USA & ISRAEL WIN WORLD YOUTH TITLES
After an exciting match, the UNITED STATES 1 team, managed to retain the title they had won in Sydney 2005, beating Italy by a small margin in the 96-board final. At the same time, ISRAEL dethroned Poland and captured the title of World Schools champions, defeating Latvia in the final match. The bronze medals went to Singapore (Juniors) and Poland (Schools).
The 11th edition of the World Youth Team Championships was probably the most successful such event ever held, combining very high attendance, excellent conditions at the venue and an innovative technology applied for the first time which led to a virtually paperless tournament.
Here is what was carried in the last edition of the tournament's Daily Bulletin:
'And so the 11th World Youth Team Championships are over and it is time to thank our Thai hosts for all their hard work and wonderful hospitality. Whatever our results in the bridge, we will all be going home the richer for our experiences here and exposure to the charm and friendliness of the Thai people.
After all the excellent tough bridge that we have witnessed over the past ten days, it appeared that today's finals would be a bit of an anticlimax, with both being over early as contests. That is not to take away from the performance of the winning teams, who both put in very impressive performances. However, down by 96 IMPs with just 16 boards to play, Italy made a tremendous comeback and outscored their opponents by 82-1 IMPs over those deals. In the end, the Italians ran out of boards, but they salvaged a lot of pride and gave the audience, both here in Bangkok and around the world on BBO, great entertainment.
The defending champions, USA1, retained the Junior Championship for the Ortiz-Patiño Trophy, the first time that any country has put together back to back wins, and the third Championship out of the last four to go to USA. The final score was USA1 235 Italy 220. The champions are Joshua Donn, Jason Feldman, Ari Greenberg, Joe Grue, John Kranyak, Justin Lall, and Robert Rosen (npc).
The Italian silver medallists are Andrea Boldrini, Stelio Di Bello, Francesco Ferrari, Fabio Lo Presti, Alberto Sangiorgio, Matteo Sbarigia, and Gianpaolo Rinaldi (npc).
The winners of the first World Schools Team Championship for the José Damiani Trophy were Israel, who defeated Latvia by 233-117 in the final with a set to spare. The champions are Eliran Argelazi, Alon Birman, Dror Padon, Ron Segev, Dana Tal, Bar Tarnovski, and Gadi Lebovits (npc).
The silver medallists, winning their country's first ever World Championship medal at any level, are Jurijs Balasovs, Janis Bethers, Peteris Bethers, Adrians Imsa, Martins Lorencs, and Aivar Tihane (npc)'.
The 11th World Youth Bridge Team Championships was held in Bangkok, the legendary capital of Thailand and one of the world’s’ most populous cities, from 29 July to 8 August 2006. At its coming of age, the WBF’s top youth competition expanded to include a separate Schools series, contested along with the normal Junior series.
The championships’ venue is Bangkok’s Baiyoke Sky Hotel, Thailand’s tallest building. The Baiyoke Sky Hotel, situated in the heart of downtown Bangkok, offers ample space and facilities to lodge all teams, officials and staff, and safeguard the comfortable running of the tournament.
The Youth Committee wishes to thank Khunying Esther Chodchoy Sophonpanich, President of the Pacific Asia Bridge Federation (Zone 6), Admiral Prasert Boonsong, President of the Contract Bridge League of Thailand (CBLT), Thongchai Yongchareon, CBLT Honorary Advisor and former President with a rich record on youth bridge promotion in Thailand, and the indefatigable Vallapa Svangsopakul - who have been instrumental in bringing the championship to Thailand and then securing excellent conditions for the participants.
All Zones of the World Bridge Federation are invited to participate in this prestigious tournament. In each series, Zone 1 (Europe) may enter up to five teams; Zones 2 (North America) and 6 (Pacific Asia) three teams each; Zone 7 (South Pacific) two teams; and Zones 3 (South America), 4 (Asia & Middle East), 5 (Central America) and 8 (Africa) one team each. The host country is entitled to be represented by one team in each series. Conditionally, a sixth team will be accepted from Zone 1 (Europe) in each series. Players in the Junior series may be up to 26 years old, while in the Schools series players may be up to 21 years old.
The Championships consist of a qualifying stage, semifinals, a final and a playoff for third place in each series. The winners of the Junior series final will be the new World Junior Champions; they will receive the Ortiz-Patiño Trophy (left) and silver replicas for each player and the non-playing captain. For the winners of the Schools series final there is the José Damiani Trophy (right) and replicas, in addition to the World Schools Champions title. Those failing to qualify will be able to participate in a Swiss Pairs contest, arranged exclusively for young people.
This is the eleventh event of the (Junior) series which was inaugurated in 1987 in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. As a biennial competition, it was held in 1989 in Nottingham, Great Britain; in 1991 in Ann Arbor, Michigan, USA; in 1993 in Århus, Denmark; in 1995 in Bali, Indonesia; in 1997 in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; in 1999 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, USA, in 2001 in Mangaratiba, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, in 2003 in St.Cloud-Paris, France, and in 2005 in Sydney, Australia. Owing to the change of cycle, this is the first time the competition is held in an even-numbered year.
The host country - The Netherlands, Great Britain & USA - won the Championship on the first three occasions, but this tradition was broken in 1993 by Germany. In 1995, Great Britain became the first country to win the title twice. Denmark won the title in 1997 and Italy in 1999. In 2001, USA became champions for the second time; Italy followed suit in 2003, but USA took the lead in 2005 when they piped Poland at the post to conquer the world Junior title for the third time.
The World Schools Teams Championship is held this year for the second time. In 2004, in New York, only Europe and North America took part, and the first winners and current title holders were Poland.