Saturday, August 14, 2004 11:02 PM
D.S.I.P. Vrs Support Doubles
There is a misconception that if partner shows 5 of a major in competition, support doubles do not exist. Nothing can be further from the truth. Support doubles & redoubles are part of the "law of total tricks" . You can evaluate the defensive and offensive potential of your hand better if you know you have a 5-4 fit as opposed to a 5-3 fit.
The auction goes 1♦-1♥-1♠-X ? Axx Axx AQxx xxx & the opponents double shows a heart fit. Over opponents artificial doubles showing a fit , support redoubles should apply. You make a support redouble and the opponents jump to 4♥ and around to you again. You have 31/2 defensive tricks and you would not mind if partner bids 4♠ so you make a D.S.I.P. double. What if you have a huge hand similar to the old fashioned redouble ? The pass & double shows that type of hand.
Support doubles should be used in tandem with negative doubles as sometimes partner has a 5 card suit for a negative double. You hold xx KQx AKxxx Q10x and open 1♦. They overcall 1♠ , partner doubles and RHO raises to 2♠ . A support double to show 3 good hearts and wanting to compete is probably a good idea. Tom & I had a hand a while back that shows this support double in action. I held x Axxxx K10xxx xx and with everyone vul Tom opened 1♠ and RHO overcalled 2♣ . I doubled and LHO bid 3♣ bringing a D.S.I.P. double from Tom . I did not think we had game , so with my stiff in his suit I passed and collected +200 . Wrong , 4♥ was cold for +620. If we change the D.S.I.P. double to a support double after all negative doubles , reaching 4♥ is rather simple. This changing a D.S.I.P. double to a support double is only for auctions where partner may have a 5 card major for his negative double. When the opponents make a take out double , support doubles are quite frequent. 1♦-X-1♠-2♣ X is 3 card support . If RHO bids 1NT is the double support or penalty ? I think the conventional support double is more common than the times we would have a penalty double of a freely bid 1NT from the opponents.
The opponents use a Q bid to show a limit raise or better quite often . Why not reserve the double of their Q bid as a support double ? The Q bid is in effect just raising their suit anyway . 1♦-1♥-1♠-2♦ X shows 3 card spade support and 2♠ always shows 4 card support. How about combining negative doubles with support doubles again ? If partners negative double can have a 5 card suit , we double to show a good 3 card suit. 1♣-1♠-X-2♣ ? xx KQx J10x AKxxx.
Do not forget that conventional doubles like support doubles are just a disciplined form of a D.S.I.P. double.