Neither vulnerable in matchmpoint duplicate, I, South, opened 1 club with the following:

Spades xx
Hearts Qx
Diamonds Kxx
Clubs AK8xxx

(All x's are seven or lower.)

West doubled for takeout. North redoubled, showing approximately 10 hcps. East passed and so did I. West "rescued" himself with a 1 diamond bid.

I bid two clubs. West and North passed. East doubled (for penalty) with QJT9x of clubs and some side values. (Of course, I didn't know this until later.) I redoubled, 1) to try to get game, 2) on my sixth trump, and 3) my presumed preponderance of points.

"It looks like top or bottom" for both sides," I announced. West nodded.

The result for all boards was two clubs, down one. What differentiated the scores was that there were two undoubled contracts, two doubled contracts, and one redoubled contract.

Was it reasonable for me to redouble even though it didn't work out this time? Or did I make a mistake earlier by not passing out or even doubling West's one diamond bid? (This would have been a good result in this game for N-S because E-W would have gone down one.)

  • 1
    Basically all the answers talk about 'matchpoint odds'. If this concept isn't clear to someone, they should ask a separate question. Commented Oct 11, 2021 at 22:35

5 Answers 5


2c seems clear.

This redouble doesn't offer good matchpoint odds. +180 and +380 rate to both score well, but -200 will often be much worse than -100. The reason is that -200 will lose to any part-score your opponents might make.


So the auction was:

1c X XX p
p 1d p p
2c p p X

So at this point you know a lot about where things are.

  • S: 12 points, 2-2-3-6
  • W: 12 points, 4-4-4-1 or 4-4-5-0
  • N: 10 points, 4-4-4-1 likely
  • E: 6 points, 3-3-2-5 or so. Not 4+ in hearts or spades. Probably not 3-3-3-4 (as the X would be very weak there, even with QJT9).

So... you want to redouble that? 22 vs 18, so slight point advantage, but a really bad fit. I don't think I'd want to touch that redouble.

Why are you worried about game? It's matchpoints - game only matters if anybody ELSE is going to be in game. In a 22-18 misfit hand, nobody's in game! The double is already going to help you out, if it's making. And down 1 doubled isn't too bad - 100 points, might be less than they make in some edge cases (probably not, I'd have them making 1d at best, but you never know).

East is doubling for the reason that they need to get 100 instead of 50 in case 1d makes.

As far as whether you should pull to 2c... before E makes the double, it's probably more likely than not you make, if P's XX means ten HC points and isn't too shape-based. (Remember, 1c doesn't say almost ANYTHING about your shape, so P isn't expecting 2-2-3-6...)

Put N on, say:


Do you want to play 2c with that? If so, bid it! Looks like you'd lose, what, 1 spade, 1 heart, 1 diamond, and two clubs, right? That's if clubs break evenly. We know they don't, as West has at most 1 club more than likely. But even a 4-1 split would be tolerable and have two club losers...

I don't necessarily fault the 2c bid, I think it's at least defensible. I might be worried about the lack of aces in your hand - 2-2-3-6 and only the ace of clubs means you don't have control of the hand for the most part, and so if W has all 3 aces (let's say) and E has a singleton somewhere, W could possibly find that singleton on lead, and get several ruffs out of E. But North has 10 points, and they have to come from somewhere, so it seems feasible that you can be fine.

  • The redouble shows 10+ HCP. Shape doesn't enter into it. Commented Oct 2, 2021 at 10:00
  • Yes, but we know N’s shape from the rest of the auction. And when I say ‘isn’t too shape based’, I mean N isn’t counting any shape in their XX - not everyone solely used HCP and nothing else for that XX, though it should be close at least I’d think. (And clearly is by the rest of the auction.)
    – Joe
    Commented Oct 3, 2021 at 0:11

Agree with Adam about matchpoint odds.
Also, your hand is right in the pocket for 2c; there's absolutely nothing remarkable about it, so you've already shown it. Unless you're Nathaniel Hawthorne, try to avoid Twice Told Tales. Pass and let partner, whose shape is still fairly unspecified, decide what to do.


This depends on your agreement with partner on the initial redouble. Some agree that this denies a fit, or tends to, but not as often over 1C. Many play that this redouble of a TO shows 10+, but has no upper, limit. But if I were going to bid 2C I would do it over the redouble of 1C. It describes your hand much better, and makes it somewhat harder for them to find a fit if they have one. At that point partner (N) could have a better fit or a better hand for you than turns out to be the case.

But once 2C has been doubled, why redouble? If it makes you will probably already have a good score, depending on the field, and if it goes down the redoube will likely make your result well below average. You are risking a lot for little gain, unless the field as a whole is good and aggressive, but your specific opponents are poor on defense.

By the way, your comment "It looks like top or bottom" for both sides," is quite improper, and a director might well warn you against table talk. Your partner still has a call, although any call but pass is unlikely. Please avoid such comments in future.


"Did I make a mistake earlier by not passing out or even doubling West's one diamond bid?"

A common and useful agreement is "After we redouble, we don't let the opponents play undoubled below 2-of-Opener's suit".

Following that logic, passing 1D out undoubled would be a breach of partnership trust. Opener's best bet is to bid 2C, as you did. This gives partner another chance to bid if they have a monster hand which wants to either penalise or play game.

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