Wednesday, 6 January 2010

1st Camrose weekend

The first of this season's two Camrose weekends takes place 8-10th January at the Edinburgh Novotel. There's plenty of information on the local website:

The England team looks like this:

Peter Crouch & Derek Patterson from Kent, the only English pair selected for both weekends. Peter and Derek are in fine form. They topped the Butlers whilst winning the Premier League, and faced each other in the final of the Gold Cup, Peter coming out on top. Derek was on the winning British team in the 1987 World Juniors.

Michelle Brunner & John Holland from Manchester, where they run a bridge school together. John has recently won the Senior Bowl in Sao Paulo. Michelle has won the IPBA prize for the best defence two years running, and everything in the ladies game over the years.

David Price & Colin Simpson, from Suffolk and Buckinghamshire respectively, were also on the Senior Bowl team. They played on the 2004/5 England team, the only one ever to qualify for the Bermuda Bowl.

The captain is Paul Hackett, vice-captain Simon Cocheme.

As usual the Irish will be the main opposition. Four of the six "whaaaales of Irish bridge" (as per their npc David Jackson) will appear each weekend. I don't suppose Jacko will risk his third pair very much, so the whaaaales will have to play more or less throughout. This might just give England the edge. Wales won't be far away. On form Scotland and the two Northern Ireland teams are there to make up the numbers.

The first match starts 7.30pm Friday, if you'd like to cheer on your team every board will be broadcast live with commentary on BBO.


  1. Nice preview and a very strong team.
    Good luck everyone.
    Come on... England.

  2. John and Michelle no longer run a bridge school, they retired in 2006.

    What is a whaaaale?

    Good luck to our England team this weekend.

  3. I wish England well and also feel it is a strong team. I am a little 'worried' about other teams "simply making up the numbers" though; there were some that felt John Holland, Paul Hackett and co were in San Paulo to do the same and they did us proud !

  4. Derek actually won the World Juniors in Nottingham in 1989

  5. Anonymous: thank you for correcting the factual errors above, I wrote it all off the top of my head and was pleased with myself for being so knowledgeable. Guess I'll have to work harder on my research next time.

    Every time Ireland win the Camrose Jackson is prone to making a proud speech about his six whaaaales of Irish (or rather Oirish) bridge, i.e. the six that finished second in the 2006 European Championship. It should be a major incentive for the England teams to perform.

    Martin: Scotland at least have home advantage this weekend, but Scottish teams have done poorly in recent years. Northern Ireland are at home the final weekend, but what price do you want? England's victory in Sao Paulo was not that much of a surprise given the addition of Hallberg and Holland.

  6. Michelle's greatest achievement in the womens game must surely be winning the Venice Cup in 1985, coincidentally that event was also in São Paolo. When I saw that John Holland was going to play in São Paolo 24 years on I just "knew" he would win Gold.

  7. Strong performance by the England team, scoring very heavily at nearly 20 VPs a match. Well played! Unfortunately the one match they lost was 11-19 to Ireland, who are one VP ahead overall, plus what David Burn described on BBO as an "improbable appeal" (I'm not sure I agree) taking place at the time of writing. The rest nowhere. All set up nicely for the second weekend in March, where Crouch and Patterson will continue alongside Liggins/Whittaker and Dixon/Silverstone.

  8. Can you tell me why Northern Ireland have two teams ?

  9. The host nation for the final weekend gets to send two teams to make up an even number. England had two teams last year and this year it's Northern Ireland's turn.

    Similarly, in the Lady Milne this year England (as hosts) will have two teams.