What a great European Championship for the England team - the best in recent history, and perhaps only bettered by the performances in 1950, 1961 and 1963 when the Great Britain team won gold in the Open and Women's competitions (there was no Seniors event). Since the introduction of the Seniors event only one other time has a country won a medal in all three competitions - France in 1995 - so this performance by the England teams is a rare occurrence.
In addition, all teams qualified for the World Championships in 2015 in Chennai. The Seniors won the D'Orsi Bowl in 2009, and the Women were second in the Venice Cup in 2013.
The team of Paul Hackett & David Mossop, Gunnar Hallberg & John Holland, David Price & Colin Simpson, with NPC Simon Cochemé, dominated the final round robin after a shaky first match, winning 8 matches in a row and finishing up 12 VPs clear of silver medalists Sweden. Poland were third.
England Women's team of Heather Dhondy & Nevena Senior, Sally Brock & Nicola Smith, Fiona Brown & Catherine Draper, with NPC Derek Patterson and coach David Burn, were narrowly pipped by the Netherlands after a final day in which the lead of the competition changed multiple times, and came down to the final board in the Estonia-Netherlands match. This adds to a long run of success for the England Women's team which has seen them pick up two gold medals and two silver medals in the last four major international events.
The Open team of Tony Forrester & Andrew Robson, David Bakhshi & David Gold, Jason Hackett & Justin Hackett, with NPC Simon Cope and coach Ben Green started the qualifying round slowly, but improved to win their group with the fifth best carry-over. They soon moved into the medal places, and beat the legendary Monaco team in their final match to secure the place on the podium - and so doing denied them victory. The competition was won by Israel.
The NPCs of all the teams wrote blogs throughout the competition, giving updates and insights into the matches and what was going on 'behind the scenes'.
- EBL event website: results | bulletins
- NPC blogs
- Pictures from the event - with thanks to Anna Gudge for the majority of the pictures
- Reports in the bulletin:Women - England v Sweden; Open - England v Bulgaria; A piece of defence by David Gold; Open - England v Denmark; Women- England v Croatia; Seniors - England v Ireland; Seniors - England v Poland; Women - England v France; Seniors - England v Sweden; Women - England v Netherlands; Open - England v Ireland; Open - England v Germany
- Videos: Andrew Robson after England played Israel; Paul Hackett and David Mossop as they wait to celebrate victory