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ONLINE EXTRA August 2013 English Bridge

Online Extra 59

to the auction.

5. They do apply after a 1™ - 1´ start

to the auction.

6. They do not apply if responder has

already shown five cards. For

example:

Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1t 1™ 1´ 2™

Dble

The double here is not a support

double since 1´ promised at least

five cards, as responder would have

used a negative double with only

four cards in spades in this sort of

auction.

7. Support doubles and redoubles,

while most commonly used with

quite weak hands, are not in fact

limited in any way; with a strong

hand just start with a double then

bid again.

8. Negative inferences apply, so in this

auction:

Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1® Pass 1™ 1´

?

A 2® bid from opener would now

deny three-card heart support -

and should probably be alerted as

such. Similarly a jump to 3® would

also deny three-card support. This

added definition is quite an amaz ing

side-feature of playing these

methods.

Support Redoubles

Support redoubles work in exactly the

same way as seen with support doubles,

but obviously apply when the opponents

have doubled responder's bid rather than

overcalled it. After the following start to

the auction:

Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1® Pass 1™ Dble

?

Redouble from opener would show threecard

support, whereas a 2™ rebid would

promise four-card support.

Here are two problems for you:

Holding the hand above, what would you

call in each of the following auctions:

A. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1t Pass 1´ 2™

?

B. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1t 1™ 1´ 2™

?

C. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1t Pass 1´ 1NT

?

D. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1t Pass 1´ Dble

?

Holding the hand above, what would you

call in each of the following auctions:

A. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1® Pass 1™ 1´

?

B. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1® Pass 1™ 2t

?

C. Opener Opp 1 Responder Opp 2

You Partner

1® Pass 1™ 1NT

?

Have you worked out the answers? If so,

Problem 1

´ J 5 2

™ 4 3

t A J 8 7 3

® A Q 7

Problem 2

´ A 7 3

™ A Q 8 4

t 3

® A Q 7 5 2

check below to see whether you've got

them right.

1A: Double - a classic support double,

showing three-card support for spades.

You should not be ashamed of this 12count:

two aces, a five-card suit and no

wastage in hearts all being positive

features. I stress this point since the

support double was not mandatory here -

pass would be acceptable but a little timid.

(This brings me to one last point when

playing support doubles: how does the

responder bid opposite one? The answer

is: as naturally as possible, but sometimes

the situation will arise where responder

has to repeat his major suit with only four

cards, despite knowing that opener only

has three-card support. The idea is that

this should not be too stressful since the

partnership is always still at the two level

so no disaster should ensue!)

1B: 2´ - this is not a support double

position since 1´ over 1™ showed at least

five cards in spades.

1C: Pass would be my choice. 2´ for the

gamblers amongst you is possible but very

risky here. I would reserve that bid for a

hand with four-card support or maybe

three-card support and a singleton some where.

Hearing the opponents bid notrumps

should always induce a note of

caution in any competitive auction - I am

sure you are all aware of this already.

1D: Redouble - a support redouble,

showing three-card support.

2A: 2´ - an unassuming cue-bid show ing

a good four-card raise in partner's suit,

usually with 16+ HCP. Perfect!

2B: You have a choice here: 3t (unas suming

cue-bid) or even 4t (splinter).

Very often making a splinter in a suit bid

by the opponents proves to be the key to

bidding a light but successful slam - where

otherwise partner's poor holding in the

opponents' suit may have proved suffi cient

ly off-putting to miss out on a slam. I

agree 4t is light, but am sure it would be

my choice at the table.

2C: Matters are quite different after a 1NT

overcall, when you should be more

cautious. I do not believe a penalty double

to be the winning option here, since fourcard

support is so important a feature to

get across. I would recommend 3™ (or

maybe 2NT as an unassuming cue-bid for

keen partnerships).

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