Bydgoszcz, Poland – with only 1 week to the beginning of the 2020 FISU World University Championship Mind Sports online we asked three representatives of the Polish delegation to share with us their views about the event being switched to an online format and what are their techniques to prepare for the championship.

Jakub Patreuha, 2018 World University Bridge Vice Champion (team classification), says that they are practicing a few times a week both live and on the Internet as they haven’t had too many occasions to play online professionally. In his opinion the new event’s format will also be a new experience for many participants. Jakub also describes the online formula as the most fair way of competing as it minimalizes the risk of cheating. The Polish bridge player admits that he and his brother Patryk, who will also participate in this championship, are quite an experienced duet. During the last World University Bridge Championship in 2018 they were awarded a second place and as he says“Now is the time to change the silver medals into the gold ones.”

Marcin Molenda, 2018 World University Chess Vice Champion (team classification), also tells us about his preparations: “I try to use the last days before the event to improve the power of my game and prepare new openings. The whole Polish team is victory-oriented. We have a pretty good chance ofwinning this year’s championship as we won silver medalin the previous edition.”Having been asked about the event’s online formula, Marcin admitted that playing chess on the Internet is highly popular; however, the same cannot be said about organizing championships of such a high importance. Moreover, he states that the format of the event will not allow the participants to show all of their skills as the time of the game is limited; yet, many new andstrong teams will be given the chance to participate in WUC.

Anna Kubicka, 2019 Polish Universities Chess Champion, admits that the participation in this year’s  World University Championship Mind Sports online is a challenge for her. It will be the first time she represents Poland in an international academic competition. Regarding the event’s formula she says the following: “The COVID-19 pandemic has strongly influenced and limited sports. Many competitions have been canceled. However, unlike many other sporting disciplines, chess and bridge provide the opportunity to participate in championships from the safety of our homes. Having a possibility to compete online is a big advantage of chess.” Anna also admits that the Polish representatives are well prepared to the competition and the chances to win the gold medal are high. Despite the fact that there is still one week to the start of the championship, the coming days will be also full of sporting emotions. The draw will be published tomorrow and on Thursday, the teams’ captains will participate in the General Technical Meeting.