MOUNTNESSING BRIDGE CLUB
Meets every Thursday at 7.25 for 7.30
at Mountnessing Village Hall, Roman Road, Mountnessing, Essex, England, CM15 0UG

DOUBLING – WHEN TO ALERT AND WHEN NOT

The official summary about announcements that has been issued by the EBU includes comments as to when doubles should be alerted – see the separate article that is accessible through the Director's page. In an interesting article by Jeremy Dhondy in the February 2007 edition of English Bridge, he clarifies some of the issues, and the comments below are based on his article.

Firstly, below is an extract from the EBU summary on the subject:



Action over opponent's calls

Opponents call...

Meaning of their call...

If your double is...

Alert

No Action

A suit at any level below 3NT

Natural

Take-out


X

Anything else

X


Does not show that suit, e.g. conventional

Showing the suit doubled


X

Anything else

X


A suit opening

Prepared, phoney, short suit, “strong 1C”, etc.

Take-out


X

Anything else

X


No Trumps at any level

Natural or conventional

Penalty


X

Anything Else

X




Comments

The only double that is assumed to be for penalties is a double of No Trumps, if bid naturally. Note that this comment does not only apply to opening bids in No Trumps.

North

East

South

West

In this example, if West's double is for penalties it is not alertable, but if it is anything else – e.g., a take-out of 1 – then it is alertable

1

No

1NT

X



The example below may surprise some people (me included!).

North

East

South

West

South's double is assumed to be for take-out: it must be alerted if it is for penalties

1NT

2

X



Even more surprising, perhaps, is this example:



North

East

South

West

East's double is assumed to be for penalties and only needs to be alerted if it means something else. However, West's double is assumed to be for take-out and must be alerted if it is for penalties.

1NT

X

2

X

Doubles of suits bid artificially at low levels are always assumed to show that suit, and similarly doubles of, say, responses to Blackwood are assumed to be lead-directional. In both cases the double must be alerted if it carries any other meaning.



North

East

South

West

West's double is assumed to show clubs; it needs to be alerted if it means something else.

1NT

No

2

X



North

East

South

West

West's double is assumed to request a club lead; it must be alerted if it means anything else

Various bids, then...

4NT

No

5♣ (artificial)

X





North

East

South

West

If North's 1♣ is a 'strong club' opening then East's double is assumed to show clubs; it must be alerted if it means anything else. If North's 1♣ is / maybe prepared or a short suit the East's double is assumed to be for take-out, and it is alertable otherwise.

1♣

X









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