Page 0025

25

October 2019 English Bridge

www.ebu.co.uk

'Well done, Frances,' I said. 'So it doesn't matter

what signalling system you are playing, the king is

the right card.'

The class settled down and I moved on to the

next topic. 'Which bid do you think has the most

meanings?' I asked.

'Two clubs,' suggested Gordon. 'Acol, Benji,

Checkback, Drury, Extended Stayman ...'

'What about double?' I interrupted, worried that

he might have 26 answers.

'That's not a bid,' said Gordon, 'It's a call.'

I resisted the temptation to give him a clip round

the ear. I understand such things aren't done in

schools any more.

'Ms Hothouse tells me you've done doubles, so

let's make this like one of those TV talent shows.

You can come up one at a time to answer the

problems, and she and I will be the judges.'

I wrote a nice easy hand up on the board as

Heather came and stood in front of the class. 'The

hand on your right opens one heart. What do you

bid and what is it called?'

'I double,' said Heather. 'And it's called a takeaway

double.'

'That should be take-out, Heather,' corrected Ms H.

'My mum says take-out is American, Miss,'

replied Heather. 'She says we should say take-away

in England.'

There was more trouble later with negative

doubles; apparently Heather's mum thought they

were bad English. 'Oh, you can't not play negative

doubles,' I quipped, but I don't think anyone

noticed.

Everyone enjoyed themselves as we worked our

way through a selection of doubles. The answers

included a couple that were new to me. I hadn't

heard of compulsive doubles or lightning doubles

before, although, come to think of it, I have seen

both of them in action at the table.

'That talent show with the doubles went down

well,' said Ms Hothouse, as she showed me out after

the class. 'It is a shame more people don't play

bridge, it would make a great TV programme.'

'Yes,' I agreed. 'We could call it The Double Agent.'

'That sounds too much like a spy series,' she

replied. 'What about The X Factor?' r

On the other hand, you will also collect 380s and

670s. After all, it is hard to defend against a weak

1NT-(Dble)-2´. If you have eight points, you

know nothing about partner's shape and can't tell

if you have enough points to make game.

Consider this example. What would you bid

holding ´A82 ™9653 tAQ7 ®764 on the

following auction.

Hand A. Dealer North

´ 10 9

™ J 8 7

t J 3 2

® A K Q J 5

´ A 8 2 ´ K Q 3

™ 9 6 5 3 ™ A K Q

t A Q 7 t K 10 8 5

® 7 6 4 ® 10 9 8

´ J 7 6 5 4

™ 10 4 2

t 9 6 4

® 3 2

N

W E

S

Hand B. Dealer North

´ K Q

™ A 8 7

t K 6 5 3 2

® 9 8 5

´ A 8 2 ´ 4 3

™ 9 6 5 3 ™ K Q J 10 2

t A Q 7 t J 10 8

® 7 6 4 ® A K Q

´ J 10 9 7 6 5

™ 4

t 9 4

® J 10 3 2

N

W E

S

W N E S

1NT Dble 2´

?

Making a penalty double seems a reasonable choice,

and indeed, if the full hand was Hand A, you would

be right. 2´ is going for 1100 and you cannot even

make game.

However, if the full hand was as in Hand B, 2´ is

making, while 4™ is making for your side. So

doubling would get you a terrible score.

Which goes back to our earlier points - the weak

no trump is easy to play and makes life difficult for

opponents. r

AACCOOLL UUNNVVEEIILLEEDD Cont from page 23

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