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Claiming with a trump out


An experienced and competent declarer claimed the remaining 6 tricks. He had 3 trumps left in his hand but defender had one outstanding. Declarer and defenders exposed their hands and one defender claimed he is entitled to a one penalty trick award even though there is no way the defense could win another trick if declarer played trump(s) first. The declarer claimed he didn't have a chance to state his line before the defender interjected and called the director. 

After reviewing the prior trump play, director ruled against the defenders. Director claimed condition #2 below was not met, based on the straight forward trump play and declarer's competence. Note - declarer and defenders didn't ruff during the play. 

I've seen other directors ruled the other way.

70 C. There Is an Outstanding Trump

When a trump remains in one of the opponents’hands, the Director shall award a trick or tricks to the opponents if:

1. claimer made no statement about trump, and

2. it is at all likely that claimer at the time of his claim was unaware that a trump remained in an opponent’s hand, and

3. a trick could be lost to that trump by any normal play

How would you rule in this case if declarer did not state a line of play.

If director is confident that #2 was false, he can forgo the automatic trick penalty because it would be irrational to not draw trumps before taking his other winners.
Director should allow the defender to win his trump trick.

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