An insufficient 3NT bid

Yesterday I had a case. Dealer bid 1H, LHO bid a preemptive 4C, and then Responder bid an insufficient 3NT. Opp din't accept it, and Responder bid 4NT. According to law 27B1(a) this is allowed, and I think 27D is waiting... Is Opener entitled to pass, or he should reply, for example aces? And if he passes, does 27D take action? And what is your decision if 4NT just makes.

B scenario hypothetically, LHO made a 4S preemptive bid this time, and Responder bid the same insufficient 3NT. What about 4NT bid, which now is more complicated as it could be: to play, asking aces, or the minors. Is there any difference with the previous real case?

Comments

  • (I presume Responder didn't intend to call 4NT and pulled out the wrong card :) ) IMHO : -

    Are you sure that 27B1(a) is the correct law - the 3NT call presumably specified No Trumps as the denomination. 27B1(a) will only apply if the 4NT call also specified No Trumps as the denomination - if it is Blackwood (check agreements - there may well not be any) then the call does not specify any denominations at all! - in which case opener would have to pass. - and this sort of covers your 2nd scenario - if 4NT shows the minors then the denominations shown are different from the 3NT call.

    The word 'specified' clearly means the denomination(s) that the call actually shows the player as holding/ wanting to play in, not the denomination on the bidding card - see law 29C that inferentially clears this up.

    Some players, of course, play 3NT over a major as showing a game going raise in the suit bid with no void or singleton. In that case the denomination shown is hearts and the responder can correct to 4!h (or 4!d if that is a cue bid/ splinter agreeing hearts)

    Now the question becomes : is 4NT a comparable call (27B1(b))? If it defines as subset of the possible meanings of 3NT - e.g. a pretty strong balanced hand, then it would qualify. If it is Blackwood then it doesn't.

  • Thank you for your answer, it is really helpful. So 27B1(a&b) does not apply for this case if he bids 4NT with a strong balanced hand.
    Now a further question can be: Is there any available bid for Responder in order to save his mistake, holding a strong balanced hand? For example 6NT, Pass, or something else? Or pair is condemned to have a bad score?

  • It doesn't matter what he holds, milton, only what their agreements make of a 4NT call. Responder may correct his bid to any legal call except double. As such, he could still punt on a 6NT contract if he wishes but his partner is going to be barred from bidding for the remainder of the auction unless they have a call which is comparable in meaning or function, by their agreements, to the original 3NT bid.

  • If offender corrects the insufficient bid to 4NT and forces partner to pass (e.g. because a direct 4NT would have asked for keycards), the director has to consider whether they could have known at the time of the infraction that it could have benefited their side. If there was no other way to stop in a making no trump game this could well be the case, and the director could award an adjusted score under law 72C.

  • @VixTD said:
    If offender corrects the insufficient bid to 4NT and forces partner to pass (e.g. because a direct 4NT would have asked for keycards), the director has to consider whether they could have known at the time of the infraction that it could have benefited their side. If there was no other way to stop in a making no trump game this could well be the case, and the director could award an adjusted score under law 72C.

    Υes exactly that's what happened in real life. Responder bid 4NT, I decided to bar opener, and contract was just made. My problem was how to take away the advantage away from the offending side. My opinion was either to award an artificial adjusted score, or to try hard to award a probable outcome, not easy I think in this case. My other problem was that the event was teams so I should check also under 86D for a possible favorable score at the other table.
    What is your opinion?

  • Well you are ruling under 27D, not 72C

    D. Non-offending Side Damaged

    If following the application of B1 the Director judges at the end of the play that without assistance gained through the infraction the outcome of the board could well have been different, and in consequence the non-offending side is damaged (see Law 12B1), he shall award an adjusted score. In his adjustment he should seek to recover as nearly as possible the probable outcome of the board had the insufficient bid not occurred.

    So all you have to do is to try and work out what would probably have happened (includes weighted scores) if the player who made the 3NT call hadn't done so. What were his options? e.g. Double for take-out, penalties, bidding a new suit, passing, or 4NT as Blackwood (obviously had 4NT been strong balanced I assume that you would have let the result stand - unless opener would normally have progressed over it had it been bid directly).

    This isn't a UI case so we aren't looking at 'demonstrably suggested' alternatives, however presumably you weigh the less favourable outcomes slightly more than necessary.

    86D makes life a bit tricky of course - your default is (presumably) +3,-3 however, as you say, there may be various scenarios when the difference would be >100 (or whatever the +3 imp range is). It is quite probable that the other room was +630/+430 in 3NT as well and this may very well actually be a favourable score since the 4!c overcall prevented them from playing in 3NT.

  • Thank you weejonnie! I think that now with your reply, everything is much more clearer for me, in order to handle similar cases. Only one last doubt!

    I weighted 50% 4S+1, 20% 5D+1, 20% 4C-3, and 10% 6S-1.
    In other room they played 3NT+2, so I got 50%
    0 + 20%1 +20%(-1) + 10%*11=1 imp.

    The same as actual result, 460-430 -> 1 imp.

    So should I keep 4NT score?

    Should I assign -3 imps because of the infraction, and because finally 3NT+2 was not a favorable score, as normal alternative games exist (4S and 5D)?

    Or should I do something else, according your opinion.

  • I ought to correct something that was no so important till now, but now it is for my weighing, that dealer opened 1D and not 1H. Sorry for that..

  • Milton, if your score adjustment reaches the same IMP result as was achieved before the adjustment then there is no damage from the irregularity and you should let the score stand. I don't think a fine of 3 IMPs is appropriate, if that's what you're suggesting, unless you really think they deliberately breached the laws to gain an advantage.

    Weejonnie, I think you could rule under either law, but I agree that 27D is "closer to home". 72C has wider application than just insufficient bids.

  • If your calculated weighted result is the same as the actual result obtained then there has been no damage - therefore you don't adjust the score (12B1)

    1. The objective of score adjustment is to redress damage to a non-offending side and to take away
      any advantage gained by an offending side through its infraction. Damage exists when, because of an infraction, an innocent side obtains a table result less favourable than would have been the expectation had the infraction not occurred.

    Since an actual score has been obtained, you can't award an artificial adjusted score (+3,-3). Since there is no law that a player must make a sufficient bid (although an insufficient bid is now defined as an infraction) then there is no indication that an insufficient bid ipso facto should be penalised.

  • Thank you all!

  • Just to be clear the ruling is under 72C not 27D. 27D only applies where call has been made which satisfies 27B1(a) or (b). In this case the call was made under 27B2 and so the redress does lie under 72C if the offender could have known that silencing his/her partner could work to his/her advantage.

  • @Paul_Gibbons said:
    Just to be clear the ruling is under 72C not 27D. 27D only applies where call has been made which satisfies 27B1(a) or (b). In this case the call was made under 27B2 and so the redress does lie under 72C if the offender could have known that silencing his/her partner could work to his/her advantage.

    Thanks for the clarification. In other words: if the responder has to pass then there are potential lead penalties and we adjust the score if we think the person who made the IB could have known it would work to their side's advantage. Otherwise the auction procedes and we adjust if we think the NOS has been damaged. Fine!

  • Just to strengthen a comment made in passing. While there is a law 12C1D which seems to allow for artificial scores it was only included as a sop to directors in certain countries who found weighted scores too difficult a concept. Weighted scores were not given for many years in many parts of the world: they have always been given in England though it is only recently they have become more common. Once a board is played to the end you should basically treat it that if you adjust you should adjust to a weighted score (unless you are clear in your mind that one particular weighting would be 85%+ in which case you adjust to that score).

    There have been a few places where people have suggested a possible recourse to 4NT which partner can pass, both in this thread and elsewhere. Over 95% of players always assume 4NT is Blackwood of some sort, except when directly raising 1NT/2NT/3NT, so they cannot assume otherwise when it is a replacement call after an infraction.

  • @Paul_Gibbons said:
    Just to be clear the ruling is under 72C not 27D. 27D only applies where call has been made which satisfies 27B1(a) or (b). In this case the call was made under 27B2 and so the redress does lie under 72C if the offender could have known that silencing his/her partner could work to his/her advantage.

    Thanks Paul. Yes we are for sure under 27B2 (3NT bid was not a mechanical error), and 27B2 suggests clearly 26 and 72C, not 27D.

    So, Is my ruling above, weighing, still valid under 72C?
    Is my weighing above, in the particular board, normal, according to your opinion?

Sign In or Register to comment.