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All comments by Art Korth
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I would sooner bid 8 than pass 5x.

(Before anyone cites chapter and verse on the sanctions for making an illegal call, this is a joke).
July 31
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Peg:

The man had 13 cards in his hand. He had to follow suit 13 times. Only on one of those 13 plays did he have any difficulty playing a card.

I may be getting more cynical as I get older. But I am trying not to get any more naïve.

Many years ago I was playing in a club game and one of my opponents (who I already held in low esteem) did exactly the same thing - every other play was normal, but on the play of the crucial suit in which my partner had a two-way guess, this opponent fumbled over a holding of two small. When confronted, she blamed some ailment. I didn't believe it then, and I don't believe it now.
July 31
Art Korth edited this comment July 31
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Jim:

You could not be more correct.

Story from two days later.

Playing with a different partner in a regional pair game, my partner was declaring a diamond partial. He led a trump off dummy (Kxxx) and his RHO fumbled noticeably before following small. My partner, holding AJTxx, won the Ace and played low to dummy's King, on which the fumbler showed out. On the next trick, my partner led a heart towards his hand, on which the fumbler rose with the Ace, crashing his partner's singleton King.

At the conclusion of the round, with several minutes remaining before the start of the next round, I left the table and sought out a TD. I explained what had happened. The TD said that he would talk to the fumbler in a few rounds so that it was not patently obvious which board he was talking about.

I returned to the table and we changed for the next round. Our new opponents were not present, and my partner commented to me about the crashed honors “It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy!” Needless to say, my partner was referring to the fumble.
July 31
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@Ian:

There must be some territory between declarer stating that he took a particular line of play because, in his opinion, his LHO hitched on the play of the King and “this annoying ch**ting b**t**d deliberately hesitated so I got that wrong sorry partner.”

@Karen:

Saying that “the hitch generally denies the key card” implies to me that the hitch is deliberate. Is that what you are implying?

You go on to say that with the Ace the defender would be ready for the play of the King and would be more likely to play smoothly to the trick. I find the logic of this baffling. Why would the defender not play smoothly to the trick without the Ace unless there was a deliberate attempt to deceive the declarer?
July 31
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My partner and I had a disagreement on this exact sequence on the first day of the GNT in Las Vegas. Cost a slam swing.

I have since come around to his view that it shows a 3 card limit raise.
July 31
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Many years ago, I played in a sectional in Richmond, Virginia. I believe the sectional began on Friday night, but I did not play Friday night. Glenn Lublin did, however, and he won the Friday night event and the two-session open pairs on Saturday (my partner and I were second on Saturday).

On Sunday, his team met mine in round 7 of 8 of the Swiss Teams. The Swiss was scored at win-loss. My team had won our first 6 matches, and Glenn's team had one loss. But Glenn's team beat mine to match our record at 6 wins and 1 loss. Both our teams won the last round to finish in a tie. As was his wont, Glenn told anyone who would listen how he had achieved a hat trick - three wins. We disputed his conclusion, as he only tied for the win in the Swiss, but that didn't stop Glenn.
July 30
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@DZ: Is your comment directed towards me as the OP? I posted this because I was very bothered by the table talk, which I interpreted, rightly or wrongly, as an accusation of unethical conduct. I do not believe that I overreacted, but I wanted to find out if others agreed or disagreed.
July 30
Art Korth edited this comment July 30
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How about bidding and making:

Partscores in each of 5 denominations: and
Games in each of 5 denominations; and
Slams in each of 5 denominations

In the same session.

Far more difficult and rare than winning 4 consecutive club games with 4 different partners.
July 29
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Guys, there is a significant difference between playing in the top bracket ab initio and winning your way into the top bracket in the first day qualifying Swiss.

If you play in the top bracket from the beginning, there is a significant chance that you will be eliminated on day one.

If you qualify for the top bracket semis by a good performance in the qualifying Swiss, you can finish no worse than 4th.
July 17
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Arranged results are highly unethical.
July 16
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Ed: It is like Earned Run Average. You have to adjust for the number of innings pitched and then figure out the earned runs based on a 9 inning game.

Or, think of it this way. The average MP for the team based on a 4 player team is the average masterpoint holding of all of the members of the team multiplied by 4.
July 13
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Randy: Ray said that you are incorrect. The increased award in the top bracket is based on the average master point holdings of the players in the top bracket. It has nothing to do with the number of players in the lower brackets.
July 13
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Because many players do not want to play in the top brackets. And that is not a facetious answer to your question.

What you are proposing is a different sort of event entirely. It is in one way similar to the pair events held in the not-too-distant past (The Triple Hex Pairs at the Lancaster PA Regional, for example) where section top winners in the first session of the event would play in a Barometer Final, the rest of the “qualifiers” would play in the regular Finals of the 2-session Open Pairs and the non-qualifiers would play in the Consolation Pairs event.

You are saying that the entire field plays a one-day Swiss Team event. The top 4 finishers qualify to play in the “A” KO Semi-Finals and Finals on Day 2. The next 4 finishers qualify to play in the “B” KO Semi-Finals on Day 2. And so on.

I believe that others have made similar proposals. It is an interesting idea.
July 12
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Ray, you know very well how the rankings are done in a two-session Round Robin with no teams being eliminated. And the Conditions of Contest are quite clear. For the two-session Round Robin, IMPs are converted to VPs for each qualifying match. The teams are ranked by VPs at the conclusion of the qualifying sessions.

The qualifying sessions are not a KO.
July 12
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Melanie:

In the case of your bracket at the Reston tournament, you played a 6-match 9-team Swiss movement. With an odd number of teams, 3 of the teams were playing a 2-round round-robin while the other 6 teams played heads-up matches. Presumably, after 6 matches, the top 4 teams advanced to the bracket's KO semi-finals.

Typically, in this format, the 3 lowest ranked teams after match #4 play in the round-robin to reduce as much as possible the chance that one team in the round-robin can blitz two opponents and qualify for the KO semi-final.

You will have to ask your tournament organizers why the bracket sizes are not 8,8,8,8, balance, with the last bracket being larger than 8.

Greg and Ray:

The event being held at Regionals is not the same as the NABC+ Soloway team event. It is based on the idea of the Soloway team event, in that there is a one-day qualifying Swiss or Round-Robin in each bracket resulting in the top 4 teams in each bracket advancing to that bracket's KO semi-finals. I referred to it as a “Soloway-style” bracketed team event.
July 12
Art Korth edited this comment July 12
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Barry is correct. District 4 runs a number of bracketed KOs in which the first day is a Swiss or round-robin (depending on the number of teams) and the top 4 from the first day qualify for the KO semifinals in the bracket. The event is NOT an open Swiss teams qualifying to a bracketed KO semi-final and final.

There are two primary reasons why this format is popular and successful:

1. It offers a full-day's play to each of the teams, regardless of their result in the first session of the first day.

2. It is considered to be fairer to all of the participants in that you play all of the opposing teams in the round robin (or substantially all in a Swiss format if there are more than 8 teams in the bracket).

When I first started playing in tournaments (1973), it was not uncommon to have one of the early events in a Regional be a Swiss qualifying to a KO. In one such event that I played in (near Washington DC, circa 1974), the first session (which began at 1:30 p.m. in those days) consisted of 4 Swiss matches. After the first session, the top 64 teams entered a 5 session (2 1/2 day) seeded KO. There were two short matches in the evening session (8:00 p.m. starting time in those days) to reduce the field to 16 teams, and the KO continued with two matches each day. (I may be wrong about the second and third days - it is possible that there were two KO matches each session, and that the event was over on Day 2 - back in those days no one complained about being eliminated from a KO and having no event to play in).

The teams that did not place in the top 64 in the afternoon session of the first day continued to play Swiss matches in the evening session for match awards. The losers in the round of 64 joined the rest of the Swiss field for the final two matches of the first evening.

And yes, I arrived at the event by walking in the snow uphill and against the wind both ways! (Get out of my yard!)
July 12
Art Korth edited this comment July 12
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There is a difference between “playing up” in a bracketed event and playing in an event in which you have not met the qualifying criteria.

In a bracketed event, all of the participants are eligible to play in the event. The issue of placing the participants into brackets is a secondary consideration. It is often true that there is some flexibility regarding the placing of the participants into brackets within the event.

In an event such as the Life Masters Pairs, the Blue Ribbon Pairs, the Platinum Pairs, etc., there are qualifying criteria. For the Life Masters Pairs, you must be a life master. For the Blue Ribbon Pairs, you must have won or placed a clear second in a regional or higher rated event with no upper master point restriction (there are some other ways to qualify). For the Platinum Pairs, you must have 200 platinum points lifetime or 50 platinum points accrued within the 3 calendar years immediately preceding the event or be a Platinum or Grand Life Master.

The only exception that I know of for these requirements is that Non-ACBL members from outside of North America may be waived into the Life Masters Pairs if they have equivalent accomplishments in their home jurisdiction.

These criteria are well-known, and I have a real problem with anyone complaining about not being allowed to play in these events without having met the qualifying criteria.
July 12
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It does seem common that when a Soloway-style KO is run at a Regional, the brackets are made up of 8 teams each and the Swiss qualifying is a one-day round-robin of 7 matches with the top 4 teams from the round-robin qualifying for the KO on day 2. If the total turnout is not a multiple of 8, the additional teams are all added into the lowest bracket and the lowest bracket will have more than 8 teams. That bracket will have a true Swiss movement since there will be too many teams for a round-robin.

The Soloway KO at the NABC will be a full-day Swiss comprising all of the teams in the event. The top teams from the Swiss (16? 32? 64?) will qualify for KO play on day 2. To the best of my knowledge, there will be no brackets involved.
July 12
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Peg:

When I used to go out to dinner with Dave Treadwell, I was with someone who was simultaneously 15 and 90+.
July 11
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Ray, I work on immorality at other times.

Immortality is objective. Immorality is subjective.
July 11
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