Back home we had, of course, to follow that debate. A fascinating spectacle, it was like a boxing match, with the two journalists restricted to ringing the bell at the beginning and the end of each round. Both candidates gave as good as they got and certainly the post-match pundits have generally declared it to have been a draw. Such are the electoral dynamics that a draw is probably not enough for Sarkozy, but will it be enough for Hollande? We’ll find out on Sunday. People will tell me that I am being naive and that both candidates have honed their skills over many years, but I am always impressed by French politicians’ ability to engage in such sustained televised debates. Whoever saw it will surely not have forgotten the 1992 televised debate between the then French President, François Mitterrand and  Philippe Seguin about the Maastricht Treaty. The combatants in these ritualised duels must be physically and psychologically drained by the end of each ordeal.