BBO Prime bidders challenge: Our experts

These are the experts who’ll be solving our monthly BBO Prime bidders challenge

Thomas BESSIS (France).

Thomas was the winner of the Open Teams at the 2007 European Transnational Championships, the Transnational Teams at the 2007 World Championships and the Open Teams at the 2019 European Transnational Championships. Representing France, he won the Junior Teams at the 2009 European Youth Championships and the Open Teams at the 2016 European Championships.

Dennis BILDE (Denmark).

Dennis was the winner of the Open Teams at both the 2015 European Champions Cup and the 2018 European Winter Games. Representing Denmark, he won the Junior Teams at the 2008 World Games and the Junior Individual at the 2010 World Championships.

David BIRD (England).

David is the world’s most prolific bridge writer. He published his first book, ‘Miracles of Cardplay’, co-authored with the legendary Terrence Reese, in 1980. He has since written more than 140 books on the game and won the prestigious American Bridge Teachers Association ‘Book of the Year’ award a record five times.

Norberto BOCCHI (Italy)

Norberto was the winner of the Rosenblum Cup as part of the Lavazza team in 2002 and the European Champions Cup in the same year. Representing Italy, he won the 2005 Bermuda Bowl, the World Team Olympiad twice (2000 and 2004) and the European Championship seven times (in 1997, 1999, 2001, 2002, 2004, 2006 and 2010).

Sjoert BRINK (Switzerland).

Sjoert was the winner of the Junior Teams representing North Europe at the 2004 IOC Grand Prix, the Open Teams at the 2009 European Transnational Championships, the 2010 European Champions Cup, the Men’s Teams at the 2011 World Mind Games and the Open Teams at the 2016 European Winter Games. Representing the Netherlands, he won the Bermuda Bowl in 2011 and the Open Teams at the 2016 World Bridge Games.

Sally BROCK (England).

Sally is currently the #4 Womens player in the WBF world rankings. She was the winner of the Womens Teams at the 2014 World Bridge Series. Representing Great Britain, she won the Venice Cup twice (in 1981 and 1985) and the European Teams Championships in 1979 and 1981. Representing England, she won the Womens Teams at the World Bridge Games twice (2008 and 2012) and the European Teams title three times (2001, 2012 and 2016).

Gabriel CHAGAS (Brazil).

Gabriel was the winner of the Transnational Teams at the 2001 World Championships. Representing Brazil, he won the World Team Olympiad in 1976, the Bermuda Bowl in 1989 and the Open Teams at the 1998 IOC Grand Prix. His victory in the 1990 World Pairs made him one of only a handful of players to have won the ‘Triple Crown of World Bridge’ (Bermuda Bowl, Olympiad, World Pairs).

Larry COHEN (USA).

One of the great writers and teachers of his generation, Larry is particularly known for introducing the ‘Law of Total Tricks’ to the bridge-reading masses. As a player, he finished fourth in the 1993 Bermuda Bowl, third in the 2000 World Teams Olympiad, and second in the 1998 World Pairs.

Philippe CRONIER (France).

Philippe was the winner of the Mixed Teams at the 2011 European Transnational Championships and the Senior Teams at the 2014 World Bridge Series. Representing France, he won the European Teams Championship in 1983 and has twice collected a bronze medal at the Bermuda Bowl (in 1983 and 1995).

Simon DE WIJS (Netherlands).

Simon is currently the #7 Mens player in the WBF world rankings. He was the winner of the Open Teams at the European Transnational Championships three times (in 2005, 2009 and 2017) and the 2010 European Champions Cup. Representing the Netherlands, he won the Bermuda Bowl in 2011, the Open Teams at the 2000 EOC Championships, the Mens Teams at the 2011 World Mind Games and the Open Teams at the 2016 World Bridge Games.

Peter FREDIN (Sweden).

Peter was the winner of the Open Pairs at the 2009 European Transnational Championships, and finished second in the 2005 European Champions Cup, the 2006 Rosenblum Teams and the 2010 World Pairs. Representing Sweden, he collected a silver medal at the 1999 European Teams Championship.

Eric KOKISH (Canada).

The world’s most respected coach, Eric was an integral member of the American team that won the 2009 Bermuda Bowl. As a player, he finished second in the 1978 World Pairs and twice collected a bronze medal from the Rosenblum Cup (in 1982 and 1990). Representing Canada, he was part of his country’s best-ever performance at a World Championship teams event, finishing second at the 1995 Bermuda Bowl.

Michal KLUKOSWKI (Switzerland).

Michal won Open Teams at the World Championships in 2014, 2017 and 2018, in addition to the Mixed Pairs at the 2017 European Transnational Championships and the Open Teams at the 2015 European Transnational Championships and the 2020 European Winter Games. As a junior, he represented his native Poland with distinction, winning the Youngsters Teams at the 2012 World Championships, then the Junior Teams at the 2015 European Championships and the 2016 World Youth Teams. In between those two victories as a junior, Michal was a member of the Poland team that won the 2015 Bermuda Bowl.

Jessica LARSSON (Sweden).

Jessica first represented her country in the Schools event at the 1998 European Youth Team Championship, finishing fourth. She collected a silver medal from the Womens Teams at the 2018 World Bridge Series. Representing Sweden, she earned bronze in the Womens Teams at the 2010 European Championship and silver at the same event in 2018 before becoming a World Champion with victory in the 2019 Venice Cup.

Daniel LAVEE (Canada).

Daniel became a world champion by winning the Mixed Teams at the 2010 World Series in Philadelphia. Representing Canada, he finished fourth in the Junior IMP Pairs at the 2002 World Championship, fourth in the Schools Teams at the 2004 World Schools Championships, and collected a bronze medal in the Junior Teams at the 2005 World Youth Team Championships.

Zia MAHMOOD (USA).

One of the most flamboyant characters in world bridge, Zia first gained international recognition as the leader of the Pakistan team that finished second at the 1981 Bermuda Bowl. He first became a World Champion with victory at the 2004 World Transnational Mixed Teams Championship, and has since won the Mixed Teams at the 2014 World Bridge Series, the Senior Teams at the 2016 World Bridge Games and the Open Teams at the 2018 European Winter Games. Representing USA, he has twice won the Bermuda Bowl, in 2009 and 2015.

Karen McCALLUM (USA).

Karen has twice won the McConnell Cup, the Womens Teams at the World Bridge Series, in 2014 and 2018. She also won the Womens Teams at the 2015 European Transnational Championships. She is also the most successful of all women players when it comes to matchpoints, having won the World Womens Pairs twice (with Kerri Shuman in 1990 and with Debbie Rosenberg in 2002) and the World Mixed Pairs (in 2006 with Matthew Granovetter). Representing the USA, Kate has won the Venice Cup twice, in 1989 and 1993.

Jeff MECKSTROTH (USA).

As half of one of the greatest partnerships the game has ever known, Jeff has won so many national titles there is not room on the page to list them. Representing the USA, he has won the Bermuda Bowl five times (in 1981, 1995, 2000, 2003 and 2009) and the World Bridge Olympiad (in 1988). He has also won the Senior Teams at the 2016 World Bridge Games, the Open Teams at the 2018 European Winter Games, the Mixed Pairs at the 2002World Championships and the Open Pairs at the 2003 European Transnational Championships. Victory in the 1986 World Pairs means that Jeff and Eric joined an elite group of players to have won the ‘Triple Crown of World Bridge’.

Brad MOSS (USA).

Brad first represented his country at the World Junior Teams in 1991, finishing fourth. He became a World Champion with victory in the 2010 Rosenblum Cup. He also collected bronze medals in both the Mens Pairs and the Mens Individual at the 2011 World Mind Games and a silver medal at the 2018 World Pairs. Representing USA, he won the Bermuda Bowl in 2017.

Alan MOULD (England).

Alan is a former conductor of the ‘Marks & Comments’ feature in Bridge Magazine. He has represented England many times as a player, coach and npc, and won a European championship as coach of the England Women’s team in 2001. His partnership (with John Holland) was instrumental in the England team reaching the final of the Seniors Teams at the 2019 World Championship in Wuhan.

Jacek PSZCZOLA “aka PEPSI” (USA).

Jacek won the World Pairs in 1998 (playing with Michal Kwiecien) and finished second in the World Mixed Pairs in 2014 (with Meike Wortel). He won the Transnational Teams at the 2011 and 2012 World Championships and the Open Teams at the 2011 European Transnational Championships. He has also been the official coach of three teams that have won Seniors World Championship titles, in 2015, 2016 and 2018. Representing his native Poland, he collected three silver and four bronze medals in European and World championship events between 1997 and 2002. Representing the U.S.A., he won the Bermuda Bowl in 2017.

Andrew ROBSON (England).

A winner of numerous events both at home in the UK and in the USA, Andrew finished second in the Open event at the 2004 World Masters Individual. Representing Great Britain, he won the Junior Teams at the 1987 World Youth Championships and the Open Teams at the 1991 European Championships. He also finished second in the 2014 European Championships and the 2019 Europeans Champions Cup.

Brian SENIOR (England).

Brian is one of the world’s leading bridge writers, and he has worked on the Bulletin team at most major championships over the last 25 years. He has also compiled and edited the official World Championships books since 1997. As a player, he first represented Ireland in 1985, and he collected his first major medal, a bronze, in the Senior Teams at the 2019 European Transnational Championships.

Barnet SHENKIN (USA).

A Scotsman by birth, Barnet was a member of the Great Britain team that won bronze medals at the 1974 European Youth Championships. He first played on the British Open team at the 1979 European Championships and represented Britain many times over the next 15 years. He moved to the USA in the 1990s, and he has had a number of creditable performances in World Championships events, notably reaching the quarter-finals of the Rosenblum Cup in 2006 and collecting a bronze medal at the 2018 Senior Teams.

Alan Sontag (USA).

The winner of the World Transnational Teams twice (in 2000 and 2013) and the Rosenblum Cup in 2006, Alan also wrote one of bridge literature’s classics, ‘The Bridge Bum’, published in 1977. Representing the USA, he won the Bermuda Bowl twice, in 1983 and 2001. He has since added three more world championship titles, at the World Seniors Teams in 2005, 2007 and 2017. Known as one of the fastest players ever to play the game, he is widely recognized as one the greats of his generation.

P.O. SUNDELIN (Sweden).

Per Olof first represented Sweden at the 1976 Olympiad in Monte Carlo. He has twice won the European Team Championships, in 1977 and 1987. He also collected a silver medal in 1991 and 2004, and bronze in 1989. He has been a member of all of Sweden’s most successful teams at World Championship events, claiming bronze medals at the Bermuda Bowl in 1977, 1987 and 1991, and at the World Team Olympiad in 1988. Over the last decade, P-O has been the coach of numerous Swedish junior teams, leading them to bronze medals in the 2011 European Youngsters Teams and collecting gold with the Schools Team at the 2013 European Youth Championships.

Wen Fei WANG (China).

Wen Fei currently occupies the #1 spot amongst Women players in the WBF world rankings. She was the winner of the Womens Teams at the 2013 European Transnational Championships and collected silver at the 2006 Womens World Pairs. Representing China she won the Venice Cup in 2009 and 2017, the Open Teams at the 1998 IOC Grand Prix, and she has also reached the final of six other World Championship events.

Martine VERBEEK (Netherlands).

Martine finished third in the Womens event at the 2000 World Masters Individual. She was the winner of the Womens Pairs at the 2009 European Transnational Championships and the Mixed Teams at the same event in 2013..Representing the Netherlands, she won the Venice Cup in 2000 in addition to silver medals at three European and one World championship events.

Jill MEYERS (U.S.A.)

Jill won the 1998 World Womens Pairs playing with Shawn Quinn. She has finished in all three medal places at the McConnell Cup (the Womens Teams at the open World Championships staged every four years), finishing third in 1998, winning in 2002, and losing in the final in 2006. She also won the Mixed Teams at the 2000 Olympiad playing for E-Bridge. Jill first represented the USA at the 1991 Venice Cup, and she won that event for the first time two years later in Santiago, Chile. She has since reached the final of the Venice Cup on four more occasions, winning in 1997, 2007 and 2013, and losing the 2000 final to the Dutch. She has also reached the final of two other World Championship events, collecting silver medals in the Womens Teams at the 2004 Olympiad and the Mixed Teams at the 2019 World Teams Championships in Wuhan, China.

Janice MOLSON (U.S.A.)

Janice is currently the #7 Womens player in the WBF world rankings. She won the Womens Pairs playing with Catherine D’Ovidio at the 2013 European Transnational Championships and collected a bronze medal playing with Sabine Auken in the 2006 World Womens Pairs. She won the McConnell Cup (the Womens Teams event) at the 2006 World Bridge Games in Verona, Italy. Representing the USA, Janice finished second in the 2000 Venice Cup and won the same event three years later in Monte Carlo. She has since reached two more Venice Cup finals, winning in 2013 and collecting a silver medal in 2015. She won the Womens Teams and the Womens Individual at the 2011 World Mind Games in Beijing. She has also reached the final of the Womens Teams at two Olympiads, claiming silver in 2004 and winning in 2016. She is currently a member of the WBF Executive Council.

Paul MARSTON (Australia

Paul collected a bronze medal playing with Graham Burgess at the 1986 World Open Pairs in Miami Beach. A native Kiwi, he made his international debut at the 1974 Bermuda Bowl, finishing sixth as a member of the New Zealand team. He first represented Australia at the 1984 Olympiad and was a member of the team that reached the semi-finals of the 1989 Bermuda Bowl on home soil in Perth, the best performance ever by an Australian team.

Tim COPE (South Africa).

Tim first represented South Africa at the 1992 Olympiad in Salsomaggiore, and for the next 20 years he was a fixture in his national team. They reached the quarter-finals of the 1995 Bermuda Bowl in Beijing and were semi-finalists in the same event in Shanghai in 2007, the best ever performances by a South African team in a World Championship event. Since 2010, Tim has been a member of the WBF’s High Level Players Commission.