Page 0034


50th European

Bridge Teams


Tony Gordon

THE 50th European Bridge Teams Cham- shown on Bridge Base Online, but it seems

pionship took place in Ostend, Belgium, E/W Game. Dealer West. the BBO Vu-Graph operator in the Closed

in June. Despite the late withdrawal of ´ AQJ98 Room did not know the players and, for

four teams, there were record entries in ™ A4 the purposes of the broadcast, entered

the three events with thirty-eight countries t K J 10 their names based on the line-up infor-

taking part in the Open teams, twenty- ® KJ8 mation he had been given. Fortunately a

eight in the Women’s teams and twenty- ´ K542 ´ Void replay could easily be accommodated (or


three in the Seniors teams. In each event ™ 10 9 3 W E

™ QJ87652 there would have been an assigned score

the leading six teams would qualify for t 95 S t 32 of 12-12 VPs) as there was only one round

next year’s world championships in Eind- ® A 10 6 2 ® Q954 of matches scheduled for the next day, and

hoven; however, as the Netherlands would ´ 10 7 6 3 Sweden prevailed by 17-13 VPs.

qualify automatically by virtue of being ™ K

the host country, if they finished in the top t AQ8764

six the seventh placed team would also ® 73


OPEN TEAMS West North East South Photo: Stephen Woodd

Townsend O’Brien Gold Pigot

The field in the Open teams was divided Pass 2NT Pass 4t

into two groups of nineteen teams and Pass 4™1 Pass 4NT2

after a round-robin the top nine teams in Pass 5®3 Pass 6t

each group progressed to a second All Pass

1 Tom Townsend

round-robin. When this approach was Cue-bid

introduced in 2008, the second round- 2 Roman Key-Card Blackwood Although this loss was the first of four

robin was all play all, but this year the 3 Zero or three key cards successive defeats, England occupied a

qualifying teams carried forward their qualifying position throughout the first

results against the other eight teams Aggressive bidding resulted in Ireland round-robin and eventually finished in

from their group and only played the reaching a small slam that seemed des- seventh place in their group. Their carry

nine teams from the other group. This tined to succeed unless England found forward score of 111 VPs meant they

change to the format did not meet with their spade ruff, but Townsend found would start the second round-robin in

universal approval, but it had the effect another way to scupper the contract when eleventh place, 19 VPs adrift of the team

of shortening the tournament by three he chose the two of clubs as his opening occupying the last qualifying place for

days. lead. Peter Pigot made the normal play of next year’s Bermuda Bowl. After five

The England team of David Gold and finessing dummy’s jack and was quickly rounds that gap was down to 11 VPs, but

Tom Townsend, Jason and Justin Hackett, one down. At the other table the Hackett England could not make any progress in

Andrew McIntosh and Nick Sandqvist, twins located their spade fit but stopped at the last four matches and had to settle for

contained five members of the team that the five level when they discovered two key twelfth place, which was where they

were runners-up to Italy at the World cards were missing. A heart was led, so finished two years ago.

Mind Sports Games in Beijing in 2008, but thirteen tricks were made and England At the business end of the table, Italy

such is the strength of the field in the gained 11 IMPs. went to the front early on and despite a

European Championship that they would A few rounds later England faced last round hiccup against Israel they won

do well to finish in the top six. They made Sweden, but the pairs in the Closed Room the title for the twentieth time in all and

a good start, with an early highlight being sat the wrong way round. You might the eighth time in the last nine cham -

Tom Townsend’s effort on the following imagine that such an error would be easily pionships. Poland were second and Israel

deal against Ireland: spotted, especially as the match was being third.

34 English Bridge October 2010


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