The NICKO, as it is affectionately named, is probably the most popular of all tournaments. The NICKO is open to all affiliated EBU bridge clubs. The early rounds are of 24 boards, increasing to 32 boards for the quarter-finals and semi-finals and 48 boards for the final, with the draw regionalised to reduce travelling.
Why not get together with your regular partner and a couple of teammates from your club and ask your club secretary to enter your team for the NICKO? An unlimited number of teams can be entered by a club.
Seeding for top teams (usually 16) will be based on Gold Points, except that the previous year's finalists will be seeded if known in time. Seeded teams will be exempt from at least the first round and will not be eligible for the Plate competition.
In order to avoid excessive travel, seeded teams may be drawn against each other from round four.
The Plate competition will be open to all unseeded teams defeated in their first match of the main event, either in round 1, or in round 2 following a bye.
Important: Player Eligibility Criteria
It was necessary to disqualify teams from the 2015/16 competition for fielding players who were not registered members of their club. Please help us to ensure that this course of action is not necessary in future competitions by including in your team only players who are registered members. For help on ensuring your club's membership list is up to date please contact us.
Please ensure that your team complies with the criteria given below.
Entry forms are available for all affiliated clubs (see above). Entries should be submitted by the Club Secretary, who should be satisfied of the credentials of the players. Players must be members of the affiliated club (and included on the membership list registered by the club with the EBU), and must have been so for at least three months immediately prior to the closing date for the competition. Moreover, nominated players must play regularly at the club or for the club or contribute regularly in some other way OR have met this criteria in previous years, yet be unable to currently do so through some personal circumstance (e.g. illness, work, childcare, etc).
Clubs are required to ensure that their members meet the criteria outlined and are thus eligible to represent them. Clubs are also asked to ensure that their representatives match the ethos of the competition. If any complaints are received that a team does not meet these criteria, the club will be required to explain why they believe the players to be eligible.
Each club can enter an unlimited number of teams, to be referred to as teams A, B, C, etc. in no particular order of preference. Each team can be four, five or six players. At least four of the players must be nominated on the entry form at the time that the entry is submitted;
Extra players may be added, up to a maximum of six, at any time during the competition, provided (a) they are qualified as above, and (b) they have not represented another team in the competition. No player may represent more than one team during the year of the competition.
The fact that a player may represent one club in this event does not bar him or her from representing another club in the Garden Cities Trophy or any other inter-club event. Teams will not be drawn against other teams from the same club for the first two rounds, but may be thereafter. This is designed to reduce travelling distances for teams in the middle rounds.
Cup - Tunbridge Wells A: Espen Erichsen, Helen Erichsen, Norman Selway, Andrew Cairns, Jeremy Willans.
Plate - Welwyn Garden City E:Sally Bennett, Piers Fuller, Anthony Golding, Francis Morton, Simon Mostyn and Jonathan Osgood
2018/19 Main Event
To be completed by
9th December 2018
10th February 2019
31st March 2019
19th May 2019
7th July 2019
1st September 2019
20th October 2019
by mutual agreement
2018/19 Plate Event
17th February 2019
7th April 2019
27th May 2019
14th July 2019
8th September 2019
27th October 2019
by mutual agreement
2019/20 entry fees are £81 per team
Level 4 agreements are permitted in this event.
Some clubs are available for hire by teams wishing to hold a knockout match at a 'halfway venue'. A list of some of these is available here.