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Nigel Short infuriates players with 'women no good at chess' jibe

April 20, 2015 16:16 IST

Judit Polgar

Judit Polgar is the best female chess player of all time

English chess grandmaster Nigel Short has landed himself in hot water and has been slammed by leading female chess players after claiming that people should gracefully accept the fact that women are not as good as men in the game.

Short, who is a former chess world title challenger, revealed to the magazine, New in Chess, that men and women were different. He questioned that why should men and women function in the same way, adding that he didn't have the slightest problem in acknowledging that his wife Rea possesses a much higher degree of emotional intelligence than he does.

Short also said that his wife, in the same way, doesn't feel embarrassed in asking him to maneuver the car out of their narrow garage, insisting that one is not better than the other, and claiming that they just have different skills, The Independent reported.

Nigel Short


Nigel Short stated that it would be wonderful to see more girls playing chess and at a higher level, but added that rather than fretting about inequality, perhaps they should just gracefully accept it as a fact.

Amanda Ross, who runs the Casual Chess club in London, said that it was incredibly damaging when someone so respected basically endorses sexism, and also pointed out that former women's world champion, Judit Polgar, had beaten Short before.

Ross claimed that Polgar must have brought her man brain, adding that they should just hope Short didn't crash his car on those days, trying to park it. She also stated that this resolved the age-old debate as to whether there's a direct link between chess-playing ability and intelligence, claiming that clearly there is not.

Ross' claims earned her a tweet from Short and he claimed addeon Twitter that she seems to suffer from incomprehension, adding that men and women have different brains, which is a biological fact. He added that he never said that women have inferior brains, insisting that that is Ross' crude and false attempt to caricature him.

Also, leading British player Sabrina Chevannes said that women were regularly subjected to sexist remarks at tournaments, prompting some to quit. She said that chess definitely has a problem with sexism, adding that she has faced it all her career.

Chevannes said that she has been asked if she wants to play in the junior section; adding that she has even had men refuse to believe that she was there to play.

Source: ANI