Jeff Rubens has taken the leading bridge magazine in the world and made it still better, but having said that, I do not approve of publishing what I consider simple sophistry in trying to win or even provoke a tired argument. In the March, 2010 Bridge World (under the Bits and Pieces section. p. 23), it is mentioned that sportsmanship dumping is alive and well in Texas high-school football.
It then describes a team, down by 4 points, and with little time left to play, but in possession of the ball, stalled out the last minute of the game rather than make an all out effort to win the game outright.
It then went on to say that the rules in that District made it so that if the subject team lost by 8 points or less in that particular game they would be a playoff qualifier beating out two competitors. Nothing could be further than this example being evidence of sportsmanship dumping since the rules made it such that this team had accomplished what it wanted to do which is to continue playing in the playoffs and did so by following the conditions of contest.
Sportsmanship dumping in bridge has only to do with allowing one’s status to not follow the spirit of competiton, either written or not written into the Conditions, but nevertheless playing to do whatever it takes to go on to the next level, keeping in mind that your team is responsible for representing the game as such and not using artificial negative tactics to further another team’s position rather than one’s own.
Yes, that spirit of the game means that even if the team feels that it would be better off if this team or that team could be eliminated by their team not playing up to their capabilities (and so felt justified in throwing that part of the competition), it would, in truth, be thought of rather, as a treasonous, despicable act and subject to severe discipline by the administration.
Sometimes, in the best interest of normal competition, a team may be confronted, usually by their up-to-then success, having to deal with ethical issues, not having any bearing on their direct success, but rather by what might happen down the road. In that event, every team is expected to adhere to fairness toward the rest of the field in general and not succumb to heinous, ugly unethical tactics.