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Another Ruling at the Club

West
AK
AKQJ2
1074
K54
North
Q97654
4
AK5
A86
East
83
10987
Q862
732
South
J102
653
J93
QJ109
W
N
E
S
3
P
P
P
D
1
3 West
NS: 0 EW: 0
A
2
9
4
1
1
0
K
6
3
7
1
2
0
5
3

I do not know the auction.  Assume a competitive auction in which North opened 1 and West ended  up declaring 3

The play started as indicated with the Next button.  When North led the third diamond, West asked about the North-South signalling methods.  South said that they play upside-down count and attitude, but play high-low from small doubletons.  North played low on the diamond lead. losing to the jack, and went down two when the defense took the next three tricks in clubs.

West called the director (me), asserting that he would have won the diamond queen if given correct information.  On questioning, North explained that they play high-low from small doubletons because the ACBL requires them to pre-alert if they agree to play low first.

The no-adjustment ruling was easy (the explanation correctly described the NS agreements). I explained to North and South that the ACBL rule applies to leads and not to signals.  I have some sympathy for West.  What a tangled nest...

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