The Camrose Trophy or "The Camrose" is an annual bridge competition among open teams representing the home nations of Great Britain and Ireland: England (EBU), Northern Ireland (NIBU), Republic of Ireland (CBAI), Scotland (SBU) and Wales (WBU). As such it is the open teams-of-four component of the "Home Internationals" organised by Bridge Great Britain.
Lord Camrose, owner of The Daily Telegraph, donated the trophy in 1936 and it was first contested in 1937. The original trophy has been lost and replaced. Because of World War II the series was interrupted mid-way in 1939 and not resumed until 1946, yet the Camrose is the world's most-played international bridge series.
Beside "The Camrose" (Open flight), the Home Bridge Internationals include annual series for Women from 1950, Juniors from 1971, Under-19 from 1990, and Seniors from 2008.
Since 2007 there have been six teams in the competition. From 2007 to 2009 the sixth team was the defending champion, so there were two teams from the previous year's winning nation. England's second team won in 2009, when it was the final-round host by coincidence. Since then by design the sixth team is a second team from the final-round host nation, which follows a five-year cycle from Northern Ireland in 2010 to England in 2014. That second representative is named for the national bridge federation; thus "Wales" and "Welsh Bridge Union" both entered in 2011.
Since 2005 a double round-robin is scheduled on two weekends. With six teams, each weekend comprises five rounds of three head-to-head matches, a single round-robin. A match is now 32 deals scored at IMPs and converted to victory points (VP). So every team plays 320 deals in the entire event, 64 against each of its rivals.
England won both of the completed pre-war and the first 17 post-war contests, through 1962. Only England and Scotland were winners in the 56 renditions before year 2000, including England–Scotland ties 1972 and 1973. Ireland first won in 2000 and won four straight beginning 2005. Wales won its first Camrose in 2011, but now England are again dominant winning five times in the last six years.
Winners by nation
The competition has been completed 70 times through 1913. Counts for England and Scotland include their 1972 and 1973 ties. England's count includes a win in 2009 by its second team, "English Bridge Union".
|Republic of Ireland||5|
Winners by year
Three times recently (*), the winners have been one of two entries from their countries, namely "Ireland" 2008, "EBU" 2009 (English Bridge Union), and "Wales" 2011. They were the defending champion team, the England "B" team, and the Wales "A" team respectively. Their compatriots were "Hosts Ireland", "England", and "WBU" (Welsh Bridge Union).
|2008 *||Republic of Ireland|
|2007||Republic of Ireland|
|2006||Republic of Ireland|
|2005||Republic of Ireland|
|2000||Republic of Ireland|
|1973||Scotland and England (tie)|
|1972||Scotland and England (tie)|
Teams competition in bridge essentially requires eight players at two tables. The North–South pair at one table and East–West pair at the other table are teammates. With six players on a team there are four at the tables and two on the sidelines during every segment of play, or set.
Camrose matches comprise two sets of 16 deals with player substitutions permitted between sets. Since 2007 the annual event comprises ten matches for each national team; previously there were eight or six matches. All 2011 participants played in 80 to 144 of 160 deals on the second weekend, or five to nine of ten sets (five matches), led by Rex Anderson and David Greenwood who played nine sets for Northern Ireland. Anderson is the career leader with 92 matches played (through 2011).
|Northern Ireland||Rex Anderson||92|
|Wales||Patrick Jourdain *||75|
|Republic of Ireland||Tom Hanlon||30|
- *Patrick Jourdain also played two matches for Scotland.
- "Home Internationals: a brief history". By Patrick Jourdain. Bridge Great Britain. Retrieved 17 December 2013. "The Camrose" is the open teams event.
- "Camrose Trophy 2011". Bridge Great Britain. Retrieved 17 December 2013.
- "Archives: Camrose Trophy Winners". Bridge Great Britain. Retrieved 17 December 2013. See also sibling pages.
- "Past Results: Camrose Results 2010". Bridge Great Britain. Retrieved 17 December 2013. Sibling pages give 2003 to 2009 and 2011 to 2013 scores and more.
- Bridge Great Britain (BGB)
- Contract Bridge Association of Ireland (CBAI)
- English Bridge Union (EBU)
- Northern Ireland Bridge Union (NIBU)
- Scottish Bridge Union (SBU)
- Welsh Bridge Union (WBU)