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16 English Bridge February 2016 www.ebu.co.uk

As is often the case, neither answer is 'correct'

because this is purely a matter of agreement. When

Acol was first developed, a double was only "takeout"

when it was the first (non-pass) action by

either player. All other doubles - including this one

- were penalties. Today most tournament players

agree to play many more take-out doubles. This

AS IS often the case, neither answer is 'correct'

because this is purely a matter of agreement. When

Acol was first developed, a double was only 'takeout'

when it was the first (non-pass) action by either

player. All other doubles - including this one - were

penalties. Today most tournament players agree to

play many more take-out doubles. This sequence is

one where double is called 'responsive'.

What is a 'responsive' double?

Suppose your left hand opponents open the bidding

at the one or two level, partner doubles, and right

hand opponent raises to the two or three level:

1´ - Dbl - 2´ - ?

1® - Dbl - 3® - ?

2™ - Dbl - 3™ - ?

A double now says simply 'I have some high cards

but I don't have an obvious suit to bid'. It is far

more likely that you have one of these hands than a

strict penalty double, and double lets you avoid

guessing which suit to bid.

Here we have an example of hands where East

will bid 3™ without the use of the responsive

double, and the better spade fit will be lost:

Mr Ashley Nicklin writes

Can you do a second take-out double? One

each?

Against a weak two opening the bidding went

2™-double (take-out)-3™-? to me. I had a 3-14-5

distribution in that order. With four spades

I would have bid 3´ instantly. Not knowing

partner's shape I doubled instead for my

partner to do a continued take-out. My partner

was told my bid should have been considered as

penalties, there is no such thing as a secondary

take-out and I should have bid clubs! Please can

you advise which is correct and why?

South West North East

1® Dbl 3® Dbl1

Pass 3t2 Pass 3™2

Pass 3´3 Pass Pass4

Pass

1 Responsive - two or more possible places to play

2 Lowest suit

3 I don't have hearts, but I do have spades

4 Finally we have found our fit

Bidding at a minimum level after the double is nonforcing,

as the initial objective is to find a fit and

compete the part-score. With a strong hand, cuebid

or jump. Assume that the responsive doubler

has a decent 8 or 9 count if they may have to play at

the three level; a little less at the two level. The hand

below provides an example:

South West North East

1® Dbl 3® Dbl

Pass 4®1 Pass 4™

Pass 4´ All Pass

1 I've got a good hand, bid your lowest 4-card suit

What does the double say about the other major?

Many pairs get no further than agreeing

'responsive doubles' but it is a good idea to discuss

how many cards in the other major the double of a

major shows. Some like to say that 'If I've got

Responsive doubles by Frances Hinden

Your Questions Answered

Your Questions Answered

click

link

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