In this section I would be putting together all the information regarding bridge facilites in the various cities in India.The information may be sketchy at present but would be made comprehensive in future.Lucknow Allahabad Varanasi Meerut Dehradun Ghaziabad Kanpur Moradabad Delhi Chandigarh Jaipur Mumbai Pune Asansol Durgapur Bangalore Chennai Ranchi
In this section I would cover tournaments happening in India and more so the tournaments happening in Northern part of India and in the state of Uttar Pradesh.
K.N. Modi bridge tournament is taking place at Boat House Club, Nainital from Oct 2-Oct 5, 1999.
Rajendra Golcha Memorial bridge tournament is taking place at Jai Club, Jaipur from Oct 9-Oct 11,1999.
All India Jagdish Agarwal memorial Oudh bridge championship is taking place at Oudh Gymkhana, Lucknow from Nov 11 -14, 1999.
In this section I would cover one good deal which appeared in the Weekly Bridge Tournaments at Lucknow or in a recent tournament with explanations.
This week's deal is on long pauses or huddles.
7 6 4
A K 10 9 6 5 2
K Q 10
K Q 9 5 2
8 7 6 3
10 8 7 6 3
J 9 8 3 2
A J 4
K Q 5
A J 9 4 2
What is a long pause or a huddle ? It is a question almost no one bothers in this part of India but it is something players are very conscious about in the international field.
According to Howard Weinstien, Chairman, ACBL Conventions & Competition Committee and Rich Colker, ACBL Recorder and Appeals Administrator a huddle is:
"...Thinking is in itself legal and an inevitable part of bridge. The problem occurs when you take longer than normal to make a call. In such cases the extra time may suggest to partner that your hand is flawed for your action. For example, you might have a better hand than he would expect, or you are uncomfortable with the denomination (notrump or suit)."
"When this happens, this is considered unauthorized information (UI) to your partner. He is not allowed to make a call that was demonstrably suggested by your break in tempo, even if he was going to make that call anyway, unless the call (or bidding on in general) is so clear that everyone — not just you — would make it. At times this may seem unfair, but it's the law."
This week's deal is from 44th Genereli European Championship which took place in Malta in June 1999 and depicts the harm which such long pauses cause.
South opened Strong 1 Club and West pre-empts with 2 Spade which is alerted. North comes with a free bid of 3 Diamonds which shows 8 + HCP and Diamond suit. At favourable vulnerability East now jumps to 6 Spade. South now pauses for a while before doubling and North converts the bid to Seven Diamonds which is doubled by West. The 7 Diamond contract doesn't score on Heart lead from East but East leads a Club and North is able to discard Hearts on dummy's Clubs and Spade ace and scores the contract. EW call the director and inform that South has paused for 30 seconds before making the double, South admits to a pause of about 20 seconds. Director rules that pause was sufficient to convey unauthorised information and convert the score to 6 Spade double minus four. NS appeal. The appeals committee said that the situation "should not pose any problems for experienced players. They should simply accept that they are outbid and double in tempo." They further stated that the hesitation could only suggest some tolerance for diamonds and that the club lead was insufficiently bad to break the link between the infraction and the damage. The director's result was allowed to stand but committee returned the deposit of NS.
This deal sufficiently depicts the harm caused by pausing. In bridge even for long established partnerships it is impossible to discuss all the bidding situaions and we all know that no bidding system conveys all the cards accurately so there is a best "representative bid" which is chosen for the cards. When you are bidding in unchartered territory ,as South was doing in this deal at 6 Spades, you should be able to know immediately that this situation is undiscussed and should choose the representative bid immediately ,which is double in the deal shown. So committee was right in rejecting NS appeal.
In India most of the directors are simply not aware of the long pauses. Long pauses are simply taken as accepted fact of life. I'm narrating to you three incidents where I felt long pauses were established and how partners use these long pauses.
First incident happened in a matchpoint pairs event in Lucknow. My LHO opened 1 Diamond (prepared) and the bidding went 1 D - (pass) - 1 S - (pass) - 2 S - (pass) - . At this stage my RHO paused for about 45 seconds before passing. I chose to balance with 3 Clubs and before I knew my LHO has bid 4 Spades. Dummy came down my LHO had 4441 distribution (singleton Club) and 12 HCP. I felt bad even though Club was singleton there is no way my LHO could have bid 4 Spade if his partner hasn't paused. At best he could have bid 3 Spades to indicate Club shortness. My RHO's pause clearly indicated that he had borderline values to make another bid and not minimum for his 1 Spade response. Both my opponents were very experienced players. I didn't call the director for the knowledge of directors in Lucknow on long pauses is very limited.
Second incident happened in an All India tournament in matchpoint pairs event where the CTD I knew was conversant with damages caused by huddles. My RHO opened strong (15 -17 HCP) 1 NT I overcalled 2 Spades and my LHO bids 3 Club which was forcing and the bidding went 1 NT - (2 S) - 3 C - (pass) - 3 NT - (pass) -. Now my LHO paused for about 45 seconds and at that stage instead of calling director I warned him that he has paused for long and if my RHO takes any action over his game bid I would call he director. This had the desired effect. My LHO immediately bid 6 C and his partner corrected to 6 NT. Now this 6 NT was no reason to call the director as this is a standard pairs strategy. My opponents were both experienced players and my LHO asked me after dummy came down that he had a bidding problem and the dummy had AKJ to six clubs and 15 HCP. You tell me is that a bidding problem.
The third incident was terrible and happened about a year ago in Lucknow in a matchpoint pairs. My partner opened 1 Diamond (prepared) my RHO doubled I called 1 H (non forcing) and the bidding went (1 D) - X - (1H) - Pass - (2 H) - . At this stage my RHO paused for a minute before bidding 3 Diamonds, I called 3 Heart and his partner now comes in with 3 Spades. My partner bids 4 Heart and we were doubled. My RHO's cards were S Kx H K J10 D AKJxx C KQ and LHO S Jxxxxx H xx D xx C xxx ,my opponents were vulnerable and they were playing Diamond suit bid after double as suit not as cue. I called he director and appealed also but my RHO was thought to have bidding problem!!! The clear UI by both experienced players was ignored else how could my LHO bid vulnerable 3 Spade against minimum partner. So much for director and appeals committee knowledge in Lucknow.
Finally when you should excercise some control before calling the director when there is a huddle. Weinstien and Colker say "If the opponents are inexperienced, where even the simplest auction can be difficult and huddles are usually meaningless, avoid calling the Director. You'll find that you and your opponents will enjoy the game more, and it will encourage more players to continue playing duplicate bridge."