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All comments by David Yates
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I think this belongs in Andy's “Auction Whacking” thread.

It is customary in the US for the TD to obtain the obligatory declaration from North that: “I was always bidding 7”. South usually denies taking additional time even if the kibs died of boredom while waiting for a call.

My guess is that this will most likely be ruled back to 7-X but it is impossible to say without actual facts and hands.
Jan. 14
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The bracket constructions become difficult and potentially quarrelsome when moving teams between lower brackets. If your team moves from 3 to 2, they may need to move a team down from 2 to 3 to keep the numbers equal. Players in 3 might object to making their bracket (supposedly, anyway) “tougher”.

Yes, this happens when your team moves from 3 to 1, but you might not select that only option since your preference is moving from 3 to 2.

As far as the MP awards, there never has been a relationship with reality.

Suppose B1 consists of seven 16K teams plus Nickell. (288K or so). The ave is 40K, This means 2nd place gets paid handsomely. In fact, more than 1st place sans team Nickell. This happened a couple years ago at our Saratoga Regional. Rich DeMartino's team had a ton of MP and they calculated that 2nd place earned more than had that team finished 1st without DeMartino in the field.

Yet either way, it is at least the same performance in terms of teams you defeated. And arguably much easier to beat two 16K teams and then lose to a big name team, then it is to score three consecutive wins over peers.

There is no rational for believing that adding an extra weak team or two to the “natural” bracket size makes that bracket easier. Nor do I believe it makes it harder. If we start with 10 or 11 in 3-ways or an initial RR,the ability to finish in the money in a KO is going to be dictated by the strength of the top teams just below the money positions, not the field average.

In my universe, the KO should be the premier event. The O/A awards determined as as a function of the strength of the top of each bracket. (Yes, big name teams get paid for being big names, but we want them here!) I would provide bonus awards in addition to the match win for lower-ranked teams defeating higher-ranked teams based on the disparity of points and the length of the match.
Jan. 14
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“You planned to pull partner's in-tempo double to 4H…”

Actually, I did not. Since I thought 3 was making and 4-X was off just one, I already bid 4 over 3.

Also, what you planned to do no longer matters since defending is a logical alternative. Players often make statements such as this and it has no relevance to the issue. Save everyone the time and aggravation of the TD call and pass.
Jan. 14
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From the real life version of The Wizard of Oz:

“What have you learned, Dorothy?”

“Nothing.”

When partner BITs, the UI is an irregularity. What you were going to do has nothing to do with anything. YOU no longer get to choose. You can thank your partner for that. It is the same as if partner led a spade out of turn. If declarer tells you not to lead a spade, it does not matter that you had AKQJ10. You no longer get to select a spade.

However, in the BIT case, if it was so certain, the authorities let you get away with partner's hesitations. We are nicer to those who frequently commit infractions than we are to those who accidentally commit one. Why, I do not know. (Mayberry would point out that we also see more tempo problems than leads out of turn.)

For the “I was always bidding the slam” crowd, that does not matter. You CAN, however, always bid the slam with ANY partner who follows the proprieties. But that did not happen here. The legal term (I could be wrong, check with Ray) is “$ht out of luck”. Unfortunate, since North tempo-ed his hand perfectly. The original hesitation showed shape but not points. The non-bit 4 showed a good fit. The BIT over 4 showed pieces but not enough to cue.

Perfectly hesitated!

“I was always bidding the slam”. But the field does not do that. And NOW you get the worse LA when the field (or players consulted) deem considering pass a LA. I was one of two pairs to reach 7NT at MP with 40 combined points. Ten pairs did not. My partner and I once claimed 13 of the 19 available tricks in 7NT in a team match and the OT (A players)was in 6.

And here on Bridgwinners, nearly 2 of 5 polled don't want to be in this reasonable slam. https://bridgewinners.com/article/view/atb-missed-slam-2-pwlm8d9h93/ Certainly as reasonable as what the “I was always bidding” contingent can expect.

Stop telling me about how “obvious” it was to bid the slam. It is more likely to succeed given the BITs than without and that is the issue. If you and your partner cannot reach an “obvious” slam without BIT, then guess what? You get the worse LA. What becomes obvious is this slam is quite a BIT better now that advancer has so accurately defined his hand. Yep, better by quite a few BITs.

The other side of the coin is that tempo pairs screw you every time they know not to go when they exhibit quick tempo. Insta-pass over 3. S-L-O-W 4. Fast 5 over 4 and now they wont go. But you cannot call the TD and force them to bid the bad slam, can you? What is your case? “They didn't hesitate over 4.” Yeah, that will work.

Since the tempo pairs screw you every time they maintain tempo, the only solution is to tag them when they commit the BIT irregularity that you can quantify. It is not a solution because PLAYERS NEVER LEARN, but at least watching David Burn pound the wooden stake in is something.
Jan. 13
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Even easier is if players would learn to bid in tempo. However, since all of humanity seems to think that the rules should be constructed around themselves and not around an objective standard we seek to support, I doubt this rather simple idea will take hold any time soon.
Jan. 13
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It is not often one can correct D. Burn on procedural minutiae, but actual current practice in bridge follows the standard procedure elsewhere of conducting as many polls as necessary to obtain the desired result.
Jan. 13
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I am surprised at the happy to miss a decent slam vote. The threshold for a small slam is 50%. This is pretty much that or better even if some previously barred pair has been readmitted and is on lead.

As far as the bidding, by the time we reach 4, North showed 15 points and is an ace better. South showed 10 HCP and is a jack better. Obvious who underbid. BTW, even not playing S/NS the cue bid should not show extras. Just a desire not to force partner to make silly, 5-level slam tries.
Jan. 13
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David Burn is very good with the particulars. I can never remember if it is wooden stake or silver bullet, so I also shoot the corpse a couple of times to be certain.
Jan. 11
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Things to do:
Stock up on popcorn
Check BBO VG times
Jan. 3
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Max, my advice is when they write the check, take it to the bank.
Jan. 3
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I find the results surprising. For the record, the reason why Michael Rosenberg and John Diamond have won more stuff than I ever will is not because they play this X as penalty.

I see no reason why I should clutter up simple agreements about what double means with an odd exception that comes up every blue moon, if that. (Which is why everyone remembers when X did work. People remember anomalies). If someone could give me a good reason, I would love to hear it. However, the following are not - nor will they ever - be a good reason.

Being able to psych “because the opponents do not have a pen-X” is an absurd argument. It is an oft repeated assertion, and - like any propaganda - might become widely accepted by people incapable of thought. But it still does not make the assertion cogent. Bridge is played with a partner. The reason I still don’t need to X you in 2 is because if you overcall on your stiff, I will be doubling you in 3 or 4 spades when your partner raises. The whole field will still be playing spades, you will be the only chumps playing spades in your direction. Doubled.

If we overlay psyching and doubles, we see that the most frequent psyching occurred back when virtually every double was penalty. Doubles transitioned to take-out over time and during that time psyching actually declined. There is a negative correlation. One has nothing to do with the other.

Secondly, thinking we want to formulate our agreements to maximize punishment when they go wrong is rubber bridge thinking. Not tournament MP or IMP thinking. Playing for stakes, one needs to soak the fish when they move to left or right. Playing at a tournament, unless the entire field is a school of ghoti (GBS: ghoti spells fish), then I already have a win on the board.

Tournament bridge is about frequency. For the delayed X to be penalty, I have to be holding a penalty X of 1. They had to raise and partner who is obviously short in that suit elected to pass rather than double for takeout. I have also held penalty doubles of a 1 and 2 openings, but these hands do not occur frequently enough to justify giving up a TO-X. So, if the OP X is defined as penalty, that means I have to make an immediate TO-X with any assortment of light values that approximates shape. Now my “negative” doubles lose resolution in values. (I wish people would call this TO, the terminology confuses noobs) So good luck working our the wide ranges when they do raise. And BTW, this is exactly the best time to make a BS raise of partner’s spade overcall with 2-cards but 10-11 HCP. Because the opening side will always go wrong now. You can claim you win when the bid wrongly over your penalty pass, but you are certainly the worse of it when they now bid over the far more frequent negative X.

As far as frequency goes, yes sometimes they get to the 2-level with fewer than 8 trump, but once again, how often? Do you want to balance with 8 vs 8 all the time, our give that up just in case they are overbidding?

Also, don’t bother posting back that 2NT is now TO, because that would be stupid if the overcall was in diamonds or hearts. (or do we have exceptions t exceptions?) So have fun with your 2353 6 & 7 counts when they overcall 1.

I think I shall pass up yet another imaginary hoard of riches for the penalty double. For the record, the last time I passed a 1-level overcall for penalties it was favorable for us, so I was willing to give up the game. LHO raised the 1 overcall to 2 back to me. I doubled, because if partner decided this was penalty, I did not care. If she thought it TO, I was going bid 3NT over whatever she bid. She did bid 3, RHO bid 3 (because that is what ghoti do) and I beat all your scores by doubling for penalties one level higher.
Jan. 3
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Abstain. Rating the auction is different than rating the final contract.

The final contract is probably < 50% so not a good MP bet. The auction is a bit crazy. 2 over 1 is the worst start in Precision - but that is the basic system. 3 is the normal rebid with North hand. It is possible that South will support opener's 9-=card suit, but I would not bet on it. You need a bid that says “this is trump, cue bid”. That makes life easy.

3 is some made up bid. I have no idea why North thinks this means South has something in hearts. WT@# is North supposed to do with 5-5 or 6-5 in majors? 4th suit does not apply in a Precision club auction if opener could just be patterning out. We don't need 4SF because the positive created a GF. Plus, it is systemically wrong. All the 1-suit positive auctions start with responder making the first natural bid. So 4th suit in Precision is opener's second natural suit. In standard bidding the 4th suit is bid by responder.
Jan. 3
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Not sure about that, they are two of the best players in the world.
Jan. 1
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Overall odds do shift, but the biggest shift in the odds is which player is more likely to have the missing length.

Initially, it is ~ 34% (~68% combined) for either player to hold exactly three of the five missing hearts. When the diamonds are 6-2, the odds for the hand with the long diamonds have =3 drops to ~ 22.5% and the hand with the two diamonds having exactly three hearts goes up to 40.5% Instead of a 50-50 guess, it is closer to 2:1.
Jan. 1
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A light opening bid is not considered a psych because it is not a gross distortion of length and/or values.

From a legal standpoint, the control bid is the response that says “I psyched”. That is what is technically illegal. If you open 1, partner bids 2NT (Jacoby) and opener now passes, everyone knows 1 was a psych. It is not illegal to pass because that is a call and not a bid.

From a systems standpoint, the control is the modification necessary to elicit that response. A “control” generally refers to the entire device or mechanism.

If you open 1 and partner responds 2NT to show 20-21, that not illegal - just stupid unless responder is worried about a psych. It is legal to play 1M-2NT as 20-21, just not legal for a 3NT rebid to show 5-6.

The term “control” started out as a systems term referring to the entire mechanism. The regulators employed the term to refer specifically to the part of the mechanism that they outlawed - the rebid indicating a psych. And that is why both Ken and Art are correct.
Dec. 31, 2018
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The other reason it wont matter whether 5 is a slam try is that North does not have a redouble to show first round control. Nor a hand that would offer a cue bid. So even if I were 100% sure that 2 was a M/M suiter and 5 was a slam try refusing to offer up a XX, I would still pass.
Dec. 30, 2018
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This poll is flawed because everyone knows clubs are not a real suit.
Dec. 30, 2018
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“I really got the ruling wrong.”

Vigfus, Wow! An ATB posted by the person who takes the responsibility. Thank you for restoring my faith in mankind.

However, I am going to disagree with you taking full blame. I think that our laws unnecessarily clutter these situations. With each passing revision, the short-hand regulatory distillation becomes more like: “and then we expect the TD to put the toothpaste back in the tube as if nothing happened.”
Dec. 30, 2018
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Extra likes, Charles: :) :) :)
Dec. 27, 2018
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These runner-ups are young!

https://live.acbl.org/event/1706006/212A/2/results

Oh wait - my bad - the young guys were third :) Well, the actual runner-ups are young at heart.
Dec. 27, 2018
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