Judy Kay-Wolff

LET YOUR CONSCIENCE BE YOUR GUIDE

W
West
N
North
E
East
S
South
1NT1
Pass
22
Pass3
Pass
?
 
 
 
(1) Weak NT (12-14)
(2) Natural (could be as much as 10 points)
(3) A huddle of about 20 seconds

You are West, holding:

W
West
AJ63
64
K4
KJ1073

What are your options????


9 Comments

JRGSeptember 12th, 2018 at 8:31 pm

Decades ago, as a youth, we played ACOL with a 13-15 HCP 1NT opening. We just loved these auctions! For what it is worth, here’s my opinion.

Opponents that doubled us for penalties sometimes rued their action and those that entered the auction occasionally went for cash-register numbers and even if not doubled, frequently got poor scores because they didn’t belong in the auction.

That’s not to say we never got punished or had a bad board, but the better players usually stayed out unless they had distributional hands (better than the example, at least in placement of honors).

I passed 1NT initially, I have no real reason to come in now and I personally consider it the only option. In any case, passing is the only logical alternative not suggested by unauthorized information. AND I’M VULNERABLE so going down is 100 a trick even if I’m not doubled.

ChuckSeptember 13th, 2018 at 12:20 am

Judy,

I’ve enjoyed reading your blog site, but have never commented before. This time I felt compelled to do so! How could anyone consider taking action in balance seat after a noted hitch by partner. If they did bid, I hope their side got punished. OR better yet, called it to the attention of the director and was reprimanded.

Bridge is definitely on the skids.

CarolSeptember 13th, 2018 at 1:34 am

I cannot imagine your approaching this topic if someone had not posed the question. In my eyes, it is automatic to pull out the green card (not to be confused with the one associated with immigration)! Pass or PASS. TAKE YOUR CHOICE. I was delighted to see your post as I am fed up with the staffs of clubs not wanting to make a harsh (though correct) ruling .. for fear of losing newer or weaker clients who don’t know about ethics. Perhaps Ethics and Manners should be taught alongside of Beginners Bridge so they will get it right from the Start!

I know your husband, Bobby Wolff, created both the Recorder System and the Ethical Oversight Committee many years ago. I have NO DOUBT about his belief in West’s choices.

I agree with Chuck. Bridge IS on the skids.

JudySeptember 15th, 2018 at 6:52 pm

I have received some personal emails about the hand, not wanting to go public. I will publish the results in day or so .. followed by Bobby’s analysis.

JudySeptember 17th, 2018 at 2:00 am

O.K. Folks .. here is the actual happening:

East/West VUL. North/South. NON VUL

Only one person committed himself above.

As West, after you pass an alerted WNT (12-14) by South:

Lefty (North) bids 2H (natural/non-forcing) (holding 0-10 HCP)

Your Partner East huddles for about 15-20 seconds and passes

South passes too.

As West holding. AJ63 64 K4 KJ1073

WOULD YOU PASS, DOUBLE OR BID 3C?????

WEST HAD THE AUDACITY TO TAKE ADVANTAGE OF PARTNER’S HITCH and balanced with 3C Driving The AUCTION TO 3NT .. MAKING 4NT BY EAST.

THE HUDDLER HELD XX AKJX AQXXX XX

IMAGINE THAT!!!!!!!

NS called the Director who said to call him back at the end of the hand. When he returned, he allowed the result to stand.

WHAT IS HAPPENING TO OUR ONCE-WONDERFUL GAME?

CarolSeptember 17th, 2018 at 4:41 am

When you posted the problem, there was not a doubt in my mind that in balance seat .. West disgustingly took action. Sometimes weaker players don’t know any better, but how can a director not understand the violation himself and allow it to recur?

JudySeptember 17th, 2018 at 4:50 am

Hi Carol,

Obviously, had East NOT huddled (suggesting he was considering taking action) .. West could do anything he wanted! 3C certainly was a consideration .. BUT NOT AFTER THE HITCH!

Art KorthSeptember 17th, 2018 at 3:35 pm

Judy:

You ask: What are your options?

Based on my experience, I would have acted in direct seat if I had methods which could reasonably describe this hand.

Having passed originally, I would certainly balance with 3C or double.

BUT, if partner huddled noticeably over 2H, I can no longer make my normal balance if there is any doubt that it is the only reasonable action available (I am not going to get into a discussion of logical alternatives, etc). And there is no doubt that pass is a reasonable action.

Query: What would you think if pass resulted in a good result but a balance of 3C or double would result in a poor result?

Bobby WolffSeptember 17th, 2018 at 7:59 pm

Hi Art,

Although one could argue the equity of your query, the pair who called the TD could happily accept the better result of allowing the abuse of UI, but if I was the TD, or on a later appeal committee and, of course, felt that the original complaining side were being opportunists, I might adjust the result downward against them, so that the field would benefit and, at least to me, bridge equity would be better served.

However, in most cases, once the so-called aggrieved side got lucky with the result, the protest would fade away.

Not necessarily fair, but, at least to me, the players now understanding their ethical responsibilities trumps all other priorities.

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