Board 2
Vul: N/S
Dealer: East

West (Vince Demuy)
North (Geoff Hampson)
H  Q T 6 5 4 2
D  3
C Q J 9 6 4

East (John Kranyak)
S A K 9 7 5 
H  ----
D A Q T 8 7  
C A T 5

S  J 6 4 3
H   A K 8 3
D  J 9 2
C  8 7
  South (Eric Greco)
S Q 8 2
H J 9 7
D  K 6 5 4
C  K 3 2


       N           E           S         W      

  •               P          P        1Cool*
      2Cry**  DBL***  2Embarassed    DBL
       P         P          P         

* Precision
**One Major
*** Artificial Game Force

Lead: Foot in mouthK

Table Result: EW +200


 Foot in mouthK    T    6    8
 CryA    3     9    6
 Foot in mouth5   Cool4  J    Q
 Embarassed9   Cry7  2    K
 Cool7*   2     5

 *After winning the EmbarassedK, East thought for a long time before leading the Cool7.

Director's Statement:

Experts were consulted. All believed that the cards played by East to tricks 1 and 2 overwhelmingly suggested that East did not have a singleton Club. One expert offered that with West needng the Ace, if East had had a singledon Club he would have waited until after winning the second Heart to shift to the Club so that partner couldn't go wrong.

Director's Ruling: Table result stands.

Players present at appeal: Geoff Hampson (N) and John Kranyak (E)

Appeals Committee Ruling:Table result stands. The ruling was 2-1

1. Unauthorized information was present, but winning the Club A was not a logical alternative.

2. The suit preference signals at tricks one and two contraindicated the singleton club holding.

One of the committee members affirming the ruling felt that the case was very close. However, under WBF conditions, the committee is to presume that the table ruling is correct unless persuasive evidence to the contrary exists.

The appeal had merit.  

Dissenting Opinion by Kit Woolsey

It was definitely agreed that there was a BIT, and the committee agreed that the UI suggested that East had a doubleton club.  The question was whether or not winning the ace of clubs and returning a club is a logical alternative.

It was argued that East's carding of the 6 of spades and the 9 of diamonds made it clear that East did not have a singleton club.  I do not agree.  Suppose East had a singleton club.  At that point in the hand, East cannot know that he even wants a club ruff.  He doesn't know the trump position since South's 2H call wasn't a raise -- it was a pass or correct call.   East might be ruffing with a natural trump trick.  A forcing defense might be the best defense.  Even if East does want a ruff, it has to be better for the club lead to come from his side.  All his 6 of spades says is that he wants West to cash the ace of diamonds if he has it, and his 9 of diamonds says he doesn't have the king.

It was also argued that if East has a singleton club he might have defended differently, such as delaying the club shift until winning the second round of hearts so West wouldn't have a problem.  This would be fine if West has the ace of clubs.  But if declarer has the ace of clubs and West the king, this line of defense is a concession.  It is better to win the heart and immediately return a club, so declarer will have to guess whether East has a singleton or a doubleton if declarer has the ace of clubs.

It could also be argued that if East had a singleton club he might have tried to make it clearer to partner.  For example, he might have won the ace of hearts rather than the king.  But this would also make it clear to declarer that East has a singleton club, so if declarer has the ace of clubs declarer will know what to do.

My conclusion is that East's plays are consistent with him holding a singleton club.  This makes winning the ace of clubs and returning a club a logical alternative.  Since that alternative is contra-indicated by the UI, West should not be permitted to duck the club.

Appeals Committee

Gaylor Kasle, Chairman
Kerri Sanborn, Member
Kit Woolsey, Member
Robb Gordon, Scribe (non-voting)