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Use of stop card

Do I need my stop card when bidding 2NT on the 2nd round to show 17 to 18 points, having opened 1 heart as we play the weak no trump opening (12 to 14 points) My partner had responded 1 spade and the opposition did not bid..?


  • edited 9:40PM
    Yes. You play the stop card whenever you make a jump bid of any description.
  • edited February 2018
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  • edited 9:40PM
    The Stop card is no longer in use. In different parts of the world, its use was discontinued at different times. Clubs can make their own rules about such things, so it is best to ask if stop cards are still in use at the club at which you play. In the USA, the stop card was discontinued starting this year.
  • edited 9:40PM
    The stop card is very much in use in England. It is mandatory in EBU sanctioned competitions and in near universal use at English clubs.
  • edited 9:40PM
    Thanks for that information. I know that the World Bridge Federation, which runs all the international events, was the first to discontinue the use of the stop card. Its use in England will likely follow the WBF discontuance in the future. I wonder what the EBU said about it recently. Does anyone know?
  • edited 9:40PM
    When you say the WBF has discontinued use I wonder to what tournaments you refer? I don't know of any WBF tournaments that are not held behind screens where, of course, stop cards are irrelevant.

    In ACBL land I believe they have been unsuccessful in persuading many players to deal with the stop card properly or at all over many years and, in part, the change in January is recognition of that failure. It's clubs are free to do what they wish but the culture is such that most, I suspect will follow the ACBL lead.
    In England there is a greater majority who follow the process. The EBU has no current intention of changing or abolishing the procedure so don't know where the information about following suit came from. 

    Clubs are, as said, free to decide but most will likely continue on the present path.

    Not completely clear what the problem is other than some players can't be bothered either to play the stop card or acknowledge it.

    Its a cardinal rule at bridge that the decision you make should come from authorised information. The stop card is to give warning that a jump bid is about to come. It's clear that (3H) Instant pass conveys a different message from (3H) long pause pass. Of course players can pause appropriately whether there is a stop card or not but the existence of the card may help and doesn't seem to hinder in any way.
  • edited 9:40PM
    When I played in the world championships in Philadelphia, there were no screens for us. Of course, this was not the Bermuda Bowl -- but the screens appear when the teams are representing their nations, not when you walk in with your team, plunk down your money, and play. These world championships feature excellent teams, but they were selected by themselves, not by any regional or zonal competitions, so no screens are used -- at least I saw none in Philadelphia (about 10 years ago).

    Of course, that has nothing to do with stop cards and their use or misuse or disuse or anything :)
  • edited 9:40PM
    Interesting because WC elsewhere e.g. a Trans National in Veldhoven with 140+ Teams had screens nas have all since the event started in 1997. All EBL events do. 
    I wonder if it was the size or because it was in the US where even a multi makes then come out in a cold sweat and a stop card a blind panic.
  • edited 9:40PM
    All team trials to represent the United States employ screens, and have done so for years. Screens began after the Italians won many Bermuda Bowls. After the screens, they never won again. That too is interesting :)
  • I have long been hoping that the STOP card would be banned. I was recently exhilarated to find that the ACBL has, in its wisdom, done just that. Playing bridge on the SS"Queen Mary 2" I enquired why it was missing from the bidding box and was told the good news. It was due to general misuse.

    I have often found, here in Britain, partners happily misusing the Stop Card and have wondered why we have a STOP card at all except to bring to the attention of those not paying proper attention to the bidding that a JUMP bid has been made and that the jump bid is not a mistake.

    So we get, for example, 1 Club, Stop 3 Clubs, Stop 4 Clubs ( meaning this is not a natural raise but Gerber-Asking For Aces). Call the director - he consults the Bridge Bible - " No penalty - Carry on".

    Another example: 1 Spade, STOP 2 Hearts (meaning I have 6 hearts)!!! Call the director. No penalty for misuse! Carry on! No requirement to rebid or correct it to the correct jump bid of "3 Hearts".

    Enough of the misuse! Throw out the STOP cards, ban the verbal "STOP", world-wide, and make PAYING ATTENTION to the Bidding an essential part of the wonderful game.

  • RICHARDW: You would like the Stop Card banned, as is the case in North America - and apparently aboard the Queen Mary 2. The ACBL have only removed the requirement to use the Stop Card, not the requirement to follow the Stop Procedure. It is still a requirement for a player to pause (for around 10 seconds) after a skip-level bid, even in America - they just don't have a Stop Card to remind them. I wish the ACBL well in this requirement, since most players do not pause after a skip-level bid even when their partner does wave the red Stop Card.

    On one level, I have some sympathy with you wanting to get rid of the card. It is rarely used properly and many club players do not understand the reason for it's use.

    I haven't come across the sort of abuse that you describe - such as waving the stop card to indicate a Gerber bid! But I do experience regularly the problem of Unauthorised Information being transmitted through failure to maintain a consistent tempo and failure to pause after a skip-level bid. Maybe your first auction fizzles out in three clubs: 1C, Pass, 3C, Pass, Pass, ? Do you make a protective bid after this auction has died? It would be a brave bid to protect at the three-level when you seemingly couldn't bid over 1C - but some might do so at favourable vulnerability.

    How do you feel if (a) partner passed instantly over 3C and (b) partner paused in apparent thought over 3C? If partner has given Unauthorised Information through a long pause then bidding would surely be more attractive and hence unethical. The stop procedure is in place avoid these ethical dilemmas. Partner should pause, whether he has interest in competing or not.

    So, you might get your wish to abolish the Stop Card, but I doubt that the regulators will remove the requirement to Stop after a skip bid.

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