Bridge Is a Conversation

I was going to devote this page to a list of recommended bridge books, but in truth there is only one I can recommend: Bridge Is a Conversation by Gerard Cohen. Though self-published — no prophet is recognized in his own time — this bids fair to become a classic. Gerard’s writing, like his bidding, dummy play, post mortems and defense, is consistently entertaining and even instructive, in a weird way. All items guaranteed sic.

Oct 082003
 

“Experts of the game know how to manage gracefully such the situation they create, most other players don’t.”

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Oct 082003
 

“Gerard’s tip of the night: ABOUT LEADS: Non-standard leads usually show non-standard hands. Use non-standard leads with extreme caution.”

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Oct 082003
 

“Gerard’s tip of the night. PLAY LIKE THE EXPERTS: When making an opening lead against a slam, lead your ace unless there is a compelling reason not to.”

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Oct 082003
 

“Gerard’s tip of the night: DECLARER PLAY: Each declarer play is like a battle. Prepare for battle. Count your winning tricks, your loosing tricks. Make a plan of attack to better your chances of winning the remaining ones.”

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Oct 082003
 

“A new breed of highly gifted players is actually able to play 3NT with 24 pts, 4 in a major with 25 points, 5 in a minor with 27 points, a small slam with 30 points and a grand slam with 34 points with a good chance of success.”

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Oct 092003
 

“In some very sophisticated systems, point counts is all that matters at that point, because the distribution factor is dealt with a very precise and specific way after the opening statement is made, but for other systems, like SAYC or 2/1GF, there is some flexibility concerning the estimation of the points value of the hand when making the opening statement.”

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Oct 092003
 

“Now that you have acquired the panoply of the perfect bridge player, let’s review it in a more global way, the strategies you may use to reach your contracts, or force the opponents to miss theirs.”

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Oct 092003
 

“Some players seem to think that making a negative double with a 5 card major is right. It is not, regardless of the cards held in that suit.”

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Oct 092003
 

“A game force bid is not necessary to reach game. It can be replaced by a cascade of 1 round forcing bid, at the expense of purity of the auction.”

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Oct 092003
 

“The NT bid used as an acceptance to an invitation by the captain, is a negative answer and does not necessarily reflects the possession of a balanced hand nor a stopper in all the unbid suits named by the team.”

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