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All comments by Lars Andersson
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I dont know Mike Passell. I have met him occasionally at the bridge table, getting slaugthered once in the Spingold comes to mind.

Suffice to say he is a great player, a nice guy, honest and from what I have seen a model for ethical behaviour. There is no one less likely to commit cheating (IMHO).

As some may know I am a cynical when it comes to current bridge ethics. This verdict compared to what goes unpunished at the very top is so weird it is more a joke than anything. Unfortunately this joke is hurting good people.
Aug. 18, 2015
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The obvious way is how the trey is being passed. Some pairs and players are decidedly more efficient being NS than being EW. Some players are always NS, maybe they are supersticious?

Another typical example is the second slow pass when considering balancing vs 1NT. Typically followed by an unorthodox minor suit lead from partner. Say your last to bid after a 1NT opening by your screen mate. The creative genius is ever present.

One tell is the pair with very few agreements and wide range bids who always hit the “right” strength in partners hand. The “Old Black Magic” (Quote Edgar Kaplan) is still alive and well. Sometimes this can be achieved with simple things like the tempo of your bids or more subtly how hard (or the angle with) you place the bidding cards on the trey. Typical auction is 1M-1N; 2m-?? where you have that “raise or not”-strength.

Good hearing is a decided advantage for some slower players.

Prepping the cards is more stone age, like so much in the ACBL.

It is also interesting to read books by US players where name calling of players from other countries is easy but naming national players is very rare. Libel laws?
Aug. 17, 2015
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The 5 bid is “interesting”
Aug. 15, 2015
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I think playing 1NT as a negative when your side doubles 1 would simplify this considerably.
Nov. 1, 2014
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Clarify intentions, then blackwood. Why make something difficult out of a simple hand.
March 31, 2014
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I agree heartily on the verdict against W-E. As for the german federation we have to remember there are humans involved. Longtime friends have to reevaluate their allegiances. The affair is out in the open which is good. Now it is an internal and painful process for german bridge. This will take time. I wouldnt rush to judgement on anyone except the 2 convicted cheats.
March 31, 2014
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I dont want to put names on someone who might be completely innocent. This was years ago in Denmark and/or Germany. Maybe some danes has better memory.
March 30, 2014
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Can anyone confirm that Elinescu was banned earlier from playing with another partner? Mister G…a.
March 29, 2014
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So the KooKoo in Amsterdam 2008 was part of a pattern. One wonders how long they have been doing it.
March 28, 2014
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There was a Champions Cup semifinal 2008 when Italy appealed 5 out of 48 boards against this pair. Allegedly wladow said “koo-koo” in sensitive situations and his partner responsed “okioki”. One of the more amusing AC stories ever.
March 28, 2014
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Enlighten us! Another KooKoo incident? :-P
March 28, 2014
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West should just learn to bid in tempo! If so, his partner can be as aggressive as he wants. Well done TD! The AC should have awarded an Appeal without Merit.
Aug. 9, 2013
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That decision was very well put by the AC. I find them very charitable towards EW in saying they believe their explanation when there were no system notes and the bidding implied something else. 45 in the majors is not possible to bid in their system apparently.
March 23, 2013
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A similar case. You hold AJxx/Kxx/AKx/Axx. NV vs vulnerable. Open 1Club third in hand as 14+ (15+ if balanced), LHO 1Spade, partner pass, RHO 2Diamonds. I would think a pass in tempo is the obvious choice here? Especially having played your system for 15+ years and having experience in this situation. A slow pass is definitely not ok, or?? :)
Dec. 3, 2012
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It is good to hear that Bridge has been nicely promoted in Omaha and that the invited players had a great time.
Sept. 13, 2012
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This is a typical hand where you want to make a cooperative slam TRY. A committal 4H or 4S (ace asking) is just wrong. Cuebid and let partner in on the decision.

Absent clear definitions, as here, you have to use common sense. Partner is trying to send a message with 4D, why not honor that and give hime some cooperation?

IMHO if you feel bad about signing off, dont do it :)
Sept. 11, 2012
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My sympathies are clear ;). The finals might go either way though. What is good for bridge is that the myth of the Monaco invincibility was exposed, they are humans and beatable. They cant sit down and expect good teams (Canada and Netherlands) to shrink and fold anymore. This is good for bridge. It is also good for bridge with Hungary, Russia, Sweden, and Poland in finals. Some new blood is necessary for the game to prosper. No offence meant to the US in the seniors or England in the ladies, but we have seen them there before.
Aug. 21, 2012
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I think the acbl rules are bad for long team events. They are well suitable for 2/3 board mp rounds. This is the way it should be for team events:
1) For long knockouts all CCs are available at tournament start
2) What you dont have on your CC you do not play, and you dont change it.
3) Heavy penalties for using conventions not on the cc.
4) No necessity to provide defences, since opps are given very ample time to prepare.

So once a round is finished and a team knows their opponents they have all morning to analyze systems and devise their own.

I dont see any drawbacks in this and its a lot easier for TD:s so I really wonder why it is not done.
March 23, 2012
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If it wasnt in the standard multi, how come Meckwell wanted to use the standard defence? ;)
March 22, 2012
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