Peter Svidler: I always enjoy coming to Ugra

Peter Svidler: I always enjoy coming to Ugra

Peter Svidler often visits Khanty-Mansiysk to play chess. It is in this city where he scored one of the brightest wins of his career – 2011 World Cup.

– You come to Khanty-Mansiysk quite often. This city is often dubbed as Russian capital of chess. Do you agree with that name?

– First of all, I always enjoy coming to Ugra and I feel very comfortable here. As for the Russian capital of chess, there are other candidates, of course, but Khanty-Mansiysk recently hosted a lot of good tournaments, which are organized at very high level.

– What are your relations with other players away from the board?

– Chess society is quite small, everybody knows each other, and we are on good terms for many years. Everybody is friendly to each other; strong friendships are rare, but we are kind of good buddies, and there are very few conflicts. The group of top players is rather small, we have common interests, and it naturally creates strong bonding.

– What do you think about the idea of including chess into the Olympics?

– It would be very good for chess, regardless of whether we are talking about Winter or Summer Olympics. If it happens, it would be a huge deal. State officials will have to take more care about chess, it should bring more money to the game. It would be a qualitative step forward for chess at all levels, from very basic, amateur level to the highest competitive level, first and foremost because it would mean a totally different image of chess for state officials.