There are numerous special doubles in specific situations detailed elsewhere on this site. This page deals with the more general doubles available, mostly in natural sequences. None of these are purely for penalties, though they can be passed for penalties on many occasions. Similarly, they are not all for takeout. Mostly, they convey specific information or ask specific questions.

Where special doubles in specific sequences have been covered elsewhere they are not repeated here. These are more general uses for doubles in natural sequences.

Another thing to remember is that if you have a 4-card holding in Opps' suit and a shortage elsewhere, this is almost certainly

Negative doubles in this system show 8+ points in principle, although over a sequence such as 1♦-(1♠)-X it might be slightly weaker. Similarly once we get to the 3-level, negative doubles become correspondingly stronger, but still essentially for takeout, denying good support for Opener's suit and suggesting 4-card support for any unbid Majors.

In practice, you can also use Competitive Doubles at the 2-level when their suit is higher-ranking than ours. So (1♠) - 2♣ - (2♠) - ??? is a place where a Competitive Double can potentially be used to differentiate between a

You can use responsive doubles at the 2-level, but the range of different bids available via Lebensohl will often enable you to show more precisely your range and shape. Responsive Doubles at the 2-level will almost always show hands of less than game-going strength, therefore, and are mainly aimed at competing effectively at the 2 or 3-level.

The use of Responsive Doubles can be particularly informative when you elect

If Opps

Support Doubles generally occur only at the 1 or 2-level, never at the 3-level.

with 1 or more defensive tricks*Passes*with*Doubles*defensive tricks**no**

*If 2nd-in-Hand passes*- Passes with 1 or more defensive tricks
- Doubles with
defensive tricks**no**

(2nd-in-Hand now sacrifices with only 1 defensive trick)

*If 2nd-in-Hand doubles*- Passes with 2 or more defensive tricks
- Sacrifices with
or only 1 defensive trick**no**

This will eliminate a lot of costly phantom sacrifices over contracts that aren't making. Nothing is certain, of course, and a lot will be down to the accuracy of your joint estimates of your defensive tricks (some of which might not materialise, but it does take out a lot of the guesswork involved and gives you a framework around which to work.

with 1st Round Control of their suit (at the 6-level) or with 1st or 2nd Round Control (at the 5-level)*Passes*with no such holding.*Doubles*

Bear in mind that the above does

If Responder Doubles the 1♠ overcall, then now 1NT by Opener is natural with a Spade stop. Essentially no other continuations are affected except that over 1♥-(1♠)-X-(no)-1NT-(No)-2♣/2♦ are now both natural and non-forcing (because we lost the negative double) and 2♠ is Gamma in Hearts. If Opener themselves rebids 2♣/2♦, then current arrangements apply (ie: cheapest new suit relay is Gamma in Spades, etc etc).