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Hello ,

I was a kibitzer on BBO and the contract was as follows.

D :W all wuln.

1h p 1sp ( not alerted) p
3nt p p p.

N leads small Cl an the contract is made .

N : TD

E-W plays 2/1 .

N complains that 1sp bid prevented him from leading Sp. In that case contract would be 1 down in any case.

Questions :

1) Is the respond of 1 sp with only 3cs considered only a deviation from their system ? If so, is that acceptable ? in what conditions ?

   a) unless it damages opponents in some way ( leading or bidding )
   b) ıt is accepted as long as not less than 3cs. ( is it correct that minor suits with less than 3cs are to be alerted  ,while Majors 
       are to be alerted  when they are less than 4cs ? )

2) Since on BBO self alerting is the case, ıs E supposed to alert that he has 3+ sp ? ( if so when ?)

3) what will be your ruling ?

Thanks in advance for your comments .


Secaaddin Ozdeniz


  • If it was an agreement then there should be an alert.
    If the player did this and partner expected 4+ spades and he hadn't done this before then it's just life (and could well go wrong if partner insisted on spades). If this is the first time then it is not an agreement and does not need an alert. The alert is for the agreement not what is in your hand.
    If the player had done it several times then that may well constitute an agreement and certainly partner has a better idea than the opponents that it might not be a real suit.

  • I think the most likely explanation for this one is that 1!s actually denied spades by agreement (with the bid to show spades being 1NT), and there was a missed alert (that agreement is obviously alertable). It doesn't make any sense for East to psyche in that position with that hand (playing 2/1 with 1!s natural, East has an obvious 1NT bid and would prefer a constructive rather than a pre-emptive auction), so I suspect the bid was probably systemic.

    If E/W can prove that 1!s is systemically natural, then I don't think there's been any infraction here (Law 75C) – East psyched and West didn't field it (3NT looks like a reasonable bid on West's hand opposite a hand with spades). (Perhaps East has an agreement with another partner that 1!s denies spades, and forgot that the agreement didn't apply partnering West – that would seem like reasonable evidence that "natural" is the partnership agreement and East was just confused.) However, per Law 21B1b, if the director is in doubt as to whether there was an incorrect explanation (this includes missed alerts) or whether a player deviated from the partnership agreement, they should assume it was the explanation that was wrong. So I'd ask E/W whether they have evidence that 1!s is a natural call, and rule misinformation (Laws 75B1, 21) if they don't.

  • It may have been explained to the director as a misclick.

  • Thank you for your comments . They are all valuable to me. What I am more doubtful about is that
    the following ;

    a) The bid of 1sp to the respond of 1h is innocent as long as it has 3+ sp ( Less than that is psyche). Therefore
    bidding 1sp instead of 1nt is only a preference. ( E doesn't have any stopper in sp playing a 3nt from
    his side might be dangerous. There fore he might have bid 1sp instead of 1nt)

    b) But if this bid harms the opponent in someway should the td adjust the score ? ( here it causes a mislead)

    c) Since E-W plays standard 2/1 and 1sp is always considered by his partner and the opponents as a bid which has 4+sp this bid is accepted only a deviation from the system even it harms the opponents.

    d) Since on BBO players are to make self-alerts ıs E supposed to alert his 1sp as 3+
    But for this situation I was already warned by Jeremy69 as " The alert is for the agreement not what is in your hand." Thanks a lot.

    F )There is surely no misclick . And they don't play the convention of "Kaplan inversion" either. Ant 1sp bid was made definitely on purpose.( E said so)

    I will be pleased if I have further comments from you.


    Secaaddin Ozdeniz

  • By the way TD accepted 1sp. saying 3c is enough for a M suit to bid. Even there is no such an agreement.

    Thanks again.


    Secaaddin Ozdeniz

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