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Take-Out Doubles

A take-out double is the most common use for the bid ‘double’ in bridge. When the opponents have opened the bidding and you have 11 or more points, no five card suit to bid, and shortness in the opponent’s suit – you double.

A textbook take-out double would look like this:

The Opponent opens 1 ♠:

You have:

♠ 7  A Q 6 3  K J 5 2  ♣ Q 10 4 3

At least three card support for the other suits, 11 or more high card points, no five card suit to bid, and shortness in the opponents suit. You can make a take-out double with two cards in the opponent’s suit but just remember, the worse your distribution the more points you should have.

A take-out double is a method that allows you and your partner to compete in an auction when you have points but no long suit.


Responding to a Take-out Double

If your partner makes a take-out double –

YOU MUST BID, EVEN IF YOU HAVE NO POINTS!

The only exception to this is if your right hand opponent bids. If so you are ‘off the hook’.

Example:

North East South West
1 Dbl Pass ?? You have to Bid!
 
North East South West
1 Dbl 1 NT ?? You can pass if you want to

If you have to bid:

  • With 0 to 8 or 9 points - you just bid your longest suit (NOT the suit the opponent opened)
  • With 10 or more points – you should jump in your suit
  • With an opening hand and a four card major – you should bid game

Remember that partner has promised you that he has the other three suits.


Doublers

Remember - since you forced your partner to bid, you should not raise unless you have more than your partner would expect you to have (roughly 15 or more points).

Remember – you have shown an opening hand already and the other three suits…..you should not bid again UNLESS YOU HAVE EXTRAS!
 


Board 1
North Deals
None Vul
♠ 9 3
K 9 4
A Q 9 8 4
♣ K 7 6
 
♠ K J 10 4
Q 10 8
7 6 5
♣ Q 10 8
 
   
W   E
   
♠ A Q 8 7
A 5 3 2
3
♣ J 5 4 3
 
  ♠ 6 5 2
J 7 6
K J 10 2
♣ A 9 2
 
West North East South
  1 Dbl 2
2 ♠ Pass Pass 3
Pass Pass Pass
 
East's double is for takeout. West does not have to bid once South responds, but should bid 2♠ with a good spade suit and 8 points.

Board 2
East Deals
N-S Vul
♠ 9 3
K 10 6 3
A 10 9
♣ A K Q 9
 
♠ A K 2
9 5 4 2
Q 8 7
♣ 10 6 5
 
   
W   E
   
♠ Q J 8 6 4
A Q 7
K 3 2
♣ 8 2
 
  ♠ 10 7 5
J 8
J 6 5 4
♣ J 7 4 3
 
West North East South
    1 ♠ Pass
2 ♠ Dbl Pass 3 ♣
Pass Pass Pass

North's double is a takeout double. Once East passes, South must bid.

South should bid 3♣.


Board 3
South Deals
E-W Vul
♠ Q 10 6 4
8 7
9 8
♣ K 8 6 5 2
 
♠ A 3
A K J 9 6
K 3
♣ A J 9 7
 
   
W   E
   
♠ J 9 5 2
Q 5 4
10 7 5 4 2
♣ 10
 
  ♠ K 8 7
10 3 2
A Q J 6
♣ Q 4 3
 
West North East South
      1
Dbl Pass 1 ♠ Pass
2 Pass 3 Pass
4 Pass Pass Pass

West's double is ostensibly a takeout double. East must bid when North passes and will bid his longest unbid suit, spades.

West's bid now of 2 shows a hand that was too strong to simply overcall 1. East should bid 3 with a heart fit and a singleton. West will raise to game with a good hand.


Board 4
West Deals
Both Vul
♠ K 10 9 5
5 2
A Q J 10
♣ A 10 6
 
♠ A 6 4 3
J 10 4
K 6 5
♣ K J 8
 
   
W   E
   
♠ Q 8 7
Q 9 7 3
4 3
♣ 9 5 4 2
 
  ♠ J 2
A K 8 6
9 8 7 2
♣ Q 7 3
 
West North East South
1 ♣ 1 Pass 2
Pass Pass Pass

North cannot make a takeout double because he does not have shortness in clubs or at least three hearts. North can either pass or bid 1. I would choose 1 because of the quality of my diamonds and the strength of my hand.

East will pass and South should bid 1NT or 2. I would choose 2 because of my length in partner's suit.


Board 5
North Deals
N-S Vul
♠ Q J 10
A 8 5
6 2
♣ A K 9 8 2
 
♠ 9 2
K J 10 9
Q 10 8
♣ 10 6 5 3
 
   
W   E
   
♠ A K 6 5 4
Q 7 2
K 9 5 3
♣ 7
 
  ♠ 8 7 3
6 4 3
A J 7 4
♣ Q J 4
 
West North East South
  1 ♣ 1 ♠ Pass
Pass 2 ♣ Dbl Pass
2 Pass Pass 3 ♣
Pass Pass Pass

East does not double because they have a good five card suit to overcall. South must pass with no clear bid. West will pass. North re-opens with 2♣.

East doubles to show not only their spade suit but the other two unbid suits also. West picks 2 because of the quality and length of their heart suit.

South competes to 3♣.


Board 6
East Deals
E-W Vul
♠ J 10 9 4
4 3
J 7 6 4
♣ A 6 2
 
♠ Q 5 2
5 2
10 5 3 2
♣ 9 8 7 3
 
   
W   E
   
♠ K 8 6
K Q 10 9 7
Q 8
♣ Q J 5
 
  ♠ A 7 3
A J 8 6
A K 9
♣ K 10 4
 
West North East South
    1 Dbl
Pass 1 ♠ Pass 1 NT
Pass 3 NT Pass Pass
Pass

South makes a takeout double because his hand is too strong to simply overcall 1NT. North bids 1♠. South now bids 1NT showing 18-20 high card points and a heart stopper.

North bids 3NT.

Prepared Using BridgeComposer