Join Bridge Winners
You hold:  72 A972 AKQ62 J5
IMPs (Knockout), N/S vulnerable
72
A972
AKQ62
J5
W
N
E
S
P
P
1
1
2
2
3
3
P
P
4
P
P
?

This 'How Do You Rule' issue (it is not really a general poll) comes from the semifinals of the top flight KO at a recent 3000 table Regional. NS are a moderately practiced, Regional quality pair. EW are an unpracticed, low ranking national caliber pair.

Everyone agreed that N's pass over 3S was significantly out of tempo, which the four players estimated to be about 20 seconds. W called the Director immediately after the 4H bid to establish that N's pass was slow.

N's hand was 83, KQ1063, 73 and AQ42 so 4H made. For his 1S overcall and 3S rebid, W held AK10654, J5, 1083 and 96, so 4H was an easy make. EW immediately called the Director. When asked why she did not bid 4H the first time, S said she thought she was concerned she had 4 black losers.

When asked why she bid 4H the second time, S said when she thought about it again, she thought it was very likely that partner could cover one of her black suit losers. She also explained that she did not know why she took such a pessimistic view when she initially passed 3H.

EW conceded a that S's hand was worth a raise to 4H. However, for whatever reason, S did not initially agree, and that N's balk served as an alarm clock
that woke her up. EW also argued that because N was a passed hand, her 2H call could have been much lighter than the hand she held. EW also argued that if the peculiar circumstances made it difficult to come to a Director decision on whether passing 3H the second time was a logical alternative - all the players agreed that N's hesitation suggest S's final raise to 4H - then either a mixed-imp adjustment or a procedural penalty would be appropriate.

N said she thought her hand was not worth a first seat opening at unfavorable. S disagreed explaining that she would always open the hand.

N was asked why he didn't bid 4S over 4H. He responded that he thought that action would likely would be seen as his seeking a 'double shot' N was not asked to provide any further explanation.

I would appreciate your thoughts on what the Director should rule and why.

Before ruling, the Director attempted to conduct a poll but could not find any comparable players who would have passed 3H. The Director thought querying players who would have bid 4H the first time would prejudice the poll. For that reason, the only outside input he sought was from other Directors.

Finally, I expect the form I have used in presenting this query does not follow the usual approach. Please accept my apologies; I didn't know how else to present it. After a while, I will post the actual ruling the Director made, together with his reasoning.

What's your call?
Redouble
Pass
Double
Abstain
1♣
1♦
1♥
1♠
1NT
2♣
2♦
2♥
2♠
2NT
3♣
3♦
3♥
3♠
3NT
4♣
4♦
4♥
4♠
4NT
5♣
5♦
5♥
5♠
5NT
6♣
6♦
6♥
6♠
6NT
7♣
7♦
7♥
7♠
7NT
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