ACBL Unit 539
San Diego

Teaching Library

Maritha Shares Her Teaching of Bidding, Play of the Hand and Defense

Maritha Pottenger has been a beloved teacher and a very successful player in the San Diego area for many years. She became a Platinum Life Master (10,000 points) last year. When asked why she teaches bridge, she responded:

I love teaching. Teaching really helped my bridge game. I had to clarify principles that were not clear when explaining them to other people; definitely a great way to improve my own bridge logic and inferences.

Bridge is the ideal game- because you can never learn it all. Each hand has something instructional to offer. Each partner offers another point of view. Psychological principles operate at the bridge table as they do throughout life. Bridge is endlessly fascinating and I adore it!

As she was retiring from teaching, she volunteered to share her teaching notes with all. You can review any of the conventions you are considering adding to your repertoire with your partner or just choose to study to improve your defense or play of the hand.

Thank you, Maritha.

Maritha Earns Platinum Life Master

Maritha Pottenger recently surpassed the 10,000 master point milestone, thus becoming a Platinum Life Master. Larry Sherman recently took the opportunity to solicit Maritha's feedback on a number of mostly bridge related questions.

 Read the full interview by Larry Sherman


Ace Asking Kantar's Rules (187 KB)

Any Bid You Make is a Lie Sometimes (195 KB)

Artificial Bids (204 KB)

Balancing 1 (224 KB)

Balancing 2 (198 KB)

Balancing Bids That Involve NT (196 KB)

Balancing Double (110 KB)

Balancing Seat Pass (206 KB)

Balancing Bid Responses (206 KB)

Bergen Raises (117 KB)

Bidding NT Slams (111 KB)

Bidding Outline (204 KB)

Bidding Over Opps. NT (116 KB)

Bidding Slams (208 KB)

Bidding Slam in Suit (208 KB)

Bidding Principles (118 KB)

Bid Where You Live (213 KB)

Bid Where You Live 2 (118 KB)

Billy Miller : When Stayman Is Doubled (111 KB)

Blackwood--Standard (113 KB)

Competitive Bidding (126 KB)

Competitive Bidding Chart (14 KB)

Competitive Bidding Tools (216 KB)

Competing over Michaels (107 KB)

Constructive Raise 2/1 (116 KB)

Context in Bidding (212 KB)

Cue Bidding (119 KB)

Cue Bidding for Slam (122 KB)

Different Doubles--Meanings (124 KB)

Different Doubles--Distinguishing (123 KB)

Doubles, Overcalls, NT (116 KB)

Doubles of 3NT (117 KB)

Exclusion Blackwood (198 KB)

First Principles in Bidding (119 KB)

Forcing Bid or Not? (126 KB)

Forcing Bids (125 KB)

Forcing NT (219 KB)

Forcing Pass (203 KB)

Four-Four Fits (202 KB)

Fourth Suit Forcing (212 KB)

Garbage Stayman (111 KB)

Gerber (116 KB)

Hamilton or Cappelletti (219 KB)

Hearts vs. Spades (119 KB)

Help Suit Game Tries (117 KB)

How High to Compete (206 KB)

Impossible Spade (192 KB)

Inferences in 2 over 1 (115 KB)

Inverted Minors (210 KB)

Jacoby Transfers (210 KB)

Jacoby 2NT (200 KB)

Kokish Game Tries (203 KB)

Law of Total Tricks (208 KB)

Lead-Directing Doubles (115 KB)

Lebensohl over NT overcalls by opps (206 KB)

Lebensohl Convention (207 KB)

Lebensohl when partner doubles weak 2 (205 KB)

Lebensohl over Reverses (212 KB)

Lebensohl Review over NT (97 KB)

Lightner Dbl and NT Game Dbl (201 KB)

Losing Trick Count (207 KB)

Losing Trick Count--Major Raises (115 KB)

Losing Trick Count vs. HCP (209 KB)

Limit Raise in Competition (116 KB)

Major Responses (101 KB)

Major Responses SA (92 KB)

Major Raises 2/1 (93 KB)

Major Raises Chart (99 KB)

Maximal Doubles (198 KB)

Michaels and Unusual 2nt (116 KB)

Mini Splinters (118 KB)

Minor Suit Slam Bidding (200 KB)

Minor Suit Opening Bids/Responses (118 KB)

Minorwood (110 KB)

Modified Flannery (16 KB)

Negative Doubles (206 KB)

Negative Inferences (209 KB)

Negative Double Chart (206 KB)

New Minor Forcing (114 KB)

NT Ranges & Responses (200 KB)

NT Bids & Rebids (202 KB)

NT Bids by Responder (119 KB)

NT Hints for Tough Hands (113 KB)

NT--Bids over opps. NT (114 KB)

NT Rebids by Opener (206 KB)

NT Review of Principles (120 KB)

NT--Bidding Stoppers (117 KB)

Opening Light--3rd or 4th Seat (204 KB)

Open Major or 1NT? (115 KB)

Overcalls (115 KB)

Overcall Strong NT (115 KB)

Partnership ? 2/1 (18 KB)

Partnership General Questions (119 KB)

Penalty Doubles (123 KB)

Preempts and losing trick count (10 KB)

Preempts Rule of 2 or 3 (119 KB)

Quantitative Bids (115 KB)

Rebid Issues--Minors (126 KB)

Rebid Issues--Minors (126 KB)

Redoubles (204 KB)

Responses to Major--Chart (12 KB)

Responsive Doubles (199 KB)

Reverses (117 KB)

Roman Key Card & DOPI (291 KB)

Scoring & Sacrificing (114 KB)

Special Conventions for Slam Bidding (111 KB)

Source of Tricks for NT (215 KB)

Splinters (109 KB)

Splinters--When Not to Use (198 KB)

Spot Cards--Evaluating (201 KB)

Stayman (219 KB)

Strong Jump Shifts (18 KB)

Summary:Responses to NT Openings (123 KB)

Support Doubles and Redoubles (203 KB)

Tactics: IMPs vs. Matchpoints (130 KB)

Takeout Doubles and Responses (210 KB)

Texas Transfers (110 KB)

The Only 7 Conventions You Really Need (215 KB)

Two Club Opening & Responses (119 KB)

Two over One General Principles (115 KB)

Two-Suited Bids--Michaels and Unusual NT (116 KB)

Upgrading & Downgrading Your Hand (115 KB)

Visualization (215 KB)

Weak Jump Shifts & Alternatives (119 KB)

Weak Two Bids & Responses (119 KB)

When Not to Reverse in Bidding (111 KB)

Whose Trump Suit is Better? (107 KB)

Declarer Play

Analyzing Leads & Assigning HCP at Trick One (104 KB)

Avoidance (117 KB)

Card Combinations (80 KB)

Card Play Notes (76 KB)

Combining Chances (66 KB)

Count HCP (78 KB)

Count Suit Distribution (63 KB)

Count Tricks (76 KB)

Count Losers (61 KB)

Count Winners (66 KB)

Cross Ruff (78 KB)

Cutting Communication (83 KB)

Dangerous Hand (82 KB)

Defender Information (67 KB)

Delay Big Decision (67 KB)

Develop Long Suits (64 KB)

Develop Tricks (71 KB)

Dummy Reversal (78 KB)

Easy Counting (72 KB)

Eight Ever Nine Never (62 KB)

Elimination & Throw in plays (54 KB)

Emotional Control (66 KB)

End Play (81 KB)

End Play Count (59 KB)

End Play NT (70 KB)

End Play Template (56 KB)

End Plays (58 KB)

Entries (76 KB)

Etiquette (71 KB)

False Cards (67 KB)

Finessing (82 KB)

Fundamentals (75 KB)

Hand Types (81 KB)

Hold Up Plays (66 KB)

Lead Low Towards Honors (57 KB)

Longest Suit First (60 KB)

Loser On Loser (66 KB)

Merrimac Coup (50 KB)

Mirror Distribution (85 KB)

More Wild Hands (136 KB)

Morton's Fork Coup (59 KB)

When Not To Count (72 KB)

Retaining Options (62 KB)

Play & Develop Long Suits (69 KB)

Pulling Trumps (57 KB)

Ruff In Short Trump Hand (64 KB)

More Ruff Short Trump Hand (59 KB)

Ruff Their Winners (52 KB)

Safety Plays (74 KB)

Safety Play Practice (47 KB)

Save Your Brain (70 KB)

Second Hand High (60 KB)

Squeezes (64 KB)

Tactics and Scoring (71 KB)

Throw In Play (63 KB)

Timing (64 KB)

Transportation (67 KB)

Trump Control (67 KB)

Unblocking (80 KB)

Vacant Spaces (58 KB)

Whe To Pull Trumps (75 KB)

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