18th European Youth Team Championships Page 7 Bulletin 6 - Saturday, 13 July  2002

The Norwegian Schools Team

Espen Lindqvist (18) is the youngest player on our team and we hope that this explains why he has such a bad sense of humour. He lives in Arendal, in the southern part of Norway. He has just finished high school and is heading for college, studying economics. He played in Antalya two years ago with his partner:

Erik Eide (20), the oldest player on the team. He is from Hamar (winter Olympic city), but this year has been doing military duty in the Norwegian Airforce. Next year, he is going to study at the University of Trondheim. Though he has just coloured his hair, it otherwise doesn't look as though he has done anything with it since the last Junior European Championships.

Petter Eide (19) is Erik's brother. Petter has just finished high school and next month will be leaving home for military duty in the cold dark north of Norway. He is the tallest member of the team, and probably has the biggest pair of feet in Torquay. He also played in Antalya.

Allan Livgard (19) is Petter's partner. A 'fancy boy' from Askim. He never eats breakfast and enjoys sleeping instead. This is his recipe for success. He has a large bed at the Villa Marina and is still waiting for some action. This is his first European Championship. Next year he is going to Bali, not for the Bermuda Bowl, but to study.

Our npc is called Olav Lillebuen. In English that would be something like 'O' low the little bow'. He has a fancy cell-phone but don't call him because he wouldn't know how to operate it!

The French Junior Team

Five of the players representing France in the Junior event here were in the team that won the bronze medal in the Schools Championship two years ago in Antalya, while the sixth one finished fourth in the Juniors.

France has perhaps one of the younger teams in the Junior Championship. Allow me to present them:

Thomas Bessis (18): He is a second year student in physics and chemistry. He dreams of playing bridge with Israel's Dana Tal. Thomas is also crazy about tattoos, piercings and tanning. For five years he has played with:

Julien Gaviard (21): He is a third year student in maths and chemistry and has to return to France on Sunday to pass an exam in order to enter an engineering school. He is the funny boy of the team and would like to visit Croatia. His favourite hobby is the English food.

Olivier Bessis (20): He is a second year student in maths and physics. Olivier is keen on karaoke and dance music. Last year he tried to take part in the French edition of Big Brother, but he was too stupid. For two and a half years he has partnered:

Godefroy de Tessieres (21): He has been in an engineering school for two years and also has a part-time job working as security at the Moulin Rouge. He always has something to say and people know him by the nickname 'Poussin' on Okbridge. Godefroy is from Martinique and had represented Martique in international Championships before playing for France.

Jerome Grenthe (21): He is in his last year at business school and is always singing and dancing but, alas, nobody likes it. However, this doesn't discourage him from trying to become a famous singer. Before playing bridge he was a wrestling champion but after 108 defeats he gave up. He plays with:

Guillaume Grenthe (22): He has just finished his studies in business school. Guillaume has, surprise, surprise, known his partner for a very long time. He is the 'Iron Man' of the team (we call him that because he is ironing our socks). He is the best bidder in France for slams.

NPC - Herve Mouiel (24): One of the most famous players of the French Riviera (he lives in Cannes), so that junior players listen to his advice on bridge but not the rest of the time! He is the king of the jokers…

England Junior Team

I have the pleasure of introducing you to an extremely weird group of young men who have the most unusual eating habits I've ever seen. We are all single but I'm sure I can do enough in this profile to put all the female readers off us for life.

Richard Probst (23): a typical English eccentric who works as a trader in the city of London. Our champion of strange eating, his specialities include whole eggs with the shell on and pints of lager with the contents of an ashtray mixed in.

Alex 'Shambles' Hydes (20): Trades in the same office as Richard. Those of you who had the pleasure of dining with him last night will have marvelled at the way he demolished two main courses and five desserts and was ready for more. His diet consists of meat, more meat, and a little carbohydrate. Salad is only allowed in the presence of a kebab. Organising himself is not his strong point.

David Gold (22): Runs the St. Johns Wood Bridge Club in north London. Take one look at how well built he is and you can imagine his appetite. After a visit to the curry house, a further trip out to the kebab shop was neccesary.

Oliver Burgess (18): The youngest member of the team, who has just finished school. Usually has cola sweets for his appetiser, wine gums for the main course and sometimes meat for dessert.

Ben Handley-Pritchard (20): Will soon start work with Richard and Alex. A Surprisingly normal eater, but doesnt like to be disturbed before midday.

Gareth Birdsall (25): Seemingly a perpetual student at Cambridge, a normal guy and a normal eater, therefore I'm at a loss to understand why he's on this team.

Jason Hackett (31): Bridge professional and ex-junior, used to eat as much as them but cannot compete now. My job as captain includes driving to kebab shops and Indian restaurants after play finishes, taking them back to my room at the Toorak to discuss anything but bridge and getting the drinks in. Of course, since they have to play the next day, these parties involve me drinking most of their share for them.


Hello, the Belgian team is back and is be pleased to be presented to you.

We start with Tom Cornelis (25), the best known Belgian player, living in Ghent, fluently speaking five languages and with a degree in informatics. He is really an old timer, since he has attended three European Championships, and as many University events, without speaking about bridge camps in Nymburk and Stargard. Since his last appearance he has let his hair and beard grow significantly, in order to make opponents afraid of him. This tactical hint sadly enough did not succeed too well up to now, but he also tries to make the life of his opponents difficult by inventing a new system every year. His victim this time is:

Kevin Peeters (23) (say Pay-thurs), who lives in the southern part of the country (he is the only one in the team) and went to a French speaking university to get a Masters in management, but speaks Dutch at home. Due to his extensive use of gel, nobody knows if he has a hair problem. This is his first international appearance, but he is not at all impressed by this, as he tried to get the award for the best played hand when playing in a 4-2 mini-Moysian fit on vugraph.

As always in the Belgian team, we seem obliged to bring three brothers together. After the Louveaux and the De Roos we have now the Vanparijs family. The oldest, Wim (Hans-Willem on his passport, but I agree Wim is better as a first name) will turn 25 this summer. He was considered as a very promising player, already playing in Cardiff 1996, but three years ago he suddenly stopped playing bridge and started to make children. The result was a heavy hair loss and two charming daughters, Floor (2.5) and Nico (1). He works in a bank in Leuven under the orders of the Belgian NJO Eric Debus, but this is NOT the reason why he was selected to come here. His two younger brothers Pieter (20) and Jef (19) are really too young to suffer hair problems. A couple of years ago they tried to play together but they stopped before as there was a danger of a murder being commited. Nevertheless, they were first in Nymburk 1999 after the first eight deals, causing a wave of shock in the room. They learned bridge six years ago and look quite like each other, but the beautiful girls in the neighbourhood can easily recognize them. Pieter is studying in Leuven for industrial engineering, and Jef is about to start to do so in September. Jef got here a new nickname, T-Rex, since he is eating twice as much as his fellows, without getting fat. Pieter arrived in Torquay with some delay, due to the fact that he forgot his passport and could not embark in Brussels on the Eurostar. Ten days before, he was planning holidays elsewhere but due to the very late withdrawal of Tom Venesoen, he was solicited to replace opposite:

Henri Van de Velde (24). There is a lot to be written about Henri. Nobody knew him when he suddenly popped up in the trials for Torquay during the Easter holidays, getting a third place and qualifying. He had never played any competition before and must join the federation afterwards in order to be allowed to play! After that, his hair became more and more grey and he is asking himself if he will return to soccer, where he is an official referee, or try to gain money by finishing his law degree in Louvain-la-Neuve. Henri speaks four languages fluently and will soon be engaged to a French girl who lives in Spain, Sandrine. This, of course, will make his hair more and more grey. By the way, he is doing very well at this tournament, getting at this moment the best Butler-score of the team.

NPC Jean-Francois Jourdain (40), nicknamed Pitch, learned in his youth how not to play bridge at Budapest (1986) and Valkenburg (1987) when representing Belgium. Now he tries to teach that to the team, who have no difficulty to understand his message and put it into practice. He started to work with the youth three years ago and immediately suffered a severe hair loss. He tried to recover, but his hair is falling again since the opening game against Norway which turned out to be a disaster after a promising start (see Daily Bulletin 2 if you are not afraid to have nightmares). In his everyday life he is a journalist, working for the Brussels daily newspaper, La Libre Belgique, and is a member of the IBPA. Before he started playing bridge 17 years ago, he played chess in the Belgian 1st league, and is still remembering with regret about those years. He is consoling himself by buying a drink for the team every time they win, which threatens to send him to the public charity institution.

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