EBL website FRB website EBL website FRB website EBL website

    FRANCE - 1st place
Thomas BESSIS, Christophe GROSSET, Nicolas LHUISSIER, Cedric LORENZINI, Quentin ROBERT, Frederic VOLCKER and Herve MOUIEL (npc)
  ISRAEL - 2nd place
  NORWAY - 3rd place
Erik BERG, Haakon BOGEN, Lars Arthur JOHANSEN, Espen LINDQVIST, Steffen Fredrik SIMONSEN, Erlend SKJETNE, Lars EIDE (npc) and Gjermund REKSTAD (coach)

France, Poland and Israel dominated the 22nd edition of the European Youth Team Championships, held in Poiana Brasov, a wonderful ski resort on Romania's Carpathian mountains, 8-18 July 2009. These countries won 7 out of the 9 available medals in the three series for national teams com­pris­ing players aged Under-26 years (formerly Juniors), Under-21 years (formerly Schools) and Girls (under 26 years). The remaining two medals were won by Norway and The Netherlands.

France was the clear winner of the Championships. They won the U-26 series, contested by 23 nations, and captured the prestigious David Pigot Trophy for the first time since 1988. France came second in their first ever appearance in the Girls series and took bronze medal in the U-21 series. Poland was another distinguished winner. They caught two gold medals, winning both the U-21 and Girls series. Amazingly enough, this was a rep­e­ti­tion of Poland's success in Jesolo '07, when again Poland had won both these series! Finally, Israel made an impressive appearance too, winning silver medals in the U-26 and U-21 series. Norway won the bronze medal in the U-26 series, while The Netherlands came third in the Girls.

In the U-26 series, Norway took an early lead when the championship went underway, and they retained it until the 6th round. France went ahead after round 7. From that point, they were continuously chased by Norway and other strong contenders, like Israel, The Netherlands, Italy, Germany, etc. However, the French managed to stay at the top of the classification for the rest of the competition, without losing the lead at any single mo­ment. At the end, they were clear winners, 9 VPs ahead of runners-up Israel and 13 VPs from third-placed Norway. These three countries, together with The Netherlands (4th), Italy (5th) and Germany (6th) earned the right to represent Europe at the 2010 World Youth Team Championships.

    POLAND - 1st place
  ISRAEL - 2nd place
Adi ASULIN, Lotan FISHER, Gal GERSTNER, Alon LAZAR, Hila LEVY, Moshe MEYUCHAS and Zohar BERG (npc)
  FRANCE - 3rd place
Fabrice CHARIGNON, Pierre COTREAU, Thibault COUDERT, Edouard DU CORAIL, Gregoire LAFONT, Clement THIZY, Veronique BESSIS (npc) and Michel BESSIS (coach)

In the U-21 series, contested by 14 European nations, the gold medal soon became an affair between Poland and Israel, as these two teams built up a more than comfortable lead from the other contestants early on. However, they remained very close to each other and alternated several times in the top position. With one round to go, Israel was leading by just 1 VP, but their 21-9 victory over Hungary on the last round was not enough! Poland blitzed the Czech Republic 25-1 to win the series with a total of 278 VPs, against Israel's 275 VPs. Well behind, France won the bronze med­al with 208 VPs. Again, the medallists will be joined by Norway (205 VPs), Sweden (200 VPs) and Germany (199 VPs), to represent Europe in the cor­re­spond­ing series of the 2010 World Youth Team Championships.

    POLAND - 1st place
Ewa Agnieszka GRABOWSKA, Magdalena HOLEKSA, Paulina JATCZAK, Natalia SAKOWSKA, Katarzyna TYSZKIEWICZ, Izabela WEINHOLD, Miroslaw CICHOCKI (npc) and Leszek NOWAK (coach)
  FRANCE - 2nd place
Marion CANONNE, Jessie CARBONNEAUX, Claire CHAUGNY, Carole PUILLET, Lea ROBERT, Aurelie THIZY and Jerome ROMBAUT (npc)
  NETHERLANDS - 3rd place
Rosaline BARENDREGT, Laura DEKKERS, Lotte LEUFKENS, Judith NAB, Jamilla SPANGENBERG, Sigrid SPANGENBERG, Alex van REENEN (npc) and Hans KELDER (coach)

In the Girls series, Poland became the first country to win this title twice. After Austria (winners in the inaugural event in 2004), and The Netherlands (winners in 2005). Poland won the title in 2007, and succeeded in retaining it this year.

Fourteen nations - more than ever before - competed this year, but the 2009 title was in doubt until the very end of the series. After the penultimate round, France was leading the race with 231 VPs, to Poland’s 225. They were followed by The Netherlands (207), Den­mark (206) while Sweden was fifth at a distance (194). The situation was even more dramatic because France had to play Poland in the last round. France needed at least 13 points to secure their lead, while Poland was fight­ing for an 18-12 victory that would allow them to win the title on a split tie. At the end, the score was 20-10 for Poland, who thus became the first European nation to win the European Girls title twice. The Neth­er­lands drew with Turkey, but re­main­ed third despite Sweden’s blitz over the host country which brought them within a small margin from the bronze medal.

The 22nd European Youth Team Championships was the first European event to be organized in Romania. The effort was undoubtedly a success. Hotel Piatra Mare, was not only the highest venue ever (altitude 1,200m), but also one of the friendliest. The Romanian Federation, spearheaded by its energetic Secretary Marius Georgescu, produced an organization of high quality and met the needs of the young participants. All visitors had the opportunity to enjoy the natural beauty of the Carpathian mountains and take a taste of its wealth of monuments (castles, palaces and churches). All in all, the first ever event in Romania paved the way for another event in this attractive country soon!

The 22nd European Youth Team Championships were held in Poiana, Brasov, Romania, 8 to 18 July 2009, at the Piatra Mare Hotel.

The event comprised an Under-26 Open series (former Juniors, for players born in 1984 or later), an Under-21 series (former Schools, for players born in 1989 or later) and an under-26 Girls series (for female players born in 1984 or later). It was open to national teams of the EBL member countries and was organized by the European Bridge League in cooperation with the Romanian Bridge Federation and the Brasov Townhall.

The Championships are the flagship of the EBL youth programme. It was inaugurated in 1968 in Prague (Juniors only), and since then has been held regularly every two years. The Under-21 (Schools) series was added in 1994 to accommodate younger players coming out of national bridge pro­grammes for school children, while the under-26 Girls series (for female Juniors) was inaugurated in 2004.

The 21st event of the series was organized in July 2007 in Jesolo, Italy. The reigning champions are the Netherlands in the Under-26 Open (Junior) series and Poland in both Under-21 (Schools) and under-26 Girls series.

For a list of former winners, click here.

  Return to top of page Close Window