Retro Edition

IMPs. Both vulnerable.
♠A Q J   8 7 4   K J 7 6 4 3  ♣J

West North East South
Pass 1♣ 1
2♣ Pass Pass ?

What’s your call?

2 2 2♠ 2NT
3♣ 3 3 3♠ 3NT
4♣ 4 4 4♠ 4NT
5♣ 5 5 5♠ 5NT
6♣ 6 6 6♠ 6NT
7♣ 7 7 7♠ 7NT
Redbl Pass

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Bid Award
Dbl 100
Pass 80
2 60

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August Boehm, Larry Cohen, Mel Colchamiro, The Coopers, Allan Falk, The Gordons, The Joyces, Betty Ann Kennedy, Mike Lawrence, Jeff Meckstroth, Jill Meyers, Barry Rigal, Steve Robinson, Kerri Sanborn, Don Stack, The Sutherlins, Karen Walker, Bridge Buff
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To reopen or not to reopen?

You’ve overcalled your six-card suit at the one level. Now you find yourself in the balancing seat. Just because partner passed doesn’t mean he’s broke. He might even be sitting on a club stack of sorts. Are you (vulnerable at IMPS) going to let the opponents (vulnerable at IMPs) play at the two level? With 3=3=6=1 distribution, two-thirds of the panel say no, one-third says yes.

The Gordons consider the reopening double “pretty automatic,” as does Kennedy who “certainly wants to compete further with this hand.”

Falk, too: “Again, this is a problem? Selling out to 2♣ when I have a singleton club, a sixth diamond, support for both majors and no idea what to lead could cost 5–7 IMPs. Expect a nearly unanimous panel.”

The stiff club prompted Robinson’s double, too. “It’s not right to allow the opponents to play at the two level when I have a singleton in their suit.”

Rigal calls this hand, “the textbook hand for a double. Anyone who bids 2 might well deserve to buy a 5=3=1=4 dummy.”

Several of the panelists acknowledge the hand is “light on values,” but reopen with a double anyway.

The Sutherlins: “We would like to have a better hand, but we must fight for a partial. Partner can easily have a five-card major, 8 HCP and unable to force with 2 or 2♠.”

“Double,” says Cohen. “I can’t make a living by selling out on the two level when the opponents have a fit. Sure, I’d like more values, but this is all they dealt me.”

Stack also doubles. “Possibly a little light on values, but I don’t believe passing is winning bridge. Going for minus 500 is not winning bridge either, but I believe in fighting for the partscores.”

Walker wasn’t enamored of returning to her teammates with a big minus on the score card. “Pass. I have nothing extra for my vulnerable overcall and with partner unable to scrape up a bid, I’ll go quietly. We might lose a few IMPs for minus 90, but we won’t lose a bundle for minus 500.”

Lawrence, too, looks into the crystal ball and sees bad things if he does anything but pass. “I might survive 2 or double, but both of these bids suggest a better hand. It is likely there will be more bidding than I like if I choose one of these two bids.”

The Coopers are of two minds. “If we knew partner was passing the double, we would venture it. At pairs we would do it. Steve would probably double, but Kitty thinks that at teams, we just don’t have enough to bid again.”

Colchamiro, fixated on baseball this month (as is any red-blooded American with a team still in the pennant race), passes rather than doubling. “If 2♣ doubled is the home-run spot, I’ve just struck out.”

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