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Hesitation

#1 User is offline   Chris3875 

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Posted 2012-April-14, 02:06

I'd be interested in having a full explanation of the law relating to "hesitation" in the following scenario as neither the players involved or the director of the day were sure - as I was involved as the North player it was difficult for me.

I don't have the actual hands. North opened a weak 2H and East sat for a very long time before finally bidding 2S (he had 20 points and 4 spades and probably would have been better off doubling). South passed, West passed, and North then bid 3H. East again hesitated for some time before passing. South passed and West bid 3S. West had 4 small spades and about 4 points. North called the director who at first said that the 3S bid should be cancelled! We played the contract in 3S and it made 11 tricks (-200 for N/S). I felt the contract should be taken back to 3H going off 1 (-50 for N/S).
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#2 User is offline   mr1303 

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Posted 2012-April-14, 02:25

The laws state that "A player in receipt of unauthorised information may not, from logical alternatives, choose one which is demonstrably suggested by the unauthorised information"

In the example you gave, the hesitation suggests that partner had other calls available to him, and probably that he had some extra values for his 2S call, that he wasn't happy about passing 3H.

That being said, with 4 card support, it may well be deemed that passing 3H is not a logical alternative, and so the 3S call may stand. It would depend on exactly what the 4 points were, and a few other factors. A singleton heart for example would pretty much (IMO) guarantee that passing 3H was not a logical alternative.

The director cannot rule that the 3S should be cancelled. When there is a hesitation, director should instruct the players to play on and call him back at the end of the hand if the non-offending side are damaged by the use of UI, and can adjust the score accordingly.
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#3 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2012-April-14, 02:56

View Postmr1303, on 2012-April-14, 02:25, said:

The laws state that "A player in receipt of unauthorised information may not, from logical alternatives, choose one which is demonstrably suggested by the unauthorised information"

In the example you gave, the hesitation suggests that partner had other calls available to him, and probably that he had some extra values for his 2S call, that he wasn't happy about passing 3H.

That being said, with 4 card support, it may well be deemed that passing 3H is not a logical alternative, and so the 3S call may stand. It would depend on exactly what the 4 points were, and a few other factors. A singleton heart for example would pretty much (IMO) guarantee that passing 3H was not a logical alternative.

The director cannot rule that the 3S should be cancelled. When there is a hesitation, director should instruct the players to play on and call him back at the end of the hand if the non-offending side are damaged by the use of UI, and can adjust the score accordingly.

This covers the hesitation and possible adjustments quite well.

Regardless of whether the TD decides to roll back to 3H, North will not be getting what he deserves.
"Bidding Spades to show spades can work well." (Kenberg)
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#4 User is offline   gordontd 

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Posted 2012-April-14, 04:05

View Postaguahombre, on 2012-April-14, 02:56, said:

North will not be getting what he deserves.

What does North deserve, and why?
Gordon Rainsford
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#5 User is offline   aguahombre 

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Posted 2012-April-14, 04:58

View Postgordontd, on 2012-April-14, 04:05, said:

What does North deserve, and why?

Without the breaks in tempo, North deserves to be defending game in spades. Why? Because that would be justice for opening a weak-two and then reopening the auction.
"Bidding Spades to show spades can work well." (Kenberg)
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#6 User is offline   Chris3875 

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Posted 2012-April-15, 01:16

West did have a singleton heart. Her cards were xxxx spades, x hearts, Axxx diamonds and Jxxx clubs. Unknown to her, her partner had opened 2S with 4 spades and 20HCP. North had 10HCP and 7 hearts AJT9853.
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#7 User is offline   gordontd 

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Posted 2012-April-15, 03:09

It sounds as though North's hand would have been better described by opening 1, or maybe 3 or 4, rather than 2, but that's up to North.

A point of terminology - East has overcalled, not "opened 2S", and as you say above would probably have been better making a takeout double instead.

On the ruling question, I agree with mr1303 that the first hesitation implied extra values for the 2 bid and so suggested bidding more. However West didn't bid more at that time, so didn't take advantage of the hesitation at that point.

Then there was a second hesitation, suggesting that East was reluctant to pass out 3 and now West did bid. If we believe that West's 3 bid was demonstrably suggested by East's two slow calls, then we would need to consider whether there was a "Logical Alternative"* to it. If we showed the West hand to a few players of similar standard to West, and gave them the complete auction without the hesitations, we would find out what they would do. I would be surprised if any of them would pass, and if not we would conclude that "Pass is not a Logical Alternative", and no adjustment would be called for.

The whole thing just sounds to me as though EW are very inexperienced and would benefit from a sensitive explanation of tempo and the laws (as well as simple competitive bidding perhaps!)

*L12B1(b) A logical alternative action is one that, among the class of players in
question and using the methods of the partnership, would be given
serious consideration by a significant proportion of such players, of
whom it is judged some might select it.
Gordon Rainsford
London UK
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#8 User is offline   Chris3875 

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Posted 2012-April-15, 04:09

Thanks Gordon!
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