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All comments by Joe Stokes
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I agree that marijuana-related substances are not performance enhancing; nonetheless, cannabinoids are prohibited in all forms (natural and synthetic) by the World Anti-Doping Authority in competitions. In fact, even cannabimimetics (great word) are banned.
Feb. 3
Joe Stokes edited this comment Feb. 3
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They do need to augment to have six players. The USBF Board is the decision maker re augmentation, and they give consideration to suggestions from the team that qualified with fewer than six players. The Conditions of Contest for the 2017 Michael Seamon JUSBC say preference will be given to those who played in the event and who are active in the USBF online training program when selecting players to add.
Jan. 2
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Ryan, I agree with much of what you said. If bridge is to stay vibrant we need large numbers of young players taking up bridge and inclusive programs at the grassroots level. We need what you refer to as a US Junior Program that fosters kids' playing bridge; we don't have one (although a few geographically-based programs are making strides).

The USBF Junior Program is by definition focused on the elite young players. Our mission is to select, support, and train a few dozen juniors who will represent the USA in international competitions for juniors.

Edit: I should have started “Dennis,” not “Ryan.” I apologize.
Jan. 1
Joe Stokes edited this comment Jan. 2
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So good to hear that, Ai-Tai, both the “better spirits” part and the coming back in 2019 part. I didn't know any of these men (except via email) before the Michael Seamon JUSBC, but I really enjoyed meeting and talking with them. They have great futures both in bridge and life. See you again, guys, in 2019, I hope.

Readers may not know how accomplished these young men are already. Four are in prestigious graduate programs at Penn, Stanford, Harvard, and Columbia; one is an undergraduate at Northeastern, and one a software engineer at Facebook. They have been playing bridge together for about a decade, having attended the same high school in Beijing.
Jan. 1
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Indeed, we are very pleased to have our JUSBC named for Michael. Many thanks to Pat and Jimmy Cayne (JEC to BBO kibitzers) for honoring their friend Michael and for their support of our Junior Championships.
Dec. 29, 2017
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fun read, Max. Congrats on your accomplishments, your insights, and your approach to the game – especially your efforts to play against the strongest opponents you can find and your focus on ethics. Well done to both you, your partners, and your partner and mentor Debbie (and Debbie, it must be fun to have such talented mentees so taken with the game). Thanks, too, for playing with and mentoring several juniors.
Dec. 22, 2017
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Yes, declarer had a rare blindspot (hard playing 4-handed in this event). Also, in addition to the false count 9 from West, East led the queen of spades from KQ, playing standard honor leads. Not that it mattered: unlikely to have led Q from Qx(x..). Thanks, Oren; a great report on an interesting round, and congrats on a good finish.
Dec. 10, 2017
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At the risk of being petty, looks like you are asking about responder’s double. Advancer has yet to bid.
Nov. 28, 2017
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A few precautions minimize the risk, especially when each table is in a separate room (typical in later stages of USBF and major ACBL team events): kibitzers must be at the table at the start of the session and if they leave, they may not return; players leaving the table during a session are accompanied by either an opponent or a director (insert juveniles jokes here); and, of course, the VuG computer screen is not visible to players or kibitzers (privacy screens help).
Nov. 22, 2017
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If takeout=responsive, this poll may be (close to) unanimous. I can't imagine not playing this double as responsive.
Oct. 19, 2017
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maybe “showing spades and any other suit…” would help clarify
Sept. 19, 2017
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Good information, nice tone. Thanks. Good luck.
Aug. 21, 2017
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I missed this the first time; thanks Ron and Ai-Tai. Very well done piece and great publicity for the game.
Aug. 2, 2017
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Congratulations, Matt. Well deserved. I'll echo Steve's comment that Matt's the best at restoring calm rationality in a potentially-explosive situation.
Aug. 2, 2017
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I think that is correct in ACBL events, unless I am out of date (nah, couldn't happen). One cannot bar kibitzers from his/her table, but each player may bar one specific kibitzer without cause. (Probably are some interesting stories that led to that rule.)
July 18, 2017
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Thanks, Oren. Fun to see these hands again. Great writing as usual. GL to you all in Toronto.
July 17, 2017
Joe Stokes edited this comment July 17, 2017
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I was suggesting that 2 followed by 2 can show 5 hearts (or 6 weak) in an unbalanced or semi-balanced hand, with 2 followed ny 2NT showing 5-3-3-2 invitational. Sorry I wasn't clearer.
July 15, 2017
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another option is for the slower route to 2NT to promise 5 in responder's major; with only 4, bid 2NT over 1NT (assuming that is not the way to get out in 3).
July 14, 2017
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And now the article has a correction: (July 11, 4:10 p.m.): An earlier version of this article incorrectly said that artificial intelligence was better at bridge than the best human players of the game. That reference has been removed; the best humans are still better than the best bots at that game.
July 11, 2017
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And congrats also to a fine group of young players who led for much of the final session and finished a close third: Di Franco and Manno (in their 20s); Palma, Poon, and Loo (30s); and Goldberg (who looks young herself but is probably a bit older). I'm sure they were disappointed with the finish but hope they recognize their significant, impressive accomplishment.
Dec. 5, 2016
Joe Stokes edited this comment Dec. 5, 2016
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