Join Bridge Winners
All comments by David Yates
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These days, if 3N = AKQxxx it means everyone else opened three.
6 hours ago
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Once Chuck Lamprey and a new partner were filling out a card before game time. When they got to weak-twos, Chuck replied that he played feature. His partner suggested they play Ogust instead.

Chuck: “I do not really see the point to Ogust”.

Other guy: “You can describe the range and suit quality.”

Chuck: “My weak twos show a weak hand and a good suit. But if you want to ask again, it is still going to be a weak hand and a good suit.”
6 hours ago
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@John, on my next submission of suggested law changes, I shall propose that you be barred from participating in (most) discussions of UI. Oh wait, you already are under the “peer group” provision! You see, it is not that I disagree (much at all) with anything you wrote, just that I suspect that most of it might not apply here. Five of the other 11 pairs in this particular field elected to defend 2. It is not clear for the other six results what bidding options were presented. But nearly half passed in balance, even if all tables overcalled 2. (Some might have bid 2, some might play DONT and treated this as a good 2 call (it is given what passes for an immediate 2 call these days) starting with X and allowing W to show a GI hand.)

Now the only way I am defending 2 with 2335, white at MP is either (a) I did not see South’s bid and thought the auction went all pass (b) my partner tanked for half a minute. Now I will save the time of the TD call and pass.

BTW, unless I have MP’d this board horribly wrong, the difference between 2 -1 and 3C+1 is one MP. Which is shorthand for it is easy to be ethical at the club because one has so much field protection there when employing losing MP strategies

However, back to our skewed concepts about polling and “peer groups”. The original intent of this was to protect the lawmakers (most of whom are VG to WC players) and the experts from being subject to a TD’s version of how bridge was played. It was never originally intended as anything more than a directive to “ask someone who knows”, but this has since taken a life and language in the laws of its own.

OK, no one passes in balance in Greco-Hampson, Lall-Bathurst, Hurd-Wooldridge and the newly formed partnership of Adams-Yates (the rest of them probably don’t want me dragging down the peer group, but there I am). So since absolutely none of these players would pass without the UI, then we get to bid with the UI because of our peer group, right?

I believe the answer is NO.

I believe that pass & X are both logical alternatives even if a certain class or type of player would be unlikely to choose one over the other. Once the UI (here it is a significant BIT) enters the equation such that it skews the probability of success for one option, then this table is no longer playing under the same conditions as all the other tables.

It is somewhere between disingenuous and preposterous to argue “I was always bidding”. Here is the deal: if you want to imagine that you can play as well as John Hurd, play on the same field. Even a deliberate partner like Joel does not tank with the West hand. So play on the same field as them and STOP CREATING UI.

Because the reality is that no one knows everything that goes into a decision. I abstained in Ray’s poll. I believe the best option is to reopen with a double. But it is quite possible with at least one of my partners might pass the East hand in balance. This is because she has a proclivity to pass my takeout doubles when she should have bid. With white ops, holding empty kings and a minimum in front of the bidder, I am not risking -470 when pass need not necessarily lead to a bad board.

We need to clean up our UI rules and procedures. What you were going to do should no longer matter after partner tanks. That tank should take the decision out of your hands. You should not be able to wiggle out claiming “peer group” when the UI clearly skews the odds among the available options.

It is simply impossible to know or replicate the entire scope of a specific decision process. Pass is a logical alternative to X simply because it COULD BE the winning option. You might make it “100%” to double, but the fact remains that option will never be 100%. Sometime partner has: Jxxx / Q10x / xxx / AQx, floats the X and you are -470 when South turns up with KQ109xx / xx / AJ9x/ x.

If I am playing with John A, I know I can drive him off X because he thinks my BIT shows an interest in penalties. So now I get a freeroll by tanking with xxxx/Qxx/xxx/AQx. The best part is my own partner John doesn’t know I was just working the system. I don’t want him to reopen with X because I have no idea what to do. We probably cannot make 3NT or maybe not even 2. I tank and now John - trying to be ethical - passes the 2(443) hands but bids with a 5cm. Perfect! Just what I want.

Thanks peer groups and polling!
May 23
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Good catch. E's shape is known with the heart pitch on the Q,
and ruffing heart after K/A, but W could have a 12-pointer.

After A, club - (low) - ruff, heart to ace, it would be an interesting gambit of not ruffing the K.
May 23
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If have to say that 9 lead followed by club shift is too deep for me. . .
May 22
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My guess is b/c they were stuck 34 IMPs with ten boards to play.
This is a mountain against JLall-KBat / Pepsi-Zia. In the previous six 15-board segments, Nickell did not score a total of 34 IMPs in five of the segments and only their gross of 37 in the 5th set was only a 13 IMP net.
May 22
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@K.A. How many times are they going to double your pay before you commentators are happy?

A funny “curse” moment happened when Mike Kamil observed that there was a throw-in for an OT but he didn't think declarer would risk it. So Oren on VG clicked on the club exit card. Mike realized right away that Oren was messing with him. But I have to admit that Oren got me because for a second I was thinking: “gee, it's almost like the players want the commentators to be wrong.”
May 22
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The way our bridge world sorts out these situations is to follow a precise four step approach:

1. Carefully consult the exact applicable laws.
2. Extract all relevant details about the opponents methods.
3. Establish causality, was there MI, did it effect the result?
4. Randomly make up some result.

Here the relevant laws are regarding MI. It seems that South mas misinformed about XX. West described it as “clubs” and - I amwmaking an educated guess - probably it is a puppet to clubs with either a long minor or both Ms (Meckwell DONT runouts) or perhaps just a long 1-suiter (regular DONT runouts). The distinction is actually very important when we get to step #3; making something up.

If they are playing Meck DONT, it is easy to imagine passing, intending to come back in with X (TO) of 2. Now a litigious South will argue that N will convert by passing and this leads to a penalty of 800 points. IME most pairs have no idea whether the reopening X is TO or penalty, and only a handful of pairs in the world will actually have system notes to back it up. But - miracle of miracles - the litigious pair always insists it is TO and both pairs will know that without the benefit of any notes to confirm their certainty.

If E/W are playing regular DONT, then the making something up part gets a little trickier because S has to consider E has a lot of hearts (might be wrong for N to convert) or has to bid spades. The issue here is that N/S do not seem to be on firm ground as values for an immediate 2 vs pass and then 2. N/S can make 3NT easily, probably with an OT and the MI (by itself) did not preclude the option of bidding and making game. (I personally guarantee that Meckwell would not be less than +430 as N/S on this board once W opens).

As to the actual lead, it seems to me (just educated guess) that W actually thought E had clubs. Ironically, it does not matter now whether declarer puts up the K or not at trick 2. If he ducks, E ruffs and the only logical return with A/A in dummy is the heart for another ruff.

So there could be a case that that MI did not lead directly to the result. I do not think consulting the TD was UI leading to a “successful” A lead. There is no connection here. If I thought E might not have clubs, I would be less likely to lead them from AQ.

So, depending on which pair I don't like and whether I have had my coffee, I can make a good case for anything from adjust to +800 N/S to no adjustment. Because that is how silly we are with this NONSENSE.

In a rational universe, the TD should be able to simply rule that there was MI, the MI might have caused a problem and the failure to properly explain the methods that the pair AGREED to play, leads automatically to Ave+/Ave- or table result (whichever is better for non-offenders). Cue Joey Silver: “NEXT”

One day we will stop making things up and calling it “bridge”. But I wont hold my breath.
May 21
David Yates edited this comment May 21
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I agree with everything that Michael wrote above. Only wanted to paraphrase a post from Michael Rosenberg on an old FP question where he stated something to the effect that in his opinion most pairs would be better off if they never heard of a forcing pass. I think about how on target Rosenberg was every time I see YAFPQ.

As far as FP goes, my advice is that unless you have a simple, specific rule that makes a certain auction FP, then FP never applies.
May 21
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Justin is such a good player he can bust his own bracket sheet :)

(At least Kevin had you guys in the final!)
May 21
David Yates edited this comment May 21
UI?
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The only question on this hand is whether you are supposed to bid 4. If partner explained 2 as a transfer and now bid 3, isn't this now a choice between 3 & 4?
May 20
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The USBF has fewer resources than one would think. This is due primarily to the inability of Jan to leave her human form and go completely quantum. Right now there is a physical limitation as to how many places she can be in at once.

The bulletin was never originally intended as anything more than a cheap & dirty guide for the players at the event. (Keep it mind that it preceded the internet.) It had the standings, whatever info teams & players needed to know - so that on one could complain they were not informed. This is not a lot of data, so they used up the white space - (often blue, yellow or whatever cheap paper they could photocopy - by sticking in some odds & ends.

As a contestant, I found the odds and ends more worthwhile than the hands. Everyone playing already knew all about those.
May 17
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That's odd. . .
May 16
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Was your 1 opening unbalanced? It seems that the pieces fit together nicely.
May 15
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The main reason to play 5CM is your side will be better placed in a competitive auction. When playing a 4CM system a la Acol or Goren (Goren is Acol for good card holders) responder will be better placed knowing that he can raise on 3M support. The opening side will always have a better idea of the extent of fit playing 5CM.

The main thing about the Montreal Relay is only that better mousetraps have come along. (Transfer responses.) Your window for success is also a bit smaller these days. Especially since opener can play support doubles to handle 4th seat interference.
May 14
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Now Zach's partner is barred :)
May 14
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A 15 second PM will increase a pair's performance because the only useful conversation that a pair will be able to have in that period of time is to just make sure they are/were on the same page with a bidding sequence or their carding.

The PMs I usually hear that extend to still talking about a board even after the round is over and the pair is still hashing after moving tables obviously does nothing to increase performance as these people have been resulting for years without results.
May 14
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Yes. Crazy conventions will be the ruin of the game. It takes away all the fun in hands like this.
May 12
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Is there some reason I would change the table result to their advantage after South made a ruling and then called the TD?

Karma stands.
May 12
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Ian is obviously hallucinating since bridge isn't about being happy - is it? After all, who plays a Grumpy Club?
May 11
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