Arrow Switch round

Last night I played at a club where the director decided to arrow-switch on the first round of the session which bacame confusing to all concerned. For East west became north south on the first round and then entered the names on the bridgemate as east west pair and switched to east west in subsequent rounds. Thoroughout the evening the bridgemate were showing wrong names on the display. The questions are : Does by playing arrow switch in this way negate the value of "balance" in the movement ? Is it better to play arrow switch round(s) at last 1/2 rounds of the session as it is generally is the norm ?Does it matter ? Is there a specific guidance in the regulations as to when an arrow-switch round should be played or should you rely on the scoring programmes to tell you if it can cope with the movement ? Would appreciate comments on this please.

• It does depend on the movement, some are finely balanced to arrow switch particular tables at particular times. I wouldn't change those, but it's usually preset for those movements.

I believe for a Mitchell, that arrow switching any round is mathematically equivalent. So from the perspective of balance it doesn't matter. As your post highlights, there are quite good practical reasons for arrow switching the last round. Players are used to it, and it kind of works out on a practical sense.

It's very easy to do this by mistake I think, by entering 1 arrow switch on the movement screen, which really means round 1
• The advantage of switching on the 1st round (or early on) is that you could skip the last round easily should time get on, I suppose. If you set it up to switch on the 9th round and decided you only had time for 8 rounds, then you would have a problem as you could not have a 1-winner movement then.

• Also makes sure everyone arrowswitches together. Last round, tables finish at different times and forget, or Director likes a drink and they forget to announce it.

• Done all those! Some 3/4 Howells involve arroswitches on some tables for the last 4 rounds. Fortunately scorebridge/ ebuscore allows corrections to be done quite easily.

• One club I know used to arrow switch on Round 2. This avoided the problems with names the wrong way round in Round 1 and allowed the cancellation of the final round if they ran out of time. ScoreBridge allows you to arrow-switch other than the first n rounds or the last n rounds but unfortunately EBUscore does not.

• I haven't tried arrow-switching Round 1. Which way should the names go in the bridgemates?

Barrie Partridge - Senior Kibitzer in Bridge Club Live - Pig Trader in IBLF

• I believe, that as in teams, it is the way they are sitting for Round 1. My advice is not to try it. Even if you get it right the players won't.

• I think EBU Score or certainly Jeff's program now allows any round to be arrow-switched.

@Paul_Gibbons said:

One club I know used to arrow switch on Round 2. This avoided the problems with names the wrong way round in Round 1 and allowed the cancellation of the final round if they ran out of time. ScoreBridge allows you to arrow-switch other than the first n rounds or the last n rounds but unfortunately EBUscore does not.

• @Senior_Kibitzer said:
I haven't tried arrow-switching Round 1. Which way should the names go in the bridgemates?

As they physically sit in first round. But as Paul said, not everyone wii understand. Round 2 better if a simple Mitchell.

• Just checked EBUScore 1.1.9 and in a standard mitchell you can only arrow-switch the first n rounds or the last n rounds

• @Paul_Gibbons said:
Just checked EBUScore 1.1.9 and in a standard mitchell you can only arrow-switch the first n rounds or the last n rounds

Correct. Try EBU compatible scorers or Jeff's original programs. These allow any round to be arrow-switched.

• Is it legal, when the club scorer has become fed up with people forgetting to arrowswitch when instructed so to do by TD and bridgemates, for the committee to announce, at AGM, that any future arrowswitch failures will simply be scored as 40%-40% (average minus to both pairs)?

• No. If the get a result on the board it should be scored as played. You could threaten them with a procedural penalty.

• I'm not sure why you would want to, unless they are doing it deliberately. An occasional failure to arrow-switch has little effect on the results and can't predictably favour either side.

• edited August 2018

I was recently hit with a 40-40 "penalty" for inadvertently failing to arrow-switch on one board of the round. The TD/scorer felt that it was necessary to apply a penalty but couldn't work out how to adjust the directions and also apply an IMPs penalty, so gave us 40-40 by way of a penalty. I got it overturned after appeal and many email exchanges with quotes from the White book, not to mention ongoing rancour from the peeved director.

Some directors have slipped into a penalty mentality where every transgression should be somehow punished. As Gordon says, it negligibly affects overall results and doesn't predictably favour either side at the table. See 8.87.1 of the White Book and also section 2.8.2(h).

• I must say I've never seen anyone be penalised for failing to arrow switch. The most severe sanction I've encountered is a groan of despair from the TD and the humiliation of being identified!

• Thanks (Tag) for the pointer to 8.87.1, it would have taken ages for me to find it.
Gordon, you really must get out more. Failing to arrow switch is very frequent and, as mentioned above, the Committee decided (erroneously it now appears) to instigate penalties for it.
As it was deemed the joint fault of everyone at the table, 40-40 seemed a fair penalty but according to 8.87.1 the hand should stand and the scorer has to do extra work to rectify in EBUScore. With falling numbers, we can't always do a Mitchell (although we try to); many (Howell or Hesitation) movements incorporate arrow switching either at half-way or the last one or two rounds.
So, imagine, arrowswitching almost every week and 2 or 3 or 4 tables forgetting to arrow switch every week.
The TD can stand up after round 10 and announce "everyone, please watch your BridgeMates for arrowswitching" and in round 11 at least 1 table will call "TD, please" as they haven't switched. And, then, those who didn't need to switch for round 11 will forget to check again before round 12 … and so it goes.
This is not Robson's or Young Chelsea, this is £2 table money (£5 annual subscription) real-life out-in-the-sticks bridge clubs who have (wrongly in my view) chosen to remain affiliated to the EBU.
My apologies to rkcb1430 for seeming to have nabbed his/her thread.

• edited August 2018

We turn up at the club to play Bridge and thence to be rewarded or punished by the cards and our opponents for our good and bad plays and decisions. We don't turn up to watch a TD take our result away when there's nothing really wrong with the board. Before I became a director and chose to learn the rules (an ongoing process) I'd seen 60-60, 50-50, 40-40 and 60-40 given to tables failing to arrow-switch. The 60-40 was deemed to be the fault of the stationary pair not to have switched.

One club I attend has the players physically change seats where they are due to arrow-switch. This, at least, enables the director to be able to look around and see anyone who has forgotten. Maybe your club could consider this, TawVale?

• Tawvale: you can penalise them, but do it with a procedural penalty not an artificial adjusted score.

• The directors at our club (myself included) will announce on the round(s) to be arrowswitched that there are arrowswitches (or that some tables will be arrowswitched).

Using Scorebridge you get out nice movement cards, which we have laminated, to put out to help players work out where and which way to move. Regrettably it appears the ones produced in EBUscore are much less user-friendly - although if someone can direct me to the spot in the programme where nice clear movement cards are available I would be only too grateful.

Usually I get told when the hands aren't arrowswitched (and then apply the groaning penalty), and can then change the results. I also delay sending them up to the EBU just in case.

• @TawVale said:
Gordon, you really must get out more. Failing to arrow switch is very frequent

Yes, I know it is, but I've never seen it penalised. After all, players come to enjoy their bridge.

@TawVale said:
many (Howell or Hesitation) movements incorporate arrow switching either at half-way or the last one or two rounds.

You could choose movements that don't have arrow-switching in the middle.

@TawVale said:
This is not Robson's or Young Chelsea, this is £2 table money (£5 annual subscription) real-life out-in-the-sticks bridge clubs who have (wrongly in my view) chosen to remain affiliated to the EBU.

Well this forum is one of the services provided by the EBU.

• I know it and I use it and I value and appreciate it. No-one else at the club of which I am thinking would have the slightest interest in discussing the finer points of law; they feel that understanding the law is the TD's job, not theirs.

• weejonnie

You can get table cards from EBUScore. Select your movement in the Movements Library and then click "Print Table Cards" button. On the next pop up box click the "+ Font Size" button until the grid fills the page (you will have to fiddle with this a bit). Then click "Printer" button and set your page orientation (Portrait or Landscape) I would suggest Landscape. Then click the button next to "Scale to fit", if this is greyed out then you need to go back an click the "+ Font" button some more. For 4 Tables set it to 1 Wide and 1 High. Four 5 to 8 Tables 2 Wide 1 high and 9 to 12 Tables 3 Wide 1 High. Then print and you can cut the movements out and Laminate.

One point to watch for is that not all movements have the instructions for each pairs' movement at the bottom. So I suggest you check them and Edit as appropriate.

Hope this helps

CMOT_Dibbler

• The inconvenience of needing to swap the pairs numbers round on the traveller in the scoring program should alone provide some incentive to the TD to go round trying to ensure that each table is about to arrow-switch and is arrow-switching when they should, irrespective of announcements or table cards or bridge-mates' displays.

Barrie Partridge - Senior Kibitzer in Bridge Club Live - Pig Trader in IBLF