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All comments by Art Korth
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Ed:

District 4 has had some events closer to your area. A few years ago, there was either a GNT or an NAP held in Binghamton, NY. I believe that it has been determined after many years of holding most of the events in the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre area (about 2 hours north of Philadelphia), which catered to the 10% of the membership that lives in the NY/NE PA part of District 4, that the District is going to locate its NAP and GNT events primarily in the Philadelphia area, which is where about 90% of the membership is located.

I strongly doubt that I will ever see an event in the Atlantic City area, or even Cherry Hill, which would be only an hour for me to travel. While I am not particularly happy with the current location - North Penn, PA (roughly 30 minutes NW of Philadelphia), I accept it as a reasonable compromise. So I have to travel about 2 hours to the game site.

If I remember correctly, when the NAP/GNT events were held in Scranton/Wilkes-Barre and even Binghamton, the turnout from your area was almost non-existent.

By the way, the 5 players on my team which will represent District 4 in Vegas in the Open bracket are from:

Galloway, NJ (near Atlantic City)
Cherry Hill, NJ
Philadelphia, PA
Syracuse, NY
East Syracuse, NY

That is a pretty decent representation of the geography of District 4. No one from Delaware, however.
June 11
Art Korth edited this comment June 11
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The ACBL has its faults. We all know that.

This is not an ACBL problem. This is a D22 problem.

We start out with the original D22 CoC which, as Mike points out, start as follows:

“The District 22 GNT Finals are knockout team events scored by IMPs (and converted to VP’s when a team plays in a round robin.)”

As I have argued from the outset, this language is self-contradictory. You cannot have a KO event scored at VPs. This contradicts the national knockout conditions of contest, which are part of the national GNT conditions of contest, and which cannot be altered by the District. If what is meant by this language is that the qualifying rounds will be scored at VPs, it should say so.

How do you fix this going forward? You have to have people in D22 who have enough of an interest in fixing the situation to revise the District CoC so that it creates rules for an event which is playable and, hopefully, enjoyable.

You also need officials onsite who are interested enough in the game to promote an enjoyable playing environment.

In D4 a few years ago, the District GNT was run in a manner which was deemed objectionable by a significant number of players. The D4 leadership stepped up to the plate, consulted with a number of interested players, and revised the D4 GNT CoC so that it promotes an event which is worthwhile. The D4 GNT CoC may not be perfect, but they are good enough that the complaints are on items for which reasonable persons will differ but which have been discussed. The primary issue which is still debated is whether there should be a carryover from the Saturday qualifying rounds to the semifinals and finals on Sunday. The issue has been discussed, a decision has been made, and we live with the outcome.

The D4 GNT CoC can be found here:

http://www.district4.info/gnt.htm

In addition, the determination of the location of the playing site has been tweeked over the years and the current site is accessible to the vast majority of player in D4 within a one-hour drive and almost all within a two-hour drive (it is two hours for me, but I live at the southeastern edge of D4 - Atlantic City NJ).

And the directing staff and the D4 officials go out of there way to promote a positive playing environment. If they can get along with me, they can get along with anyone.

The bottom line is that, as long as everyone acts like adults and tries to play well together in the sandbox, good things will happen.

EDIT: In reviewing the D4 GNT CoC, I find that they could lead to the same debacle that occurred in D22 in one unusual situation in each flight. In the event that the initial field consists of precisely 4 teams in the Open Flight or Flight A or B, The D4 GNT CoC call for reduction of the field to 3 teams for Sunday, with a one session 3-way “round-robin” on Sunday to eliminate one team followed by a one-session heads-up final with full carryover. In Flight C, the CoC calls for a one-session 3-way match on Saturday afternoon to eliminate one team followed by a head-to-head match on Saturday night. But the CoC also state that “ All round robin matches are scored by IMPs and each match is converted to Victory Points (using the 20-Point Victory Point Scale) to decide the order of finish.” I am sure that this is an oversight, and I will bring it up so that this can be corrected. I am sure it is not intended that the one-session 3-way match on Sunday afternoon is to be scored at VPs. The “order of finish” language was no doubt intended to limit the use of VPs to the qualifying stage on Saturday (other than the 3-way in Flight C), but it is ambiguous.
June 11
Art Korth edited this comment June 11
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Mark:

I suspect that the losing team would find an offer of a refund of entry fees to be insulting. At least, that is how I would take it.
June 10
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David: Why is that?

Whether we agree or disagree with the decision of D22 as to the outcome of the event, why should the entry fees be refunded? The event was held.

Now, if you are saying that D22 should compensate the losing team by refunding its entry fees, that is a different matter.
June 10
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Depending on the facilities in which the National Swiss event is being held, one will typically find copies of the VP chart posted on support poles, walls and matchpoint score recap stands.

My experience is that you can't walk 10 feet without coming across a VP chart at a National Swiss.

I don't recall having played a regional Swiss team event using the NABC+ VP chart, so I can't relate any experience in that regard.

The last time I played in the GNT National Finals (2006) predates the Swiss qualifying - the qualifying used to be run in four brackets of 5 or 6 teams each, with the first day's completion being a double round-robin within each bracket scored at IMPs converted to VPs to reduce each of the four brackets to three teams each. The two “half-matches” played against each team would be considered to be a single match. The second day's completion would be an afternoon 3-way match to eliminate one team from each bracket, followed by the two survivors playing an evening match (full carryover from the afternoon 3-way) resulting in one team surviving from each bracket. This would be followed by a full-day semifinal and a full-day final. The event used to take four days - it now takes 5 days.

The VP scale used in the first day's competition was posted conspicuously in the playing area, along with the IMP results of the matches (halftime scores included).

I am very much looking forward to The GNT in Vegas, despite all of this.
June 10
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No, because my partnership agreement when playing this range 1NT is that a 5 card major is not permitted.

I probably would not do so anyway, but I am not permitted to do so, so it is not an issue.

(edit to correct typo)
June 10
Art Korth edited this comment June 10
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And your point is?
June 9
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Ray:

Simply put, the ACBL national CoC incorporate the ACBL national KO CoC by reference.

The D22 CoC are not in conformity with the ACBL national CoC and are therefore invalid.
June 9
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So that gives D22 two chances at having a team in the final 16, while other districts have only 1 chance? The fact that both teams cannot make it to the final 16 doesn't solve the problem.
June 8
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It would be unfair to all of the other teams in the GNT at the nationals to have an additional team in the competition.
June 8
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“No one continues in a knockout event after the final whether they win or lose.”

The third and second place teams are eliminated, leaving the first place team as the only one left.

To argue that the first place team is also out of the event is disingenuous, if not downright cynical.

The power of 2 argument is a complete red herring. In the history of bridge, there have been plenty of knockout events that ended in 3-way matches. I was on the winning team in a second bracket KO at the Washington DC NABC in 2002 that ended in a 3-way final (there was a glitch in the event and the second bracket, which should have had 8 teams left after the first round, wound up with 9). Does that mean that the event was not a KO?
June 8
Art Korth edited this comment June 8
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Michael:

A three-way match consists of three head-to-head matches being played simultaneously. Team A plays Team B, Team B plays Team C, and Team C plays Team A. The method for determining the survivor(s) is set forth in the national KNOCKOUT conditions of contest.

This presumes that 1 or 2 of the 3 teams will be eliminated as a result of the outcome of the three matches. If all three teams continue in the event regardless of the outcome of the matches, the 3-way match is not a knockout match.
June 8
Art Korth edited this comment June 8
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I have to chime in.

If one or two teams are eliminated from the event as a result of the match(es), the event is, by definition, a KO.
June 8
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Begin Rant.

OK - can we all just accept the fact that the OP hand has the 10? It really has nothing to do with presenting example hands which justify a 4 call.

Example hands are just that - they do not have to have anything to do with the actual hand presented in the OP.

End of Rant.
June 7
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“If the current CoC called for converting IMPs to VPs in a round-robin match on the 20-VP scale for 30 boards, then a winner should be determined according to the CoC. The only reason I can see for not enforcing the actual CoC, as I explained below, is if D22 authorities misled one or more participants to their detriment in terms of what CoC applied, in legal terms, whether D22 should be estopped from applying the actual CoC. I don't see how great bridge skill would give anyone any particular insight into determining the credibility of the various participants and witnesses as to what CoC applied and what was told to various participants.”

No. If the current District GNT CoC violate the national GNT CoC then there is a reason why the winner should not be determined according to the current District GNT CoC. Specifically, if the national GNT CoC specifically incorporates the national conditions of contest for knockout competitions and those conditions of contest spell out how the winner of a 3-way KO final is to be determined, then the current District GNT CoC are to be ignored.

And please do not try to tell me that the 3-way final is not a KO. If it walks like a duck…
June 7
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Eamon: You used the word “cheating.” I believe that this will generate an automatic warning.
June 7
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“VPs is not matchpoints

It’s not IMPs either.”

Apples and Oranges.

I apologize if this seems basic, but it should be spelled out.

There are various ways to rank teams.

Total Points.
Total IMPs.
Win/Tie/Loss*
Victory Points.

*In multiple team competitions without eliminations, the Win/Tie/Loss method may be further broken down to award a 3/4 win to a team that wins by 1-2 IMPs and a 1/4 win to a team that loses by 1-2 IMPs. These results are sometimes referred to as “winning ties” or “losing ties” and the scale itself is sometimes referred to as the “small VP scale.”

There may be others but I cannot think of any more right now.

Total points is a method of ranking that has not been seen in high level competitions in the last 40-50 years. I have been involved in a team-of-8 competition which was scored at total points, but other than that one instance, I have never seen total points used.

Total IMPs is, as far as I know, never used as a method of ranking. By total IMPs, I mean that the amount of IMPs won over the amount of IMPs lost over a series of matches against different teams. Imagine a Swiss Team in which your score is your net IMPs (IMPs won less IMPs lost). A head-to-head KO match is scored at total IMPs, but it is ranked as Win/Tie/Loss.

Victory Points (VPs) is not a method of scoring. It is a method of ranking. Boards are scored individually by total points achieved at each table. The score differential in total points is converted to IMPs. This is a scoring method.

After the IMP score of a match is determined, the ranking method is then applied to the match.

If the match is scored at Win/Tie/Loss (meaning that the ranking method is Win/Tie/Loss), the team with IMPs won exceeding IMPs lost earns a Win, and the other team earns a Loss. If IMPs won equal IMPs lost, both teams earn a Tie.

If the match is scored at VPs (meaning that the result of the match is ranked using VPs), the IMP differential is converted into VPs for each team based on a scale. Typically there are 20 or 30 VPs at stake in each match, which are evenly divided between the teams in the case of a tie, and awarded more to the winner based on the margin of victory in IMPs.

So, comparing matchpoints to IMPs is comparing scoring methods. Comparing Win/Tie/Loss to VPs is comparing ranking methods. Comparing IMPs to VPs is not possible. And comparing VPs to matchpoints is also not possible. So my earlier comment that VPs is not matchpoints is also, strictly speaking, Apples and Oranges. But what I should have said is that the proper comparison would be IMPs to matchpoints. Ranking the results by converting IMPs to VPs does not convert the competition into a matchpoint competition.
June 6
Art Korth edited this comment June 6
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I just do not understand this.

VPs is not matchpoints.

I can understand that you might be conservative with a big lead in a win/tie/loss situation. But the same should be true in VPs - the odds of increasing your score in a meaningful way when you are considerably ahead are small, so it doesn't pay to take risks.

Conversely, if you are in a deficit situation, you need to gain back all of the deficit in a win/tie/loss scenario. In VPs, taking risks is also worthwhile, as you can only lose a few more VPs while you can gain back quite a few, and the amount of IMPs it takes to lose VPs is larger than the amount of IMPs it takes to gain VPs.

So I just do not understand why players believe there is a significant difference in your objective in a long match scored at win/tie/loss as opposed to a long match scored at IMPs converted to VPs.
June 6
Art Korth edited this comment June 6
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Mike:

I was discussing the concept of estoppel as it applies to this situation.

I have no intention of getting into minute details of the responsibilities and authority of the various officials, nor the resolution of the case.

I am not even taking a position that estoppel applies here. Where is the detrimental reliance? Now, if one of the announced winners whipped out his phone and reserved airline tickets to Vegas and made a room reservation upon being informed of his win, that would be detrimental reliance.

This whole situation is a s**tstorm of historic proportions.
June 6
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Steve:

I don't want to get into a long drawn-out discussion on minutia (too late!) but if an agent of the governing body with apparent authority gives an instruction or an interpretation of the conditions of contest, and you rely on those instructions or interpretation to your detriment, the governing body should be estopped from arguing that the instructions or interpretation is not valid.

As for the procedural issues that were dropped, assume that you had two appeals pending. But then you are told that you have won. You drop the appeals. Later you are told that you did not win. The result of the appeals could potentially change the result. The governing body should, once again, be estopped from changing the result due to your detrimental reliance on its representation.

Unfortunately, that damages the team that was later declared to be the winner. That is unfortunate, but if the correct result (based on all correct information existing at the time of the event) is that the newly declared winner did not win, then it did not win.

If there is doubt as to the actual winner, then we have a problem (no s**t Sherlock!)
June 6
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