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All comments by Wayne Burrows
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“You continue to ignore my main point; the total change of mindset that is brought about by the BIT. All the highfalutin analysis and arguments for the ♦ lead are basically irrelevant. Partner should not make a BIT which basically announces ‘I have an ace’.”

Previously, you said “without UI (or ‘help’), the mindset of a player is totally different.”

I do not accept that the break in tempo announces (basically or otherwise) “I have an ace.” That is only one of many possible reasons for the break in tempo.

If a break in tempo is being used to announce that a player has the ace then that is a whole different matter than UI. It is illegal communication between partners.

The notion that the mindset is changed is speculative and not established.

Adjustments in UI situations are based on bids or plays that are “demonstrably suggested” and “logical alternatives.”

We cannot determine the mindset of a player. There is no way of knowing for certain whether Glubok had thought of the diamond lead before the hesitation or not. If not then there is no way of knowing whether he was triggered into his thinking by the hesitation.

Therefore we need an objective measure. And the objective measure is based on actions being “demonstrably suggested” and that there is at least one “logical alternative”.

My contention is that a slow pass does not demonstrably suggest a diamond. And further that a zero play should not be considered by anyone to be a logical alternative whatever the result of a poll.
Dec. 7, 2018
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'“ What is the hand you are hoping to defeat 7NT with a non-diamond lead that is consistent with this auction?” And similarly, elsethread Michael H:

That might SEEM like the logical question but, when it comes to UI, it is not the main question. It's barely even a relevant question.'

The law is defined in terms of logical alternatives which are defined in terms of one's peers, ‘class of player’, using the same methods. Unfortunately, ‘class of player’ is not defined.

I seriously doubt whether a player that makes a safe lead to allow the opponents to take their thirteen tricks is a peer or in the same class as a player who makes the best effort to defeat the contract when the opponents are in 7NT.

A safe lead when the opponents almost certainly have thirteen tricks is absurd when there is an appreciable chance the opponents have screwed up. And that information is available from their auction.

Even allowing for a poor bid by Levin, to not investigate 7NT opposite the unlimited Grue, a priori there is a significant chance that the A is not held and that makes other leads extremely poor on this auction - when a hand not in control corrects to 7NT not knowing that a particular ace is not held.
Dec. 7, 2018
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What would have happened if Antonsen had held the A or another ace or trick? After 7NT would he have doubled? Would he have paused and passed?

Of course we can never know. But if there is a reasonable possibility he would have paused then surely the diamond lead is not suggested over another by the pause.
Dec. 7, 2018
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Except we were hoping for a construction where there are 12 tricks on a spade or some other safe lead.
Dec. 7, 2018
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Martin Reid is a big boy.
Dec. 6, 2018
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Ray your suggestion is absurd. Of course no one wants an ace to be shown by a hesitation.
Dec. 6, 2018
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I think the problem is that something “stupid” should not be a logical alternative. The problem is with the name logical alternative or with its definition or with the judgement of people who think that the stupid is a logical alternative.

The problem with the “unethical” comment is that it is in the report without being discussed. The committee should have explicitly made a comment about it. Probably that comment should have repudiated the suggestion of anything unethical.

Silence by the committee was a poor decision.
Dec. 6, 2018
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Explanation of methods does not include lessons on how those methods maybe used.
Dec. 6, 2018
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Ed, Perhaps I should have said rectified but for completeness there are also times when it should be punished under L73C. Seldom if ever are there penalties issued under than law despite the fact that it is frequently broken.
Dec. 6, 2018
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“An appeal shall not be heard unless:
1. in a pairs event both members of the
partnership concur in making the appeal (but
in an individual contest an appellant does not
require his partner’s concurrence).” Law 92D1

Unless the appeal was irregular and unlawful in this respect then I think we can conclude that Joe Grue concurred with making the appeal.
Dec. 6, 2018
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Ron 16A covers what information a player may used. The similar term “from other sources” appears in the heading 16D but the laws tell us the headings do not form part of the laws. Perhaps it would be better if these terms were defined formally.
Dec. 6, 2018
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“A player may use information in the auction or
play if:
(a)it derives from the legal calls and plays of
the current board (including illegal calls and
plays that are accepted) and is unaffected
by unauthorized information from another
source”

To me this seems a weird sentence.

The information may be used if it derives from a legal call or play and it is unaffected by unauthorised information.

That seems to say if the information in the auction is affected by unauthorised information then you cannot use the information from a legal call or play. Which seems to be a bizarre concept.
Dec. 6, 2018
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“I really do think that the problem was in the polling.”

It seems to me that there is a real danger that those answering the poll answered on auto-pilot. Perhaps based on a maxim that a safe lead is always desirable against a grand slam.

This is a flaw in using polls. As I said elsewhere, the laws do not require polls. Polls are the way that directors solve the problem of determining whether the threshold for logical alternative is met. Any such poll must be interpreted with some care and caution.

A diamond lead is, surprisingly to some and therefore maybe counter intuitively, safe. It is without cost if:

1. South has the A

2. West has the stiff A

3. South has the Q

4. EW have 13 tricks without a diamond lead.

Each of these possibilities is reasonably likely. Together they are almost certain.
Dec. 6, 2018
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No UI should not be punished a priori.

The use of UI should be punished.
Dec. 6, 2018
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This is not an unusual ace asking bid.

It is just that there is an interesting inference available that is not usually available on these auctions. I do not have to disclose such inferences that allow me to use an ordinary key card ask in an unusual way. That is general bridge knowledge that is available to everyone without disclosure.
Dec. 6, 2018
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“♠Kxx ♥AJxxx ♦Ax ♣AQx”

Kit this hand is not possible.

1. Joe Grue has two key cards and this hand has four.

2. This is not even close to count 13 tricks opposite the missing key card and the queen of trumps. In particular, Grue is not known to be short in hearts nor to have a heart honour. It would be a huge leap of faith to jump to 7 with such uncertainty about the hearts.

Once you realise this latter point I think Levin is almost guaranteeing the KQ and quite possibly KQJ (and the A if that is not one of Grue's keycards.) But once you give him those cards now there are a large number of spade and heart tricks after Grue's correction to 7NT.
Dec. 6, 2018
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“Does the UI suggest a diamond lead? IMO it does. What could South be thinking about other than doubling? Nothing, so he is thinking about doubling. He must have an ace, as otherwise why would he double? By your logic, which is quite sound, that ace figures to be the ace of diamonds. Thus, the UI suggests the diamond lead.”

I agree that south if thinking must be thinking of doubling.

However I do not agree that it follows from that that he “must have an ace”. There are other holdings where he might think 7NT is going down. Partner knows you are stopping diamonds if he has holdings in two of the other suits that tell him they are not going to run then he might consider doubling.

I do accept that the ace that partner is most likely to have is the A. However I do not see how that information comes from the UI of a slow pass. It comes from the AI of the auction. I come to precisely the same conclusion whether partner doubled or passed. Just consider the alternative that partner has a different ace. Now a slow pass might be based on thinking that double did ask for a diamond lead or simply that he was unsure whether double would ask for some specific suit that he did not want to direct. That slow pass would not suggest a diamond. It is 100s to 1 with or without a slow pass that if an ace is missing on this auction it is the A.

The information “I have the diamond ace” is not in the slow pass. Even the information that a diamond lead is better than any other lead is not in the slow pass. The information in the slow pass is just that the player had something on which to base thinking of a double - it could be any ace or various other potential tricks.
Dec. 5, 2018
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There might have been a comment. I would be surprised if any experienced player at some time has not heard an opponent say something after they realised they had done something stupid.
Dec. 5, 2018
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“My lead choice is definitely based on logic. It is the logic that if partner had the ace of diamonds he would have doubled.”

That is not logic as I know it or have studied it.

There is no universal logic in which partner would have doubled if he held the A.

The the premise that partner would double with the A is flawed and I think it is in a general sense but maybe not for some particular partnerships then there is no logic to the insistence on a non diamond lead.

That is opinion and it is opinion that is based on some particular method or imputed style onto south. It is not the only way to play bridge.

Anyone who reasons no diamond lead because south did not double without establishing that that is the method played by south is not part of the proper population to determine whether or not a diamond lead has logical alternatives.

If you hold a strong view that double would show the A or any ace or that pass would deny an ace then perhaps you are not a peer of the player making the decision or not using the methods of that partnership. Therein lies the problem.

As Michael has said several times. What is the hand you are hoping to defeat 7NT with a non-diamond lead that is consistent with this auction?
Dec. 5, 2018
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The polls do not show that at all.

1. The polls may not have been conducted properly by asking pairs to use the methods of the partnership. In particular there does not seem to have been any attempt to establish what a double would mean. At least one of the people polled imputed a method onto the auction that was not established by the director as a fact for the partnership concerned.

2. A sample of six is extremely unlikely to establish anything to a reasonable standard. Certainly not a standard by which there is any fairness in taking away a normal lead given the auction. From a poll of six one should not be convinced that there is no logical alternative if zero poll for a different action and one should not be convinced that there is a logical alternative if one, two, or three and possibly more poll for a different action. Indeed a poll should almost never be taken as definitive. That is an extremely poor use of statistical data.
Dec. 5, 2018
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