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Ops open a minor, partner doubles - what is it?

#1 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2012-February-12, 15:44

Easy question

White vs Red

(1m) X - what does this double show?
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#2 User is offline   BunnyGo 

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Posted 2012-February-12, 15:51

Ostensibly it shows 4 cards in each major and tolerance for the other minor and opening values. Many people will be happy with only 3 cards in a major or a couple fewer points.

Edit: Yes, I forgot to include options 2 and 3 that nigel has below.
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#3 User is offline   nigel_k 

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Posted 2012-February-12, 16:07

Three options:

1) takeout double
2) too strong to overcall a suit
3) too strong to overcall 1NT

The minimum in each case depends on agreement and style.
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#4 User is offline   blackshoe 

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Posted 2012-February-12, 17:31

Once you're comfortable with the first three options, you can add
4) Equal Level Conversion (ELC), showing both majors, usually longer or stronger (or both) than , intending to bid 1 or 2 over a simple bid in the other minor from you. With the type 2) double nigel mentions, if is the suit he'd have to jump in .

Beginners will sometimes double with a balanced minimum opener with length in opener's suit because, well, they have an opening hand. Then when you bid their short suit, they rebid 1NT, forgetting that this shows 19-21 or so.
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#5 User is offline   mgoetze 

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Posted 2012-February-12, 17:43

Executive Summary: Double shows a hand where the sum of overall strength and takeoutishness exceeds a certain threshold.

This certain threshold depends on the vulnerability. For the following, I will assume our 1NT overcall shows 15-18 HCP and that we don't play ELC in this situation. At w/r, if I had to aim for full disclosure, I would try something like the following:

(a) 8+ HCP, a void in their suit, at least 4 cards in all the other suits
(b) 9+ HCP, singleton in their suit, 4 in each of the others
© 10+ HCP, at least 4 cards in each major, at least 3 in the other minor
(d) 12+ HCP, at least 4-3 in majors, at least 4 in the other minor
(e) 14+ HCP, at least 3 cards in each of the unbid suits, not suitable for 1NT overcall
(f) Any major single-suiter worth the equivalent of 17.5+ HCP
(g) Any hand worth the equivalent of 19+ HCP, except those for which we have another bid (e.g. two-suiter) available

Texture is also an issue so if my HCP are in their suit I'm less likely to double than if my HCP are in the other suits, etc.
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#6 User is offline   jillybean 

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Posted 2012-February-12, 22:25

So nothing resembling ATxxx,QTxx,xx,xx

I've been doubling on 44xx with very minimum values and it's not something I discuss with partners. Obviously I should.
Searching for your own mistakes is the only way to learn this game. - Fluffy

And no matter what methods you play, it is essential, for anyone aspiring to learn to be a good player, to learn the importance of bidding shape properly. - MikeH

SLOW DOWN! This is not a speedball :)
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#7 User is offline   BunnyGo 

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Posted 2012-February-13, 05:30

View Postjillybean, on 2012-February-12, 22:25, said:

So nothing resembling ATxxx,QTxx,xx,xx

I've been doubling on 44xx with very minimum values and it's not something I discuss with partners. Obviously I should.


44xx, I think should be fine. With a 5 card major and a 4 card major and some extra tolerance for the minor (unless they are significantly differing in texture, as in 85432, AKQJ, HHx, x) I'd just bid the 5 card major.
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#8 User is offline   daveharty 

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Posted 2012-February-13, 09:05

View PostBunnyGo, on 2012-February-13, 05:30, said:

44xx, I think should be fine. With a 5 card major and a 4 card major and some extra tolerance for the minor (unless they are significantly differing in texture, as in 85432, AKQJ, HHx, x) I'd just bid the 5 card major.

Let's not confuse the issue here. My interpretation of jilly's post above is that she has been in the habit of doubling with garbage hands that have 44 majors. (If that's not the case, then ignore what follows.) It's easy to understand the motivation; finding a fit is important in a competitive auction. But it's also wrong. Jilly's example hand (ATxxx QTxx xx xx) may or may not rise to the level of a 1S overcall for your partnership; it's close enough that I would expect reasonable people to be on both sides of the argument. But it in no way resembles a double. If you have discussed with your partner the possibility of doubling with this hand (or with a 44xx equivalent), you may be in violation of the ACBL's prohibition on systemic psyches; if a psyche is a "gross misstatement of a player's honor strength or distribution", then I think this fits the bill. But even if you don't run afoul of "the Man" you face the erosion of partnership trust. How is partner supposed to make intelligent decisions after a double like this? If she holds moderate values, she may jump to an unplayable level. Or she may double the opponents in a partscore hand expecting you to have some defensive strength. Even if she is an understanding sort and doesn't get upset, she is almost certain to start making allowances for the possibility of subminimum doubles, and you are again on shaky legal ground. Minimum doubles by an unpassed hand, even at favorable, should be something like ATxx KJxx QTxx x in my view; obviously where you draw the line is a matter of partnership discussion. But the further you get away from "ideal" shape, the more honor strength you should have; and a hand like ATxx QTxx xxxx x isn't even close despite perfect shape.
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#9 User is offline   Charlie Yu 

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Posted 2012-February-14, 20:20

takeout double. The more offshape the double, the more points you need. On 4441, sometimes I double on a 9 count.

If I have 5-4 majors, I tend to bid 2m Michael cue bid.
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#10 User is offline   Cthulhu D 

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Posted 2012-February-14, 20:37

View PostCharlie Yu, on 2012-February-14, 20:20, said:

takeout double. The more offshape the double, the more points you need. On 4441, sometimes I double on a 9 count.

If I have 5-4 majors, I tend to bid 2m Michael cue bid.


15+ (maybe a good 14) balanced or semi balanced. More seriously it's takeout, but I wouldn't be optimistic that partner has 4 cards in both majors. I'd expect a pickup partner to be light opening strength ish atleast, and with my regular partners we'll make a takeout bid with an 8 count.
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#11 User is offline   quiddity 

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Posted 2012-February-14, 20:51

View Postjillybean, on 2012-February-12, 22:25, said:

So nothing resembling ATxxx,QTxx,xx,xx

I've been doubling on 44xx with very minimum values and it's not something I discuss with partners. Obviously I should.


No, nothing as light as this. It will be very difficult for your partner to field such a wide range if the opponents compete. For example, (1)-X-(3). What should partner do with a 12-count and a 4-card major? Or worse, a 12-count and a nice 5-card club suit?
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#12 User is offline   mike777 

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Posted 2012-February-14, 21:33

View Postjillybean, on 2012-February-12, 22:25, said:

So nothing resembling ATxxx,QTxx,xx,xx

I've been doubling on 44xx with very minimum values and it's not something I discuss with partners. Obviously I should.



prefer pass at fav vul, could live with 1s.
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#13 User is offline   han 

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Posted 2012-February-15, 04:31

With 44xx (this hand is 5-4) you could double if you had another ace, although it would be quite aggressive.
Please note: I am interested in boring, bog standard, 2/1.

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