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"I wouldn't have passed" EBU, Swiss Pairs

#1 User is offline   CamHenry 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 10:28



All vulnerable: I've lost how to set this on the hand diagram.

NS play a strong diamond system.
1 showed EITHER 11-13 balanced OR 10-15, unbalanced, no 5cM and not 4-4 majors. This was alerted and asked about before W passed.
1 was alerted, asked about by E. The explanation given was "negative; no interest in game facing any hand I could hold".
The double was neither alerted nor asked about.
South's pass was not alerted nor asked about. Systemically it hasn't been defined in detail; the actual S hand definitely IS a pass, while Axx/Axx/x/Axxxxx definitely IS NOT.
E asked about N's 1 response, clarifying the description. It was further defined as "could be as strong as a bad 9 HCP; excludes a hand with a six-card suit to an honour and nothing outside".

When dummy came down, W asked about S's pass. He was told "it shows diamond tolerance; with no tolerance he'd bid a suit or redouble". At this stage you are called and receive a description of the situation.

At the end of play you are called back. The contract made +1, for 340, and EW justifiably feel this is likely to be a very bad score for them. W claims that he "would have taken out the double if S's pass had been alerted".

How do you rule?

[Disclaimer: I was a player at the table, not a director; I have no objection to the ruling received but wanted to see how many opinions come up.]

Edit: it's West, not East, who wanted to take out the double. Also Nige1 explained how to set vulnerability: thanks!

This post has been edited by CamHenry: 2013-October-08, 03:54

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#2 User is offline   RSClyde 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 10:52

I think that pass is natural and requires no alert. But I'm no director so maybe I'm wrong. E/W got bit in the ass by not having a clear agreement.
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#3 User is offline   TylerE 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 11:05

I'm confused...how does E get to take out his own double. Do you mean E said he wouldn't have doubled? Agree with no alert needed... pass of an artificial bid to show tolerance is "just bridge" in my book.
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#4 User is offline   bixby 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 11:07

I'd really like to know how E would have taken out his own double.
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#5 User is offline   billw55 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 11:26

Obviously OP meant west.

And agree with Clyde. Why should passing a double, showing tolerance to play that contract doubled, be alertable? West should have asked, score stands.
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#6 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 11:39

View Postbillw55, on 2013-October-07, 11:26, said:

West should have asked, score stands.

Is this ruling made under the "should have protected himself" regulation? If so, how do you know West "by experience or expertise, recognize[d] that their opponents have neglected to Alert a special agreement"? In fact, you seem to say that West should have protected himself because the double does not require an alert, but the regulation does not say that. No regulation does.
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#7 User is offline   GreenMan 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 11:46

West apparently *thought* the double required an alert and didn't get one, then was disappointed when he learned otherwise, and claimed he was damaged. This is the reverse of the usual "should protect himself" situation, but it still applies IMHO.
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#8 User is offline   TylerE 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:03

I would have more sympathy for W if he wasn't looking at a singleton . That should REALLY alert him to the fact that SOMEONE at the table has .
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#9 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:13

View PostGreenMan, on 2013-October-07, 11:46, said:

West apparently *thought* the double required an alert and didn't get one, then was disappointed when he learned otherwise, and claimed he was damaged. This is the reverse of the usual "should protect himself" situation, but it still applies IMHO.

What still applies?
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#10 User is offline   c_corgi 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:16

From the OP it sounds as though N/S have no agreement about whether South would pass with 11-13 balanced and xxx or Hxx in diamonds. Is North's pass what is expected with his hand? If so it seems like South needs most of his actual diamond holding to pass. If not, or if it is uncharted territory, N/S got lucky.

It sounds likely that E/W don't have an understanding of what their double means. If that is the case, West was probably hedging that the double might have been based on diamonds and might not be stood anyway, a position he would not be likely to take if South's pass showed genuine diamonds. West may have been misinformed by failure to alert if South's pass had a "potentially unexpected meaning". I would be inclined to interpret that as "pass should have been alerted if it showed longer diamonds than clubs, not if it just shows any weak NT or similar" but if it shows more than xxx or some particular holding then maybe it should be alerted. Even if he has been misinformed, an experienced West should protect himself; what degree of diamond tolerance needs to be shown by the pass before I start to feel sympathetic towards West's "I wouldn't pass if I'd known that" position is an interesting question.
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#11 User is online   nige1 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:33

View PostCamHenry, on 2013-October-07, 10:28, said:


All vulnerable: I've lost how to set this on the hand diagram. NS play a strong diamond system.
1 showed EITHER 11-13 balanced OR 10-15, unbalanced, no 5cM and not 4-4 majors. This was alerted and asked about before W passed.
1 was alerted, asked about by E. The explanation given was "negative; no interest in game facing any hand I could hold".
The double was neither alerted nor asked about. South's pass was not alerted nor asked about. Systemically it hasn't been defined in detail; the actual S hand definitely IS a pass, while Axx/Axx/x/Axxxxx definitely IS NOT. E asked about N's 1 response, clarifying the description. It was further defined as "could be as strong as a bad 9 HCP; excludes a hand with a six-card suit to an honour and nothing outside". When dummy came down, E asked about S's pass. He was told "it shows diamond tolerance; with no tolerance he'd bid a suit or redouble". At this stage you are called and receive a description of the situation. At the end of play you are called back. The contract made +1, for 340, and EW justifiably feel this is likely to be a very bad score for them. E claims that he "would have taken out the double if S's pass had been alerted".How do you rule?
Agree with everybody: Result stands. &v=b seems to set vulnerability to "both"..
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#12 User is offline   CSGibson 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:35

Pass as an offer to play is just bridge, and it is a negative inference anyway that he didn't want to be rescued - like negative inferences from passing when a support double is available, this is not alertable, but would be disclosable upon question or upon winning the auction. E-W were stung by not having clear agreements, and NOT by any MI. Table result stands.
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#13 User is offline   trevahound 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:42

West's pass of 1dx is remarkable to me, and is the direct cause of e/w's bad score. I suppose west thought his partner had 6-7 diamonds and opps didn't know enough to play in any other strain?

I see no infraction nor irregularity.
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#14 User is offline   ggwhiz 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 12:50

The damage was self inflicted. Obviously with no solid agreement there is no way West should pass on those cards.

Springing a system like this on the opps without a pre-alert and chance for them to discuss such things may be allowed (? I don't know) and if it is I find that distasteful but can't see a remedy just sympathy. Even then their are so many negative inferences to the system (ie, what does 1 or 1 mean) that disclosure is always lacking.
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#15 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 13:00

Did EW have any agreement as to the meaning of East's double?
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#16 User is offline   ArtK78 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 13:28

View PostCSGibson, on 2013-October-07, 12:35, said:

Pass as an offer to play is just bridge.

Table result stands.

I agree with this 100%. Nothing more needs to be said.

View Postggwhiz, on 2013-October-07, 12:50, said:

Springing a system like this on the opps without a pre-alert and chance for them to discuss such things may be allowed (? I don't know) and if it is I find that distasteful but can't see a remedy just sympathy. Even then their are so many negative inferences to the system (ie, what does 1 or 1 mean) that disclosure is always lacking.

I have some sympathy for this point of view. However, in this particular case, the meanings of the 1 bid and the 1 bid are not so strange as to be hard to digest immediately.

If the regulations of the bridge organization in charge of this event allow this system without any prealerts or other disclosure other than normal alerts, then there is certainly no grounds for complaining about it.
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#17 User is offline   campboy 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 13:40

I agree that if pass is a suggestion to play in diamonds then it is natural and no alert is required.

View Postggwhiz, on 2013-October-07, 12:50, said:

Springing a system like this on the opps without a pre-alert and chance for them to discuss such things may be allowed (? I don't know) and if it is I find that distasteful but can't see a remedy just sympathy. Even then their are so many negative inferences to the system (ie, what does 1 or 1 mean) that disclosure is always lacking.

I have played against NS many times and they always pre-alert their system and give opponents a chance to discuss methods. They sometimes even bring suggested defences, and I have only ever seen one other pair do that in the EBU.
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#18 User is offline   ggwhiz 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 14:05

View Postcampboy, on 2013-October-07, 13:40, said:

I agree that if pass is a suggestion to play in diamonds then it is natural and no alert is required.


I have played against NS many times and they always pre-alert their system and give opponents a chance to discuss methods. They sometimes even bring suggested defences, and I have only ever seen one other pair do that in the EBU.


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#19 User is offline   akwoo 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 15:01

How experienced was West? Is he or she likely to infer from the explanation of 1 that the bid could be made with 5 diamonds and 2 clubs?

I think either way, result stands, but I might ask N/S to try to give more disclosure for opps who cannot make these kinds of inferences. (Then again, if you can't make these kinds of inferences, you probably can't make any inferences from opps bidding, so I'm not sure how much this helps you.)

As to my reasoning, imagine N/S had the contrary agreement that a pass denied diamond tolerance. I suppose that would have to be alerted as well. At which point every possible meaning of pass has to be alerted...
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#20 User is offline   richlp 

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Posted 2013-October-07, 15:18

View PostCamHenry, on 2013-October-07, 10:28, said:



All vulnerable: I've lost how to set this on the hand diagram.

NS play a strong diamond system.
1 showed EITHER 11-13 balanced OR 10-15, unbalanced, no 5cM and not 4-4 majors. This was alerted and asked about before W passed.
1 was alerted, asked about by E. The explanation given was "negative; no interest in game facing any hand I could hold".
The double was neither alerted nor asked about.
South's pass was not alerted nor asked about. Systemically it hasn't been defined in detail; the actual S hand definitely IS a pass, while Axx/Axx/x/Axxxxx definitely IS NOT.
E asked about N's 1 response, clarifying the description. It was further defined as "could be as strong as a bad 9 HCP; excludes a hand with a six-card suit to an honour and nothing outside".

When dummy came down, E asked about S's pass. He was told "it shows diamond tolerance; with no tolerance he'd bid a suit or redouble". At this stage you are called and receive a description of the situation.

At the end of play you are called back. The contract made +1, for 340, and EW justifiably feel this is likely to be a very bad score for them. E claims that he "would have taken out the double if S's pass had been alerted".

How do you rule?

[Disclaimer: I was a player at the table, not a director; I have no objection to the ruling received but wanted to see how many opinions come up.]



I'm well out of synch with everybody here but, depending on the definition of tolerance, North's explanation doesn't match his action. Would South have passed with a 12 count, balanced distribution and 3 cards in diamonds? If not, then their definition of tolerance doesn't match mine (certainly not impossible). If the pass showed a minimum of 4 diamonds then that certainly should have been mentioned.
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