With both sides vulnerable at matchpoints, I held the following cards: ♠ 8653 ♡ J3 ♢ AK52 ♣ QJ4.

RHO opponent opened one club, I passed. LHO opponent bid one diamond, pass from partner. The next round was two clubs pass, two diamonds.

At this point, I hoped that partner would pass. Instead, she "balanced" with a double. I actually wanted to pass two diamonds doubled for penalties, but RHO opponent bid 2NT. The two opponents made it, in part because they had AKQ of spades between them, and the 120 points they earned was a good score for them (and a poor score for us), relative to the 110s and 100s earned by others with their cards. If we had left them at 2 diamonds, they would have made it and scored only 90 (good for us, bad for them).

I would have been glad to stay out of the bidding because the apparent "misfit" limited the opponents' trick taking potential. Our bid pushed them into a better contract. Was this just an unfortunate result or was this really a good time to refrain from contesting the auction?

  • Partner made the reopening move - judging the sense of that really requires seeing that hand rather than your own. Mar 5, 2023 at 23:41
  • @ForgetIwaseverhere: Partner had ♠ J742 ♡ Q7654 ♢ Q7 ♣ AT.
    – Tom Au
    Mar 5, 2023 at 23:59
  • 1
    I'm pretty sure you misdefended. Mar 6, 2023 at 0:13
  • @AlexanderWoo: The opponents had three top spade tricks (I led a spade), two top heart tricks, and several "long" club ticks. (The opposing bidders had six clubs and six diamonds, respectively.) We had three top diamond tricks and two top club tricks, and no "long" tricks (because of shorter suits).
    – Tom Au
    Mar 6, 2023 at 0:23
  • @TomAu - Okay I see. Mar 6, 2023 at 1:54

1 Answer 1


Yes - you compete less aggressively against 2 of a minor or 4 of a minor because those are generally poor scoring contracts.

Also, I play penalty doubles in that sequence. If your partner had a takeout double of diamonds, they should've doubled 1D. If they weren't willing to compete over 1D, they shouldn't be willing to compete over 2D.

Finally - you never know - RHO might have bid 2N without the double anyway.

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