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What the heck! MI UI

#1 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 13:59



South opens 2nt
North alerts 2nt and when asked sys "5-5 in the minors"
North bids 3
South bids 3nt

When I ask what is going on North says, I got the explanation wrong. South says, I'm just bidding my hand.

Before we go on, I am asking the question to get this right in my mind, have no interest in getting an adjustment. This is a game where there is no qualified Director.
South is a boorish bully with no regard for the laws. North is one of the players who volunteer to "Direct".

Is this the correct procedure;
Playing transfers over 2nt, South must ignore the MI, announce a transfer and bid 3.
North can now "wake up", by the 3 bid, not the announcement of a transfer.
North can now bid 3nt.
Before the opening lead South advises his opps that there was MI given.

The tricky part here I think, is, when is North allowed to wake up and act on the mistake?
Is the announcement of a transfer UI but the 3 bid is AI which should alert North than something has gone awry?
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#2 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 14:17

You don't mean this:

"South bids 3♦
North bids 3nt"

N has to go on the fact that he's got it right, so he's bid 3 and hasn't heard the alert/announcement, the question is whether 3/N can exist, this may depend on the allowed strength of the bid if it's minors.

You then have the issue as to south's bid, what is their system over a transfer, some people play the transfer GF and DO bid 3N with a doubleton heart.

If they play something standard, S should bid 3 and now N has an issue as to what this means.
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#3 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 14:26

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-June-05, 14:17, said:

You don't mean this:

"South bids 3♦
North bids 3nt"

Thanks, fixed.
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#4 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 15:04

As it happens,NS presumably screwed up as deserved.
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#5 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 15:08

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-June-05, 14:17, said:

N has to go on the fact that he's got it right, so he's bid 3 and hasn't heard the alert/announcement, the question is whether 3/N can exist, this may depend on the allowed strength of the bid if it's minors.

3 does not exist in their system so is this AI to North and are they allowed to realize their mistake now?
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#6 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 15:13

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-05, 15:08, said:

3 does not exist in their system so is this AI to North and are they allowed to realize their mistake now?

Transfer over 2NT does not exist in their system, but weirdo stuff like 2NT both minors does?
Even so, I would not be in a hurry to bid 3NT over 3 with AJT in diamonds and Qx in hearts.
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#7 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 15:39

View Postpescetom, on 2021-June-05, 15:13, said:

Transfer over 2NT does not exist in their system, but weirdo stuff like 2NT both minors does?
Even so, I would not be in a hurry to bid 3NT over 3 with AJT in diamonds and Qx in hearts.

Transfers exist over a strong 2nt.
Playing 2NT as both minors, 2nt 3 3 does not exist.
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#8 User is online   paulg 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 16:33

After North has explained the systemic meaning for 2NT, South is not allowed to 'wake up' in terms of their bidding but they are permitted to use the UI to correctly alert their agreements.

So South should not alert 3 as a transfer, since that is not its systemic meaning, and if asked should explain it as minor suit preference.

However South is not allowed to use the UI and so has to treat 3 as a transfer and continue with 3. Now North has no UI and can do what they like. If this is done smoothly then NS may escape punishment even if North guesses to bid 3NT.

South bidding 3NT is clear use of UI and is subject to penalty in my opinion.
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#9 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 17:29

View Postpaulg, on 2021-June-05, 16:33, said:

After North has explained the systemic meaning for 2NT, South is not allowed to 'wake up' in terms of their bidding but they are permitted to use the UI to correctly alert their agreements.

So South should not alert 3 as a transfer, since that is not its systemic meaning, and if asked should explain it as minor suit preference.

This depends on what their actual system is. If 2NT is systemically strong, South needs to alert as a transfer. If not, you are correct.

Adjusting is more complex, but you're absolutely right that South deserves a procedural penalty - and not a warning unless South is a complete beginner. 3NT is egregious.
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#10 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 17:31

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-05, 15:39, said:

Transfers exist over a strong 2nt.
Playing 2NT as both minors, 2nt 3 3 does not exist.

If it doesn't exist, is there any reason North would wake up to what is actually going on. Couldn't South have misbid with 5/5 in hearts and clubs, or chosen to open 2NT with a strong hand knowing they would get another chance?

I would be including a very small percentage of 3NT in any weighted score, if I included any at all.
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#11 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 21:53

2nt is strong by agreement, North plays 2nt 5-5 minors with others and forgot the agreement here.
Both players are experienced, I don't knowingly club baby seals.
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#12 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2021-June-05, 22:11

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-05, 21:53, said:

2nt is strong by agreement, North plays 2nt 5-5 minors with others and forgot the agreement here.
Both players are experienced, I don't knowingly club baby seals.

Then South should be alerting 3D and not doing so is an infraction. It's hard to adjust without knowing details of their agreements, but I can certainly see the auction proceeding 2NT - 3D; 3H - 5D. It depends if exclusion keycard is a possibility, but they may well wind up in 6D or 6NT. So I would be including 6D-2 and 6NTx-4 (or whatever) in the adjustment.

As for procedural penalty, South has two significant infractions. Bidding 3NT deserves more than a standard penalty and my immediate reaction (supported by another director) is something like half a board penalty. Not alerting 3D deserves a warning. In context it looks more like a calculated move to avoid a disaster, but even experienced players get procedure wrong out of ignorance so I can't really justify additional penalties.

All in all, N-S will have done better by just not playing the board at all.
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#13 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 02:36

View Postsfi, on 2021-June-05, 22:11, said:

Then South should be alerting 3D and not doing so is an infraction. It's hard to adjust without knowing details of their agreements, but I can certainly see the auction proceeding 2NT - 3D; 3H - 5D. It depends if exclusion keycard is a possibility, but they may well wind up in 6D or 6NT. So I would be including 6D-2 and 6NTx-4 (or whatever) in the adjustment.

As for procedural penalty, South has two significant infractions. Bidding 3NT deserves more than a standard penalty and my immediate reaction (supported by another director) is something like half a board penalty. Not alerting 3D deserves a warning. In context it looks more like a calculated move to avoid a disaster, but even experienced players get procedure wrong out of ignorance so I can't really justify additional penalties.

All in all, N-S will have done better by just not playing the board at all.


It's fairly common among club players to believe mistakenly that alerting 3 in this situation will wake partner up, so they don't.

Bidding 3N CAN be the systemic move on this hand, you need to check it isn't (some pairs play that the transfer is GF and 3 shows 3, so 3N is a doubleton, I think without 5 spades)
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#14 User is offline   sfi 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 02:44

View PostCyberyeti, on 2021-June-06, 02:36, said:

It's fairly common among club players to believe mistakenly that alerting 3 in this situation will wake partner up, so they don't.

Hence the warning.

Quote

Bidding 3N CAN be the systemic move on this hand, you need to check it isn't (some pairs play that the transfer is GF and 3 shows 3, so 3N is a doubleton, I think without 5 spades)

You are correct. I would have expected South to say that at the table though, and I would like to see some evidence. If they're well-known in the club that shouldn't be hard to produce.
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#15 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 11:11

North and South are allowed to "bid their hands". The Director will then follow the Laws.

I believe the information at hand is:
  • Systemically, 2NT shows strong balanced hand.
  • System over 2NT is some form of Stayman and Transfers.
  • North plays "5=5 minors, weak" with several of her partners, and forgot South isn't one of them.
  • In North's system where 2NT is minors, 2NT-3; 3 has no systemic meaning.

Now, I assume that given the AI to E=W (they heard the explanation, and the correction before the Opening Lead (right? South corrected the MI?)), that South took 9 or 10 of the last 8 tricks. But assuming the heart suit is unavoidably blocked, maybe there's an issue here. Let's go through it anyway.

Given that:

South is in possession of Unauthorized Information, and Law 73C requires that he "must carefully avoid taking any advantage from that unauthorized information".

South must also Alert per his correct system, and if 3 is a transfer and that is Alertable/Announceable, he must do so. This will provide North with UI; that's what happens in face-to-face play. Not relevant to the ruling, but see below.

Unless South can show evidence that 3NT is his correct response to a transfer (which I also agree is possible, but I also agree would definitely be ahead of "I'm just bidding my hand" on South's excuse list!), then it is clear that he did not "carefully avoid" using the UI, but used it to try to salvage the situation. L73C continues: "A penalty may be assessed against a player who violates C1", and I'm definitely assessing one. Depending on the experience and obnoxiousness of the player, it might be a gentle explanation of his requirements. It might be a 1/4 board. In addition, at least in the ACBL, it would be sent to the recorder in case South has a habit of "just bidding his hand", and in my clubs, would be mentioned to the other directors for the same reason.

The director will then use L16 to assign a score. 3 is clearly a LA not suggested by the UI (in fact, it's the automatic call), so now, what's North going to do? Remember here, while there would be UI for North at the table, for the purposes of evaluation of the auction, there isn't. Now, I know that there are many who will say "3 doesn't exist, so partner must not have 5-5; oh yeah right, we don't play that, he thought I transferred, what do I do now?" is automatic. In my experience, in many auctions, it's not - "Oh, partner likes it, and is 1=1=6=5 or 0=2=6=5 with all useful cards and the A" is also an option. But frankly, having played this agreement, that wouldn't occur to me, partner never has a good hand. I'd say "partner forgot again". So, let's take it to some Precision players, tell 'em they're playing 2NT is 5=5m, and give them this hand and auction, and see what they tell us. If the vast majority say, or at least mention "are we sure partner didn't forget and has a flat 20?", then we go with "3 wakes up North", and we'll assign a reasonable call (likely 3NT. South will pass that). Defence will be based on "You know North thought it was 5=5 minors when she bid 3, and then knew the real system when she bid 3NT (because she told E-W either at the time or during the clarification period (L20F4)." Which again should have some, possibly large, fraction of "9 of the last 8 tricks", assuming the information passed by N-S in the "assigned play" is sufficiently different from the actual play).

We'll also ask South about why he didn't Alert/Announce 3 as required (assuming it's required). If there's any hint of "didn't want to give UI to partner", well, we're back into penalty mode. If it's "I was so shocked by the explanation that I lost my mind", sure, but still explain South's obligations to him.

End of At-the-table.

What South is required by Law to do is to Alert/Announce the transfer, and bid 3 (Cyberyeti's caveat excepted). Assuming he does this, North now has UI that could "wake her up" to the real agreement. Now *she* is bound by L73C. But the same polling above that said "partner must have 20 BAL, even if our system is 5=5m" applies here, and means the only LA is "3NT, and guess what to do when 4 comes back to her." Luckily, 4 doesn't come back to her, so she doesn't have to guess.

I know, I know, club game, minimal (and playing) TD. That's why South gets away with "bidding his hand" a lot, because he's never called on it, and the directors don't get to know that he does (and when the director at his table calls him on it, a different kind of hell breaks out). As a (slightly better than minimal club) TD, I have that problem in spades, even in games where I'm playing and not directing, and especially in clubs where I'm not a regular or a director. The answer is either "if they need to do that to win *this game*, let 'em. Not worth it." or "improve the directing in general at the club so that this gets noticed by more directors, and more players who get ruled against by more directors" or, especially if I can't let go for the former and the directors aren't interested in the latter, volunteer to do some of the directing myself. But there's a lot of the former, and just enough of the latter that I don't get labelled a Rules Lawyer who can't tell the difference between the Vanderbilt and a -ing club game *by the directors*, never mind the players.
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#16 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 13:04

View Postmycroft, on 2021-June-06, 11:11, said:


Now, I assume that given the AI to E=W (they heard the explanation, and the correction before the Opening Lead (right? South corrected the MI?)),

No! but we knew what was going on ;)

Thank you for the time you spent on your reply. I am very interested in the process and it's useful to hear this detailed explanation.

In discussions after the game, I was advised that South did not take advantage of the UI that North prefered diamonds over clubs.
These rules around UI, MI, LA's etc are complex, if a person familiar with the laws doesn't get it right, how can we expect players be aware of them, let alone understand their obligation.
Perhaps we'd be better served with a brief, club version the laws and leave the full version for the Bermuda Bowl.
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#17 User is offline   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 13:32

View Postjillybean, on 2021-June-06, 13:04, said:

In discussions after the game, I was advised that South did not take advantage of the UI that North prefered diamonds over clubs.
I agree with that, and didn't even think of it. But it doesn't really matter - North could have been 4=5=2=2 and "preference" is Kx vs 8x.

Compared to the UI he did use - that 3 doesn't show 5 hearts, and that he might get passed in a bad fit partscore with 5 on - I'm not particularly worried about it.

Quote

These rules around UI, MI, LA's etc are complex, if a person familiar with the laws doesn't get it right, how can we expect players be aware of them, let alone understand their obligation.
Perhaps we'd be better served with a brief, club version the laws and leave the full version for the Bermuda Bowl.
They are, and it gets much worse at the higher levels, because the information passed and potentially used *also* requires BB-level bridge knowledge (and intimate knowledge of the particular pair's system) to work out what "carefully avoid" means, or "logical alternative". There's a reason why, at the BB, the best directors in the world regularly consult with players sitting out, coaches, and "retired World class players" who have volunteered to assist - as well as each other - when these things come up.

But the "brief, club version" - for players at least - isn't a problem; it's Law 73C1, and it's easy to understand. The problem is with the players who don't think it should apply to them, or who believe they shouldn't have to "do something stupid" (and blame the directors for "forcing them to" when they assign a result. Don't blame us, blame your partner for making a mistake and giving you the UI!), or any of the other reasons players come up with to not follow it.

Actually ruling on UI/MI is complicated - and can't be done correctly without consultation in almost all cases; but the players don't need to know how that's done, and in fact some people have used "how it's done" to work out if they can use the UI and get away with it. Note, this is why L73C2 is written the way it is in the current Laws, to make it clear that damage to the opponents is not necessary for action to be taken on blatant use of UI.
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#18 User is online   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 15:19

Could somebody who plays or has played 2NT opening as both minors please comment on the auction 2NT-3; 3NT - ?
(leaving aside the issue of whether 3 preference should be alerted or not).
I would guess that 3NT might be serious/non-serious respect to slam in diamonds, or some other forcing meaning?
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#19 User is offline   Cyberyeti 

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Posted 2021-June-06, 15:24

View Postpescetom, on 2021-June-06, 15:19, said:

Could somebody who plays or has played 2NT opening as both minors please comment on the auction 2NT-3; 3NT - ?
(leaving aside the issue of whether 3 preference should be alerted or not).
I would guess that 3NT might be serious/non-serious respect to slam in diamonds, or some other forcing meaning?


Well most people play it with a range of say 5-10 or 10-14 so it's unlikely to be a slam try opposite a NF 3
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#20 User is offline   sanst 

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Posted 2021-June-07, 01:59

That there was MI and very probably use of the UI, is obvious. But no director could act opun the given information, because an essential element is missing: were EW damaged and, if so, how?
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