Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Kosintseva Sisters Leave Russian National Women's Chess Team

HOLY HATHOR!  The Kotsintseva sisters have quit the Russian National Women's Chess Team because they refuse to play under the leadership of team coach Sergei Rublevsky.

I haven't read about the specific issues that may have arisen with this male GM trying to coach an all-female chess team, but I know that issues have come up in the past regarding male coaches with other women's teams, including a medal-women U.S. Women's Olympiad Team the one and only time GM Susan Polgar played for a United States women's team.  So it's not exactly like these issues haven't come up before -- of course they have!

I am left wondering - what the hell did Rublevsky do to "emotionally shake up" the Russian Women's Team during the last Olympiad.  It's not sexist to say that a coach cannot treat a woman like he would treat a man.

In any event, the Kotsintseva sisters are OFF THE RUSSIAN TEAM, and the resulting team is left seriously weakened in their absence.  No ifs, ands or buts about it!  There is an article at Chessbase that sensationalistically exclaims:

Kosintseva sisters abandon the Russian women's team
06.02.2013– From 2-13 March 2013 the Women's World Team Championship will be held in Astana, Kazakhstan. The Russian team, which won the Chess Olympiad last September, has lost it two top players, Nadezhda and Tatiana Kosintseva. The sisters say they refuse to play for the team under the leadership of trainer Sergei Rublevsky, citing 'psychological incompatibility'. News and interview.

That article title, of course, is complete bullshit.  I suspect it would be more accurate to say that the Russian Chess Federation has abandoned two of its highest-rated female chess stars in order to support a mysoginistic bully because, well, that's sure what this looks like, dudes.

One can depend on GM Polgar to report all the chess news, and her blog picked up the radio interview of Nadezhda Kosintseva.

I am waiting to see if any of the remaining members of the Russian National Women's Chess Team, including popular players who have blogs, will comment on this development.  They may feel restrained from or refrain from doing so because of chess politics. 

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