BBO Discussion Forums: Meckwell Help - BBO Discussion Forums

Jump to content

Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

Meckwell Help How many points required

#1 User is offline   robiche 

  • Pip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 9
  • Joined: 2018-November-10

Posted 2020-August-26, 04:59

Hi,

I been looking all over for an answer.....how many points are required to bid Meckwell over Opps 1NT opening bid. Vulnerable and Non-Vulnerable. What about if I bid 2NT(promising 2-minors), do I need Extra points. Sincere thanks to All.

robiche
0

#2 User is offline   TylerE 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 2,633
  • Joined: 2006-January-30

Posted 2020-August-26, 09:15

There is no "law"

Agree whatever you want.
0

#3 User is offline   mycroft 

  • Secretary Bird
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 6,124
  • Joined: 2003-July-12
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Calgary, Canada

Posted 2020-August-26, 09:42

"Points Schmoints. Shape rules." -- Marty Bergen.

Applies in many many cases, and interfering over 1NT openings is definitely one of them.

You do have to agree with your partner how disruptive vs constructive you are going to be, so that he knows what hands (if any) should be looking for game; and you need to agree how this changes (if at all) for opening NT ranges different from your field normal (which, if you're looking at MeckWell and "rules", is almost certainly 15-17, so what changes if it's 12-14, 10-12, 14-16,...). But within the bounds of your agreements, do whatever works for you.

The weaker you are, the more shape you need to be safe at the 2 level; I can't imagine anyone complaining on either side if I double 1NT with T9xxxx T8xxxxx -- -- "both majors". Doing it with a bog-standard 4=5 requires a few cards.

This applies to the opponents as well. Do not assume that the agreements your partnership plays by (even the agreements you were taught) are the opponents' as well. When I play DONT, for instance, I overcall on hands you likely would never think of (and I would never do playing something else, as well). The D stands for "disturb", and it's designed to push them out of 1NT-AP as much as possible, with as much safety as possible, eschewing "find best contract" to do it; it only works if you "D" as often as possible, and trust in the system to keep you safe a lot of the time. However, the number of times the opponents have misplayed because they expected "5=4 at least, and a sound overcall" (because that's what they play) is huge; the number of times they have complained to the TD that "that isn't an overcall" (unsuccessfully, of course) is non-zero. Don't be one of them, and don't get caught like they do.

Also, remember that Matchpoints is a frequency game, not a size-of-score game. Turning -90 into +90 once, and -50 once, and -120 into -100 once and -110 once, and +50 into -800 once, still means you're much to the good. And it doesn't matter much if that -800 is a -50 instead. But that's only "how you decide if your agreements are wrong, or need to be different MPs vs IMPs" - look at the matchpoint result, not the number in your scorecard. "Agreement with partner" is much more important than even the results, and "violating agreement with partner because you don't like the results you're getting" (rather than discussing and changing it) is more damaging to your results than playing a bad agreement correctly.
When I go to sea, don't fear for me, Fear For The Storm -- Birdie and the Swansong (tSCoSI)
1

#4 User is offline   mikeh 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 11,708
  • Joined: 2005-June-15
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Canada
  • Interests:Bridge, golf, wine (red), cooking, reading eclectically but insatiably, travelling, making bad posts.

Posted 2020-August-26, 10:02

I agree that there is no law about point requirements for meckwell or any other conventional defence to notrump. However, most pairs using such defences have some understanding or expectation of what one shows by taking a call.

IMO, points are not a particularly useful indicator: generally one is showing either a two suited hand or a single suit, and the object is not so much to be able to bid constructively (although sometimes one owns the hand despite the strong notrump opener) as it is to get into the opponents auction in a manner that combines some safety and some obstructive interference.

At any level of the game, most pairs have an easier time bidding after one of them opens 1N than any other opening bid. Most pairs play some well known methods (even if only stayman and transfers), and th3 opening bid is tightly constrained. Therefore, left to their own devices, most pairs bid well after 1N.

Therefore it pays to interfere but, of course, the same definition of 1N, and the strength it shows, can allow responder to penalize dubious (or even sound) interference. Hence it is important for the overcaller to have playing strength.

Playing strength is about how long ones long suit or suits are and about where one has ones points.

xxxxx AQ xxxxx A is not remotely the same as AQxxx xx Axxxx x.

All experienced players would want to get into an opponents 1N auction with the second, but few would do so with the first.

Spot cards are also very important, especially 9s and 10s.

AQ109x xx A1098x x is much stronger than AQ543 xx A6432 x

Vulnerability really matters as well. Overcalling on bad suits when vulnerable can lead to -200 or worse even if you escape a double, and on hands where the opps will struggle in their own partial. Again, this is particularly true when overcaller has lots of points in his short suits, where they are good on defence.

When showing a 2suited hand, Id suggest that when vulnerable be 5-5 or better, unless one has two very good suits.

AKJxx KQ109 xx xx Id double 1N even red, but AJxxx KJxx xx xx, red would find me passing.

White v red, Id bid both times.

If showing a one suited hand, have at least a six card suit. Over calling on 5 card suits, in some 5332 hand, is a recipe for disaster. Paradoxically, the better the 5 card suit and hand, the worse the outcome is likely to be. This is because your hand rates to be better on defence than on offence.

Remember: points dont take tricks. Cards take tricks and a trick taken by the deuce of your long suit counts as much as the one your ace of trump took. So you want long suits, points in those suits, spot cards in those suits, and you would prefer to have NO points in your shirt suits. Of course, Aces are ok in short suits, as are kings that are not singletons, but short suit. Queens and jacks are negative values. They rate to do you no good on offence but mean the Opps lack them, so may not be bidding much, and they may help on defence.

Even side Aces and Kings are worth far less in your short suits than they are in your long suits: look at the two 5-2-5-1 hands I showed above.

LHO, at mps one will happily risk the occasional disaster if one is more often getting a good board, while at imps one really wants to avoid going for a big number, so bear the form of scoring in mind.

If vulnerable, Id expect a working 10 count (working means values in your long suits) with decent texture and 5-5 or a good 6 card suit with spots.

If non vulnerable, especially against vulnerable opps, if 5-5, Id get in with much less. A10984 K10964 xx x no way Im passing And indeed, given that I have both majors (so game is possible) and great texture, Id bid vulnerable with that hand. The great shape, the possession of the ace and king, and the suit texture make it ok. But KJ643 J6543 Kx x is more hcp (and Id bid if white v red) but a far worse hand, so Id pass if vulnerable.

I hope this rambling discourse is of some help.
'one of the great markers of the advance of human kindness is the howls you will hear from the Men of God' Johann Hari
1

#5 User is offline   akwoo 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 1,039
  • Joined: 2010-November-21

Posted 2020-August-26, 12:13

Especially at MPs, *their* vulnerability matters as well. If you have the xxxxx AQ xxxxx A hand, you should never be coming in when *they* are vulnerable; partner could have Kxx KJxxxx Kx xx and you have missed a chance for +200. But when they are nonvulnerable, the +100 you get defending isn't so hot compared to the +140 you get in 2.
0

#6 User is offline   robiche 

  • Pip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 9
  • Joined: 2018-November-10

Posted 2020-August-26, 14:52

View PostTylerE, on 2020-August-26, 09:15, said:

There is no "law"

Agree whatever you want.




thanks...I agree, partnership agreement still the best
0

#7 User is offline   robiche 

  • Pip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 9
  • Joined: 2018-November-10

Posted 2020-August-26, 15:00

View Postmycroft, on 2020-August-26, 09:42, said:

"Points Schmoints. Shape rules." -- Marty Bergen.

Applies in many many cases, and interfering over 1NT openings is definitely one of them.

You do have to agree with your partner how disruptive vs constructive you are going to be, so that he knows what hands (if any) should be looking for game; and you need to agree how this changes (if at all) for opening NT ranges different from your field normal (which, if you're looking at MeckWell and "rules", is almost certainly 15-17, so what changes if it's 12-14, 10-12, 14-16,...). But within the bounds of your agreements, do whatever works for you.

The weaker you are, the more shape you need to be safe at the 2 level; I can't imagine anyone complaining on either side if I double 1NT with T9xxxx T8xxxxx -- -- "both majors". Doing it with a bog-standard 4=5 requires a few cards.

This applies to the opponents as well. Do not assume that the agreements your partnership plays by (even the agreements you were taught) are the opponents' as well. When I play DONT, for instance, I overcall on hands you likely would never think of (and I would never do playing something else, as well). The D stands for "disturb", and it's designed to push them out of 1NT-AP as much as possible, with as much safety as possible, eschewing "find best contract" to do it; it only works if you "D" as often as possible, and trust in the system to keep you safe a lot of the time. However, the number of times the opponents have misplayed because they expected "5=4 at least, and a sound overcall" (because that's what they play) is huge; the number of times they have complained to the TD that "that isn't an overcall" (unsuccessfully, of course) is non-zero. Don't be one of them, and don't get caught like they do.

Also, remember that Matchpoints is a frequency game, not a size-of-score game. Turning -90 into +90 once, and -50 once, and -120 into -100 once and -110 once, and +50 into -800 once, still means you're much to the good. And it doesn't matter much if that -800 is a -50 instead. But that's only "how you decide if your agreements are wrong, or need to be different MPs vs IMPs" - look at the matchpoint result, not the number in your scorecard. "Agreement with partner" is much more important than even the results, and "violating agreement with partner because you don't like the results you're getting" (rather than discussing and changing it) is more damaging to your results than playing a bad agreement correctly.


Thank you so much, this really helps, my partner and I both read and use Marty Bergen ''Points Schmoints''. With your comments and informative reply, I feel we now have the necessary information to come up with a point range that is workable for us. Thank you so much.
0

#8 User is offline   robiche 

  • Pip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 9
  • Joined: 2018-November-10

Posted 2020-August-26, 15:09

View Postmikeh, on 2020-August-26, 10:02, said:

I agree that there is no law about point requirements for meckwell or any other conventional defence to notrump. However, most pairs using such defences have some understanding or expectation of what one shows by taking a call.

IMO, points are not a particularly useful indicator: generally one is showing either a two suited hand or a single suit, and the object is not so much to be able to bid constructively (although sometimes one owns the hand despite the strong notrump opener) as it is to get into the opponents auction in a manner that combines some safety and some obstructive interference.

At any level of the game, most pairs have an easier time bidding after one of them opens 1N than any other opening bid. Most pairs play some well known methods (even if only stayman and transfers), and th3 opening bid is tightly constrained. Therefore, left to their own devices, most pairs bid well after 1N.

Therefore it pays to interfere but, of course, the same definition of 1N, and the strength it shows, can allow responder to penalize dubious (or even sound) interference. Hence it is important for the overcaller to have playing strength.

Playing strength is about how long ones long suit or suits are and about where one has ones points.

xxxxx AQ xxxxx A is not remotely the same as AQxxx xx Axxxx x.

All experienced players would want to get into an opponents 1N auction with the second, but few would do so with the first.

Spot cards are also very important, especially 9s and 10s.

AQ109x xx A1098x x is much stronger than AQ543 xx A6432 x

Vulnerability really matters as well. Overcalling on bad suits when vulnerable can lead to -200 or worse even if you escape a double, and on hands where the opps will struggle in their own partial. Again, this is particularly true when overcaller has lots of points in his short suits, where they are good on defence.

When showing a 2suited hand, Id suggest that when vulnerable be 5-5 or better, unless one has two very good suits.

AKJxx KQ109 xx xx Id double 1N even red, but AJxxx KJxx xx xx, red would find me passing.

White v red, Id bid both times.

If showing a one suited hand, have at least a six card suit. Over calling on 5 card suits, in some 5332 hand, is a recipe for disaster. Paradoxically, the better the 5 card suit and hand, the worse the outcome is likely to be. This is because your hand rates to be better on defence than on offence.

Remember: points dont take tricks. Cards take tricks and a trick taken by the deuce of your long suit counts as much as the one your ace of trump took. So you want long suits, points in those suits, spot cards in those suits, and you would prefer to have NO points in your shirt suits. Of course, Aces are ok in short suits, as are kings that are not singletons, but short suit. Queens and jacks are negative values. They rate to do you no good on offence but mean the Opps lack them, so may not be bidding much, and they may help on defence.

Even side Aces and Kings are worth far less in your short suits than they are in your long suits: look at the two 5-2-5-1 hands I showed above.

LHO, at mps one will happily risk the occasional disaster if one is more often getting a good board, while at imps one really wants to avoid going for a big number, so bear the form of scoring in mind.

If vulnerable, Id expect a working 10 count (working means values in your long suits) with decent texture and 5-5 or a good 6 card suit with spots.

If non vulnerable, especially against vulnerable opps, if 5-5, Id get in with much less. A10984 K10964 xx x no way Im passing And indeed, given that I have both majors (so game is possible) and great texture, Id bid vulnerable with that hand. The great shape, the possession of the ace and king, and the suit texture make it ok. But KJ643 J6543 Kx x is more hcp (and Id bid if white v red) but a far worse hand, so Id pass if vulnerable.

I hope this rambling discourse is of some help.


Thanks, I will discuss these points with my partner. I have a much clearer understanding of how I want to play Meckwell. Sincerely loi Robichaud a.k.a robiche
0

#9 User is offline   nige1 

  • 5-level belongs to me
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 9,085
  • Joined: 2004-August-30
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Glasgow Scotland
  • Interests:Poems Computers

Posted 2020-August-26, 19:50

Criteria for a bid over opponent's 1N opener should probably be defined in terms of shape and playing-strength rather than HCP.

IMO, however, a double should have an agreed minimum point-count, so that partner can convert to penalty, with reasonable frequency and fair confidence.

For example, we play RAPTOR Double = 5+ m and 4+ M. If you agree that this double promises 10+ HCP, then partner can pass with 10+ HCP -- especially when he can stand a minor-suit lead.

Paradoxically, such a policy results in more lucrative penalties than if you play a traditional purely penalty double.
0

#10 User is offline   TylerE 

  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 2,633
  • Joined: 2006-January-30

Posted 2020-August-26, 20:17

View Postnige1, on 2020-August-26, 19:50, said:

IMO, however, a double should have an agreed minimum point-count, so that partner can convert to penalty, with reasonable frequency and fair confidence.


We're discussing Meckwell, which like DONT has the double as the start of a shape showing relay, so this isn't relevent.
0

#11 User is offline   PhilG007 

  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Full Members
  • Posts: 973
  • Joined: 2013-February-24
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Dundee Scotland United Kingdom
  • Interests:Occasional chess player. Dominoes

Posted 2020-August-27, 08:23

View Postrobiche, on 2020-August-26, 04:59, said:

Hi,

I been looking all over for an answer.....how many points are required to bid Meckwell over Opps 1NT opening bid. Vulnerable and Non-Vulnerable. What about if I bid 2NT(promising 2-minors), do I need Extra points. Sincere thanks to All.

robiche


The vital thing here is partnership agreement. The two of you need to discuss fully how to approach this
to be sure you're both on the same wavelength.
"It is not enough to be a good player, you must also play well"
- Dr Tarrasch(1862-1934)German Chess Grandmaster

Bridge is a game where you have two opponents...and often three(!)


"Any palooka can take tricks with Aces and Kings; the true expert shows his prowess
by how he handles the two's and three's" - Mollo's Hideous Hog
0

#12 User is offline   bluenikki 

  • PipPipPipPip
  • Group: Full Members
  • Posts: 240
  • Joined: 2019-October-14

Posted 2020-August-27, 08:43

View Postrobiche, on 2020-August-26, 04:59, said:

Hi,

I been looking all over for an answer.....how many points are required to bid Meckwell over Opps 1NT opening bid. Vulnerable and Non-Vulnerable. What about if I bid 2NT(promising 2-minors), do I need Extra points. Sincere thanks to All.

robiche


In a team game some years ago, the pair at our table included Eric Rodwell. Rodwell made some sort of 2-suited call. I asked his partner whether in their style it was a serious attempt to buy the contract or would it often just be horsing around. The partner replied "It's just bridge," which is certainly not true. When the dummy came down, Rodwell explained that they had only a mailed exchange of system notes, with no time to discuss fine points.
1

#13 User is offline   ThomasRush 

  • PipPip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 27
  • Joined: 2020-August-27
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Houston, Texas, USA (or thereabouts)
  • Interests:Bridge (?), Toastmasters, wine, people, libertarianism, creating humor, teaching bridge

Posted 2020-August-27, 09:41

View PostTylerE, on 2020-August-26, 20:17, said:

We're discussing Meckwell, which like DONT has the double as the start of a shape showing relay, so this isn't relevent.


You are seeing only the obvious. There is much beneath the surface in bridge, if you open your eyes to implications.

You're replying to a post where someone suggests something new to you. Do not dismiss it, thinking that the poster made a mistake.

His or her post is extremely relevant to the Meckwell discussion.

If you agree that a Meckwell double shows shape and a certain minimum strength, it frees 4th hand to convert the double to penalty when she knows that she and her partner hold 21 or more of the 40 points in the deck.

Which do you think is more lucrative over time: A) Bidding willy-nilly over 1NT with no agreements on point count, often going down your way, or, B) disciplined Meckwell doubles that allow partner to convert to penalty where instead of a +110 or more frequent -50, you get +200 or +300? In addition, after 1N - X - P - P ... think of the pressure you're putting on opener!

Perhaps your defense isn't up to converting the double so this style won't work for you. Or perhaps you and your partner cannot bring yourselves to adopt a more disciplined Meckwell double -- then don't. But others will use it quite effectively.
He who plants a tree affirms the future
1

#14 User is offline   mycroft 

  • Secretary Bird
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Advanced Members
  • Posts: 6,124
  • Joined: 2003-July-12
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Calgary, Canada

Posted 2020-August-27, 09:49

Which of course was the answer that the partner should have given, but decided to give the "I'm better than you and need to show it" answer instead.

I have issues with MeckWell on this front (mostly on the Meck side); but this should be straight up basic knowledge for pro-level players; and should be at least as important as what are the responses to 1-p-1 when dealing with clients.

(and I absolutely believe that ER took a near future opportunity to make that clear to "partner".)
When I go to sea, don't fear for me, Fear For The Storm -- Birdie and the Swansong (tSCoSI)
0

#15 User is offline   DCal 

  • PipPip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 15
  • Joined: 2007-September-17
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Austin, TX 78745
  • Interests:reading, playing guitar, bridge of course

Posted 2020-August-27, 19:27

One of the best bridge books ever written is Mel Colchamiro's How You Can Play Like an Expert (Without Really Being One.) He gives two rules which work with any system of no trump overcalling systems: in the direct seat, use the Rule of Eight: You must have at least six points, then add the length of your two longest suits and subtract the number of losers in you hand from that total. If the result is two or more, bid [6+2=8]. If not, pass. In the balance seat, after LHO bids 1NT and there are two passes to you, employ Mel's Rule of Two: With two or more shortness points (doubleton=1, singleton=2, void=3), always balance regardless of the strength of your hand or the vulnerable. There are many formulae for making decisions at bridge, but Mel's Rule of Two is the only one I have found to always be right: In fourth seat you hold: Jxxx, x, Txxxx, xx. You have three shortness points. Playing Meckwell, you bid 2D, showing diamonds and a major. If you lack two shortness points, you pass regardless of strength of your hand. Again, the Rule of Two always works. It's magic!

I been looking all over for an answer.....how many points are required to bid Meckwell over Opps 1NT opening bid. Vulnerable and Non-Vulnerable. What about if I bid 2NT(promising 2-minors), do I need Extra points. Sincere thanks to All.

robiche
[/quote]
1

#16 User is offline   miamijd 

  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • Group: Full Members
  • Posts: 737
  • Joined: 2015-November-14

Posted 2020-August-27, 19:43

It's a matter of playing strength, not HCP. Quite obviously:

x QJT9x QJT9xx x

with 6 HCP (a fine overcall at any vulnerability) is a lot better than

QJ AJxx KJxxx Jx

which is basically a pile of junk.

Cheers,
Mike
1

#17 User is offline   doccdl 

  • PipPip
  • Group: Members
  • Posts: 19
  • Joined: 2020-August-21
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:India
  • Interests:YouTube

Posted 2020-August-27, 21:39

It all depends upon distribution ,location of HCP in the long suits.There are no binding laws laid down,Multitude of conventions/gadgets are available and they all have their advantages and short falls.I found that many players use Cappeletti with or without modifications.One should desirably know all of them when facing strange partner.Use the one which the profile shows.
0

Share this topic:


Page 1 of 1
  • You cannot start a new topic
  • You cannot reply to this topic

1 User(s) are reading this topic
0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users