GM Ilya Smirin says chess is not for women

GM Ilya Smirin says chess is not for women

GM Ilya Smirin has been fired with immediate effect by the FIDE for saying ‘Chess is not for women’. A controversial comment on Tuesday, September 27, marred the opening match of the FIDE Women’s Grand Prix 2022–23.

The embarrassing remarks were made as the ninth round of the competition in Astana was being broadcast live. Belarusian-born Israeli grandmaster, Smirin, made his English-language commentary debut alongside WIM Fiona Steil-Antoni of Luxembourg. However, the chess player’s stunning assertion that “Chess is not for ladies” made his debut a disaster. Furthermore, he continued by explaining “why a woman would desire to acquire a men’s GM title”; and “why men cannot play against women but women may play against men.”

It should be remembered that the gender has no bearing on achieving a grandmaster norm. It can be attained by performing at a specific level against formidable competition, that must include a plethora of other grandmasters (irrespective of the gender).

Steil-Antoni countered saying, “Of course, why not?”

Smirin replied, “I don’t know. For instance, why women can play with men and men cannot play with women? Today it would be like everyone for parity!”

Smirin sought to move past his statements after laughing it off. However, the harm had already been done.

Read more: Travelling across the Digital Universe: A visit to the future ; Chris Uwaje

Hikaru Nakamura, an American GM and well-known YouTube broadcaster, criticized Smirin for his offensive comments. He claimed in a YouTube video, “What the hell? It’s brutal. It must be really uncomfortable for Fiona to handle it there. It is reasonably rough.”

Reacting to the Smirin’s remarks, FIDE wrote in a statement, “During yesterday’s Women’s Grand Prix live broadcast, one of the announcers expressed some very embarrassing comments. Although we have great respect for Grandmaster Ilya Smirin as a chess player, the views he expressed on air are completely unacceptable, and offensive, and do not represent any of the values that FIDE stands for. Therefore, we unreservedly apologise to all those who were offended. Additionally, GM Smirin will not continue as a FIDE commentator with immediate effect.”

About The Author

Skilled communication expert and tech whiz. Highly passionate about social transformation and quality education.

Related posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.