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All comments by Steve Willner
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The ACBL rules are unclear (“highly unusual and unexpected,” as Dave quoted), but I think the relatively common holding of a 3c suit makes 1C!-1D-1M alertable in ACBL jurisdiction.

1C!-1D!-1NT showing 18-20 is explicitly alertable. 1C!-1M-1NT is weak in WJ (Polish Club), as it is for most other players, so is not alertable.
Nov. 15
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“the claimer is the ”offending“ party”

Well, no, a claim is not an infraction. Claiming without a proper statement is an infraction, though (Law 69C).

“(a term used in other Laws),”

Other Laws are not relevant to claims.

“so doubtful cases should be resolved in favor of the non-claiming side.”

Law 70A says so.
Nov. 15
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I had a similar situation years ago with a lock at about trick 3 but with a complex line of play needed. Like Doug, I decided to play a few more tricks to simplify the claim but in the process managed to discard the wrong loser for down 1 in a cold slam. That experience has motivated me to claim as early as possible.

By the way, the important thing about a claim statement is the order in which the remaining cards will be played. Stating the number of tricks that will result is irrelevant. I will, from time to time, make a bad claim (having miscounted, for example), but the number of resulting tricks is never in doubt.
Nov. 6
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“That would cut out a lot of pages”

If I wanted to bet on what fraction of ACBL Directors could rule correctly in such a world (not every single ruling perfect but at least be right a lot more often than wrong), what fraction would you consider worth even odds? (If someone offered me an even bet at 10% and there were a way to settle the bet fairly, I'd take the under.)

I'm given to understand some other jurisdictions do better, but that's not the question.
Nov. 6
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Stu gave the disciplinary position, but what score to give is a separate matter. The walkouts are presumably disqualified from the event, but you have to balance the interests of Mike's team and the third team. There's no completely fair way to do that once it's too late to change the match assignments. I am pretty sure the regulations specify an artificial score for this situation, probably 12-0 or 13-0 in VPs. That's not perfect, but “no chance to win” was an exaggeration (though an understandable one under the circumstances).
Nov. 5
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“it might be better if the Law came be reworded from the negative side…”

That is the effect of the current wording. Failure to state a line of play jeopardizes the claimer's rights, i.e., is detrimental to the claimer. “Not often penalized” means in practice never in an isolated case, but someone who persistently refuses to claim properly might be penalized.
Nov. 5
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Claim rulings always provoke the longest discussion threads. I wish there were better official guidance in an easily accessible form.
Nov. 5
Steve Willner edited this comment Nov. 5
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Unless it just changed, the contestant in a team event is a whole team.

What “contestant” has to do with a rating system is a mystery to me. If a given pair play only as partners, they will have to have the same rating, but that's not a problem. Comparing team and pair games is a bit of a problem, but there are solutions. Nick Straguzzi and Gerben Dirksen, among others, have written quite a bit about rating systems.
Oct. 16
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I thought NABCs have four nations. (Of course players from many more than that show up.)
Oct. 16
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After discussion, your partnership _might_ agree to play this 3 as non-forcing. (All strong hands with would have to start 1.) Without discussion, I'm never passing 3.
Oct. 13
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I should have added to the above that your best contract is 2x, but you can't get there from here.
Oct. 12
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I played TOSR with natural bidding instead of the reverse relays. I thought the natural bidding by an unbalanced 1 opener was a weakness of the system, but maybe (quite likely!) our natural bidding was just bad. There's probably not much in it either way, but it would be nice to hear from anyone who has tried both approaches.
Oct. 12
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I'm surprised by the two comments above. To me, the double only says that 4 was bid to make, not as a save or two-way action. If South is sure he wants to defend, he has to pass and take an undoubled plus, which will be fine if 4 was not making. In this view, pulling the double is automatic.

Of course I wouldn't be bidding 2 on the first round, so different methods than mine must have been in use.
Oct. 12
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Thanks for votes and comments. I'm surprised there is so little support for 3. Sure, K is devalued, but the hand is still pretty good. This is why I asked, though, so I've learned something.

On the actual deal, it's not at all clear what contract you want to be in. Double dummy par is 6=, but nobody was in slam, and about half the declarers took only 9 tricks. You need what seems an off-percentage play to take 12. Several good declarers (including one of the Grossack brothers) took 12 tricks, though, so maybe there was a way to find the winning play. 3NT made 8 to 10 tricks for 22%, 50%, or 72%, respectively.
Oct. 10
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Spades and diamonds. I'd be more concerned about those than clubs.

It would have been better to ask before dummy came down, but there's nothing wrong in asking later at trick one. Singling out a particular suit gives UI to partner. That's not necessarily an infraction (though L73A/B come to mind), but partner's legal plays may be restricted.
Oct. 10
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Isn't one of the virtues of PDI that it is better when the situation – forcing or non-forcing – is unclear?
Oct. 8
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“What do we know about declarer's distribution?” would have been a proper question. Singling out a particular suit is a bad idea.
Oct. 8
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“so you can tell what the player was trying to do with their illegal call.”

Why do you need that? L23A2 says “possible meanings attributable to the withdrawn call.” That seems to mean from the point of view of other players at the table, not necessarily what the offender actually had in mind.

I agree with the rest: before choosing his call, the offender has to know whether partner will be barred or not.
Oct. 3
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p. 3 “partner is likely to lead a heart if you don't double”

I'm coming late to this party, but why is partner likely to lead a if you don't double? Didn't 2 show dislike of ? And presumably 2NT showed something useful in .

Should double say “please _do_ lead your suit?” Or is it better to keep it “please don't” and use it on any strong hand not quite good enough for 2NT?
Oct. 3
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Oh, I believe that too, but who know for sure when there is no definition? What's wrong with using “rounds,” which has an established meaning?
Oct. 2
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