Russian newswire ITAR-TASS reports that Andrey Filatov, President of the Russian Chess Federation, has made a statement noting that FIDE presidential candidate Garry Kasparov’s comment that the Russian women’s national team should have been banned from the World Chess Olympiad appears both insensitive and inappropriate.
“The 13th World Champion Garry Kasparov held a campaign-trail press conference, at which he voiced some things that were at the very least bizarre,” Andrey Filatov said, in an article titled according to the tweet by Chessdom editor.
“Kasparov’s statement that, if it had been up to him, he would not have allowed teams who missed the formal registration deadline (which included the Russian women’s team) to participate in the Chess Olympiad, seems just out there. Our ladies’ team has won two most recent Chess Olympiads. Barring it from the tournament is akin to barring the German national football team from the next FIFA World Cup. Instead of paying so much attention to minor points in the regulations and some formalities, Garry Kasprov would have done much better by giving his fellow country women flowers and wish them to complete their hat trick at this year’s Chess Olympiad. However, instead, he is making provocative statements all the time, full of invective against Russia, which make me personally doubt his psychological and emotional health.”
The RCF President added in conclusion: “I would like to wish to Garry Kasparov, if he loses the election, to avoid going down the same path as his great predecessor in chess, Robert James Fischer, who was known as rather dysfunctional, to put it mildly.”
The agency reminded “that the Russian women’s team was barred from the Chess Olympiad for bureaucratic reasons: according to the Organizing Committee, the Russian team failed to submit its application for the Olympiad before the June 1 deadline.”
The Russian Chess Federation responded by saying that the organizers had no reason to make this decision. Under the circumstances, the RCF was prepared to take the matter to the Sports Arbitration Court in Lausanne.
Chess Bilbao 2014: Do you think that Russia is still the world chess power?
Andrey Filatov: I’d like to point out that Russia won the world title in Istanbul, so we are world champions. We will find out which national team is the best at the Chess Olympiad in Norway. I hope the Russian team gets the gold.
Chess Bilbao 2014: How many Russian clubs will participate in the European Cup that will be held in Bilbao in September?
Andrey Filatov: Four Russian chess clubs will take part in the European Club Cup in Bilbao. The clubs will be from Moscow, Saint Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, and probably Siberia.
Chess Bilbao 2014: Among these, which do you think has more chances of winning the European Cup?
Andrey Filatov: We wouldn’t want to single out any club just yet, since they are all very good, but Malakhit from Yekaterinburg is one of the favorites.
Chess Bilbao 2014: Which other European club would you consider among the favorites?
Andrey Filatov: The favorites are always Russian clubs.
Chess Bilbao 2014: Which big names of current Russian chess will be competing in Bilbao?
Andrey Filatov: I think that 90% of the national Olympic team will participate in the European Cup, because it’s a very important championship. Of course, the Chess Olympiad is more important, but we would like to win the European Club Cup.
Chess Bilbao 2014: Will we see you in Bilbao in September visiting the Guggenheim Museum?
Andrey Filatov: I am definitely planning on going, yes. Because Bilbao is a great city, the Guggenheim is a great museum, and the Bilbao tournament is a great tournament. I would also love to visit the Athletic Club Bilbao, of which I am a big fan now. At the moment in my view it is the best team in Europe. For this reason, apart from visiting the Guggenheim Museum, I wish to visit the stadium of the great Athletic Club Bilbao.