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All comments by Kyle Rockoff
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The competition was put together as a replacement event for the yearly ACBL College Championship, which after three qualifying tournaments was supposed to be held in Montreal but got cancelled with everything else. Who knows what will happen next year? The event was organized from a set of those that participated in the bridgebowl this year up to cancellation. Can’t speak for the organizers if this will become anything beyond a one-time thing.
16 hours ago
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Don, I don’t know about the “right answer”, but partner held QTx of s, Kxx of s and the J. Opponents can make 5, you can only make 3s. This hand doubled and partner pulled to 4 rather than risk 3N. We were debating if a suit this long and solid would ever X here (dbler was mad partner didn’t bid 3N to X).
July 3
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Pretty normal stuff (double t/o, Lebensohl, etc). Depending on your agreements, a 3 should probably be michaels instead of stopper asking.
July 1
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Matthew made the point to me in private that perhaps this article looks like “complain about a bad director call” kind of post, which honestly wasn’t my intent when I posted this. I’m here to learn, and promote discussion about the ACBL laws (and the accuracy to which they apply in live and this new realm of online play). My sincere apologies if I’ve offended anyone with the article. I’m really was not trying to be nitpicky, but a prior post of mine (on Speedball Claims from a few weeks ago), seemed to draw a decent mix of opinions of director calls in this new world of online bridge, and I thought sharing this call would help further that discussion.
June 29
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I think it would be much better for aids like system notes to be banned, but for all intents and purposes, it's impossible to enforce. You can already view your convention card mid-auction without penalty, so unless BBO wants to make system changes it seems pointless to me to ban other system aids. Now if someone pauses for 3 mins to reference notes, I still think that's a problem because now you're slowing down play. I don't know how to enforce that.
June 28
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Ditto to what David said. That's also been my experience.
June 28
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Debbie, this was the online regional. There is a glitch for 2 session events that isn’t fixed yet where convention cards don’t post at all the second session and need to be manually posted by each partnership.
June 28
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I had a particularly disturbing director call yesterday in the open pairs regarding Issue #1.

After I lead, I learned opponents play a variable NT (12-14 in some seats, 15-17 in others), and had an accident where 1N in 3rd seat was announced with no range and no convention card was posted. I was on-lead with the choice of T8xx of or KJxx of s, and depending on their NT style I might very reasonably make a different lead depending on what their 3rd seat Non-Vul NT agreement is. If they played 12-14 NT 5cd M uncommon, I would lead a .

I lead a low , and dummy came down with a 10 count with QTxx of s across A9xx, and declarer made an overtrick most of the field wasn't making (it turned out on the given deal, almost all pairs were in game, so the overtrick didn't matter).

I still don't know what their agreement is, and the director, even after asking them to post a card twice, ultimately didn't want to do anything. ACBL law is pretty clear here that we're entitled to their proper agreement (even if they messed it up on either end), and rectification based on misinformation of their agreement. No action was taken to identify their agreement, which was pretty disturbing to me, even if the result only influenced a couple of MPs.
June 28
Kyle Rockoff edited this comment June 28
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Sylvia I agree. Never said 1N is right, just figured that was the type of problem hand :-). I feel more like just poking fun at OP for using language like “should be X, but with exception you can deviate”, because I think that literally describes the sgreement for every bid in bridge. Someone has to point out the alternatives.
June 25
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I'm not necessarily using HCPs as my sole evaluation metric, but yes DOPI applies.
June 24
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Sounds like someone is afraid to bid 1N (or pass) with values and small spades.
June 24
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I would play sequence 1 as T/O if the opponents overcalled hearts over 1m and spades were in the picture. For the sequence in question, 2N is clearly all the T/O you need.
June 23
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There’s a point imo where over-alerting is too much of a UI concern. How do I know if you’re consistent each time you alert saying something like “15-17, promises 1 ace”? I also think that’s the kind of thing that maybe can be alerted, but not only should not be verbally volunteered with the range announcement, but is a red flag. I still think it’s enough of a style thing that it’s not sufficiently unusual to alert, but announcing is definitely wrong.
June 21
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Dave Caprera: “I do not believe it should offend anyone…”

If I had twenty pence everytime I heard that Dave.
June 20
Kyle Rockoff edited this comment June 20
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Going for near unanimous Dave? :)
June 17
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Good to keep in mind, thanks Louis!
June 11
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I think there is a squeeze on all those club discards? I think you drop singleton K or smother the J by leading the Q from the board in the end position.
June 10
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Amaresh and the group he gathered are doing amazing things. I also kibitzed a novice group tonight, Amaresh had amazing patience as he sat there for 15+ minutes trying to get a group of probably 8-12 year olds letting them play around on Bridge Master until they figured out what a finesse is. Not saying it went perfectly, but this is the kind of stuff we definitely need to be doing as a community.
June 10
Kyle Rockoff edited this comment June 10
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To me, it felt like the rejection of the claim gives declarer explicit information that partner held Jxxx (J8xx in my hand would reject the claim and take 1 trick) or Jxx is offside. Unless we're all going to use the mixed strategy of randomly start rejecting a portion of online claims that are correct so that declarer cannot glimpse information from a rejection of the claim, the rejection gives declarer extra information, to which he is normally not entitled to. I was south, when declarer continued not to give a statement it made me uncomfortable enough that I felt ceasing play and calling the director was reasonable.

Hooking for J onside and playing for the drop seem like close enough percentages to me that I wasn't comfortable with the director's statement that banging down AQ was the standard percentage play, though I think playing down the honors is probably the common line most would take if declarer doesn't know the J is out. Jenni above makes the great point that if declarer has counted out the hand North would have preempted 3=1=4=5 if the finesse is right, which might be presumed knowledge for an expert player, which I can accept as a reasonable ruling in a NABC event but I was not sure was a ruling to be held in a club speedball.

I just wasn't sure if the logic of the ruling should be “declarer if stating no line is assumed to not know the J is out, and will play the honors top down”, or “absent information, it is assumed declarer takes the obvious percentage play in the suit”. If the ruling is assumed the latter, it did not seem obvious to me that declarer is justified the working line of two close percentage plays. Comments on this page seems to suggest declarer might be entitled to some knowledge of the given shape of North's hand for preempting, which seems to clash the two strains of logic– i.e. A) Declarer is an idiot that knows nothing and we assume he cashes his tricks vs. B) Declarer knows the J is out, has count on the hand, is going to make a percentage play despite a mental lapse in the suit etc.
May 31
Kyle Rockoff edited this comment May 31
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I updated it today, if it still isn't working, let me know.
May 30
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