This concept was authored by Mr. Danny Kleinman and published in The Bridge World in the year 1997, issue August, page 15. This method was devised for employment by the responder, who contends with immediate intervention by the immediate opponent with a suit overcall. The concept is not applicable when the immediate opponent doubles, only when the player intervenes with a suit bid.
Basic Argument for the Concept
The main argumentation of the published article demonstrates that the penalty double is used very seldom at low levels, such as the one and two levels of the auction. In many cases the takeout double is employed, but this competitive call would apply to only certain holdings since the requirements of the takeout double is conditioned on certain parameters. In the early stages of the development of the takeout double one requirement was that it could only be applied only when one Major suit remained unbid. and the responder does not have sufficient values to make another bid on the two level.
The Hubble concept is based on the parameters of the original negative double, but the responses are based on the transfer principle, which is illustrated by the examples presented below.
Mr. Danny Kleinman sub-chaptered the pertinent auctions in sequences. It is to be noted that the negative double is not compatible with the Hubble conventional method and is not employed per agreement. For example, when the responder bids 1 Heart or 1 Spade in these Sequences, then this bid does not indicate a 5-card plus Heart or Spade suit. Per agreement the bid is a transfer bid.
Sequence 1: 1 - 1
South AQxx KJxx xx Axx
West xx Axx AQxxx Kxx
North Kxx Q10xx Kxx Qxx
North, the responder, is practically unable to make a negative double, but somehow communicate to partner the held competitive values.
Note: Although some partnership agreements have been relaxed to employ the negative double in this example, the more disciplined parameters of the negative double require the responder to hold four cards in both Major suits.
The responses are shown below with the accompanying definitions:
South West North Meaning 1 1 Double Transfer to the Heart suit. (Note: this is the correct response for the above example.) 1 Transfer to the Spade suit. 1 Transfer to No Trump. 1 NT Unusual No Trump showing weak values and a minimum of 5-5 in both unbid suits.
Note: The first response of does not show limited values, but it does strongly imply (if not promise) a stopper in the suit of the opponent. The actual strength of the holding of the responder will be revealed on the next bid. All transfer bids are considered to be one-round forcing.
Sequence 2: 1 - 1 or 1 - 1
South AQxx Jxx xx AKxx
West xx AKQxx Axx xxx
North Kxxx xxx KQx Qxx
The situation is the same as above. According to the established parameters of the negative double the responder is unable to employ this double. With the agreement to employ instead the Hubble conventional method the responder can compete in the auction and convey information to partner.
South West North Meaning 1 / 1 Double Transfer to No Spades. (Note: this is the correct response for the above example.) 1 Transfer to No Trump showing unlimited values and possible stopper in Hearts, if done with extra values. 1 NT Unusual No Trump showing weak values and a minimum of 5-5 in both unbid suits.
Sequence 3: 1 - 1
South xx AQxxx KJx Qxx
West AQJxx Kxx Axx xx
North x xx Q10xxx AJxxx
If the agreement were to employ a negative double, then this call would only show a minimum of 4-4 in the unbid suits. The employment of the Hubble conventional method, however, can communicate a 5-5 distribution.
South West North Meaning 1 1 Double Transfer to No Trump showing unlimited values and possible stopper in Spades, if done with extra values. 1 NT Unusual No Trump showing weak values and a minimum of 5-5 in both unbid suits. (Note: correct bid for the presented example.) 2 NT This is a limit raise for Hearts and shows a minimum of 3-card support.
Sequence 4: 1 - 2 or 1 - 2
South AQJxx xx KJx Qxx
West xx AQxxx xxx AKx
North Kxx xx AQxx Jxxx
The Hubble conventional method assists the responder in showing a possible limit raise of the suit of partner.
South West North Meaning 1 2 Double Transfer to No Trump showing unlimited values and possible stopper in Spades, if done with extra values. 2 NT This is a limit raise for Spades and shows a minimum of 3-card support. (Note: correct bid for the presented example.)
Note: With fewer values than the recommended 8/9-11 points the responder would first support the suit of the opener with 2 Spades instead of forcing the competitive auction to the three level.
Note: For the bidding sequence of 1 - 2 it should be determined whether the bid of the immediate opponent is preemptive or carries another meaning.
Further explanations of the Hubble conventional method is necessary since it is rather flexible by nature. The agreement is that the responder can transfer partner, following the overcall, in order to communicate competitive values. However, partner is under no obligation to accept the transfer bid. If partner has a better, more descriptive, more accurate bid, then partner will not accept the transfer. Partner will select another, more appropriate bid.
The Hubble conventional method also allows the opener to bid the suit of the responder at the one level, if possible, with only 3-card support. The opener, with 4-card support and stronger values, can raise the suit of the responder either two levels or three levels.
Another perceived advantage of this conventional method is the fact that both the double and the transfer bid provide the responder with a second bid, which describes the holding more accurately and possibly defines the distribution more exactly.
The players must keep in mind that all No Trump bids by the responder are employed on all holdings, which are unsuitable to play in No Trump. This is an essential feature of the No Trump response. The No Trump first response, if not a jump in No Trump, shows a distinct distributional pattern, and which allows the opener, if accepted, to place the contract at a low level.
Following a Major suit overcall on the two level by the opponent presents a definite advantage to the opener if the responder doubles the overcall. The opener has the opportunity of converting the double by the responder, which is normally a transfer bid, to a penalty double. The opener is the single competing player, who realizes that the advancer holds very few values and has a worthless holding.
Note: The opener would only accept the transfer to No Trump following the double by responder only if the opener would have passed a standard 2 No Trump bid. Otherwise the opener bids 3 Clubs or 3 Diamonds, his real suit.
The author, Mr. Danny Kleinman, mentions in his article that the idle bids not mentioned in the above four sequences can be included by the partnership by agreement. This is namely the flexibility of the concept and guidelines of the fundamental principle.
If you wish to include this feature, or any other feature, of the game of bridge in your partnership agreement, then please make certain that the concept is understood by both partners. Be aware whether or not the feature is alertable or not and whether an announcement should or must be made. Check with the governing body and/or the bridge district and/or the bridge unit prior to the game to establish the guidelines applied. Please include the particular feature on your convention card in order that your opponents are also aware of this feature during the bidding process, since this information must be made known to them according to the Laws of Duplicate Contract Bridge. We do not always include the procedure regarding Alerts and/or Announcements, since these regulations are changed and revised during time by the governing body. It is our intention only to present the information as concisely and as accurately as possible.
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