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Affaire Fantunes: Fabrizio Catarsi’s view

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We received and with pleasure publish this contribute

I’d like to give my opinion about the exclusion of Nunes and Fantoni from the national team, sustaining the technical official (hereinafter the TO) who although she may possibly be partial to the Bocchi/Madala pair, I believe is looking for valid alternatives to the three traditional pairs who have given us so much satisfaction during the past years.

We gather from statements on this site and elsewhere, rumors about the lack of an official justification which the TO should have given about their exclusion; permit me to say that there exists no obligation to give a public explanation of the TO’s choice, which concerns only him, the team and those directly involved. No explanation of any kind is due to us “nosy parkers”.

There is a lot of discussion about the pairs being accustomed to playing with each other, or about their technical value, or about their personality and experience; aside from Lauria/Versace and Nunes/Fantoni who are certainly the most experienced couples, I would like to point out that to reach excellent team cooperation at top levels, two or three years are necessary; the Duboin/Sementa pair was formed in 2008 and Bocchi/Madala in 2009, and therefore both pairs have reached a certain stage, giving us excellent results on a national and an international level.

As regards the individual players, nothing to comment about Duboin and Sementa who have previously played on the national team; Bocchi is undoubtedly a world level player, while Madala is that mysterious object (according to others) who represents a promise, but not yet a certainty. To tell the truth, I’d like the readers to remember September of three years ago (2007) during the finals of the Bridge Club Championship between the Lavazza and Angelini teams, above all the last two boards in which Sementa, in a 3NT contract, failed to follow suit (not influencing the result) which resulted in the judge’s penalizing the contract by one trick down. Well, Agustin Madala, at the time barely 20 years old, from that moment assumed an attitude of maturity and personality so great as to make you think that not only was he this youngster of great promise who took command of the situation (making up for his companion’s nervousness), but a player navigating with great charisma and experience, piloting his ship into port (so much for talk of personalities).

We also want to talk about the criticisms of the TO (who is also the sponsor of the Lavazza team) for the presumed lack of “feeling” with the Nunes/Fantoni pair. It’s known that Italians are hypocritical about any kind of “affair”, it’s enough to see what has surrounded us up to now in our daily lives. It’s easy to say that the TO doesn’t have the right feeling with the Roman pair, but we don’t like to say on the other hand that in the midst of the Angelini team there are two pairs who can hardly stand each other and don’t even tolerate each other, or that there is a senator who can’t digest the “other pair”. This isn’t said or even mentioned yet it is seen by everyone, as the American Nationals showed.

The national team is the framework which includes the best Italian players; to make it function at its best, there must be the internal harmony necessary to face our tough adversaries with confidence and serenity; according to you, does this condition exist?

To conclude I would say that a choice of this kind could have been expected, it’s the result of many situations more or less unknown to us (or known?) and love of Fantoni and Nunes should not in any way influence our opinion of their replacements, who are certainly players of a high level both nationally and internationally; I would also add that before criticizing the TO for such a choice, I would have pointed my finger to the internal relationships within the national team, which didn’t seem idyllic nor a guaranty of real cohesion.

We ask why they in particular have been excluded? I think that the parties directly involved know the various reasons and if they really feel like talking about them, it would be great to have an open confrontation with their fans, and with the 50 million TO’s which there are in Italy.


 [stextbox id=”info”]An amateur crazy about this magnificent game (today a sport). Let’s not say that I’m taking sides: I’ve played both with Bocchi/Madala and with Fantoni. A romantic: I still believe in friendship among the players, and I feel I am a friend of the persons involved in this affair (although maybe they regard me as an acquaintance). I am a bit disorganized but sincere and trustworthy: I hate experts in politics or those looking for hidden agendas. I’m used to looking straight ahead, I never found anything interesting on the ground, I like to try reading between the lines. Fabrizio Catarsi.[/stextbox]

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