Paul Cronin

Whither A/X:continued

The concern I keep hearing from people is that while the lower strats are fairly  reasonably bounded, as in D=0-300, C=300-750, B=750-2000 , the highest strat is unfairly bounded, as in A=2000+. The range 2000-infinity is simply too large, and skews the event result markedly in favour of the very small number of players in the field with very large masterpoint holdings. The 8500 players in the 2000-5000 masterpoint range are seen as the cannon-fodder needed to make up the field for the 2000 players in the 5000+ masterpoint range. On a smaller scale, Unit 166 has some 3400 members in total, with 36 players in the 5000+ MP range. But a significant portion of those 36  5000+ players don’t play in tournaments anymore. and others won’t be attending any given tournament because of other plans. This results in the perception then that the limits of the upper strat are very much in favour of a very small number of top players. To digress somewhat, is this perception simply a part of a larger perception that duplicate bridge in general is organized in favour of the 1% of players with 5000+ MPs?  





kenrexfordApril 29th, 2010 at 5:28 pm

I still don’t get it. What is the point of being able to tell your friends and family that you have achieved the highly esteemed rank of GOLD LIFE MASTER (applause, confetti) is the operational definition of that high honor is that you are “cannon fodder” for others to beat up on?

I, personally, have found it somewhat annoying over the years, this copnstant inflation of masterpoints and the constant increase in what the limit is for the protected player. My career is such that I cannot play enough events and tournaments to gain tons and tons of freebie points. But, they steadily accumulate, over the years. And yet, no matter how long I play, and no matter how good I get at this game, I keep suffering the indignity of being classified for tournament purposes by some lower class. Every time I think that I have finally reached the level where I cannot any longer be classified as B or A/X or whatever, they raise the ceiling! Quite embarrassing.

I figure that when I get to 10,000 MP, they will make A/X go up through 15,000 because the lesser Grand Life Masters are feeling like cannon fodder for the World Champions.

Martin HunterMay 11th, 2010 at 7:33 pm

I am continually annoyed by the constant whining of Life Masters ( incl Bronze, Silver, and now apparently, Gold ) who want protection from the ‘good’ players.
If one continues to earn masterpoints by playing in games with an upper masterpoint limit, they will eventually move to another level and have to play against ‘good’ or ‘better’ players.
The Life Master titles are cheapened every time a LM, BLM, SLM, GLM complains about playing against ‘good’ players.
Suppose an up-and-coming golfer earns his long-awaited PGA Tour Card, do you think he looks at next week’s Tournament, sees that Tiger & Phil are entered, and says ” I’ think I’ll sit this week out”? ( Yes, I know there’s lots of money for a lot of placings down the list )

Now, lets go back to the concept of moving Flight X’s masterpoint limit up from 2000 / 3000.
Suppose I am having a lot of success in BCD or my masterpoint total has exceeded the upper limit.( dread the thought ) I am going to try A / X. But, look, the upper limit for X is now 5000.
How will I ever earn masterpoints, I say? Well, if I am one of the whiners, I may choose not to play. Its a double-edged sword.

Finally, for the absurd comment / perception that “duplicate bridge in general is organized in favour of the 1% of players with 5000+ MPs”: Here is the proof that it isn’t:

-Games with upper masterpoint limits
-Clubs that discourage the presence of ‘good’ players, by running the majority of their games with such limits
-North American Pairs-2 Flights for players under 5000 MP
-Grand National Teams – 3 Flights for players under 5000 MP
-Spingold – 2 Flights for players under 5000 MP
-Life Master Pairs – 2 Flights for players under 5000 MP
-CNTC – B event
Flight BCD
Stratified games, in general

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