John Carruthers
International Bridge Press Association

The debate over the new WBF Victory Point scale rages on. That the scale produced such a debate in the first place in an indication that all is not quite right with it.

The WBF has done as it promised in Bali that it would do, that is, conducted a survey among interested parties to see what the overall reaction to the scale is.

Without the survey, there is always a danger that a few opinionated souls could skew the results simply because they are the only ones heard from and the WBF wanted a wider opinion base than the one represented by our membership.

We eagerly await the results of the survey questionnaire.

Curiously, a lot of the debate has been among Australians, one supposes due to Ron Klinger’s passionate, cogent and well-publicized opposition to the new scale.

Our chief objections to the new scale are that

(i) it is too complex for easy reference and

(ii) it is completely unnecessary.

In the [ilink url=»″]November Bulletin[/ilink] we analysed six other scoring methods, all simpler than the one used in Bali. All six of those scoring systems (including win/loss/draw) produced the same eight qualifiers except in one instance: USA1 would have qualified instead of Canada if IMP differential were used as the determining factor. Every other sports league that we know of, including chess, uses win/loss/draw as a method of determining its winners and/or qualifiers. The equivalent to Victory Points in chess would be a Victory-Point scoring system based on the number of moves to checkmate or resignation.

Does it not seem awkward (at best) when a team scores up a match and does not know the VP score without reference to what appear to be logarithm tables?