American Go E-Journal

5 MINUTES WITH: Francesca Mauri, Italy

Thursday May 27, 2010

Francesca Mauri is surprised to be here.  “I should learn to play this game,” the 5-kyu said as she emerged from her second-round game. Someone else was supposed to represent Italy at the WAGC, but when he became ill and wasn’t able to attend, she got the nod.  Mauri learned go 20 years ago, discovering the game from reading Trevanian’s novel Shibumi.  She found the go club in Milan and was so serious about learning to play that she insisted on using the full board, but then about a decade ago, she stopped playing and says she “forgot everything.” Now she has started to play again and here at the WAGC she has become excited by her fellow players’ enthusiasm and she plans to return home and play more seriously.  The organizer of the House of Games where many different mind games are played, Mauri attended the World Mind Sports Games in Beijing in 2008 and has been impressed by the tremendous determination for excellence she’s seen in Asia. On the other hand, she’s a bit less sanguine about Chinese taxi drivers, who she’s convinced are “crazy and rude, but have great reflexes.”
– None Redmond, special correspondent for the E-Journal; photo by John Pinkerton