ETH Zurich in the most prestigious university in Switzerland, the best in continental Europe and in the top 6 universities in the world. No less than 21 Nobel Prizes have been awarded to graduates of the ETH. I had a wander up there this morning to see if I could engage with some of the brightest young minds in the country and beyond.
I placed my jumpers down in front of the main university building and set about haranguing people to play . Moritz Fontboté and Midori Pittini were first to join in. They are both physics students and lovely engaging folk . Moritz reminded me of R.E.M. guitarist Mike Mills to look at : a very enthusiastic chap with a constantly enquiring mind.
Next to join us were Francesco Gotti from Ancona, Italy - about to finish his final year in mechanical engineering , and Samuel Pflaum from Germany . Game on ! Midori, Francesco and I took on the others plus a fellow in yellow whose name I didn’t get. Francesco had all the Italian flair and skill but it was Midori who stole the show. She ended up with a hat-trick for us , the last one a perfect little chip at the back post to win it 5-3. Moritz worked hard for the opposition and was very competitive , and Sam crunched into the tackles throughout, but we were always ahead by the odd goal.
Talking to the troops afterwards it was clear that their workload was very heavy ..studying for long hours 7 days a week. All seemed to be enjoying the experience though and were really friendly, open and engaging young brainy whippersnappers. Great game at an elite seat of learning , overlooking old town Zurich.