Please click here if you do not see a Nav Frame at left and Header Frame above - you'll need them!


By Tom Sloper (湯姆)

February 12, The Year Of The Dog
Column #253

Chinese Official Tournament Rules.

(Continued.) Our players had made a Chinese New Year bet, that the first one to make the specially created hand would be treated to Sunday dim sum. That hand (for those too lazy to simply click the link above and see the column of two weeks ago) was:

1911 and 1949 (dates important to modern Chinese history), with pungs of E (since China is in the "Eastern" part of the world) and R (chung, the national symbol of China). The hand seemed to be cursed. The closest anyone got was Samantha. Here's what she started with:

She had flexibility with this - there were possibilities for the dates in all three suits. Samantha's first pick was 6D, which gave her a complete chow. Hanging onto it for the moment, she threw 5C. A few turns later she picked 8C, and had a real quandary. Should she keep the 8C? Or go for the Chinese New Year hand? Well, we wouldn't have a column if she didn't go for the hand. She threw it back. The next pick worth telling about was 9B. She threw 5D. Then Noriko threw E. Samantha punged it and discarded 6D.

As you might expect, everyone took note when E got punged. Waiyee made a sound. Earl was doing his usual poker-faced thing, and didn't make any outward display.

Samantha soon added 4B to her hand. But then Waiyee punged 9B. That killed bams for Samantha's 1949. Samantha drew the fourth E and konged it. The replacement tile was 4B; she threw it back. Not long after, she got 9D, and had her 1949, in dots, getting rid of the unnecessary 4B.

What she needed at this point was ones and reds. But given her kong of E, it was unlikely anybody'd throw R. And, until and unless the hand was ready for mah-jongg, she'd be unable to call a one. She'd have to pick lucky. She picked and discarded G, and that was it. Noriko won on it - All Pungs, Pung of Dragon, One Voided Suit.

In the postmortem, it was decided that she'd needed to have more ones (craks or bams), and that it may have been unwise to try without them.


Click the entries in the header frame, above, to read other columns.

© 2006 Tom Sloper. All rights reserved.