On 24 and 25 October, Combined National and European Championship in the sport version of a popular TV quiz "Svoya Igra" was held in Voronezh. The event was organised by Voronezh State University, Joint Students' Board of VSU, and the Intelligent Technologies Centre TSIT.RUS with the support of International Association of Clubs of the sport version of the game 'What? Where? When?'
The participants of the tournament came from many countries of the world. For the first time the event brought together players from Russia, Israel, Switzerland, Kazakhstan, Armenia, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus and the EU countries. The favourites of the championship were the two-fold Crystal Owl Prize winner Ilia Novikov and the acting champion of Russia and the holder of the Continental Cup Aleksandr Korobeinikov.
The players fought for the title of champion over two days that involved two stages, a play-off and the final match. All in all the players had 50 intellectual battles, each of which included 25–60 questions on very diverse topics – Natural Sciences, World Literature, Internet Folklore, Popular Culture, Economics, Religion, Travelling, etc. The tasks had been prepared by the international team of professional editors.
Intellectuals of Voronezh State University did not stand back either. The university's undergraduate and postgraduate students and graduates competed with Russian and international guests – a bronze champion of Europe of the game "What? Where? When?" among students and the first champion of Russia of the team game "Svoya Igra" among students Nikita Saprykin, a bronze winner of the World competition among 'Brain-ring' connoisseurs Roman Zurkan, and the Voronezh champion of "Svoya Igra" Aleksey Proshin.
'It is not easy to prepare for any tournament. I tried to practise more and play more – I met with other players in various places and played off-line or online on Skype. I take part in a Skype project 'Svoyak non-stop' (SNS). This is an online platform for intellectual games. I played a lot there and it helped me to get ready for the championship. The championship left the most positive impressions on me and the organisation was up to the mark. I have known many players for a long time and with some of them I have played before. I believe that every player has their own opinion on what kind of questions they prefer to answer. I would like to see more questions on Mathematics and Sport,' – said a representative of the VSU Faculty of Applied Mathematics, Informatics and Mechanics Aleksey Proshin.
According to the results of the heated competitions a player from the Moscow region Stanislav Maksimenko became the winner of the Combined National and European Championship of the sport version of "Svoya Igra". The second prize was given to Mikhail Ivanov from Saratov and the third – to Pavel Solokhyan from Erevan.
The leading specialist of the Student Affairs and Social Development Administration Aleksandra Nazarova told us about the organisation of the championship:
'The team of organisers has a well-developed algorithm for holding such events. That is why it did not take a lot of time to get ready for it this time. They have been carrying out championships of various levels for four years, hence they know all the hidden pitfalls and realise the extent of work to be done. The most time consuming was the process of coordinating and informing potential participants. A huge amount of work has been done to prepare the event. And students who took part in organising it have gained a good reputation. International participants and organisations that prepare the championship in other countries also assisted in organising the event. We have one of the strongest teams that prepare questions for the competition.
It should be mentioned that the organising committee's portfolio has a number of tournaments of the same scale and on a similar theme – II National Championship in sport version of 'Svoya Igra' (October 2013) and the Open Cup of the Black Earth region in experimental forms of intellectual games (April 2015).