Join Bridge Winners
All comments by John Portwood
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Is Rodwell a light opener? Having AK of hearts might suggest not having Q of clubs as well. The hand was opened on the other room so it must have been close.
8 hours ago
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Well yes - unfortunately declarer has just lost the K in finding out the misexplanation (equity) or misbid (no adjustment).

One point not noted - Declarer knows that East has probably misbid due to the leaving of the table and West's comment. Should they be held culpable for not taking advantage of this? Answer: probably not - it is not an extremely serious error unrelated to the infraction to not take advantage of East's obvious difficulties.
23 hours ago
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East has UI from explanation that XX is a runout to clubs (it is possible to add on extras onto this and that should be investigated)

West has UI from east running to Director.

So

First of all, let's look at the UI for East. (West has not given the expected explanation)

I don't think there is any damage for NS here - West hasn't bid and East does not have to do so. South's bid of 2 might be less likely to be made if EW have an agreement that 2 shows the majors.

Secondly, let's look at the UI for West (East has run to director so the explanation “runout to clubs” does not match the hand)

West has very good club support - but partner is presumably weak and they are vulnerable. East's running to the TD makes bidding 3 less attractive and pass is obviously a LA - so the question is: is bidding 3 a LA? If polling suggests it is then I am altering the contract to 3 - 3-off or so and possibly doubled and the rest is moot.

Anyway - we'll assuming bidding 3 is not a LA

Does the UI demonstrably suggest leading A and is there a logical alternative?

That is tricky - I think we can rule out a spade lead and a Diamond Lead, so the choice is between a heart and a club.

If you think leading A is suggested and a heart lead a LA then we can rule on a heart lead and not a club - and see where that gets us.

Assuming there is no LA to A (and there may not be - length in partner's hand makes the lead safer) then we now go onto the MI that South has (assuming it is as such, it could be a misbid and not a misexplanation)

When the J comes down from East, it looks like encouragement. If East could be shiort then I think South will duck (principle of restricted choice.)
May 21
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I'd like to know if there is a ‘pick a slam’ option for 5 or 5NT. Let partner make the final guess.
May 21
UI?
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Well - that depends on what 3 systematically means. If it is some form of superacceptance then North has psyched and you then bid 4 as a shutout (if that's your system) or cue 4 if you want to be very aggressive.

Alternatively you may feel that your partner has made an off-center 1NT overcall - perhaps with a stiff Ace of Spades and 6 running hearts, and you would do better in 3NT.

Since bidding spades 3S or 4S is suggested by the failure to alert, one has to decide which option is ‘demonstrably suggested by the failure to alert’ (probably 3) and now we have to decide whether there are any logical alternatives.

If polling finds no logical alternative to 3 (as it may well do) then 3 is fine. If it does find a LA then that call will have to be chosen to ‘carefully avoid taking advantage’ of the UI.

At the moment 85% believe, presumably, that there is no LA to 3 - which (in EBULand) means there is no LA and so 3 is permitted.
May 21
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That is a valid reason for an appeal, if the appeal committee find the director ruling grossly unfair, then NS can still gain.
May 20
UI?
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Does “carefully avoid taking advantage” stretch to assuming LHO has psyched 2nd in hand? I haven't seen any case law or guidance. (Assuming partner has psyched of course is worse). I think it is an extreme view.

(Of course partner might decide to take it out - maybe you have a distributional hand too weak to bid in 1st position)
May 20
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Well we don't know that South didn't know - he might just have forgotton to alert.
May 20
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Partner held

J
JXXXX
QX
XXXXX

Opponents

XXX
AXXX
XX
AQXX

opposite

XX
KQXX
XXX
KJXX
May 20
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There is a hand in one of Victor Mollo's Menagerie series about the Hogg not permitting opponents to make the best defence by using the same play (leading off dummy, hoping East doesn't go up with QXX) and lead through a vulnerable holding. “By taking account of the fact that East is a person rather than a cardinal point, declarer makes his contract”.
May 20
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We'll start off with Law 80B2a (duties of the TO)

(a) appointment of the Director.If there is no appointed Director the players should designate a person to perform his functions.

Now, as to the ruling,(Assumed to be under EBU White Book procedures)

It is only experienced players who are expected to protect themselves. If such players receive an explanation which is implausible, and they are able to protect themselves by seeking further clarification without putting their side’s interests at risk (e.g. by transmitting unauthorised information or waking the opposition up), failure to do so may prejudice the redress to which they would otherwise be entitled.

There are six other diamonds in the pack, no reason at all why North can't hold 4 of them, so the explanation (1 shows diamonds) is certainly not ‘implausible’ - after all players can get creative with take-out doubles these days. (Anyway, all this would have meant was that a split ruling would have been made).

(Players can call one of the EBU Panel TDs, a list is available online: http://www.ebu.co.uk/laws-and-ethics/td-list)

As an adjunct - If East “knows that North can't have diamonds”, as discussed above then he can't ask a question as that would be solely for partner's benefit. If he only suspects then he can do.

So we accept that East (and West, there are no screens) have MI. The point being that South knows that there is likely a double fit around, said knowledge not being made available to EW due to this MI.

Before considering the final ruling you would need to know EW bidding methods over the 1 transfer to hearts. Obviously asking questions after the end of the hand is tainted by foreknowledge of the hands, but since all bridge players are people of great integrity, we can expect truthful answers.

Since East is going to be more enthusiastic over a bid by North showing hearts than one showing diamonds (after all he has 2nd round countrol in all suits, I think that bidding a slam is a reasonable one.

There thus seem to be various possible combinations, but I think South is usually going to sacrifice in 7 (or even 7) over a slam at these colours.

So:

50% 7X - 5 by South - NS + 1100
30% 6 By EW - NS +1430
20% 6 By EW - NS +1370

(The ruling itself isn't difficult, the problem occurs in deciding the rectification. Since there are various possible outcomes a weighted decision seems equitable. At teams there won't be much difference if we decide EW will always bid to 6 at least.)
May 20
John Portwood edited this comment May 20
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The principle of ‘fairness of competition’ is probably unknown to the vast majority of bridge players. If I were you I'd keep to movements that minimise the length of time a pair has to sit out - you'll keep at least half the field happier and, TBH, I don't think that the difference matters too much.

There are other factors than ‘fairness’ - one of which is that the computer programme for a ‘Switched Mitchell’ may just ask you how many rounds need arrowswitching: for 10 tables (share and relay/ bye stand) a fairer method then arrowswitching only on the last round is to arrowswitch tables 9 AND 10 on the penultimate round as well. Other methods to promote fairness include arrowswitching only one board on two rounds rather than two boards on one round - not sure whether normal programmes can handle these.
May 19
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Scorebridge (and EBUScore) allow you to set club default movements (Scorebridge is easier to do)
May 19
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The EBU has to cater for its Walruses just as much as their Papadopolouses.
May 19
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OK - I'll now remember every time I pick up this hand.
May 19
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Beyond 12 you can use a web mitchell, but you have to share or have players make a copy of the boards during the first few rounds. Only do it with experienced players. (And there is a slight problem with an odd number of tables. That doubles your capacity.)
May 19
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Tom, Their agreement is that 2 is Landy for both majors. That is all East can use. She does not have to say that “partner appears to have clubs” since a) he might not and b) it is up to the opponents to work that out (at their own risk unless it turns out West could have known the comment might work to EW advantage - which it has, as EW stopped in 2 rather than 3). East must respond as if the call shows the majors, in many cases this can result in a stupid contract as West has to assume the bid has been made in response to a club suit. Here West has provided evidence that he woke up before the alert, and so has no UI from it - this is a very rare occurrence and is almost certainly in breach of law 75

C. Mistaken Call

When the partnership agreement has been explained correctly, the mistake being the call made and not the explanation, there is no infraction. The explanation must not be corrected (nor must the Director be notified) immediately and there is no obligation to do so subsequently.
Regardless of damage, the result stands .

(The only query is the tenses/ order)
May 18
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There is a difference between amount of competition and fairness of competition.

Playing 6 rounds of a Mitchell with no arrowswitch (two winners) means that the amount of competition between every pair is the same (they compete on 5 boards). Obviously since EW pairs do not play against all NS pairs, some may have a tougher set of opponents, but it is only one pair missed.

Playing a hesitation Mitchell with an arrowswitch creates much greater variety in the level of competition between pairs - and hence is less ‘fair’ even though the amount of competition is greater.

Consider two stationary NS pairs

For 6 sets of boards they are competing for the matchpoint and for two sets of boards (the two sets arrowswitched on the last round) they co-operate.

Now consider NS and an EW pair (one that moves)

In fact there are three types of EW Pair

1) The one you play and is NS on the last round (six)
2) The one you play and is EW on the last round (one)
3) The one you play on the last round (one)

Finally consider two moving pairs: there are three comparisons

1) Pairs where both pairs play NS for the last round (six)
2) Pairs where one pair Plays EW for the last round (one)
3) Pairs where they play each other for the last round (one)

It is the variation in the amount of competition between these relationships that makes the hesitation Mitchell less fair than the truncated one.

(Obviously this does not take into account relative stregngths of opponents, their location in the movement and technical difficulty of the boards)

PS - if you want the easiest game in a full Mitchell with one arrowswitch, arrange to play the strongest pair on the arrowswitched round. If you do come to the club when I am directing I will make sure that I do play you in that position.
May 18
John Portwood edited this comment May 18
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If partner has a suitable club holding, we can lead a club AFTER the Ace of Diamonds. If declarer has a good club holding then we can't switch.

In general, the lower the top honor the safer the lead. The problem is: you have limited long-card trick taking potential in clubs (partner is unlikely to have 5). Partner is more likely to hold a 5-card major (unless your bidding methods include Lucas or extremely aggressive weak 2s - in which case he is more likely to hold 5 diamonds.)
May 17
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The OP is dropping hints that the NT call may be atypical. I am playing on that.

The problem I have is that all the other suits are dangerous to lead from - and no indication as to which might be best. I can give arguments for and against each in turn - which is why it is being polled. Looking at dummy might give me an indication.
May 17
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