Open Teams. The victory of Israel in Open Teams, over Monaco and England, has come unforeseen but not surprising; their strenght was known, after all. The victory come by a quite thrilling final. Before the last round Israel was leading 1,5 VP over Monaco; third trailed England, more than thirteen VPs from the leader, an abyss. In the last round Israel lost to Norway, but it wasn’t enough for England: they should won by fifty VPs, and over Monaco! It was almost impossible, but it is well known the British viewpoint upon certain matters: “…We’ll never surrender!”. They won, but not so much, therefore Monaco was at least runner up and England third.
Israel: Alon Birman, Lotan Fisher, Ilan and Ophir Herbst, Dror Padon, Ron Schwartz, Ron Pachtman (NPC).
Monaco: Fulvio Fantoni, Geir Helgemo, Tor Helness, Franck Multon, Claudio Nunes, Pierre Zimmermann, Jean Charles Allavena (NPC), Krzysztof Martens (coach).
England: David Bakhshi, Tony Forrester, David Gold, Jason and Justin Hackett, Andrew Robson, Simon Cope (NPC), Ben Green (coach).
Fourth and fifth came Poland and Bulgaria; the sixth place, the last useful to go to 2015’s Bermuda Bowl, was got by Germany. The German team had been lately reinforced by one of the strongest pair of our times: Sabine Auken and Roy Welland. Sabine gave much lustre to her country, but she played mainly in women team; now, with Roy, is making great even the Open Team. Roy Welland is an American citizen, but he dwells in Germany, thence his right to enter the national team. The sixth place looks disappointing for Germans, but it shouldn’t be, as this team is new, still growing.
A bitter note: at Chennai, in Bermuda Bowl, will miss a great team; The Netherlands, placed eleventh only, failed to qualify. The team was weakened because were missing Brink-Drjiver, engaged in Chinese League.
Italy took the fourteenth place, a disaster foreseen since several months, since when the Italian Federation senselessly decided to make trials instead to simply confirm the team which only three months before had won the Bermuda Bowl. This however is not a bitter note; this is a farce.
The pair Lorenzo Lauria – Alfredo Versace, in Italian Open Team, won the Butler in the eliminatory stage, but this didn’t give Italy more than the ninth place (out of eighteen). The Lauria-Versace’s performance – and the women’s wonderful championship – just demonstrates that Italians didn’t deserve the humiliation of the Senior and Open teams, that all this could and should have been spared, that there is somebody who should apologize for this.
Women Team. Here The Netherlands didn’t miss: the Dutch women took the lead at once (as they are used in great events), then relinquished it (as they are used in great events), but this time there was the third part of the story; at the very last round they prevailed. Runner up was England, third France – but France never entered the battle for the victory – fourth Italy, fifth Poland and sixth Turkey.
Netherlands: Carla Arnolds, Marion Michielsen, Jet Pasman, Anneke Simons, Wietske Van Zwol,
Meike Wortel, Alex Van Reenen (NPC), Hans Kelder (coach).
England: Sally Brock, Fiona Brown, Heather Dhondy, Catherine Draper, Nevena Senior, Nicola Smith, Derek Patterson (NPC), David Burn (coach).
France: Debora Campagnano, Benedicte Cronier, Elisabeth Hugon, Vanessa Reess, Sylvie Willard, Joanna Zochowska, Jerome Rombaut (NPC).
A toast for England: gold in Senior teams, silver in Women, bronze in Open.
And let’s end with a toast for Italian Women: Margherita Chavarria, Caterina Ferlazzo, Gabriella Manara, Simonetta Paoluzi, Francesca Piscitelli, Ilaria Saccavini, and Gianpaolo Rinaldi (npc); the reader should take a glance to the standing before the start of the last round: Italy 284, Netherlands 282, England 280, France 278. And it also has to be known that Italy has fought for the title since the start. And that Italy beat both Netherlands and England. And this squad was new; we’ll see the full blooming in 2015’s Venice Cup.
Paolo Enrico Garrisi