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Responding to a Takeout Double -- Part 2


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In Part 1 of this article, we discussed responding to a low-level takeout double. The gist of it was that notrump bids show values and a stopper(s). Suit bids show 0-8 except for jumps. A single-jump after partner makes a takeout double shows about 9-11.

What about if the takeout double is of a high-level bid (like 3♠ or 4♠)? There is not as much room, so the ranges are a bit less defined.

Here is a rough approximation of responses to a 3-level takeout double:

3 of a suit (or 4 of a suit without jumping): 0-9 (approximate), 4+ card suit
3NT: Stopper, some values (probably about 8-13 -- wide range!)
Jump to game: 10-15 (approximate), 4+ card suit
Jump to 4NT: Probably Blackwood (but some expert pairs might define it as natural, invitational).

Example hand for 3♠ X P 3♠ :

♠ A2  
♥ Q765  
♦ 7652  
♣ 764.
 

Example hand for 3♠ X P 3NT :

♠ A2  
♥ J75  
♦ AQ532  
♣ QJ4.

Example hand for 3♠ X P 4♠ :

♠ A32  
♥ AQ65  
♦ K652  
♣ 76.
 

Here is a rough approximation of responses to a 4+level takeout double:

Non-jump takeout = Anything. Could be very weak. Could be up to 13 or even more points. What can you do?
Takeout to 4NT = Not natural. Typically 2 places to play (Example: 

4♠ X P 4NT on

♠ 3  
♥ 87  
♦ K10876  
♣ AJ654.

Note: taking out a 4-level double usually shows a shapely hand. With a flat hand, such as:

♠ J42  
♥ J65  
♦ Q765  
♣ A32,
you would just pass a double of a 4♠ or 4♠ opener and hope to beat them. The only time you might take out a 4-level double with only a 4-card suit is if they open 4♠ and you want to take out to 4♠ (maybe with something like:  

♠ AQ76  
♥ 32  
♦ K10765  
♣ 32.

Be prepared to make some bad decisions. It is a guessing game at a high level and you can't get them all right.

You might also consider getting Larry's book on Doubles and Redoubles HERE or try Michael's Doubles Webinar which you can find HERE


 

With both sides vulnerable, the auction begins: 

WestNorthEastSouth
 3♠  Double  Pass  ??

 What is your call with:

♠ K32  
♥ K4  
♦ K654  
♣ K942?
 

Choose One:

Pass

3NT

4♠

4♠

4NT

5♠

5♠

With both sides vulnerable, the auction begins: 

WestNorthEastSouth
 3♠  Double  Pass  ??

 What is your call with:

♠ K82  
♥ KJ74  
♦ 42 
♣ J942?

Choose One:

Pass

3♠

3NT

4♠

With both sides vulnerable, the auction begins: 

WestNorthEastSouth
 3♠  Double  Pass  ??

 What is your call with:

♠ KJ532  
♥ 42 
♦ KQJ4  
♣ 32?

Choose One:

Pass

3♠

4♠

4♠

With both sides vulnerable, the auction begins: 

WestNorthEastSouth
 4♠  Double  Pass  ??

 What is your call with:

♠ 2  
♥ KJ642 
♦ 54  
♣ KQJ42?

Choose One:

Pass

4NT

5♠

5♠

Other

With both sides vulnerable, the auction begins: 

WestNorthEastSouth
 4♠  Double  Pass  ??

 What is your call with:

♠ Q32  
♥ QJ4  
♦ K654  
♣ J42?

Choose One:

Pass

4NT

5♠

5♠

With both sides vulnerable, the auction begins: 

WestNorthEastSouth
 3♠  Dbl  Pass  ?

What is your call with: 

♠ 543  
♥ 9876  
♦ J1092  
♣ Q9
 

Choose One:

Pass

3♠

3NT

4♠