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Unintended splinter

#1 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 11:23

MP.


F2F laws and regulations without screens, club players.
3NT is alerted by West and explained on request as spades fit, singleton or void in hearts.
West bids 4NT and East after some thought passes.
East takes 10 tricks and South calls Director.
South says that he received a wrong explanation of 3NT and that with correct information he would not have led hearts.
West says that his explanation was correct.
East (not the same player in North a few weeks ago) says that he forgot that 3NT was splinter and passed 4NT because it looked the best thing to do.
EW have a convention card which lists 1M-3NT as splinter in the other major and 4NT as RKCB.
4NT= turns out to be 30% for NS (5= would be 14% and 5-1 would be 85%).

How should Director proceed and rule?
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#2 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 11:58

The first thing the director should do is make sure the information he's getting makes sense. You have South alerting a bid that East supposedly made according to your diagram. Things get more confused from there. I could try to guess who really did what, but I'd rather you fix the OP. B-)
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#3 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 12:54

View Postblackshoe, on 2021-March-31, 11:58, said:

The first thing the director should do is make sure the information he's getting makes sense. You have South alerting a bid that East supposedly made according to your diagram. Things get more confused from there. I could try to guess who really did what, but I'd rather you fix the OP. B-)


Oops. Somebody was screaming for dinner :(
OP fixed I hope, thanks.
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#4 User is online   smerriman 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 13:12

The CC and West's bidding clearly shows South received the correct explanation, so South's argument about the lead is silly. How exactly did they manage to take 10 tricks though?
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#5 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 13:13

What did E think 3N was when he bid it ? if natural, he's a queen light so passes partner's 4N quantitative like a shot. So that only leaves the lead issue in that case, but no redress because he received the correct information. Do we know how the play went ?
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Posted 2021-March-31, 15:17

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-March-31, 13:13, said:

What did E think 3N was when he bid it ? if natural, he's a queen light so passes partner's 4N quantitative like a shot. So that only leaves the lead issue in that case, but no redress because he received the correct information.

He though it was natural. He plays more bridge with robots than humans and is used to making choices like this. But partner's F2F explanation woke him up to his agreement and also made it clear that partner intended 4NT as RKCB. I don't think he had any idea what the laws say at that point.
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#7 User is offline   pran 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 15:30

The only irregularity which may justify adjusted score here is the fact that East has received UI from the explanation of his 3NT bid.
His subsequent pass to 4NT was apparently caused by this UI.
The important question now is what would East most likely (or even possibly) have called without this UI?

I very much doubt that he would have bid on after 4NT with his rather limited hand?
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#8 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 15:37

View Postsmerriman, on 2021-March-31, 13:12, said:

How exactly did they manage to take 10 tricks though?

Is it relevant?
FWIW, out of 22 pairs playing in NT and receiving a lead, 7 made 8 tricks, 5 made 9, 4 made 10, 3 made 11 and 3 made 12.
Perhaps more relevant is that of the 5 pairs playing in spades, 2 made 10 tricks and 5 made 11.
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#9 User is online   smerriman 

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Posted 2021-March-31, 16:10

View Postpescetom, on 2021-March-31, 15:37, said:

Is it relevant?

South appears to be claiming they they would have beaten the contract by not leading a heart. I'm struggling to see how the lead makes any difference at all; whether or not they'll take 10 tricks appears to be fully down to the later play.

But given South got the correct explanation, the whole argument seems moot in the first place.
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#10 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 00:00

Since there was no MI, what South might have led with a different explanation is irrelevant. This should be explained to him.

East has UI, and the UI demonstrably suggests passing 4NT, so the question is whether there is a logical alternative to passing. I don’t think there is, so I would rule the score stands.
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#11 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 02:29

View Postsmerriman, on 2021-March-31, 16:10, said:

South appears to be claiming they they would have beaten the contract by not leading a heart. I'm struggling to see how the lead makes any difference at all; whether or not they'll take 10 tricks appears to be fully down to the later play.

Yes the hearts lead makes no difference at all, it is fully down to the later play. Director suspected this immediately and was able to check it before ruling.
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#12 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 02:52

View Postblackshoe, on 2021-April-01, 00:00, said:

Since there was no MI, what South might have led with a different explanation is irrelevant. This should be explained to him.

I agree. So let's concentrate on the pass after 4nt.
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#13 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 03:01

View Postblackshoe, on 2021-April-01, 00:00, said:

East has UI, and the UI demonstrably suggests passing 4NT, so the question is whether there is a logical alternative to passing. I don’t think there is, so I would rule the score stands.


If East asked "what is the UI that I received" how exactly would you reply?
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#14 User is online   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 03:10

View Postpescetom, on 2021-April-01, 03:01, said:

If East asked "what is the UI that I received" how exactly would you reply?


The UI was that partner wanted to use Blackwood when, if 3N was natural, 4N would be quantitative, so bidding is suggested. You have THE most obvious pass of a quantitative 4N imaginable.
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#15 User is offline   weejonnie 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 04:46

It seems pretty clear that NS have no misinformation as there is sufficient evidence that this was a mistaken call correctly explained (Law 75C/ 21B1(b))

Thus we now move on to the question of "UI". It is clear that East has UI (West has explained the bid (correctly) as a splinter in support of spades, which East has forgotten.)

(If asked then East would have to explain the 4NT call as Blackwood even though he can't take it as such).

The question therefore is: What would East think that the 4NT bid actually means over his (presumably) balanced raise to 3NT). Given the strength of his response (which I would regard as an overbid anyway) I don't think that bidding 6NT - or even 5NT, passing the buck is going to be a logical alternative and with only two spades 5 spades is not a LA.

Of course the TD should in theory poll players (having found out what exactly East meant with his bid and what he expected 4NT to be absent UI) but this seems clearcut. Note that his explanation ("Because it seemed the best thing to do") is not adequate by itself as it is based on the UI ("Oops we are having a bidding misunderstanding")

No adjustment.

(Been ages since I've had to deal with a UI/MI case - thanks to self-alerting online.)
No matter how well you know the laws, there is always something that you'll forget. That is why we have a book.
Get the facts. No matter what people say, get the facts from both sides BEFORE you make a ruling or leave the table.
Remember - just because a TD is called for one possible infraction, it does not mean that there are no others.
In a judgement case - always refer to other TDs and discuss the situation until they agree your decision is correct.
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#16 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 10:55

View Postweejonnie, on 2021-April-01, 04:46, said:

It seems pretty clear that NS have no misinformation as there is sufficient evidence that this was a mistaken call correctly explained (Law 75C/ 21B1(b))

Thus we now move on to the question of "UI". It is clear that East has UI (West has explained the bid (correctly) as a splinter in support of spades, which East has forgotten.)

(If asked then East would have to explain the 4NT call as Blackwood even though he can't take it as such).

..... (omissis) ....

(Been ages since I've had to deal with a UI/MI case - thanks to self-alerting online.


I am out of the habit too, but I remember it much the same as you say here.

The Director in question however seemed to be interpreting the question of "UI" differently: he argued that East did have an LA, namely a 5 response to RKCB showing 1 keycard and that the UI from the alert suggested pass. Of course that could only be an LA if the actual partnership agreement was AI to East, regardless of how he woke up to it.
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#17 User is online   smerriman 

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Posted 2021-April-01, 13:17

So the director agrees there is UI, and thinks a logical alternative is blatant use of that UI?

New director, please.
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#18 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-April-02, 10:28

I know players for whom 4NT is ace-asking, no matter what the auction. Even this one. For them, answering aces would be an LA.

If the director suggested it was an LA to me (having bid 3NT naturally, not that I have done that for yonks, but let's say it was "2M, 13-15 BAL"), I'd question it. "I bid NT showing a balanced limited hand, partner has enough for slam if I'm on top of my range, I'm not, I pass." Other players who are not me could add "4 is Gerber over first and last NT, it's not plausible at all that this is ace-asking to me, who forgot our agreement."

I am not so sure that there is no MI - I would check if this was a "no mutual understanding" case. But assuming it's just a straight forget, sure, no MI, and not sure how the MI caused damage.

I totally understand the "he heard there was a system screwup, so he passed ASAP and hoped" - I've ruled against that any number of times. But here, I don't see it, if the pair has "quantitative 4NT" in their vocabulary. Which, if they're playing crazy inverted splinters, I'm guessing they do.
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#19 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-April-02, 16:05

View Postmycroft, on 2021-April-02, 10:28, said:

I know players for whom 4NT is ace-asking, no matter what the auction. Even this one. For them, answering aces would be an LA.
...
I totally understand the "he heard there was a system screwup, so he passed ASAP and hoped" - I've ruled against that any number of times. But here, I don't see it, if the pair has "quantitative 4NT" in their vocabulary. Which, if they're playing crazy inverted splinters, I'm guessing they do.

This player certainly would consider 4NT to be quantitative if the explanation had not reminded him of the actual agreements.
And I'm pretty sure his rapid pass was an attempt to make things easier for everyone, certainly not in the hope of a better result.
I don't think he knew if it was appropriate or even legal to respond with keycards.
He is an ethical young guy and I imagine would have been happy to explain his forget to the opponents before lead was chosen, had he known that was legal (not to stir up a previous thread, but the issue is there).

View Postmycroft, on 2021-April-02, 10:28, said:

I am not so sure that there is no MI - I would check if this was a "no mutual understanding" case.

The system card is there, and he would recite it word for word if asked.
If you were his club TD you would know that he occasionally forgets some partner-specific stuff all the same, which you might consider modifies this agreement.
His partner doesn't seem to take any account of that possibility in his bidding.
So I would say borderline at most, and not relevant to the 4NT bid issue.
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#20 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2021-April-02, 16:53

View Postmycroft, on 2021-April-02, 10:28, said:

But assuming it's just a straight forget, sure, no MI, and not sure how the MI caused damage.

If MI doesn't exist, it definitely doesn't cause any damage. B-)
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