Wednesday, September 28, 2005 11:42 PM

D.S.I.P. - Modified




            For those skeptics who do not want to play “full blown” D.S.I.P. doubles there is a half measure.  Tom Gandolfo suggests you can play D.S.I.P. doubles based totally on table position. If you are in front of the suit , the competitive double is always D.S.I.P. . If you are behind the suit , the double is penalty. The reasoning is that you do not want partner to convert when the trump honours are onside.


          This stance detracts from one of the advantages of D.S.I.P. doubles though which is to ferret out duplication of value for further offensive bidding.  Maybe at the two and 3 level this modified approach makes sense if both you and partner are bidding. If only one member of the partnership is bidding , a double will never be a single handed penalty double. This re-opening double will always be D.S.I.P. regardless if you are behind the suit


          Here is an auction that occurred tonight. 1♣-P-1-1 




Technically this is not a classic D.S.I.P. double in that partner passed originally at the one level. Without discussion, the double though is still giving partner the option to pass rather than  bid 4♣ .However , if you do have a serious trump stack and partner does not have a enough to re-open with a double , you have missed out for a bonanza . With the trump stack you do not need partner to have enough defense to beat this contract as a bare minimum will do. This is because the trumps are well located behind the bidder. There is also a “lack of competition” from the opening bidder in this particular auction even though partner is suggesting competing.


          What about the major suit competitive auctions in the majors right up to and including the game level ? 1♥-1-2-2♠

    4-x  Is a typical competitive D.S.I.P. action . You would like to be in 4 unless partner has heart duplication of value whether its on side for them or not. In these kind of auctions where you must “give them their trump suit” the double is still D.S.I.P.  Duplication of value in either hand is a detriment for your side bidding. Trump stack doubles in these auctions are just too restrictive.


          I think the solution is that D.S.I.P. doubles still must be “depending on context” doubles. In the situation where only one of the opponents has bid a suit and you are behind the suit , a trump stack penalty double is still permitted. It would be nice to have a blanket rule that all competitive doubles are D.S.I.P. but in the real world things are not so neat and tidy .


You still lose out with hands that can be converted becomes being “onside” does not matter . QJ10x , A109x KJ108 etc . You are gambling that partner does not have enough defense to re-open with a double and as your trump stack is so great you do not want her competing again either. I think this is the trade off between D.S.I.P. and trump stack doubles. You can not have it both ways . Comments ?