[BLML] Claims

Nigel Guthrie nigelguthrie at yahoo.co.uk
Wed Sep 8 16:03:44 CEST 2010

[Dave Seagull]
Case 1: declarer is in a diamond contract with the lead in dummy       and all 
trumps are drawn and spades never have been played
Dummy: S - xxxx H - AJ
Declarer: S - xx D - xxxx
Declarer's claim: I will pitch 1 spade       loser on the HA and concede 1 
The director was called because originally the heart suit was: Kx       opposite 
AJTx and the 2 tricks previous to the claim were HK       followed by a heart to 
the Ten and now if play had continued the Q       would drop from LHO who 
started with Qxx and declarer can discard       his last losing spade on the 
established HJ.
Declarer was a flight B player who clearly made a careless claim       but 
should not playing the HJ after the Q drops be considered       careless or 
how would you rule? Would you rule any differently if the claimer was flight C? 
flight       A?
Would you rule any differently if the first 2 heart tricks were at       an 
earlier stage of the play?

Case 2: declarer is in a heart contract after pulling trumps and       
eliminating spades and diamonds with clubs never been played
Dummy: H - xx C - AQJ
Declarer: H - xxx C - xx
Declarer led a low club, LHO followed low and before declarer       called for a 
card from dummy, RHO placed the CK on the table       without saying anything.
The director was called and RHO who started with Kx of clubs said       they 
were trying to claim by showing declarer that the finesse was       off and that 
declarer's earlier plays gave away his complete count       so it was clear to 
RHO that declarer must lose a club.
Declarer was a flight A player who probably could have taken the       finesse 
(or claimed) at trick 4 since the elimination was       completely unnecessary 
and at that point he already knew that the       final result depends solely on 
the club finesse.
RHO was a flight B player who clearly made a careless and       impatient play 
(or claim).
How do you rule? 

I'm just a player but I think the director should rule for the claimer in both 
In the first case, declarer said he'd discard a spade on the hearts. In my view, 
the law should assume that you cash winners *top down* unless specified 
In the second case, barring mechanical error, the defender's intention to claim 
seems manifest.

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