Summer Festival restarts today

The Summer Festival gets going again today (Wednesday) with the Mixed Pivot Teams taking place at a few venues around the country. There is then a Mixed Pairs Championship played across local heats on Thursday, before attention turns back to London for the weekend. The three day Swiss Teams takes place at the Royal National Hotel on Friday to Sunday, and there are one day Swiss Pairs at the University of London Union on Saturday and Sunday.

To play on Wednesday or Thursday, please enter directly with the host venue. For the weekend events please enter with the EBU Competitions Department - 01296 317203/19 - or through My EBU. Whilst entries can be made at the venue, please note that there will be a £2 surcharge, and the Swiss Pairs may sell out, so entries in advance are recommended.

Tim Anderson joining EBU as Membership Development Officer

We are pleased to welcome Tim Anderson to the EBU staff. Tim will be starting on 3rd September as our Membership Development Officer, and will be working with the regions involved in the expanding Membership Development Project - initially started, with success, by Yorkshire CBA - to help them bring more members into affiliated clubs.

In this part-time role, Tim will be using his background in marketing, publicity, and most recently in journalism, to help clubs and counties involved in the Membership Project reach out to existing, and potential, bridge players in their region. Tim has acted as Chairman, or in other committee positions, at various bridge clubs, and is also a County TD, so has a wealth of experience in bridge to combine with his professional skills. Once he starts in the role he can be contacted at (the address will not be active until 3/9/18).

Despite good performances, all junior teams knocked out of World Youth Team Championships

Despite some excellent performances at times, all four England teams at the World Youth Team Championships in China have missed out on qualifying for the knockout stages. The U16s narrowly missed out, finishing just outside the top eight in 9th place. The U26s and U26 Women both finished in 12th, and the U21s finished in 16th.

That all four England teams qualified for the competition exceed all expectations, so their performances in competing among the elite of world junior bridge, against countries where bridge is given far more importance in the national curriculum, is a credit to the players and their coaches. Whilst there will be a sense of disappointment in the squad that none of the teams progressed to the quarter finals, we can all be proud of their efforts, and be confident that England has a bright future in international junior bridge. Only a few of those in China will be too old to play in the 2020 WYTC, so the squads will be looking to use this event as a springboard to compete for medals at future events.

The NPCs have been writing blogs whilst in China, and these give an insight in to the highs and lows they experienced at the event - read them here.

Consolation events: The U16s led in the early stages of their consolation event, but with little to lose the other teams got more and more wild, and England slipped out of the top places. So they may not leave with any honours, but as Giorgio writes in his final blog, it has been "an amazing experience" for the team, and he gives his sincere thanks to all the supporters, particularly their sponsors Tetragon and No Fear Bridge, for making it possible.
The England U20 Lions are leading the 34-team transnational BAM (point-a-board) competition, with the England Girls in 12th, and the England U20 Dragons in 13th.

The teams were:
Under 16: Jasmine Bakhshi & Henry Rose; Jamie Fegarty & Liam Fegarty; Oscar Selby & Andy Cope; NPC: Giorgio Provenza; coach: Laura Porro (picture)
Under 21: Sam Anoyrkatis & Theo Anoyrkatis; Harry Madden & Kripa Panchagnula; Liam Sanderson & Daniel Winter; NPC: Michael Byrne; coach: Alex Roberts (picture)
Under 26: Michael Alishaw & Stephen Kennedy; Kyle Lam & Toby Nonnenmacher; Shahzaad Natt & Ben Norton; NPC: Paul Barden; coach: Graham Osborne (picture)
Under 26 Women: Yvonne Wiseman & Liz Gahan; Olivia Bailey & Ewa Wieczorek; Laura Covill & Siyu Ren; NPC: Sally Brock; coach: David Burn (picture)
We would again like to thank everyone who has contributed to the fundraising. The response has been fantastic – not only because it has provided financial support but also because it has emphasized the importance that the membership places on junior bridge, giving a boost to all of those involved in knowing that they are appreciated. If you intend making a donation, but haven't yet had chance to do so, please note that the donation page on the EBED website will be closed at the end of August. You could still donate by other means, but if you want to ensure gift aid is included, please use that donation page before the end of the month.

Sixteen different winners at Really Easy Congress

The 2018 Really Easy Congress has taken place just outside Warwick, with an almost unprecedented number of different winners across the five competitions.

The event was aimed at those with less experience of 'congress bridge', and the honours were well spread with sixteen different players finishing in first place at some point during the weekend. The main competition, a seven match Swiss Pairs, was won by Kate Webb & Neil Smith (pictured), with 106 VPs, just ahead of Kate Pledger & Steve Beckley who scored 102.

The leading players in each competition were:

Friday afternoon Welcome Pairs N/S - Helen Smithson & Denver Gorman E/W - Paul Winstone & Roger Harris
Friday evening Pairs N/S - Maju Sethia & Sampat Sethia E/W - Giles Thompson & Chiho Thompson
Saturday afternoon Pairs N/S - Ruth Wethey & Clare Tingle E/W - Helen Cameron & Louise Wilson
Saturday evening Teams Maju Sethia, Sampat Sethia, Shirley Kayne, Wendy Trayhern
Sunday Swiss Pairs 1st - Kate Webb & Neil Smith
2nd - Kate Pledger & Steve Beckley
3rd - Ian Sidgwick & Paul Spencer
4th - Giles Thompson & Chiho Thompson

Hacketts second in India

Jason and Justin Hackett have finished second in the Pairs competition at the annual HCL International Bridge Championship in New Delhi. India's most prestigious congress attracts an international field, and Jason and Justin were beaten only by the Russian pair of George Matushko & Dmitry Rogov.

Runaway victory for Winkler & Lakatos at Summer Festival

The main event of the first weekend of the Summer Festival has been won by Gabor Winkler & Peter Lakatos. The Hungarian pair finished an impressive 35 VPs ahead of the field.

The midweek competitions, held at multiple venues around the country, were well supported, with Roger Morton & David Ould winning the Play with the Experts Pairs, and Steve Root & Niall Igoe winning the GCH Fox Championship Pairs.

See the Festival Hub for more details, along with articles, results, and other information from the event.

The Festival restarts on Wednesday 15th with more midweek competitions, ahead of the weekend-long 4 Star Teams, and two one-day Swiss Pairs.

Kripa Panchagnula wins Young Player of the Year

Kripa Panchagnula was presented with the 2017 Young Player of the Year award at the Summer Festival yesterday. Congratulations to Kripa for a great year in which he was a key member of the U21 team which earned a bronze medal at the European Championships, won the Peggy Bayer Trophy, and finished second in the Channel Trophy competition. He is pictured receiving the award from EBU Chairman, Jeremy Dhondy.

Other awards - including the Young Pair of the Year - will be announced and presented later in the year.

Entries now open for Lady Milne trials

We are now accepting entries from pairs wishing to compete in the Lady Milne Trials. The Trials will consist of a Pre-Trial and a Trial.

All applications will be accepted for the Pre-Trials, which take place 11th-13th January 2019 at the Young Chelsea Bridge Club. The Trial, which will consist of a number of qualifying pairs from the Pre-Trials, plus any applicants the Selection Committee have chosen to exempt from the Pre-Trials, will take place on 1st-3rd February 2019, again at the Young Chelsea BC.

The entry fee will be £120.00 per player. The closing date for applications to is 30th September 2018.

The Lady Milne Trophy takes place 12th-14th April 2019, in Ireland (venue to be confirmed).

White Book for 2018 now available; Blue book unchanged

The updated White Book for 2018 is now available - 2018 White Book.

A list of changes made to the 2017 version is available here.

The significant change for TDs and players is the increase in procedural and disciplinary penalties - 25% top/6IMP/1VP and 50% top/12 IMP/2 VP (though of course, for players, this only affects them if they fail to follow procedure or behave badly!). Other changes relate to the new laws of bridge from 2017, updates made by the EBU, and changing interpretations by the Laws & Ethics Committee.

The Blue Book is unchanged in 2018 - the 2017 remains the correct book to use.

EBU makes donations to charity

The EBU is pleased to have made donations to charity on behalf of its members.

Whenever a club holds a charity event a special, reduced licence fee is paid to the EBU, and the EBU periodically donates the collated fees to charity.

The fees collected for the financial year 2016/17 - £1057.89 - have been donated to support hospice care for children and young adults.

The fees for 2017/18 - £1026.90 - have been donated to EBED, to help support its work to continue the growth of the game in England.

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