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Stayman may or may not have 4cM

#1 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-August-08, 14:36

ACBL and NZ Bridge

Playing 4 way transfers after a 1nt opening, the balanced invitation goes via 2C stayman.

1NT 2C* Stayman or general invite
2x 2NT Invitational, may or may not have 4cM

Which bid should be alerted? 2C or 2NT
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#2 User is online   smerriman 

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Posted 2021-August-08, 15:00

2NT.

From the ACBL Alert Procedures:

Quote

Do NOT Alert the following bids:

After an Opening No Trump Sequence or a Natural No Trump Direct Overcall, a 2C bid over 1NT or a 3C bid over 2NT that asks about the No Trump bidders major suit holdings. Alert any follow-up bid that reveals that the 2C or 3C bidder may not (or did not) hold a major suit for the bid.

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#3 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-August-08, 15:15

View Postsmerriman, on 2021-August-08, 15:00, said:

2NT.

From the ACBL Alert Procedures:


Even after 2?
This seems odd to me in any case, the 2NT bid is natural (given the rest of the auction) unlike the two preceding bids.
Surely the opponents have a right to know at the moment of the 2 bid whether or not it promises a 4 card major?
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#4 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-August-08, 17:25

You need to check with NZ regulations - you've only got answers for the ACBL. But yes, it is and has been for 20 years that the call that shows the "may not have" is the one that's Alerted in the ACBL, not 2 (which, as long as it *asks* for a major, is the "default" meaning for the call. Yes, even if you play 2 Puppet Stayman, asking for a 5-card major).

Pescetom, if you need to know in fourth seat, you can ask. But experience shows that you (in general) don't - but you do need to know for the defence.
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#5 User is offline   helene_t 

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Posted 2021-August-08, 23:01

Not alertable in New Zealand. Well, that's what the directors say at my club, I can't find any official sources that talk about it.

It is bit weird since people do alert Baron, which is similar in a way.
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#6 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 01:34

View Posthelene_t, on 2021-August-08, 23:01, said:

Not alertable in New Zealand. Well, that's what the directors say at my club, I can't find any official sources that talk about it.

It is bit weird since people do alert Baron, which is similar in a way.

That's weird, one of the directors at my club says the 2 should be alerted. I'm glad it is not just me who is confused.
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#7 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 09:27

Well, you got me to read the manual. And I'm not thrilled with it, at least as far as "Alerting regulations" are concerned. It's basically "Alert anything conventional except these 'self-Alerting' calls", and then "conventional calls defined" - doesn't. It just explains that "natural +" is conventional (and a couple more examples). It needs to say "all calls that are not natural are conventional, including: " or something. I guess they think that's obvious, but it really should be mentioned.

Having said that, the relevant regulation is the following (page D58 of the manual):

[these specific calls are considered self-Alerting]: "simple Stayman 2♣ responses to 1NT opening bids [and the "no major" 2 response] (alert all other uses [including natural])."

So the question becomes: is 'asking about a 4-card major, even if you don't have one, because you're using it as a puppet to show other sequences, "simple" Stayman?' And I don't know the answer, and I wouldn't guarantee anyone not on the committee does for certain either. These situations are the ones where "tribes" form of received wisdom that it either is or isn't, and they don't even know there's another tribe out there.

So, I think you have to contact NZB for a determination. I'm surprised I can't find one, it can't be the first time. However, given "Your principle should be to disclose, not as little as you must, but as much as you can, and as comprehensibly as you can." (D56, from 29.1, Alerting Regulations, Introduction), I don't think you'll be *wrong* Alerting it, even if you'll be stared at and laughed at by people who think that's obvious ("the regulation is unclear, so we're going with full disclosure").
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#8 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 10:02

View Postmycroft, on 2021-August-08, 17:25, said:


Pescetom, if you need to know in fourth seat, you can ask. But experience shows that you (in general) don't - but you do need to know for the defence.


I would be unhappy to ask about any promise of a major or invitational strength (though I will) because that puts UI pressure on my partner: these are the precise situations that announcements are supposed to address.

Having said that, I concede that (at least for me) there is rarely any urgent need to know. But many players here (and even the regulations) seem to think differently, with responder not promising a major being seen as some kind of scandal (even though the majority play that way).

P.S. FWIW I'm in the tribe that sees NT invitations (or minor suit shows) that pass through Stayman as part of that Stayman.
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#9 User is offline   axman 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 10:41

View Postpescetom, on 2021-August-09, 10:02, said:


Having said that, I concede that (at least for me) there is rarely any urgent need to know. But many players here (and even the regulations) seem to think differently, with responder not promising a major being seen as some kind of scandal (even though the majority play that way).



Aren't these situations that CCs **address.

** #@?%^##ought to/#!%$@
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#10 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 12:31

View Postmycroft, on 2021-August-09, 09:27, said:

Well, you got me to read the manual. And I'm not thrilled with it, at least as far as "Alerting regulations" are concerned. It's basically "Alert anything conventional except these 'self-Alerting' calls", and then "conventional calls defined" - doesn't. It just explains that "natural +" is conventional (and a couple more examples). It needs to say "all calls that are not natural are conventional, including: " or something. I guess they think that's obvious, but it really should be mentioned.

I agree, I was no wiser for reading the manual.

View Postaxman, on 2021-August-09, 10:41, said:

Aren't these situations that CCs **address.

** #@?%^##ought to/#!%$@

Unfortunately, CCs are unheard of in NZ Club bridge, and not required by ACBL even at Tournament level.
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#11 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 15:18

View Postaxman, on 2021-August-09, 10:41, said:

Aren't these situations that CCs **address.

** #@?%^##ought to/#!%$@


Up to a point even then, at least with our (and some other) national formats.
The detail of a convention falls between the System Card and System Notes, which are even less likely to be accessible (and readable) in practice.

I just checked my own Card, which to my relief makes a reasonably honest attempt, given the space:

1NT-2 = "Stayman": 2 2 = 5card; 2 = other
1NT-2-2: 2 = or INV; 2 = ; 2NT = 44


I hope one could figure out that Responder will not always have a 4 card major and might not be invitational either if full of diamonds.
There are several pages of follow-ups about 1NT Stayman in the System Notes, but only in English, not national language.

I certainly could do better, but most opponents do worse, and I risk more trouble by following the rules than I would by disobeying them.
As nige1 points out, some standard of markup language and internet accessibility would make the whole process a lot simpler to use and enforce.
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#12 User is online   mycroft 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 16:10

Oh, they're required. They're just not always there.

Cynicism off.
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#13 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 17:02

The problem is not that they're not required, it's that players don't get into trouble for not having them.
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#14 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-August-09, 21:14

View Postblackshoe, on 2021-August-09, 17:02, said:

The problem is not that they're not required, it's that players don't get into trouble for not having them.

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#15 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2021-August-10, 10:26

I say that directors should enforce the rules of the game.
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#16 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2021-August-10, 12:40

View Postmycroft, on 2021-August-09, 09:27, said:

So, I think you have to contact NZB for a determination. I'm surprised I can't find one, it can't be the first time. However, given "Your principle should be to disclose, not as little as you must, but as much as you can, and as comprehensibly as you can." (D56, from 29.1, Alerting Regulations, Introduction), I don't think you'll be *wrong* Alerting it, even if you'll be stared at and laughed at by people who think that's obvious ("the regulation is unclear, so we're going with full disclosure").

I did ask, and they don't know. I will go with the alert of 2NT until told otherwise.


View Postblackshoe, on 2021-August-10, 10:26, said:

I say that directors should enforce the rules of the game.


That would be super!
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#17 User is offline   pescetom 

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Posted 2021-August-10, 13:48

View Postblackshoe, on 2021-August-10, 10:26, said:

I say that directors should enforce the rules of the game.

But we are talking about regulations not laws, and sometimes even courageous directors need firmer regulations or at least sure support of the regulatory body and organisation.
I don't remember seeing any regulation that specified a precise penalty for a missing or inadequate card, for starters.
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#18 User is offline   nige1 

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Posted 2021-August-10, 15:07

View Postmycroft, on 2021-August-09, 09:27, said:

So the question becomes: is 'asking about a 4-card major, even if you don't have one, because you're using it as a puppet to show other sequences, "simple" Stayman?' And I don't know the answer, and I wouldn't guarantee anyone not on the committee does for certain either. These situations are the ones where "tribes" form of received wisdom that it either is or isn't, and they don't even know there's another tribe out there.So, I think you have to contact NZB for a determination. I'm surprised I can't find one, it can't be the first time. However, given "Your principle should be to disclose, not as little as you must, but as much as you can, and as comprehensibly as you can." (D56, from 29.1, Alerting Regulations, Introduction), I don't think you'll be *wrong* Alerting it, even if you'll be stared at and laughed at by people who think that's obvious ("the regulation is unclear, so we're going with full disclosure").

View Postpescetom, on 2021-August-10, 13:48, said:

But we are talking about regulations not laws, and sometimes even courageous directors need firmer regulations or at least sure support of the regulatory body and organisation. I don't remember seeing any regulation that specified a precise penalty for a missing or inadequate card, for starters.
Twin bases of WBFLC
policy seem to be
  • Delegation of key responsibilities to NBOs (creating a fragmented, over-sophisticated, incomprehensible Tower of Babel); and
  • Empowering TDs (too often relying on their subjective judgement in preference to objective criteria).


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#19 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2021-August-10, 17:16

View Postpescetom, on 2021-August-10, 13:48, said:

But we are talking about regulations not laws, and sometimes even courageous directors need firmer regulations or at least sure support of the regulatory body and organisation.
I don't remember seeing any regulation that specified a precise penalty for a missing or inadequate card, for starters.

Well, the ACBL regulation has its faults, but it's a good start. Or would be, if directors enforced it (NB: some do; the problem is that some don't).
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#20 User is offline   sanst 

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Posted 2021-August-11, 01:47

View Postnige1, on 2021-August-10, 15:07, said:

Twin bases of WBFLC policy seem to be
  • Delegation of key responsibilities to NBOs (creating a fragmented, over-sophisticated, incomprehensible Tower of Babel); and
  • Empowering TDs (too often relying on their subjective judgement in preference to objective criteria).


Your first point is probably correct. But thats not the WBFLCs fault, but of the NBOs who claim the right to make their own rules. I got the impression that the ACBL for one, is an organization that wont compromise easily. Besides, whats usual in one country, is sometimes highly unusual in another. And there are NBOs that differentiate between players based on level, others dont.
I think your second point is only half finished.
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