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In my partnerships, we play low from all singletons.
July 24, 2019
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I hope that this thread is addressing Ray Yuenger's incident and not the OP.

In the OP case, I was uncomfortable making the otherwise (to me) clear adjustment to EW +130, for the reasons I stated. I think a Bridgewinners poll like this one is an excellent way for me as a club director to have both better rulings and less controversial ones. I do tell the players that I will be polling and that I will be strongly influenced by the result. The only downside is that results posted at the end of the game are subject to change.

Another recent case was resolved by the bidding poll at https://bridgewinners.com/article/view/bidding-problem-2-1exzdlypmv/
July 10, 2019
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The weight-of-cards argument for double from East's perspective is that West has 10 or 11 HCP, so NS have 16 or 17. This affects the prospect of setting 4, and also the probability that 4 will be bid at other tables. I would assess this as very low. The other side of the weight-of-cards case is that 4 has good chances to succeed, so that 130 may be a common score.

The bridge-logic argument assumes that very few if any other tables will bid to 4: the high cards and the auction so far both argue for this. NS may not defeat 4, but if it makes it will be a near bottom anyway. If 4 goes down, the double can only benefit, and the benefit can be crucial when the set is two tricks, as here. Even if East thought that 4 was 50-50 to make, the matchpoint odds are much better than this.
July 6, 2019
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The BIT was acknowledged, though South said it had no bearing on his action.
July 6, 2019
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Ruling situation: South's pass was slow, and North bid 2. I said I'd let this poll decide whether pass should be mandated at this turn. At 20-3 (current count) I think not. (South now bid 3NT, which was cold…)
July 4, 2019
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The quiz Correct Answer was 2 . I did not expect 20-0 for 1 NT.
June 29, 2019
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It would be worth a lot more, but is not reachable in a declare-only event, where the contract is a given.
June 22, 2019
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Nobody scored better than 640. If half the field (including you) scored 640, you would have 75% - so a bit more than half avoided idiocy. Probably about par.
June 22, 2019
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The ACBL takes the position that evidence in these cases must be written, in the form of system notes.

I recall a ruling from the 2003 New Orleans NABC, on which I was the floor director. See Case 22 in the Casebook (http://web2.acbl.org/casebooks/New_Orleans_Fall03.pdf). North and South had either misbid or given MI. Their argument for misbid (repeated in the Casebook) was logical and convinced me - but the head directors did not even want to hear the argument, if there was no written support. The Appeals Committee backed them up. Looking back, I still would let the argument for misbid persuade me. So I agree with Ed in a degree here, except that verbal evidence must be **very persuasive** to prevail: “weight of the evidence” is not enough when the evidence is spoken.

In Law there are three standards of proof: beyond a reasonable doubt, preponderance of the evidence and clear and convincing evidence. I would settle for clear and convincing, but the ACBL wants no reasonable doubt. The case here is a good example: you could reasonably decide that misbid rather than MI is probable, but if weight of evidence is enough then 21B1(b) would not be there.
June 20, 2019
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See Law 21B1(b): “The Director is to presume Mistaken Explanation rather than Mistaken Call in the absence of evidence to the contrary.”

There was MI. It's not clear what adjustment is appropriate, but there should be one, even if we dislike both North's 2 and South's final pass. A weighted adjustment might be appropriate here, but I do not have enough experience with these to say what it should be.
June 18, 2019
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For those curious about the result: If you bid you will be down 1 in 7 hearts or diamonds, down 8 in 6NT if partner passes (which mine would have, I'm convinced). If you pass you will be +200. All these scores sit in the gap between -620 and +480 and earn the same (dead average) matchpoint result. +500 in 6S doubled is par and next to top. The 6S bidder had

AQxx
x
xxxx
A10xx

…an interesting bid.
May 9, 2019
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The title suggests that the director adjusted the NS score and not the EW. I'm not sure that any adjustment is called for, but if the director does award an adjusted score under Law 73E2, the adjustment should apply to both pairs unless there is a substantial reason otherwise. The “inference at your own risk” precept is not such a reason.

I suppose a PP could be assessed in this situation, as there was a deviation from correct procedure.
May 3, 2019
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Declarer's discard from dummy on the first losing spade trick depends on which defender will win that trick. It might be possible for East and West to obscure their spade holdings and make the discard more difficult - but I did not see a good deceptive sequence. (East's failure to switch to spades at trick two is a clue here.)
April 26, 2019
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North was also a robot. I was South, but got to declare the hand.
April 25, 2019
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Just checking. I am aware that I balance less than some would. I admit I didn't think it close at the time.
April 21, 2019
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♠ 8 7
♥ K 7
♦ A Q 9 8
♣ A Q 8 5 3

♠ J 10 9 5
♥ A 9 5 4 2
♦ 6 5 3
♣ 6

East led a club and (with no remarkable brilliance or blunders) 1 made 1 - which was the only plus for North-South
April 21, 2019
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Law 70A “…the Director adjudicates the result of the board as equitably as possible to both sides…” This would seem to make equity a strong consideration.

That said, claims with unstated lines are common, and a common source of possibly unnecessary distress. I think it would improve the Laws to allow a statement before the director is called. Opponents say something like, “I want to call the director. Do you want to state your line of play?” If they call without asking, the claimer gets a chance to state a line when the director arrives. This seems to me a better way to preserve equity - though admittedly it is not now our Law, and also seems to excuse the claimer from an expectation that should be met. I'd be fine with a PP for the claimer (particularly one who should know better) in this situation.
April 6, 2019
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These books have been Important to my own game. I have quibbles (they do not give enough focus on partner's expected strength, and their matchpoint slam analysis ignores that when opponents make a slam against you where your lead matters, you are looking at 30% or so at best).

But I remember a hand from a swiss where I had

Kxx
Qxxx
xxxx
Jx

on lead against 1NT - 3NT. I recalled the hand on page 28 of the NT book - same but with hearts & spades swapped - and led a spade. Dummy had a monster with galloping minor tricks and two small spades. Partner won the ace and returned the jack: queen, king. I led back to partner's 10 and declarer said, “If you're out of spades I can claim.” Partner said. “I have two more spades.” No way I would find that lead on my own. (Yes, we can't beat it double-dummy. These things even out, I think.)
March 30, 2019
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Right! And a pretty play it is. West has

Q J 10
7 6
J 9 x x
A J 9 8

The analysis after the hand says,

“The biding shows a dummy with exactly five Hearts, four Diamonds, three Spades and one Club. The opponents have taken advantage of that knowledge by leading a trump. So smart, against a dummy holding a singleton, since They know the Declarer will get rid of club losers by ruffing in dummy. Without that lead we could have made an extra trick.”
March 24, 2019
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Law 90: “The Director…may also assess procedural penalties for any offense that unduly delays or obstructs the game, inconveniences other contestants, violates correct procedure…” Many of these apply here. I would not do this in my club, but higher the level of this event, the more I feel a PP would be appropriate. Declarer gets a PP and all the tricks. Defense gets no tricks and also a PP if their conduct merits one.

Next.
March 23, 2019
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