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Improvers Week 11 The Losing Trick Count (LTC)

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LTC We have used mainly HCP for decisions on what to bid We have used mainly HCP for decisions on what to bid Works very well for NT contracts Works very well for NT contracts But not good enough for suit contracts But not good enough for suit contracts We must consider the value of shape We must consider the value of shape LTC allows us to evaluate all hands LTC allows us to evaluate all hands Giving more accurate suit bidding Giving more accurate suit bidding

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Calculating the LTC Count up to 3 cards in each suit Count up to 3 cards in each suit More than 3 discount lowest More than 3 discount lowest Any that are not A K or Q are losers Any that are not A K or Q are losers Singleton K or Q is a loser Singleton K or Q is a loser Doubleton Q is a loser Doubleton Q is a loser Bare Q is a ½ loser (Bare is Q without A K or J i.e. Qxx) Bare Q is a ½ loser (Bare is Q without A K or J i.e. Qxx)

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Calculate the LTC How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 Total Total 6 AA JJ 33 K Q 33 44 TT 44 33 J 3 2

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LTC The lower the LTC the stronger the hand The lower the LTC the stronger the hand Provided you find a fit! Provided you find a fit! You must not use LTC unless you have agreed a suit!! You must not use LTC unless you have agreed a suit!! A weak 1 of a suit opener would normally have a LTC of 7 (used only as a guide) A weak 1 of a suit opener would normally have a LTC of 7 (used only as a guide) 1NT opener is very often 8 1NT opener is very often 8 Sometimes 7 with a good HCP count Sometimes 7 with a good HCP count So lets calculate the LTC for a number of hands So lets calculate the LTC for a number of hands And look at the HCP count as well And look at the HCP count as well

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 3 How many losers? How many losers? 0 Total Total 6 AA JJ 33 K Q 44 TT 44 33 J 3 2 22

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? 7 How many losers? How many losers? 3 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 Total Total 7 JJ TT 33 K Q 33 44 55 44 33 J 3 2

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? How many losers? How many losers? 0 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 Total Total 4 AA KK 33 K Q 33 44 QQ 44 33 J 3 2

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? How many losers? How many losers? 0 How many losers? How many losers? 0 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 1 Total Total 2 AA KK K Q 33 44 QQ 44 33 J 3 2 A

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? 9 How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 Total Total 7 QQ JJ Q KK 44 TT 44 33 J 3 2 22 33

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 3 How many losers? How many losers? 2 Total Total 7 AA KK K AA 44 JJ 33 Q 2 33 JJ 22 33

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Calculate the LTC How many HCP? How many HCP? How many losers? How many losers? 2 How many losers? How many losers? 1 How many losers? How many losers? 2½ 2½ How many losers? How many losers? 2 Total Total 7½ 7½ AA K AA 44 JJ 33 Q 2 33 JJ 22 33 QQ

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Note The Losing Trick Count is related to shape not point count The Losing Trick Count is related to shape not point count

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LTC We have a maximum of 12 losers We have a maximum of 12 losers So does Partner So does Partner Total of 24 losers possible Total of 24 losers possible In an agreed major: In an agreed major: With 14 losers between us game is on With 14 losers between us game is on With 15 game is unlikely With 15 game is unlikely With 16 we want to stop at the 2 level With 16 we want to stop at the 2 level With 12 we should consider slam With 12 we should consider slam

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LTC If partner opens 1 of a suit assume 7 losers If partner opens 1 of a suit assume 7 losers With a major suit fit and With a major suit fit and 9 losers raise to 2 9 losers raise to 2 8 losers raise to 3 8 losers raise to 3 7 losers raise to 4 7 losers raise to 4

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Using LTC as responder LTC? LTC? 6 Partner opens 1 Partner opens 1 Combined LTC is 13 or better Combined LTC is 13 or better Bid? Bid? 1 1 If partner re-bids weakly bid 4 If partner re-bids weakly bid 4 If partner re-bids stronger bid 4NT If partner re-bids stronger bid 4NT AA JJ 33 K Q 33 44 TT 44 33 J 3 2

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Using LTC as responder LTC? LTC? 7 Partner opens 1 Partner opens 1 Combined LTC is 14 or better Combined LTC is 14 or better Bid? Bid? 4 4 With only 5 HCP! With only 5 HCP! LTC takes account of shape LTC takes account of shape TT 99 33 K Q 33 44 55 44 3

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Using LTC as responder LTC? LTC? 8 Partner opens 1 Partner opens 1 Combined LTC is 15 or better Combined LTC is 15 or better Bid? Bid? 3 3 Invitational Invitational Partner can bid game with LTC 6 Partner can bid game with LTC 6 QQ JJ 33 Q KK 44 TT 44 33 J 3 2 22

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Using LTC as responder LTC? LTC? 7 Partner opens 1 Partner opens 1 Combined LTC is 14 or better Combined LTC is 14 or better Bid? Bid? 4 4 With 18 HCP it looks great but too flat for more With 18 HCP it looks great but too flat for more AA KK 33 K AA 44 JJ Q 3 2 22 JJ 44

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Building up the picture Opening bid assume LTC 7 Opening bid assume LTC 7 Weak response assume 9 Weak response assume 9 Re-bid shows LTC of 6 and 5 ‘s Re-bid shows LTC of 6 and 5 ‘s Responder bids 4 with LTC of 8 and 3 ‘s Responder bids 4 with LTC of 8 and 3 ‘s 1 3 P P 11 P

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LTC - Summary LTC is more accurate than HCP for suit contracts LTC is more accurate than HCP for suit contracts It takes shape as well as strength into account It takes shape as well as strength into account Much better for raising suit bids Much better for raising suit bids 1 of a major, 2 of the same major is better if it shows 9 LTC rather than 6-9 HCP 1 of a major, 2 of the same major is better if it shows 9 LTC rather than 6-9 HCP 1 of a major, 3 of the same major showing 8 LTC is very useful 1 of a major, 3 of the same major showing 8 LTC is very useful Remember the joint LTC for game is 14 Remember the joint LTC for game is 14

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LTC - Summary SO: SO: 1 major, 2 of the same major shows 9 LTC 1 major, 2 of the same major shows 9 LTC 1 major, 3 of the same major shows 8 LTC 1 major, 3 of the same major shows 8 LTC 1 major, 4 of the same major shows 7 LTC 1 major, 4 of the same major shows 7 LTC 1 major, 4 of a minor agrees the major and shows more than 7 LTC 1 major, 4 of a minor agrees the major and shows more than 7 LTC This is a Splinter or Cue Bid in the minor by agreement. (Separate lessons) This is a Splinter or Cue Bid in the minor by agreement. (Separate lessons)

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