the ace of clubs, North’s holding took on a rosier hue. With a control in diamonds as well as in clubs, he decided to accept partner’s invitation by bidding six clubs. This call conventionally shows second round control of the suit either the king or a singleton—since South’s bid in clubs had announced the ace.

W hen South next revealed the ace of diamonds by bidding six diamonds. North became aware that his partner was try ing to go all the way- an ambition which would not be fully warranted if South had only four bare aces North reasoned that, in addition, South must have either a six card heart suit or additional secondary controls. On this assumption he bid seven hearts, and South was able to confirm his judgment by claiming the contract shortly after the opening lead.


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