Source: Tehran Times
TEHRAN - Seven-time World Chess Champion Anatoly Karpov, who has come to Iran to attend the first edition of Chess Stars Cup, says that the sport is very popular among the Iranian people.
The prestigious competition will take place in Bandar Anzali Free Zone, northern Iran, from July 9th to 21st.
FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov will also attend the Chess Stars Cup.
"I have a good relationship with Iran Chess Federation and this is the second time I come here. Now, so many schools have compulsory chess lessons. For example, there are 15,000 chess schools in Romania," Karpov told the reporters in the press conference held at the Iran Chess Federation in Tehran, Iran.
"At the moment, I am focusing to spread Anatoly Karpov International School of Chess around the world. We've opened 200 schools around the world so far. In my opinion, you need to have more teenage players in your country. I think the chess is very favorite sport among the Iranian teenagers. When I arrived at the Imam Khomeini Airport, so many people knew me and took selfie with me. In Moscow's Airport also the Iranians took picture of me. It shows that chess is very popular sport among the Iranians," he added.
"The most important role of the Iranian federation is to support the juniors since study is just not enough. Availability of information resources can help the chess players to shine in the world tournaments," the grandmaster stated.
Asked him is there any chance for the Iranian chess players to play their Russian counterparts in friendly matches, Karpov said, "The Russian federation is always ready to enter new challenge and we can arrange the matches between the two countries. Each year, we organize the matchs between the Russian and Chinese players. At first, the Chinese women were better than Russian women but our men players were superior. Now, we've improved in two sections," the legend concluded.
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