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A fortunate inadmissable double

#1 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 12:42

MP f2f


Who never had the urge to double their partner's bid? But it was accidental here, East was brooding over the previous hand and doubled what he thought was an opponent's bid to show his four spades and near-opening values. After a stunned silence at the table, he apologised and reached towards the bidding box again, but South was having none of it: "you must Pass now, or I will have to call Director". East reluctantly complied and South passed.

On seeing the dummy West thought ruefully that they had missed game, but it turned out spades and diamonds were both offside. South was not at all happy with -140 rather than +100 as at other tables and now he did call the TD.

How should TD rule here?
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#2 User is offline   steve2005 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 13:49

death penalty for south is too lenient for making their own ruling Posted Image
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#3 User is offline   pran 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 13:51

View Postpescetom, on 2022-February-09, 12:42, said:

MP f2f


Who never had the urge to double their partner's bid? But it was accidental here, East was brooding over the previous hand and doubled what he thought was an opponent's bid to show his four spades and near-opening values. After a stunned silence at the table, he apologised and reached towards the bidding box again, but South was having none of it: "you must Pass now, or I will have to call Director". East reluctantly complied and South passed.

On seeing the dummy West thought ruefully that they had missed game, but it turned out spades and diamonds were both offside. South was not at all happy with -140 rather than +100 as at other tables and now he did call the TD.

How should TD rule here?

Law 36 - INADMISSIBLE DOUBLES AND REDOUBLES said:

.....
B. Offender’s LHO does not Call before Rectification
.....
1. any double or redouble not permitted by Law 19 is cancelled.
2. the offender must substitute a legal call, the auction continues, and the offender’s partner
must pass whenever it is his turn to call.

South is the main culprit here! He should have called TD who would have allowed East to replace his illegal double with any legal call

TD should now consider awarding an assigned adjusted score on the ground that East was incorrectly deprived his option to make a legal call. (West must of course pass for the remainder of the auction). However, given the rest of the story it appears to me that TD should let the result stand.

However TD should in any case issue a PP on South for 1: failing to call the Director and 2: imposing an incorrect ruling on the situation.
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#4 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 13:59

View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 13:51, said:

South is the main culprit here! He should have called TD who would have allowed East to replace his illegal double with any legal call

And West?

View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 13:51, said:

TD should now consider awarding an assigned adjusted score on the ground that East was incorrectly deprived his option to make a legal call. (West must of course pass for the remainder of the auction). However, given the rest of the story it appears to me that TD should let the result stand.

Stand for both sides?


View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 13:51, said:

However TD should in any case issue a PP on South for 1: failing to call the Director and 2: imposing an incorrect ruling on the situation.

Agreed for the combination of both (#1 alone seems a bit harsh, also given that East and others did the same).
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#5 User is offline   axman 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 14:07

View Postpescetom, on 2022-February-09, 12:42, said:

MP f2f


Who never had the urge to double their partner's bid? But it was accidental here, East was brooding over the previous hand and doubled what he thought was an opponent's bid to show his four spades and near-opening values. After a stunned silence at the table, he apologised and reached towards the bidding box again, but South was having none of it: "you must Pass now, or I will have to call Director". East reluctantly complied and South passed.

On seeing the dummy West thought ruefully that they had missed game, but it turned out spades and diamonds were both offside. South was not at all happy with -140 rather than +100 as at other tables and now he did call the TD.

How should TD rule here?

The auction is over, the play is over. South's last pass condoned the alleged irregularities. result stands L25A5. If the auction ends before it reaches the player’s partner no substitution may occur after the end of the auction period (see Law 17D). L25B1. A substituted call not permitted by A may be accepted by the offender’s LHO. (It is accepted if LHO calls intentionally over it.) The first call is then withdrawn, the second call stands and the auction continues
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#6 User is offline   pran 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 14:07

View Postpescetom, on 2022-February-09, 13:59, said:

And West?

Law 36B2: the offender’s partner must pass whenever it is his turn to call.

View Postpescetom, on 2022-February-09, 13:59, said:

Stand for both sides?

I don't see why not?
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#7 User is offline   pran 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 14:17

View Postaxman, on 2022-February-09, 14:07, said:

The auction is over, the play is over. South's last pass condoned the alleged irregularities. result stands L25A5. If the auction ends before it reaches the player’s partner no substitution may occur after the end of the auction period (see Law 17D). L25B1. A substituted call not permitted by A may be accepted by the offender’s LHO. (It is accepted if LHO calls intentionally over it.) The first call is then withdrawn, the second call stands and the auction continues

East has a case because South illegally prevented him from replacing his illegal double with a legal call.
However, as the game proceeded it appears to me that East/West was not damaged from the irregularity by South.

Note that the applicable Law is 36, not 25
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#8 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 14:43

East should have called the director as soon as South opened his mouth and reported South's illegal ruling (and for some of us, violation of Law 74A2 - it really annoys me when opponents attempt to make their own ruling - and annoys me even more when they attempt to intimidate me or my partner).
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#9 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 15:42

View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 14:07, said:

Law 36B2: the offender’s partner must pass whenever it is his turn to call.

Exactly, but worth spelling out.

View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 14:07, said:

I don't see why not?

Law 11A as from 2017?
(This is one reason I thought this was worth posting and perhaps not just a Simple Ruling).
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#10 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 15:44

View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 14:17, said:

However, as the game proceeded it appears to me that East/West was not damaged from the irregularity by South.

Not only not damaged, but possibly advantaged.
(Another reason I thought this was interesting)
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#11 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 16:24

"The Director may allow or cancel any enforcement or waiver of a rectification made by the players without instruction." - 10B.

Otherwise known as "Nobody seemed to have an issue with the ruling made at the table without me around when they thought it would be to their advantage. I don't see any reason to disagree just because it wasn't. Play on, and call me next time if you want the *correct* ruling."

Of course, I use the other half of 10B if it turns out the people trying to game something through actually were advantaged, but that tends not to trigger a call later - at the time, or way too late (in the bar, after they tell the story and the other players say "what? Why didn't you call the director?").
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Posted 2022-February-09, 16:40

View Postmycroft, on 2022-February-09, 16:24, said:

"The Director may allow or cancel any enforcement or waiver of a rectification made by the players without instruction." - 10B.

Otherwise known as "Nobody seemed to have an issue with the ruling made at the table without me around when they thought it would be to their advantage. I don't see any reason to disagree just because it wasn't. Play on, and call me next time if you want the *correct* ruling."

Of course, I use the other half of 10B if it turns out the people trying to game something through actually were advantaged, but that tends not to trigger a call later - at the time, or way too late (in the bar, after they tell the story and the other players say "what? Why didn't you call the director?").


And how about the "new" 11A ?
"Action by Non-Offending Side
The right to rectification of an irregularity may be forfeited if either member of the non-offending side takes any action before summoning the Director. If a side has gained through subsequent action taken by an opponent in ignorance of the relevant provisions of the law, the Director adjusts only that side’s score by taking away any accrued advantage. The other side retains the score achieved at the table."


East may have been intimidated by South, but he committed the original infraction and then took an action without summoning the Director. It looks as if his side may have gained through subsequent action taken by the opponent, although whether South was ignorant of the relevant provisions of the law seems doubtful here (or does it mean that he ignored them).
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#13 User is offline   axman 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 17:04

View Postpran, on 2022-February-09, 14:17, said:

East has a case because South illegally prevented him from replacing his illegal double with a legal call.
However, as the game proceeded it appears to me that East/West was not damaged from the irregularity by South.

Note that the applicable Law is 36, not 25

First, there is nothing aesthetically bad about an opponent condoning as legal a double of a bid less than 8. Additionally, it solves a lot of problems satisfactorily that the laws do badly at best. That means that L36 is stupid. Had to get that off my chest.

An observation I make in this case is that after East X 1H he withdrew the X and then passed. According to L25, S at that point could object (call the TD) who would rule via L25. Instead of calling the TD what did happen was S passed. In accordance with L25 the pass was a change of call, or a correction of call without penalty, which S condoned.


Whatever conflict you feel that L36 has with the other passages which resolve the facts better I am at a loss to identify. My opening comment, was it not, was that L36 is stupid.
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#14 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2022-February-09, 19:17

View Postpescetom, on 2022-February-09, 12:42, said:

How should TD rule here?

I think the elements have all been mentioned above, but I don't think the director has any rights to change the table score for E-W. We have a legal auction and a result gained through play, so that should stand. You point out that Law 11A explicitly allows the director to adjust the score for N-S only, but they have not received any advantage.

This law may seem harsh on E-W (if they had a biddable game, for example), but E-W have some culpability here. East committed the initial infraction, and then neither called the director when attention was brought to the irregularity.

So, table result stands. I will point out to N-S that South's actions risked an adjustment had they obtained a good table score.

Now we have to consider the players' actions outside the auction itself. Everyone should have called the director when attention was drawn to the irregularity (Law 9B), and it's worth pointing out this is both a right and an obligation for everyone. South clearly should not have tried to make up laws at the table, so Law 90A gives me the right to penalise the player. I'm going to use it and penalise N-S some amount of matchpoints - probably 1/4 board but could easily be convinced to double that penalty, particularly if South is experienced and E-W are beginners. There are circumstances where this could be obvious bullying tactics, and I'm happy to stop that in its tracks.

Next time E-W might be confident enough to call the director and South might follow correct procedure.
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#15 User is offline   pran 

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Posted 2022-February-10, 02:39

View Postaxman, on 2022-February-09, 17:04, said:

First, there is nothing aesthetically bad about an opponent condoning as legal a double of a bid less than 8.

Curious comment:

Law 19A1 said:

A player may double only the last preceding bid. That bid must have been made by an opponent; calls other than pass must not have intervened.

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#16 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-10, 03:54

View Postpran, on 2022-February-10, 02:39, said:

Curious comment:

I don't find this particular part of axman's argument unreasonable: LHO may condone an (illegal) insufficient bid by making a legal call, why not an (illegal) inadmissible double or redouble too?
That still doesn't make the rest of law 36 silly of course. And we would now have to decide if LHO may redouble ;)
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#17 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2022-February-10, 09:43

Law 11A absolutely applies. The director "may" do this. But also, note "side gains...opponent in ignorance of the Law". South almost certainly knew very well that he "should" call the director and get him to resolve the issue. He decided to try to convince East to do something else instead and succeeded. If East gains, South isn't in ignorance of the law, and this doesn't apply.

When I'm in this situation, I rule in whichever way will stop this from happening again. And if it's South intimidating E/W with "we know the law" rather than "let's call the director and let him rule" then if magically it turns out that South is both wrong and disadvantaged, "you made your own ruling, looks okay to me, carry on" seems appropriate. With a "the director should be called, you know, that's what I'm here for", as necessary, so that E/W know better next time.

If I think East or West did anything intending to bypass the rules to their advantage, then I'll put that in my ruling, and it might trigger 11A. I'm certainly more willing to give "double bad" rulings than my colleagues. But in my experience, this is 80% a strong pair trying to bully the newer players, 10% a bullied pair "knowing the ruling" because a strong pair did this to them earlier, and 8% a pair that had this done to them earlier, but it was a different situation, or they missed the "partner must pass" rather than "infractor must pass". And in all of those cases, "if you had called me at the time, I would have ruled [X], and what happens, happens. You decided to make your own ruling, and I see no reason to change it just because it turned out badly for you. Next time call me. \_`@_/" seems both equitable and sufficient to stop this behaviour next time (and might give N/S the courage to not get this kind of stuff pulled on them next time, too).

If it turns out I've read the table wrong, well, it's not the worst ruling I've given, and I'm sure there are worse yet in my future. It's not *wrong*, and I've even made worse *correct* rulings. And definitely not the ruling that I will hear "you know, if you could play bridge, you would"/"surely everybody would realize"/"we're allowed to think, you know"/"you're restricting judgement" from the bar later.

But I don't have to punish every player who commits an infraction, even when I have the option to. I'm allowed my own judgement :-). Again, "[t]hey are designed not to punish irregularities but rather to rectify situations where non-offenders may otherwise be damaged."
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#18 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-10, 10:59

View Postsfi, on 2022-February-09, 19:17, said:

I think the elements have all been mentioned above, but I don't think the director has any rights to change the table score for E-W. We have a legal auction and a result gained through play, so that should stand. You point out that Law 11A explicitly allows the director to adjust the score for N-S only, but they have not received any advantage.

This law may seem harsh on E-W (if they had a biddable game, for example), but E-W have some culpability here. East committed the initial infraction, and then neither called the director when attention was brought to the irregularity.

So, table result stands.

I agree with the rest of your reply but I'm not convinced either of us have 11A pinned down, which is why I expressed doubt above and a good part of why I made this post. This law changed significantly in 2017 and I suspect you may be thinking about the previous version.

2007 Laws said:

LAW 11 - FORFEITURE OF THE RIGHT TO RECTIFICATION
A. Action by Non-Offending Side
The right to rectification of an irregularity may be forfeited if either member of the non-offending side takes any action before summoning the
Director. The Director does so rule, for example, when the non-offending side may have gained through subsequent action taken by an opponent in
ignorance of the relevant provisions of the law.



2017 Laws said:

LAW 11 - FORFEITURE OF THE RIGHT TO RECTIFICATION
A. Action by Non-Offending Side
The right to rectification of an irregularity may be forfeited if either member of the non-offending side takes any action before summoning the
Director. If a side has gained through subsequent action taken by an opponent in ignorance of the relevant provisions of the law, the Director
adjusts only that side’s score by taking away any accrued advantage. The other side retains the score achieved at the table.



2017 Laws Commentary said:

Law 11 deals with players who don’t call the Director when there is an irregularity. If the nonoffenders
act before calling the TD, the Law has said for years they may forfeit their right to
rectification of that irregularity. Law 11A has been changed in the 2017 code. The Director is
now empowered to award a split score (both sides losing) when either side gains (previously he
would only remove the advantage from non-offenders). Now the Director takes away whatever
advantage was gained by the side who did not call the TD in time (such as by causing a player to
get a second penalty card through ignorance of the obligation to play the first one), but the TD
still applies the Law to the side who committed the irregularity.


The commentary also gives an example where South invents his own ruling but then calls TD when East hits lucky because of it.

2017 Laws Commentary said:

N/S keep their table result: three out of the last six tricks. E/W do not keep their advantage.
Had the TD been called in time E/W would have won one of the last six tricks and that becomes the
adjusted score for E/W.


Now that looks very similar to the situation in this post: so based on this, TD should rule that N/S will keep their table result (-140, a bottom) and E/W do not keep their advantage and get -100 like all other E/W (3NT and 4 were equally possible final contracts but both go down 1).

The fly in the ointment is that the law doesn't say what the commentary says it does, or at least not clearly. The first (older) sentence is fine, but the second (newer) one reads like it was translated from Spanish by a Canadian :). In particular the phrase "gained through subsequent action taken by an opponent in ignorance of the relevant provisions of the law". Action subsequent to what? Why (only) by an opponent? What if the gain accrued to one side through the series of actions by all players following the initial failure to call TD? Does "in ignorance of" mean not knowing or does it mean ignoring?

Now if it said something like the humble suggestion below, I would be happy awarding the split score as above:

maybe should have said:

If at the end of play one side has gained from the fact that Director was not summoned following an infraction, then the Director adjusts only that side’s score by taking away any accrued advantage. The other side retains the score achieved at the table.

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#19 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2022-February-10, 11:15

View Postpescetom, on 2022-February-10, 03:54, said:

I don't find this particular part of axman's argument unreasonable: LHO may condone an (illegal) insufficient bid by making a legal call, why not an (illegal) inadmissible double or redouble too?

Are you suggesting a change in the laws? Currently Law 36A would prevent this.
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#20 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2022-February-10, 12:19

View Postblackshoe, on 2022-February-10, 11:15, said:

Are you suggesting a change in the laws? Currently Law 36A would prevent this.


I am agreeing that it would be a logical change, as it is coherent with what happens after lead out of turn and insufficient bid.
It's not my own proposal and I haven't thought it through, so there may be some good reason why the current 36A prevents it.
One issue that springs to mind is redouble by LHO, but the simplest solution would be to just allow that.
Another is that we would still need something like 36A if there was no previous bid to double.

It's off topic of this post, however.
My suggested change of the laws is to make 11A clearer.
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