попова шахматы

Natalia Popova: Teaching children in Khanty-Mansiysk is a pleasure, they study with fiery eyes

International master Natalia Popova, trainer of the Ugra Chess Academy, and participant of the World Rapid Championship, tells about her work and games.

– I registered into the tournament in the last minute. This opportunity came as a surprise to me. Playing at the World Championship is an honor. Right now I am beginning to gain the momentum – I won in the previous round and have 2.5 points. I am satisfied with my play.

– As far as I remember, you participated in the European Rapid Championship, which took place in Belarus a few years ago. Can you compare these two events and the level of organization?

– All events in Belarus and Khanty-Mansiysk are always organized at the highest level. That championship was a very special event for us, all local players were happy to participate. I studied chess a lot more than I do now, so I played a few decent games, and even won a prize. Now I play just for my own amusement.

– Are there new chess talents in Ugra? Do young people like to play chess?

– Khanty-Mansiysk is relatively small, but there are many chess enthusiasts. The number of students grows every year. They study with fiery eyes, they participate in all major local tournaments, learn from grandmaster games, and teaching them is a pleasure for me.

– Are there many girls among the students of the Academy?

– Yes. We even have a study group with girls’ majority.

– Hopefully Khanty-Mansiysk will soon produce world class players! Good luck in your remaining games!