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All comments by Robb Gordon
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I am not understanding why you (and others) think that women will be angry with men for commenting on this thread. According to the public vote tally the women voting were OVERWHELMINGLY in favor of discontinuing women's events.
Aug. 13, 2015
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I have to disagree with part of the last comment. The part before the comma is fine, but NOTHING to do with bridge ability? Then why do the same women win over and over?
Aug. 12, 2015
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True enough. But as for Jody's comment, I was prompted to put up this poll by the declining attendance in women's events.
Aug. 12, 2015
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ACBL, but there is an answer that includes petitioning the WBF.
Aug. 12, 2015
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1 Bracket 1 KO, minus the adjustment for a 6 person team.
Aug. 10, 2015
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I insured my masterpoints :-)
Aug. 9, 2015
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“I guess (by now) I should be used to people making statements as if factual when much more likely anecdotal (at best).”

Sounds like Michael watched the “debate” Thursday :D
Aug. 8, 2015
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This was an admirable set of reasons and more admirable that you posted them You have my admiration :) But I would have told that person “We all buy our masterpoints.” I can promise you somebody that starts out like we all did and schleps to clubs and tournaments, pays entry fees, gas, hotels, airfare etc (oh and a bridge library) pays PLENTY for masterpoints, and I suspect that those who only play with peers pay a LOT more per masterpoint than somebody who hires a team. I know that this wasn't the point of your posting but as a lifelong amateur (rarely pro) that comment got to me!
Aug. 7, 2015
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One thing I do agree with - as much as I share the desire for a new product to replace ACBLScore, these so-called “infrastructure” issues are quite urgent. It would only be a matter of time before we are cyber-vandalized, and the support for these systems is basically non-existent.

If I were writing ACBL priorities, I would have ALL of these things on top including the new scoring software. But given limited resources I agree that these problems take precedence.

As for those of you who think the answer is to outsource, you are right no doubt about some of this, but even outsourced projects have to have an inside stakeholder/project manager to ensure that milestones are met and that the outside developer has access to the resources within ACBL to accomplish that.
Aug. 7, 2015
Robb Gordon edited this comment Aug. 7, 2015
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In the “old” days any difference of less than .5 matchpoints constituted a tie. I am sure they had a similar rule for IMPs and VPs.
Aug. 7, 2015
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Peggy - .01 VP miss? Now I've seen it all!
Aug. 6, 2015
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This is a good post, although I don't think “fair” necessarily enters into it.

First of all, when Ira Corn created the Dallas Aces, it was with the specific goal of winning a world championship for North America. Previously, the Italian Blue team had dominated the WCs since the mid-50's. As I understand it, Corn initially thought of playing, but soon figured (or was told) that this would be counter-productive. He succeeded, although the Blue Team retired (sort of) soon after. It should be noted that for the Aces to be able to represent North America, they had to win a team trial, by no means guaranteed.

Mr. Zimmerman recruited two of the world's best pairs to play with he and his expert partner. These 3 pairs from France, Italy, and Norway “emigrated” to Monaco so they could play as one team and not have to worry about any “trials”.

So basically in the second case you have a sponsor (who is a pretty good player) playing with hired guns for a country in which none of them really live.

I see a difference here.
Aug. 5, 2015
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We too have hired pros twice. Not to play but to coach and to help us work on system. If top golfers have coaches and top tennis players have coaches, why shouldn't bridge partnerships. It has helped us immensely.
Aug. 5, 2015
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David, there are a few instances of that here, past and present. Some of them have involved supporting more elderly pros as well.
Aug. 4, 2015
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Whether Mr. Bruno is correct or not (I think not), I thank God that I don't have his cynicism. There are many professional bridge players. Some of them are jerks, frankly. But some of them (many in my experience) are among the finest, most honorable, kindest people one could know. Maybe I am just lucky. (no, I don't pay them)
Aug. 4, 2015
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There are many reasons. Just like people have different motivations for, say, a trip to Paris, people have different motivations for hiring pros. I think all the reasons you give (except perhaps “employment”) come into play.
Aug. 4, 2015
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I believe (not 100% sure) that NABC+ Swiss Team events do not have a point reduction for extra members like other Swiss events.
Aug. 4, 2015
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While I oppose the reduction in its entirety, I think including the Spinderbilt would be a travesty. 64 boards per day for 7 days is a bit different from 48 boards a day for two days, not to mention the likely quality of opponents. Even today, many NABC+ events underpay relatively in masterpoints. Does anybody really think winning four bracket 1 KOs equals winning the Vanderbilt?

We should ENCOURAGE 6 person teams in these events since they are effectively the training ground for world competition (that is if we still have world competition).
Aug. 4, 2015
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So it is November, 1981. Edgar Kaplan had written a series of editorials in The Bridge World concerning something he called “sportsmanlike dumping”. He argued that if the organizers made stupid conditions of contest the contestants were entitled if not obligated to take advantage of them. This is based on the “propriety” (so-called at the time) that a contestant must make every effort to win (not the trick, but the event, or the qualification). Such situations were more common back then and often involved round robins where a team could benefit to lose to a weak team near the end, knocking a strong team out of qualification.

At the San Francisco Fall Nationals the North American Swiss Team was in its first day. At that time, the scoring was win-loss (there were quarters and halves as well, but not VP). The conditions said that any team with OVER 4 wins got to play on day two.

So two teams met in the last match. They both had 4. So they agreed to pass out all the boards and tie the match. An uproar ensued (some of these players were and are very well known). Somewhere over in the Reisinger I am sure Edgar was smiling (more so because one of the pairs was a “K-S” pair.

In any case a proviso was added to the CoCs that that was not allowed, even though it increased the chances of winning/qualifying.

Of course the other scenario, dumping to friends when you are having a bad game has always been considered cheating. There were some ugly rumors in 2006 in the World Championship Open Pairs when two pairs from the same country played each other late. The pair who was doing well walked away with three tops and won the event.
July 30, 2015
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