Veldhoven 2011: Silvio Sbarigia’s view

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 Ciao Silvio, I call you, as usual, to know your thought on Veldhoven World Championship. As we talk, is in playing the last round of qualification stage: the first eight will go to knock-out stage. It’s a triumph for the Open Team, who ends ahead; it’s a disappointment for Women and Seniores, both twelfth, far from the qualifying zone.

Let’s start from the Open: what about?

I have been between the first ones to complain the exclusion of Fantoni and Nunes at Ostend European Championship. Well, I today have to recognize that Mrs Lavazza was right. This team won in Ostend and is doing very well in Veldhoven. Bocchi and Madala are playing very well: the facts proved that Mrs Lavazza, who stubbornly want them in the team, was right.


Let’s talk about women…

In the women bridge there’s a basic problem: in Italy there aren’t professional or full time players as, instead, are in other countries. Our players, even good, are less experienced at international level, and that’s harming, is just the lack of competitive spirit and wickedness at table.


Might it be extenuating the fact that there have been last minute convocations because unexpected withdrawals?

Yes, it is, but our players lack of adequate preparation to events as World Championships. Our ladies don’t lack of technical preparation but of competitive spirit. Apart from accidents and contingencies, that still lacks in Italian women bridge is the experience and the holding at table. They should play more, especially in international competition, where, besides, they also will better know their opponents.


Let’s go now to Seniores’s, a field that you know very well. The np Captain is Bernasconi and Coach is Carlo Mosca, your friend and main partner since many years. What did happen?

There the results are even more disappointing than for women. I thinkyoucan findthe reasons forthis clearfailurein the formationof the team.At European Championships inOstendwent the three pairs arisen from trials (Baroni-Mariani; Caviziel-Cedolin;Longinotti-Maci) and behavedwell, sincethey reached theWorld Cup qualifying. Later, at Open Europeans in Poznam there were some contingencies. Longinotti, Maci’s partner, couldn’t attend for health problems and he was substituted by Vivaldi. Later, Maci too couldn’t join the team at Poznam. His place was token by Mosca, the coach, who there played some rounds with Vivaldi. The pair Mosca-Vivaldi was created there; they before never played together. The results in Poznam weren’t brilliant, but Bernasconi confirmed that team. As I often repeat to you, Bridge is a partnership game: Vivaldi and Mosca are very strong players, but never made pair before.


Actually, Silvio, you’re the normal partner of Carlo Mosca, and I think that the pair Mosca-Sbarigia is today the strongest between Italian Seniores…

Carlo and me obtained many successes and we are a long standing partnership, with many clear winning results. As Seniores we won twice the Coppa Italia, in two different teams, and we made well in many events. Sure we are a very well matched pair.


Silvio, why a casual pair as Mosca-Vivaldi has been preferred to a sound pair as Mosca-Sbarigia?

In Poznam was an emergency situation, but the Captain later confirmed that pair. You ask me why in World Championship the pair Mosca-Vivaldi has been chosen instead Mosca-Vivaldi, but I sincerely don’t know this. I have to admit that many asked the same question, but I haven’t answer. Rather I myself will ask a technical explanationof this choicetoBernasconi, responsible of convocations.


What do you mean with “technical explanation”?

I would know which thoughts borne the Captain to believe that Vivaldi could play with Mosca better than me who am his regular partner since years.


Back to Bermuda Bowl: which team could bother Italy?

I think this team could be Usa2, because they are stout. Their youth make them cheeky, they haven’t awe nor psychological subjection. Paradoxically, be at the table against two giants as Lauria and Versace inspires to them less awe than older players could do. This could be their trump card. Anyway, by arriving at Bermuda Bowl they also have proven to be very strong players.


Laura Camponeschi


Silvio Sbarigia is a pharmacist; he was born in Rome and lives there. He has won the European championship in 1975, runner up at 1974’s and at Olympic games of 1976. He is World Life Master.




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