Thursday, November 17, 2005 9:59 AM

D.S.I.P. – Single Handed Bidding




          My bidding philosophy is “shape before strength’ whenever possible. I bid my shape and later on in the auction I bid my strength with a D.S.I.P. double. This action allows partner who has heard the bidding & is in a better position to make the decision , to  place the final contract. It prevents two horrible Bridge faults . Bidding your hand again and pseudo sacrifices. The following two hands demonstrates the power of the D.S.I.P. double.


IMPS nobody vul and in 3rd seat you open 1 with x x AQ10xxx AQ10xx and LHO overcalls 1♠ . Partner bids 2 and the opponent bids a pre-emptive 3 . You bid 4♣ and they bid 4 and around to you again. Playing with Tom & BJ this a simple decision. I have described my shape and I have 1 + 1 = 3 defensive tricks so I double saying I would like to bid again. Partner has bid my stiff at the two level so she is in a way better position to place the final contract. The double being the most flexible bid in Bridge transfers the decision ( blame) to partner. This is a Bridge World problem & 15 of the so called expert panel bid 5♣. This is a silly single handed bid which is in effect bidding the same distribution and values that you have shown the table. 4X could go for a terrible number as can 5 of a minor. Partner could hold 6 & 4 !! Why guess ?


Another hand which shows the single handed pseudo sacrifice. IMPS you NV and they are vul. Partner opens 1 and the vul opponents double. You bid 2♣ with x xx QJx A10987xx and they bid 2 & 4 respectively so around to you again. Again an easy bid for me playing with BJ & Tom . I have  a maximum for my nonforcing 2♣ bid so I double saying I want to bid again. Turns out partner has a penalty double of 4 but thought I might have virtually nothing for nv 2♣ bid. She happily passes and we pick up +500. The expert Bridge World panel bid 4NT saying pick a sacrifice ! Again a horrible single handed pseudo sacrifice. The wrong side of the table making the decision. Trusting the opponents all the time to make your decisions is not a winning proposition.


I am convinced that the penalty double is the most single – handed Bridge bid ever devised. Catering to that bid also causes single handed actions. Take this example from the Bridge World. IMPS and you are vul and they are not. x xx AJxxxx AJ10x . They open 1 and partner vul overcalls 2 and they bid 4. Playing with my partners I make a D.S.I.P. double as I can not have a trump stack on this auction. The Bridge World panel bid 4NT for the minors ! This is silly as 5 or 4X may be the best spot. Preserving the double to be absolutely penalty makes them do silly single handed actions. It is worth it ?


D.S.I.P. doubles  do not leave home without them !!