Home Chess FIDE Girls’s Grand Prix Collapses into “Chaos” as Gamers Withdraw

FIDE Girls’s Grand Prix Collapses into “Chaos” as Gamers Withdraw

FIDE Girls’s Grand Prix Collapses into “Chaos” as Gamers Withdraw


The third leg of the FIDE Girls’s Grand Prix was attributable to start yesterday, however after a turbulent 24 hours it has solely begun right this moment amid chaotic scenes and the withdrawal of a number of gamers.

(Title picture: the gamers confer – photograph credit score ChessBase India / Aditya Sur Roy)

The FIDE Girls’s Grand Prix is a sequence of tournaments to find out who will play the Girls’s Candidates Event 2023 – 2024. The earlier two legs of it, in Astana and Munich, went with out a problem – with Lichess offering some protection of the occasions to date.

The primary gamers to withdraw, just some days earlier than the event, had been the Ukrainian gamers Anna and Mariya Muzychuk. Whereas they haven’t given any assertion for his or her withdrawal, they had been attributable to play three Russian-flagged gamers on FIDE’s rating listing: Kateryna Lagno (who was born in Ukraine however switched to the Russian Chess Federation in 2014), Aleksandra Goryachkina (who has beforehand obtained monetary assist from pro-Putin corporations), and Polina Shuvalova (who has expressed public opposition to the conflict).

What seems to be the place of the Muzychuks appears to be aligned with many worldwide sports activities federations. FIFA and UEFA (soccer), the IAAF, System 1, UCI (biking), FIS (snowboarding) and dozens of different sports activities have outright banned Russian and Belarussian people and groups from taking part in sporting occasions.

Whereas (much like tennis) particular person Russian and Belarussian chess gamers can take part in occasions, they can not achieve this beneath the Russian/Belarussian flag, nor can their nationwide anthems be performed. Not like tennis, these chess gamers – even when quickly enjoying beneath a impartial flag at a chess event – nonetheless seem within the FIDE score lists as Russian/Belarussian. Additional, in contrast to skilled tennis gamers, skilled chess gamers in Russia and Belarus usually obtain state funding. 

Shortly earlier than the event was attributable to begin yesterday, it was found that Zhansaya Abdumalik had additionally withdrawn. Whereas the circumstances of her withdrawal aren’t but absolutely identified, plainly she had no transport from the airport, restricted contact with the organizers, no FIDE personnel had been on-site to help gamers, and Abdumalik highlighted that circumstances within the lodge weren’t appropriate per event laws. 

The German Chess Federation has gone on to spotlight that:

  • The gamers traveled alone and unaccompanied by taxis in New Delhi in the course of the evening, with the gamers feeling extraordinarily insecure;
  • There have been no rooms obtainable for a number of gamers within the official lodge regardless of their arrival date being identified and so they needed to wait a number of hours from 5am for a room to be obtainable; some gamers needed to transfer to a special room a day after checking in;
  • There was (and continues to be) no FIDE technical delegate who was on-site; they’d ordinarily be the contact individual and verify the venue and lodge upfront.

ChessBase India had the chance to debate these matters with Bharat Singh Chauhan, President of the All India Chess Federation and Event Director. Particularly, Singh highlighted Abdumalik’s flight arrived round half-hour early, and that is why no one met her on the airport.

In a put up final evening, Abdumalik shared she had mentioned the problems with FIDE President, Arkady Dvorkovich, who apologized to her, took the blame for the scenario, and highlighted his understanding if she had no power left to play. 

The identical put up shared that a number of different gamers formally complained to FIDE, asking to postpone or cancel the occasion:

One of many gamers named on the letter, Bibisara Assaubayeva (2 occasions Girls’s World Champion in Blitz), printed a scathing and private criticism of her compatriot’s determination to withdraw. She additionally advised her identify had been added to the official criticism with out her permission or information (auto-translated screenshot under):

Considerably understandably, this prompted a powerful response from Abdumalik (auto translated screenshot under):

Assaubayeva then replied again (screenshot auto-translated):

One will get the general impression that the 2 most promising girls gamers within the Kazakh Chess Federation don’t see eye to eye. The Kazakh Chess Federation was not instantly obtainable for remark.

Elisabeth Paehtz was then additionally drawn in to defend the signing of the open letter to the FIDE President, highlighting no participant would add one other participant’s identify with out their express consent:

From a supply near the event, talking beneath situation of anonymity, the native organizers proposed a alternative participant to take Abdumalik’s vacant spot. This supply has instructed us that this suggestion was strongly refused by the gamers, as two replacements had already been discovered when the Muzychuks withdrew. 

Likewise, redoing the pairings of the round-robin with 11 gamers would even have been trivial and saved the pairings truthful – permitting every participant to have 5 video games with White and Black every. Nevertheless we’re instructed that this suggestion was met with Goryachkina strolling out of the technical assembly, giving the implication she was threatening to withdraw from the event. This matches with Paehtz’s last assertion, which states the ultimatum of a single participant prevented a good distribution of the pairings.

Following Abudmalik’s withdrawal, Goryachkina presently has a event with six video games with White and 4 with Black, and a relaxation day (when she was attributable to play Abdumalik) in the course of the occasion. Arguably, this has created a possible precedent the place a single participant influenced different gamers’ plans and risked terminating an entire event – one thing an earlier FIDE assertion stated can be untenable.

A picture posted by ChessBase India reveals that in the beginning of the spherical, Goryachkina refused to shake palms with Bharat Singh Chauhan, the Event Director and Indian Chess Federation President.

Photograph credit score: ChessBase India / Abhyudaya Ram

Consequently, Elisabeth Paehtz determined to withdraw right this moment, giving her assertion to the German Chess Federation:

“I can’t settle for that not each participant begins the event with the identical {qualifications}.The supposed resolution of a brand new draw with a good distribution of colours failed because of the ultimatum of a single participant.Even in the event you begin with 6 occasions white and 4 occasions black, as in my case, an unfair distribution of different gamers will not be a prerequisite for a good and equal event for everybody.”

In the meantime the event continues with gamers now receiving two relaxation days within the event (within the type of byes), and the pairings changing into much more distorted. Shuvalova, for instance, now receives six video games with White and three with Black, with one other relaxation day halfway by way of the event, in Spherical 5. 

Lastly, including to the woes of the FIDE Girls’s Grand Prix, the organizer for the fourth leg seems to have pulled out. Initially scheduled on FIDE’s web site as attributable to be in Bydgoszcz in Poland, the situation now not seems (though it has not been faraway from Wikipedia). Whereas no reasoning has been given as but, a supply near the event has advised it might be because of the Polish event organizers being unwilling to host Russian gamers. 

FIDE didn’t reply to a request for remark, requested three hours in the past on the time of publishing this text, however yesterday had printed an apology to the remaining gamers of the event. If they provide an extra assertion we are going to replace this text.



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