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.

AQ832
H92
DQJ
CT873
West    
1C
Partner    
1D
East    
1H
You    
Double*


Your 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:

KJ
HKQT832
D7
CT873
West    
1D
Partner    
1S
East    
2C
You    
Double*


Your double indicates a good heart suit with spade tolerance.

Now imagine a third auction:

AJ3
H765
DQT
CJ8752
West    
1S
Partner    
2D
East    
2H
You    
?


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


Bidding the Fourth Suit

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

AQJ632
H765
DJ74
C8
West    
1H
Partner    
2C
East    
2D
You    
2S


Your 2S denies club tolerance because you didn't make a Snapdragon double.


Responses to the 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.

  • Maximal Double
    A conventional double used as a major suit game try.

  • 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.

  • Thrump Double
    A double of a 3-level preempt asking partner to bid 3NT with a stopper.

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