Appeal 1 - 2010
Reported by Pauline Gumby

Open ITS Final - 24/4/2010

Appeals Committee: Edward Chadwick (chairman), Kim Morrison, Kieran Dyke

Board 6
EW Vul
Dealer East

S  Q5
H  A53
D  AJ973
C  J42

S  7
H  Q8764
D  KQ2
C  K765

S  109643
H  10
D  1064
C  Q1083
S  AKJ82
H  KJ92
D  85
C  A9

Auction and Explanations

Contract: 3NT S


Declarer claimed 9 tricks


Cx 2 10 A

Result:      3NTS NS -50

Tournament Directors Statement of Facts and Ruling :    The claim was disputed by EW as 5 spade tricks were not available. I was called to the table. Declarer made the statement that if he could not take five spades then the only logical alternative was to to take the heart finesse. As this was losing, 8 tricks were agreed and the board scored as NS -50.

After the match, and after consulting the hand record, it was noted that as the H10 was singleton, declarer could still make 9 tricks even after giving up the HQ.

Under Law 71, the director may cancel a concession (in this instance, declarer's concession of 5 tricks) "if the player has conceded a trick that could not be lost by any normal play of the remaining cards."

I ruled that this was not the case and allowed the score to stand. The reasons were:

  1. the additional possibilites were not noted at the the time
  2. 6 out of 11 declarers in 3NT were defeated

Reasons for Appeal:   

* My analysis at the table was incorrect. With H10 dropping I had 9 tricks.
* The line stated at the table was not the line taken by declarers who failed.

Opponents Submission:     


Decision of the Appeals Committee:    

Director's Decision upheld.

Given that

  1. declarer notices that West shows out on second spade and
  2. declarer decides to finesse hearts and notices 10 from East then

there are alternative lines of play. e.g. double D finesse, i.e. small to AJ9xx finessing 9 when West follows low. Declarer was extremely careless in his claim and cannot subsequently select the winning line.

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