2022 – de Botton

(L-R) Tor Helness, Artur Malinowski, David Bakhshi, Thor Erik Hoftaniska, Janet de Botton

David Bakhshi is one of the leading professionals in the UK, with numerous successes in domestic and international tournaments. He is also a highly successful bridge coach and teacher. See David’s EBU profile.

David has represented England at the World Team Olympiad (2004), the European Team Championships (2012 & 2014) and the Bermuda Bowl (2013 & 2015). Playing with Artur Malinowski he represented England in the Bermuda Bowl in 2019 and the team was very unlucky not to make the semi-finals. He and Tom Townsend played in the 2022 Bermuda Bowl reaching the quarter finals.

David also plays in many major tournaments around the World, and his International achievements include a bronze medal in the European Open Teams (2005), and a 6th place finish in the 2006 World Open Pairs (the highest placing by an English pair in over 30 years). More recently, David has won the NEC cup in Japan (2011), and was a runner-up in the Vanderbilt (2011), one of the most prestigious team events in USA.

Janet de Botton has been fielding a high quality team for many years. She has won each of the following twice: the Spring Foursomes, Crockfords and the Gold Cup. Other successes include a Hubert Phillips win in 2007 and a bronze medal in the European Open Mixed Teams. She is a well-known patron of the arts, is a DBE (for charitable services to the arts) and was a Trustee of the Tate Gallery for 10 years. See Janet’s EBU profile.

Tor Helness (born 25 July 1957) is a Norwegian professional bridge player. He was a stalwart on Norway junior and open teams for thirty years. He and his regular partner Geir Helgemo had many many successes including winning the Bermuda Bowl with the Norwegian team in 2007. He and Helgemo moved to Monaco for some years but are now back playing for Norway. They will be playing on the Norwegian team in the Bermuda Bowl in a few weeks.

Tor’s son Fredrik is also playing in this year’s Lederer on Team Gillis and his partner Helgemo is on Team Andresen!

Thor-Erik Hoftaniska is a bridge professional and Norwegian International. He has been a core member of the de Botton team for some years and was instrumental in victories such as the Spring Fours in 2013. He was in the Middlesex team that won the 2015 Tollemache. In 2019 he and Espen Erichsen won the pairs in the Reykjavik Bridge Festival.

Artur Malinowski was born in Poland, moved to Norway and then England where he is now a full-time bridge professional. He also manages TGRs Bridge Club. See Artur’s EBU profile.

He won the silver medal at the 2007 European Pairs in Antalya, and was in the England Open team that took the silver medal in the World Mind sport Games in Beijing in 2008. He also has two bronze medals in the European Mixed Teams, and has won Crockfords as well as the Gold Cup. With David Bakhski he represented England in the Bermuda Bowl in 2019 and the team was very unlucky not to make the semi-finals. 

Tom Townsend, lives in Shepherd’s Bush with Ewa Kater and their son Max. Tom was part of the junior team captained by Raymond Brock, which won the 1994 European and 1995 World Junior Championships for Great Britain. He’s played numerous times since then for England at Open level, most notably in the 2008 Olympiad in Beijing, where England reached the final and lost to Italy. He played for England with David Bakhshi in the Bermuda Bowl in 2022 and qualified with Ben Handley-Pritchard European Championships later in 2022. Tom is the Telegraph daily bridge hand columnist. See Tom’s EBU page.