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All comments by Jonathan Weinstein
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Yeah I thought so too. Cost a regional event unfortunately, in the last round of a Swiss. Just needed some reassurance. FWIW lefty did not have the slam try the auction seemed to indicate… she had barely enough to bid game, and it so happened righty had AKJxxx and out – I would surely show some strength with that hand, perhaps bidding 4S since I can’t show a feature.

I think many people would have led a heart on 2-4 anyway but the purported slam try made it stand out more.
Aug. 20
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The principle is that at the “phantom table” where the board wasn't played, the result would have been equally likely to be any of the actual results *including yours*. So 1/17 of the time you would push against a phantom clone of yourselves, hence you were (1/17)*(.5)=.03 matchpoints from a top.
Aug. 20
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I think the 1994 champs fit this description? Great story. That was right after I joined ACBL, I think I read about it in the first bulletin I ever got.
Aug. 17
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Kit,

That’s a valuable general rule about it being okay to win the A slowly, but this hand is a rare exception! It would obviously be mandatory to win from ATx, so if East won the ace slowly from Axx, declarer would get it right.

A near-equivalent situation arose in a long-ago regional against Jason Feldman. Early in the hand, declarer led the Q from hand with KTxx in dummy… knowing your tip, I won slowly (as second hand) from Axx (thinking mostly of what to lead next, but retaining an option to duck.) Jason successfully dropped partner’s Jx. He knew I might be thinking of my continuation, but we agreed it would have been unethical to think from AJx; therefore you must win in tempo from Axx.

Jonathan
June 28
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Actually, on #2, once the heart distribution is revealed, there simply isn’t any normal hand for declarer to have. Q ATx AJ9xx T9xx is the closest, and that’s a pretty horrid opening bid! So maybe Ron actually worked out that this hand was likely. He might have been aided by tempo on the 2 bid?

Also NB if Ron believed in declarer’s apparent 1=3=5=4, the K shift at trick 3 would have made a lot of sense. This adds to my sense that he suspected the fishy 2 bid.
June 15
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Hi,
I’m glad to see Peter bring this up. I strongly support tiebreaking rather than overtime, for all the reasons already mentioned. Any long match that ends in single digits is essentially a coin flip anyway. (I have also long thought overtime is too long in many sports such as basketball.)

The fact that ties happen with any noticeable frequency is an artifact of the imp scale having integers, and the only purpose I see to that is ease of hand scoring. So why not break ties by recalculating using a fractional (“continuous”) imp scale? Henry Bethe promoted this, and once drew up a scale, I think (it would be easy to replicate.) This could be a transition to using a “continuous” IMP scale all the time, which seems just as natural as the continuous VP scale.

Incidentally, if I understood right, among Peter and Danny’s proposals were the exact opposites of “score before the last segment” and “score in the last segment.” If choosing from these, I would take “before last segment” because last-segment results are often swingier and more random.

Jonathan
May 29
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Following the US team trials (USBC) which has had 15-board segments for quite a while.
May 22
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“BAM movement”=”movement most commonly seen in BAM events”. Not a crazy usage to me at all, and not suggestive of confusion of scoring vs. movement. To be a little more careful one could say “BAM-style movement.”
May 5
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Sounds to me like if #1 has more carryover against #3 than #4, they still have a choice.

It’s not an easy call but I don’t think I favor the rule change. Let the RR winner set the bracket how they like.

I generally *am* in favor of reducing carryover by some factor when the team with positive carryover placed behind their opponent in the RR. This was (is?) a Bermuda Bowl provision.
May 4
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I agree, it's a good format. D13 (Chicago-Milwaukee) does something very similar. And incidentally, 10 teams is amazing! partly thanks to separate weekend from Flight A, I guess.
May 3
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For completeness, if anyone if still reading, the K is also fatal if North started with KQxxx QJxx xx Jx, and his pitches are certainly consistent with that.
May 2
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Incidentally, I think Jake did make the percentage play in the ending, but it’s kind of close, because he’s a favorite to survive cashing K even when South has A. For simplicity I’m assuming he knows the shapes.

His play, K, is very simple: succeeds 100% if South has A, 0% if North has it.

If he cashes K, he will ultimately succeed 66% if South has A, 14% if North has it. (The losing case is only when South has A and quack-9-x-x so no endplay is possible.)

So, if you think the bidding (and play) carries no inference about the A, the simple play is right. This depends on whether, over the 2 asking bid, you think North is in a destructive bidding position so the A doesn’t matter.
May 2
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On Board 22, it was actually excellent *partnership* defense. Michael was careful to come down to 1 club and 4 hearts at the end. If South kept another club, it would have been safe for Jake to try the K before committing himself. But that would be fatal if Michael was down to Q9xx A, so Jake had to pick his poison without cashing any hearts. On Vugraph it appeared Michael took a while for his last pitch…excellent work to envision partner and declarer's problems from the weak hand.
May 2
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My local club has used a mode where scores start to show only after 4 rounds or so. Clearly a good tweak if you show at all.
April 3
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An aluminum foil box is vastly superior to any of the many wooden holders I’ve tried. The crucial pro-tip is to keep some foil in the box. Otherwise it tips over much too easily.
March 31
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For beginners who finished last, poor valuation much more likely than anything sinister.
March 29
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NS could easily make 8 tricks in clubs if they got to lead. Pull three rounds of trumps, then three rounds of diamonds. When EW lead against 2, looks like their play is three rounds of spades, threatening to score the 13th spade or an extra trump trick. The play from there isn’t simple – from DF we know that EW always get a 6th trick, but there are a number of variations. EW’s control of the side suit looks like the key difference between 2 and 2.
March 29
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Results at http://thecommongame.com/PHPPOSTCGS.php?options=LookupClioBoard&acblno=&date=2017-03-28&board=15&gamemode=

Only about 10% managed to double the 1NT overcall, it appears.
March 29
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Opener had QTx in clubs.
It’s a classic Vondracek effect: you have a loser in spades but not clubs, and spades plays better. The phrasing “Vondracek effect works in spades but not clubs” is a bit confusing. The play is indeed worth studying, certainly more complex than the standard Vondracek examples.
March 29
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It would also be normal to make 3nt on a diamond lead. Looks like the normal result after a 2nt opening and transfer auction. Clubs are very random board-by-board, but session results generally pretty just.
March 28
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