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All comments by Mike Cassel
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Very few newer players, raising themselves up thru Gold Rush events, who may have a BRP qualification, have your kind of mindset. The event, is plenty tough without catering to another big handful of elite pairs who are granted ‘the MasterCard mantra that rank has its privileges’

You conveniently seem to ignore the ecological implications of catering to the apex at the peril of alienating advancing players who might take offense at more perks for a very few. Maybe getting to BRP day 2 will now be easier but the optics count also.

Some of our elders had their earn their LM status in open competition. It’s a different world now. Coddling Boosts table counts. I believe strategies that encourage NABC+ entries are important. I don’t think a drop-in policy squares with the mission of the league.

More fun for you is more important though?! It would be more fun for me, but I’ll be happier in ten years if we haven’t promoted purity over more egalitarian policies.
15 hours ago
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Drop in logic makes sense like incentives for coal mining
Our future, be it the only world we inhabit or the card game we are passionate about (in which cards may also be an endangered species), is at risk.
How might we encourage casual club players to be more ____
How might we encourage club players to attend sectionals and regionals?
How do we replace the experienced NABC attendees who are sliding off the demographic cliff?
How do we encourage NABC players who now stay in regional events to enter NABC+ events?

Not by trying to purify and make clean coal.
We want more people to dip their toes in the BRP.
Allowing drop-in is eminently logical
But ecologically unsound…imo

We now bemoan LMs who aren't ‘real’ bridge players
Maybe we can gripe about GLMs whose national bonafides are tainted
Less focus on purity and elite
More on existential threats
23 hours ago
Mike Cassel edited this comment 23 hours ago
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Maybe NABC regional players and BRP day 1 non qualifiers can find themselves competing against Soloway QF losers in regional events on Wed and Thurs.
What a thrill to compete against them in a lesser event.

Maybe more attendees will enter the BRP because a few dozen of the top players will be in the Soloway QFs.
April 18
Mike Cassel edited this comment April 18
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Will a transcript of the Burgay tape ever see the light of day?
April 16
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If, as a number of posters mentioned, opener was following through on the bid that was in his mind, 5, as soon as partner bid 1, the assertion that the jump to 5, says zilch about heart control: K xx KQ AKJxxxxx

You can't know what was in the opener's mind and you really can't claim what your ‘Flight B’ opponent might or might not do. Flight B in the GNT runs the gamut from new LMs with 600MPs and those with well over 2,000MPs.
April 16
Mike Cassel edited this comment April 16
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not when you remove 4 to 5 not trotting out Bwood.

Steve, if this is what you believe then you should have no trouble letting South raise to 6.
Maybe the poll doublers don't have such stringent requirements for the jump to 5
April 15
Mike Cassel edited this comment April 15
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How many of the doublers are wondering why opener didn't cuebid 4 on the way to 5. The opponents don't have to have 11 hearts.
April 15
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Yu
don't you mean no DEFENSE hand?
April 15
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In 9 hours no one has suggested that opposite an unlimited partner who freely bid 1 over the 1 overcall that opener's 4 might show a heart control and game near-certain and subsequent forcing pass values?

The 5 jump doesn't promise extras to me:
Kx xx K AKJxxxxx
A reasonable shot in the dark with no expectation that 4 isn't making.

Those posting that the opener quick call promises extras are just guessing. Maybe the opener is trying to stampede opponents into a phantom. Maybe speed means opener never considered a 4 cuebid, and, as some have said, was going to bid 5 willy nilly.

Certainly a conversation among friends about the necessity of honoring tempo after jumps is in order. At the table with a director? Not my style when playing against friends
April 15
Mike Cassel edited this comment April 15
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Having already cuebid 3 I would have interpreted 4 as a natural call. A reasonable question is whether or not 2 would have been advisable holding Axxxx. We tend to make 2/1s in suits that will provide a source of tricks rather than J2N or a splinter.

I actually have a great hand if partner bids 4. He would not do that without a spade control. I would probably bid 5. We have never discussed Last Train.
April 9
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imo, the opener is not an automaton. When the partnership system does not account for an initial weak showing 3 response to J2N, the opener can advertise weakness by bidding 4 over 3.
The fact that I chose to cuebid 4 could have been interpreted “properly”:
Opener didn't have a spade control, didn't sign off missing the AK,K,AK, therefore must have a full opener which can only include the A.
Clearly, LOL, you can see my partner neglected to put all of the pieces together?! I am not cuebidding 4 with an opener that includes only one king.

How can responder holding Axxx embark on a slam exploration without knowing that opener has significant fitting diamond honors?

Later in the day both pairs in the last match reached an unmakeable slam:

AKJxx Qxx
xx AKxx
Kxxx Axxx
KQ Jx
If the Q had been the Q the slam might have had a chance. I would enjoy hearing from this thread's mostly knowledgeable contributors how to handle this collection.

I will submit, that bidding 4 over partner's 3 cuebid in the OP hand was the best route toward a heart slam.
Degree of fit is critical. I was worried about the ambiguity of 4, obviously in retrospect, wishing I'd done so
April 9
Mike Cassel edited this comment April 9
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I thought 4 would confirm that the club shortness was a void. If I had given the problem more thought I might have come up with Paul H's solution: 3 temporizing and waiting to hear that partner has a spade control.
4 would then be an ideal continuation.
At the risk of sounding defensive:
holding QJx QJxxx KQJx x
With an opener including but 1 control I would not be cuebidding diamonds but be bidding 4 over 3.

I also plead ignorance that partner is too strong to bid 3 as a splinter over 1. Reaching slam after this splinter seems routine.
April 9
Mike Cassel edited this comment April 9
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I proposed a third Grass Roots event at the now disbanded NAP/GNT coordinator forum. Qualify as pairs during the Grass Roots Fund Month. Best average matchpoint % over two sessions from as many sessions as you care to play.

Two Day Swiss Pairs NABC final in the fall.
The better you are doing the better the pairs you play against.
Focus on providing opportunities for Club players, not frequent tournament players, to qualify for a travel subsidy to the Fall NABC.

This popular format in Europe is basically unheard of in the U.S. When will we get a better scoring program?
April 8
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1 2N
3 3?
April 8
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shows 4+ ♠s and enough strength to take a bid: expose possible psyche
can't vote for option 1 because I don't want to play 1X unless my RHO did psyche
April 8
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The bigger problem IMO is that the cachet of the title of life masterhood used to be accompanied by an appreciation of the beauty of advanced play and a desire to become even more competent.

Now it appears to be an end in itself and a few sessions in open competition lead to a realization that to really advance requires more time and concerted effort than many want to commit.

I think we don't celebrate milestones like your first Vienna Coup, strip squeeze, throw-in, dummy reversal, etc. enough. To become GOOD at the game you have to appreciate these small incremental gains like when you first realize you know the entire shape of all four hands after the first trick(s). You have to not only not mind, but actually appreciate, losing to stronger opponents…and learn from both your mistakes and their expertise.

It's more comfortable and may be more enjoyable to be competitive at your level. But a few decades of stratification and a myriad of other options for recreation are hurdles to overcome toward gaining significant mastery at bridge.

I'm reminded of the certificates that Josh Waitzkin earned from his mentor, Bruce Pandolfini, in ‘Searching for Bobby Fischer’. We should be doing more to recognize and encourage growth and excellence among less experienced players.

Some enjoy the social aspects of the club and are not going to become tournament players. Let's insure the club remains a fun place to play. But if we don't make an effort to ignite the desire for the appreciation of ‘the inner game of bridge’ among those who have potential we risk losing the base of the tournament player pyramid in the next decade.
April 8
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5 by you might just be a transfer to 6X
April 6
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Some might believe that it's important to start getting your suits in rather than claiming the balance of power.
Was hoping to get a read on how many would choose a bid rather than XX.
April 6
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Isn't that the truth?
If we don't find a way to keep Gold Rush graduates and Bronze LMs interested in growing in their knowledge and appreciation of the game the next decade or two are going to be disruptive.

Dilution is not the word that comes to mind. It's the coming decimation of experience and expertise.
April 6
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the arabesque backs on the Kem cards of yore also.
April 4
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