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Many thanks to Sol Hartman for hanging several of his paintings at the club!
For information, please see Sol’s web site.
The photo above shows Richard Burns sitting next to Sol’s “Richard.”
West’s 3♠ bid showed a good hand and a good suit (Ogust).
North led the ♣3 to the J, Q, and A. Declarer led a trump to dummy’s Q and South’s A. South led the ♦6, and North made a face. North won the ♦A and returned the deuce. South ruffed and led a club. North ruffed and gave South a second diamond ruff.
Table result: 4♥W–2, NS 200.
North’s reaction to South’s diamond lead was an “extraneous gesture” violating Law 73B1. South was therefore prohibited by Laws 73C and 16B1 from “choosing from among logical alternatives one that could demonstrably have been suggested over another by the extraneous information.” The director ruled that the “extraneous information” “demonstrably suggested” leading a club at trick five, but after polling a few players the director ruled that at trick five South had no “logical alternative” (see Law 16B1b) to returning a club.
(The director notes that two NS pairs set 4♥W only one trick after the ♣3 opening lead. The director suspects that those South players never got a second diamond ruff because they did return a club when they were in with the ♥A.)
Director’s ruling: The table result stands. North-South penalized for North’s impropriety.
At the table, EW scored 170 for 3♥W+1. There was an acknowledged break in tempo (BIT) before East’s second-round pass.
East alerted West’s 2NT bid and explained it as a transfer to diamonds. At the table, East made 3NT for 600.