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YBTJ - 6NT claimed

West
854
1082
973
KQ32
North
Q106
AK9
KQ8
A1098
East
J92
QJ63
J102
754
South
AK73
754
A654
J6
D

Yesterday I was asked to be a member of an Appeal Committee. I accepted, which may not have been a clever call (shall we say an overbid?).

In our case North became declarer with the above cards in 6NT after an uncontested bidding sequence by NS (interestingly it was not provided to the committee, but as a rare exception it really is not important in this case). East opted to lead the seven of clubs, dummy played small, West played the Queen. Declarer took the trick and claimed twelve tricks, stating that he plays now a club back. Counting the obvious tricks E-W found only eleven (3 spades, 2 hearts, 3 diamonds and 3 clubs).

EW asked for the ruling of the jury, who learned that there is agreement about the facts around the table, and citing the §70D1 decided the result being one down. Her decision was based on the fact that “careless” declarer play can result in going down (such as throwing a spade and a diamond on the high clubs or playing for the non-working spade finesse, both would be “normal” by definition - not mentioned the simple version of blocking the key suits).

NS appealed. They clarified that they agree with the general idea of choosing the losing line in spades (even when it is inferior), but for them not testing the diamonds first, before playing on spades is “senseless” choice of line.

EW was given the possibility to comment. They emphasized that the declarer was angry because of some bad bidding, could not count up to twelve, so the claim was wrong, and finally mentioned that starting with the diamonds is simply bad play, because of possible communication problems later in the play (true).

I am very much interested about the result of the voting, and would also be very grateful having opinions from expert juries. (I may not know everyone (my fault), so special thanks for everyone, who mentions her/his routine being jury)

 

Thank you in advance.

One down; deposit not paid back
One down; deposit paid back
6N made
6N made and jury is warned, asking for better ruling practice
Asking for help from a higher level committee (there is always one more)
Other (please specify)

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