Join Bridge Winners
All comments by David Yates
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If partner has a penalty pass you missed a red 3NT.

I am a bit surprised by the vote. I thought it might be closer to 50-50, but mostly I am surprised by some who voted for pass. Stevo, Gavin. I remember when these guys were young and would never let someone steal with a BS white 2 overcall. Now Gavin is married, has a kid and got cautious. Face it, Gavin now has too much to live for and bids like a senior.

Of course, if it is just me getting senile, I suppose that is a possibility. But I cannot remember ever reopening with suitable shape and strength and getting whacked in a partial - and my memory for painful results is still pretty good. Maybe it happens in a world full of boogeymen, but in today's game when people overcall 1NT white with weak shape, it is unlikely South is going to risk a X at IMPs. I think it is riskier doubling at MP. They will risk a double. Or two undoubled undertricks against -110 for passing is just awful.

I think at IMPs the biggest risk is comparing result, saying “plus 50” and hearing mates respond “lose 11”. Partner knows I have values at IMPs for reopening. A NT game is still possible. Not so much if you pass though.
March 27
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Suppose the board of AAPL wrongly terminates Tim Cook on similarly baseless excuses. Subsequently, Cook receives a judgement for $22 billion. Do you suppose there might be some shareholder suits?

$22B is to AAPL what 860K is to the ACBL, about 6% of TOTAL assets.

Our BoD just blew 6% of our organization's assets because they actually believed they could get an arbitrator to believe that the CEO did not properly relocate. So what were they going to say in response to the obvious question of: “If Bahar did not relocate, why did you reimburse him for relocation expenses?”

Perhaps: “That only proves we are incompetent.”

IMO, Bahar is completely entitled to this judgment. And we are completely entitled to pay for this judgment through increased dues, increased entry fees and reduced services because we have been so stupidly tolerant of the arrogant fools who have mismanaged for so long.

I was a bit bummed my date for spring NABC canceled. But I am happy that it will be 1/2 table less for their revenue. Keeping bridge alive is a nice sentiment, but quite frankly our ACBL deserves to fail.

If any of you lawyers our there know whether it would be possible to sue our BoD in some sort of class-action suit, I would certainly sign on. Perhaps the BoD insurance can recover this damage claim for which our BoD is responsible. On a good day the insurance company will subsequently refuse to continue coverage and maybe we could be finally rid of this pox on our game.
March 27
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The ACBL position on the stop card was that since many people were not stopping, we should just do away with the card - but still expect people to obey the now nonexistent sign.

Think of all the money our highway departs could save by not installing stop signs on corners. What could possibly go wrong?
March 27
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Would you reopen with 32 K1073 AQ5 AJ85?
March 27
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OK, this is the one. We now have a NEW STANDARD in idiotic polling decisions.

The TDs took a poll that was 100% to pass 3NT and because the TDs HAD NO IDEA WHY anyone would bid on (the slow 3NT at the table that should not have been part of the poll, maybe?) they then decide that it is now OK to take the 0% polling action. Which, BTW is - not surprisingly - the 100% double dummy winning action.

For the record, this once again disproves the “BIT is not demonstrative” crowd. No one in their right, UI-free, bridge mind bids 4 on this auction. One might plan on 3 then 4. Or, one might seriously consider pulling 3NT to 4. With the 9-8 of hearts and no entry, that would have been my choice.

So here it is folks, a NABC-level ruling that if the auction clearly suggests one action is 100% but some clueless dolt thinks “the BIT was not demonstrative”, then we go with the new ACBL policy of “Ignorance is Bliss”.
March 26
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“One more. . . ”

Bridge is about counting, but I lost track of the stupid policy tally. Anyone have the true count?
March 25
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WC is sometimes an overbid filling out a BBO profile. As far as assessments are concerned, I agree completely with BBO's guidelines: “Of course, you may at times find that you disagree with another's assessment of his expertise. If this is the case, it is not appropriate to mention this to him via private or public chat. You may be correct, but it may also be that he's just having an off day.”
March 24
ATB
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Well, the best call was 2. Followed by 3 because 4 might have galvanized someone.

I would not have passed as dealer. I would not have bid 3 (X seems right). I would have bid over 3. I would have bid 5 with the N hand over the X. I would have passed 4 because forcing partner to act and then bidding with no extras is always wrong - except, perhaps, when you have an inside track on this partner who does not seem to ever bid. But then it is still a random guess.

Basically North is scared of South overbidding and South is scared of North's underbidding.
March 22
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… and Al decided it wasn't one of his better ideas.
March 21
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I was bidding 5 before partner opened and then showed a strong NT. It would be nice to be able to ask for aces :) Not knowing what that would be, I am bidding 3 then 5.

If partner cannot now find a 6 bid with 4 cover cards and a trump honor, then it is my fault for agreeing to play. (Probably should have found it anyway.)
March 21
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Repeat?! It is like this guy is a machine. Wait a sec. . .
March 20
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This post was a bit shorter than mine. Brevity isn't everything.
March 20
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USA standard was always 1-level bids by responder over X were F1 and 2-level bids by responder were natural NF.

I believe this is still BWS.
March 20
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Oh, I get it now. If North held: xx Jxxxx AKx xxx and South held: AJ10xx xxx xxx xx, then East would have doubled 2 with his hand and West would have bid or doubled over 3 with his.
March 18
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All dogs are mammals. But not vice versa.

Once upon a time, bridge was a popular vehicle for meeting people annd/or socializing. That is why bridge was popular.

Yet at its zenith, the ACBL had maybe a quarter million members. Today we have 165K. Down 1/3. In the late 1940s, 44% of households had at least one regular bridge player. If this was also down 1/3 then maybe 38 million households in the USA would have a bridge player. Its not even remotely close to that number.

The point is that tournament and ACBL club duplicate bridge was never that popular. And it still isn't. Socializing was - and still is - popular.

Bridge stopped being a vehicle for socialization by younger people around the mid 1960s. Before unleaded gas, 8-tracks and affordable color TV, so those items did not contribute. This was also long before Facebook.

The point is that not many people were ever that interested in competitive bridge. The are, obviously, those of us who become addicted. But it is a small number and frankly, virtually all of us got started in the social game.

Marketing bridge is not the issue. One needs to SELL the game. And frankly, I never met a marketing person who really understood sales - or could even explain the difference. Until we have a product that can be sold, we can market it all over town and it will not make a damn bit of difference.

Bridge is the probably the most interesting game ever invented. I can repeat that until I am blue in the face. Or I could sing that in three-part harmonies with Buffett and Gates. It still does not matter to anyone else.

The question is not how do we best market bridge. The question is how do we create a product that does not suck. Competitive club duplicate basically sucked according to most bridge players back when “everyone played bridge”.

So why would anyone think any differently today?
March 17
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Agree 100%

For the record, my sponsor expects me to know what is happening with the hand way before trick 10 and fire a club after winning trick 9 because the alternative of the diamond cannot possibly be right in any universe.

For the record, it really pisses me off that some idiot West sitting there forever wondering what to play in a 4-card end position is going to now try to nuance a carelessly constructed claim for an extra undeserved trick.

Next up - wondering how to promote a game where players try to gain undeserved results through overly technical twisting of the rules.

Yes, we have rules. Yes, declarer should be more careful. But guess what. A big YES that we should actually FOLLOW THE RULES:

L70

“A. General Objective
In ruling on a contested claim or concession, the Director adjudicates the result of the board as equitably as possible to both sides, but any doubtful point as to a claim shall be resolved against the claimer.”

For people without a dictionary, “doubtful” implies something that is not certain.

In the first case, it is certain that declarer will not toss the ten under the AK. No one does that, so declarer will come to three tricks.

In the second case, it is certain that had West actually played a card that declarer would either (a) toss a club from dummy on the 7 (which West was not supposed to lead if he was paying at least some attention) or (b) ruff the diamond in dummy and then realize the Q can be pitched.

NO DOUBT.

So if anyone wants to start quoting letter of the law, next time read THE ENTIRE LAW before trying to apply it.
March 17
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For the record, prior to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, Meetup, Match, etc., bridge was the world's most popular social medium platform.

The fact that no one seems to recognize this is why efforts to promote the game have been - and will continue to be - a failure.
March 17
David Yates edited this comment March 17
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No, but it does mean that you play 2 when you open 1 and responder 3-1/2 and sometimes you play your 5-0 club fit when responder is 3550 weak.

It is amazing how many bogeymen bridge players can fear. There is always going to be some weak hand that cannot be catered to. A bidding system is not supposed to be efficient bidding 13 opposite 8 and no fit. One gets out and doesn't worry about it.

IMO, the main problem with 1C-1H; 2C is partner will overvalue a 10-11 count with something like Hx thinking six clubs tricks might be possible - when you might have just 2-3 opposite Qx.

Opposite Axx KJxxx xx xxx your side is better placed in 1NT. You have 2 stoppers in all the side suits and no ruffs with short trumps. Why do I want to play 2? Opposite Axx KJxxx xxx xx, it wont much matter what part score you are in because you probably wont make it.

In any event, I have opened these hands 1 forever because I had to (Precision) and 1 because I wanted to (Standard) and it was never a problem.

I prefer being able to rebid 1NT (natural, not -> ) with some of these 3145 after 1D-1H but it requires a fairly sophisticated checkback system to avoid partner declaring a 5-1 after “correcting” to 2H.
March 17
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Ray, sometimes the opponents have all their major suit cards mixed in with their minors.
March 16
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I really do not understand the problem here.

West has UI from the alert. He is supposed to think 3 is interpreted as natural as intended. Presumably, in that context, 4 is some sort of slam try, but since it denies a diamond control, West is ALWAYS bidding 4 unless for some reason the TD believes that West is supposed to act on the UI and pass?!

So rolling back to 4 is ridiculous.

The only question is whether East must now bid 5. Since there is nothing in the OP showing East has UI, the answer is a resounding no.
March 16
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