My regular partners will probably agree that I can have some approaches to bidding that differ from the usual. I have ideas that do not always gel with the ‘norm’, but I do reckon that sometimes we make automatic bids rather than consider the whole situation. Look at this deal from this year’s Llangollen Swiss Teams and see whether you understand my thinking.
After two passes, West opened one spade (playing five card majors). Looking at the North hand in isolation the routine call is one no-trump – the point count is minimum but the spades are excellent and the values are all working. However, my view was that opposite a passed partner game was unlikely to be great and with the opposition vulnerable, one spade was not a great spot and collecting a couple of hundred in defence might be our best possible result. This got even better when one spade went back to South, who re-opened with a take out double. I was happy to leave this in and even a declarer as good as Irish international Hugh McGann could not help losing eight tricks for minus 500. When the very experienced North at the other table made the obvious 1NT call in the same situation he was booked for an eight imp loss. It was notable that of the thirty times this board was played, on twenty five occasions N/S played in a no-trump part-score, so there are a lot of players out there who disagree with my logic. Their loss.