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Men dont have any advantage in chess.
August 30, 2008

The results of the first day of the Championship were summarized at the press conference.

The journalists had a chance to talk to a Russian chess player Alexandra Kosteniuk, the representative of Sweden Pia Cramling, the Ukrainian chess player Natalia Zhukova and Humpy Koneru from India.

The fact that Natalia Zhukova who occupies the 13 place in the FIDE rating lost to Katherine Rohonyan from the USA with the 52 place in the rating list was main surprise of the first game of the first round.

Despite her low mood Natalia shared her impressions of the game with the journalists. Specifically she said: I was in the lead during the game and I had more time. My opponent s figures were spread all over the chess board. I have never seen such an arrangement before. Then something went wrong and I lost. I lost psychologically first of all. After the game I found many ways to end the game in a draw.

The journalists were interested in Alexandra Kosteniuks opinion of the current championship, her attitude to the knock-out system. She underlined that the World Championship is a special event. Emphasizing the tension and spectacular features of knock-out system still she didnt think it the best for the World Championship. The probability of making a mistake is very high and there is no right for making it. I think a longer tournament is more desirable to determine the Champion. It is the forth Championship arranged in a knock-out system I participated in. The most successful for me was the one in 2001 when I passed to the final.

Answering the question if mens and womens chess should be differentiated Alexandra Kosteniuk admitted that they should.

Chess tournaments like any other sport competitions should be arranged for men and women separately. But the point is that unlike other kinds of sports men can not make use of their physical advantage.

The Indian chess player Humpy Koneru said that there was no knock-out system in her country, thats why she was facing some difficulties.

According to the drawing of lots Humpy Koneru is not playing in the next round since her opponents have not arrived. Mass media representatives wondered if it would affect her results. She remarked that, on the one hand, she was glad to have some days of rest, but on the other, she was afraid it would render her bad service.

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