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All comments by Oren Kriegel
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The upper limit for 2 is 9 or maybe a poor 10 HCP. Invitational hands still bid 1 then 3.
July 18
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What happens is you play a silly contract. Inverted minors have their losses, just like any other convention.
July 18
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2NT was fairly wide-ranging. Partner could have jumped to 3NT with extra values (~16 HCP) and a pure 1=5=4=3 shape, such as:

x
K10xxx
AQxx
AQJ

but if he had similar strength with weaker clubs, he might have to rebid 2NT despite being in-range for 3NT.
July 17
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I wouldn't say he needs that to move toward slam, but if he has as much as that, he owes me a cuebid. It might have been possible to miss a good slam opposite something like

x
1098xx
AJxx
AQx

but it seemed like passing 4 was the percentage move. (Not to mention keycard would keep us out of slam opposite that hand.)

A slam move wouldn't be uninvited, though. 3 was a slam-try.
July 17
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Yeah, I was thinking of something else. I edited that out.

See you in a couple days–maybe we'll meet in the finals.
July 17
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At least one BBO employee is mortified about a 97% game—he's shooting for 100%.
July 10
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No, that would be

Kx
Axxx
Qxxx
KJx
July 5
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There are plenty of hands that can't, won't, or shouldn't balance where it's right to compete. If partner is balancing all the time when you want to be competing, then partner will be making some sick, sick calls, and much of the time you'll be getting bad results because of it.

Doubling a minor with this hand not only isn't sick, it's normal. A takeout double shows roughly opening values with support for the unbid suits. You have… drum roll please… an opening hand with support for the unbid suits.
July 4
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On June 28, 2014 you couldn't.
June 28
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John, no matter what the terminology is, the meaning is almost exactly the same for these doubles. Call them responsive, call them whatever else.

In my example auction, if responder has a stopper, he will probably bid 3NT. If he doesn't, he will probably bid something else (including punting with 3). I don't call it a thrump double, because to me that suggests that the doubler's partner prioritizes bidding 3NT with a stopper over bidding a major, as Bergen recommends in his original writeup of thrump doubles (e.g. 1 (3) X expecting opener to bid 3NT with a spade stopper and 4 hearts).
June 27
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John,

You're probably right about teaching club players. I don't do much of that, and none at all recently. If you want to emphasize that responsive doubles only apply in bid and raise situations, that's fine, and probably a good approach.

But saying, “This double is penalty because this isn't a bid-and-raise situation,” (e.g. your example auction above) is far different than saying, “This double is better played as penalty than as takeout for bridge reasons.”

If you were saying the former above, I've probably wasted everyone's time. If you were saying the latter–which is how I read your comment–then getting hung up on whether or not it can be called a responsive double isn't useful, in my opinion.
June 26
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Richard,

I don't doubt that you are right about the technical definitions or that your sources are valid. I'm just saying that common usage of the terms don't map precisely to the definitions. Feel free to continue to point out where inaccurate terminology is used, but I don't think it advances the discussion much.

Perhaps there are differences between the US and the UK, but the term “responsive double” is used far more broadly than the technical definition. Here's an example of a so-called responsive double, that clearly doesn't fit anything close to the definition, but still gets called responsive:

1 (1) X (3)
X

If you play this as showing values, rather than penalty, some players will call it responsive. I've heard auctions of this type be described as such at the table, and no one had any trouble knowing that that meant, “values, not four spades, not penalty.”
June 26
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You can use whatever terminology suits you, but saying “this isn't a responsive double because it doesn't fit my narrow definition” ignores the substantive part of the post that many play this double as not penalty. Quibbling about terminology, particularly in an informal setting, rarely fosters productive discussion.

I prefer to play this double as takeout, but I almost always play open regional or national team events, so what's best at the club is not really relevant to me. I agree that in (old-fashioned) standard, this double is penalty, but I'm not convinced that's best.
June 26
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On whose authority do you say that? Even if that's how responsive doubles were originally defined, in practice the term is used to describe a far wider range of situations than just

(opening) X (raise) X.

I hear doubles called “responsive” very often. I've rarely, maybe never, heard a double described

You can say that a great many players (including many or most American experts) are misusing the term, but I would argue that bridge language evolves, just as language in general evolves. When someone says something is “awful,” they don't usually mean it's “worthy of awe.”
June 26
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Your first sentence doesn't follow from your second. While technically responsive doubles apply after a suit is bid and raised, the term is used far more broadly. It means roughly “a card-showing/takeout double after partner has intervened.” I would call a non-penalty double of 2 on that auction responsive, but even if you don't, playing double as takeout (call it whatever you like) is a reasonable treatment, and many top-level players use it. This double is not “of course” anything.
June 26
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An offer to play a contract undoubled doesn't imply that you still want to play there doubled.
June 26
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West had

Ax
Qx
AQxxx
J98x

and East

x
9xxxx
xxx
AQxx

so playing two more rounds of hearts was the only double-dummy make, but it was virtually impossible for the defense to go right after declarer played a trump.
June 24
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It's only ridiculous if you think 1NT shows any values. If it doesn't, then 0 HCP is not a psych, it's in range.
June 22
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Using proscribed words might be more problematic than announcing the range…
June 22
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I led the Q in tempo.
June 21
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