Wednesday, 6 June 2012

Dublin 2012 - Open, Part 1

European Championships fever is upon us. Can the new England manager Cope with a team of jaded old has-beens and prima donnas and get beyond the quarter-finals? Will he opt for a diamond formation or rely on throw-ins? But enough of the football; what about the Euros that really matter, the Bridge Euros taking place in Dublin between June 12 and June 23? Surely that represents a much better chance of national glory?

If you can’t be there to wave the flag and encourage Peter Crouch to do his Robot Dance each time he brings in a grand, why not keep in touch with the action via the blogs on the EBU website? We hope that the NPCs will bring us all the drama as it happens and the rest of us can point out helpfully how that 3NT could have been made on an intra-finesse and triple squeeze.

Just in case you’ve forgotten, the boys who will be representing us in the 51st Open Event are as follows:

Tony Forrester & David Gold
Andrew Robson & Alexander Allfrey
Peter Crouch & Derek Patterson

NPC: Simon Cope; Coach: Ben Green

The Open series will be played in two round robins: in the first round robin (qualifier), teams will be divided into two groups, according to their ranking in the preceding 3 European Team Championships. At the end of the qualifier, the 9 best ranked teams from each group will be determined, which will advance to the second round robin (final). The remaining teams will finish the championships at this point.

England (as such) has never won the Open event. You have to go back to 1991 when Great Britain last claimed the title. Forrester and Robson survive from that triumph where their teammates were John Armstrong, Graham Kirby, Tony Sowter and Roman Smolski, with Sandra Landy as NPC. It is surely time to make up for 21 years of hurt.

The top three teams in each event get medals, while the top six get to play in the World championships in Bali in 2013. How can we fail? Come on, Eng-er-land!

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