Fabiano Caruana: “Hope we will make chess popular in our country”

Artur Kogan, the captain of the Italian team, gathered young and promising players whose main secret is positive thinking. Mr. Kogan attended the press-conference with his best player Fabiano Caruana.

– How does Italy perform at the Olympiad?

Artur Kogan: The result is quite satisfactory. We won five matches, lost two and drew one. We had an excellent match against Russia-1 – the fight was epic, and our illustrious opponents won only at the last moment.

– Tell us more about your players.

A.K.: Fabiano Caruana plays on the first board. Michele Godena - on the second one, Daniele Vocaturo is on the third, Sabino Brunello – on the 4th, and Denis Rombaldoni is a reserve player. The average age of the team is just 20 years old. We play decently here and have a tremendous potential for the future.

– How do you motivate your players?

A.K.: This is a small secret of our team. My system is based on positive thinking. I have faith in my players and instill hope in them.

– You mean that the players must visualize their opponents resigning on the 10th move  or something like that?

A.K.: This is actually pretty close. Positive thinking is based on believing in your own strength and fearlessness. My players do not fear their opponents and are always motivated.

– There are no experienced players in your team – is it a disadvantage?

A.K.: I don’t think so. I like working with players who can compete for the world championship in future, and I am happy to give them my experience and knowledge. Our leader, Fabiano Caruana, is 37th in the world rating, and his potential is huge.

– Fabiano, is this your first Olympiad?

F.C.: No, I played in Dresden two years ago.

– How do you feel playing on the first board?

F.C.: I feel big responsibility. So far I am not very happy about my performance, but I’ll try to play better at the finish.

– Does chess popular in Italy? Can you find any information about recent tournaments in Gazzetta della Sport?

F.C.: I don’t think so. Chess only started gaining popularity in Italy, and the most popular sport is football, of course. I hope that the success of our team will give chess a widely spread popularity in our country.

A.K.: We are here to increase popularity of chess in Italy by successful performance.

– Fabiano, how did your life change since your last visit to Khanty-Mansiysk? Are you happy to return?

F.C.: I moved from Budapest to Lugano. Nothing changed apart from that: I played on the tournaments and did a lot of routine preparation.

A.K.: Fabiano, I think that you have forgotten to mention beauty of Khanty-Mansiysk girls as well as the very high level of organization of this event.