Calling a Discard to Expose a Block for the Year or NEWS (Article ID 146)
Abstract: During the game, a player may not call to expose a group of single tiles unless the tile called is the winning tile that gives them mah jongg. This rule also applies to pairs. A single tile defined is a stand-alone tile or a group of tiles that are not identical i.e. 2020 or NEWS.
Question from a player: Someone threw a 2 Crack. I called it and exposed 2020. Another player called my hand dead. Why is my hand dead?
Answer from the league: “Your hand is dead because 2020 consists of 4 individual tiles. It is not a kong (a group of 4 identical tiles). You may only call for a tile to complete a pung, kong, quint or sextet, which a re groupings of identical tiles. The same rule applies for NEWS. You may only call one of the tiles in NEWS if it is for mah jongg. ”
Source: National Mah Jongg League Bulletin Q&A (2021)