In bridge bidding, a Snapdragon double is a competitive double after the first three players bid three different suits. A Snapdragon double by the fourth player is artificial and forcing. It advertises length in the lone unbid suit (5+ cards), at least 8 points, and tolerance for partner's suit. "Tolerance" ranges from doubleton to tripleton support depending on partnership agreement. The following examples will contain middle-of-the-round support, i.e. honor doubletons like A-x or K-x.

West
1C
   North
1D
   East
1H
   South
Double*

South
SAQ832
H95
DQJ
CT873


South's double shows a spade suit with tolerance for diamonds. The reasoning behind the Snapdragon double is that a natural penalty double here is very impractical. Snapdragon nurtures the hope of playing in either of two suits.

Vulnerability and bidding level are factors in determining whether to double, and Snapdragon is typically played through the 2-level. At the 2-level, however, it promises a better suit and values:

West
1D
   North
1S
   East
2C
   South
Double*

South
SKJ
HKQT832
D7
CT873


South's double indicates a good heart suit with spade tolerance. Now imagine the following auction:

West
1S
   North
2D
   East
2H
   South
?

South
SAJ3
H765
DQT
CJ8752


South should pass with flat shape and anemic clubs that would require getting up to the 3-level.

By inference, bidding the fourth suit instead of doubling denies support for partner:

West
1H
   North
2C
   East
2D
   South
2S

South
SAQJ632
H532
DJ74
C8


South's 2S denies club tolerance because he failed to make a Snapdragon double.

The Snapdragon double is forcing for one round. In response to a Snapdragon double, overcaller's rebids are natural.

See also

  • Equal Level Conversion
    A method of showing certain 4-5 hands after a takeout double.

  • Lightner Double
    A lead-directing double of an enemy slam contract.

  • Negative Double
    A conventional double used by responder after opener starts the bidding with one-of-a-suit and the next player makes a suit overcall.

  • Optional Double
    A conventional double made after an opponent has opened the bidding with a preempt.

  • Responsive Double
    A conventional double used when partner makes a takeout double and the next player raises his partner's suit.

  • Rosenkranz Double
    A conventional double used when partner makes an overcall and the next player bids.

  • SOS Redouble
    A conventional redouble that asks partner to bid a new suit.

  • Stripe-Tailed Ape Double
    A double of an enemy game contract, in hopes of stopping the opponents from continuing on to slam.

  • Support Double
    A conventional double used by opener after partner makes a suit response and the next player overcalls.

  • Takeout Double
    A conventional double that asks partner to bid one of the unbid suits.

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