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Responding to a Takeout Double -- Part 3


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This is the final quiz in this 3-part series. In the earlier sections, we discussed taking out low and high level takeout doubles. Here, three more topics are introduced:

 

1) Taking out to 4NT. If the opponents open 4♠ or 4♠ and partner doubles, what are you to bid with, say 5-5 in the minors? For example:

WestNorthEastSouth
 4♠  Double  Pass  ??

And you hold:

♠ 42  
♥ 2  
♦ AJ876  
♣ K10765?

Fortunately, 4NT shows this kind of hand (it is not practical for it to be natural or Blackwood). Partner will pick his best/longest minor. (Note: For experienced players, if the opening is 4♠ and you takeout partner's double to 4NT you are showing any 2 suits -- not necessarily both minors).

2. Their responder acts after the takeout double.

What if the auction starts:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠  Double  3♠  ??

South now has the option of passing with a bad hand. So, if he bids (say 3♠), he is showing values. A "freebid" shows about 8-11 points. What if South doubles? I recommend playing that as "responsive." This means "not penalty." It is card/value showing. For a double on the auction shown, South might have:

♠ K32  
♥ 32  
♦ K1087  
♣ AJ54

Even if their raise is to game (say 4♠ on the auction above), double is still not "penalty" and would be the correct call with the hand just given.

3. Lebensohl.

This is a convention that most experts use. I recommend it only for very experienced players with good memories. It works like this:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠ Double  Pass  2NT*

The 2NT bid is conventional (and alertable). It does not mean that South wants to play in 2NT. It means (usually) that he has a weak hand. It requests that the doubler bid 3♠. The 2NT bidder can then pass (to play in 3♠) or correct to 3♠ or 3♠ to play there. With a better hand, he bids directly on the 3 level (without going through 2NT first).  There are many finer points and variations to this convention--this is just the basic overview. 

The downside of Lebensohl is that the partner of the doubler can no longer bid 2NT natural.

For the purpose of this quiz, assume you are NOT playing Lebensohl.

With both sides vulnerable, you are South in this auction:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠  Double Pass ??

What is your call with:

♠ KJ2  
♥ 876  
♦ AJ5  
♣ J654
 

Choose One:

Pass

2NT

3♠

3NT

4♠

With both sides vulnerable, you are South in this auction:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠  Double 3♠ ??

What is your call with:

♠ 32  
♥ 876  
♦ AKJ5  
♣ K654
 

Choose One:

Pass

Double

3NT

4♠

4♠

4NT

5♠

5♠

With both sides vulnerable, you are South in this auction:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠  Double 4♠ ??

What is your call with:

♠ 2  
♥ 76  
♦ AKJ52 
♣ KJ654

Choose One:

Pass

Double

4NT

5♠

5♠

With both sides vulnerable, you are South in this auction:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠  Double 3♠ ??

What is your call with:

♠ Q8632  
♥ 87 
♦ J52 
♣ 654

Choose One:

Pass

Double

3♠

4♠

With both sides vulnerable, you are South in this auction:

WestNorthEastSouth
 2♠  Double Pass ??

What is your call with:

♠ 32  
♥ KQ76  
♦ K1052 
♣ J87

Choose One:

Pass

3♠

3♠

4♠