441px-BilboquetToday I hosted a farewell lunch for Zoltan Krasznai, a bright young Hungarian colleague who is heading off to fresh pastures in the European Commission and who has served me with great distinction for four years.¬†Our Belgian trainee at the moment is a champion French boxer (la savate). To break the ice, I asked my other¬†guests if they had shown similar sporting prowess. Here’s the list of my champions: bowling and archery; chess and athletics; gymnastics (including a national champion); squash and bilboquet. Yes, bilboquet (that would be Bernard, faithful readers would imagine, and you wouldn’t be wrong). I was deeply impressed by the degree of skill and application around the table. I used to have a theory about how those ambitious in sport later translated their ambitions into other arenas. If so, I not only presided over a lunch table of talented athletes but also of future achievers.