The US Championships from our point of view

The US Chess Championships are over and we have two winners: Sam Shankland and Nazi Paikidze. We will not speak here about their games. We will speak instead about their style, including behavior, clothing, haircut and other interesting stuff. We will of course also speak about the rest of participants, but we believe that Sam and Nazi should be the main characters here.

Nazi was not only the champion, but also the “stylish” one

Nazi Paikidze prepared well the competition for sure and we are not speaking about chess, but about her closet!! Special dresses, high-heeled shoes, short skirts, stylish sweaters, fitted t-shirts, etc. Her closet was well prepared for a long competition. Taking in account that she does not live in Saint Louis, we guess that she traveled there with at least three good big suitcases.

Being more specific, we would like to say that we liked a lot the model she was wearing during the play off against Annie Wang. Nazi was dressing as if she was going to take part in a high level soirée, which is absurd when you are competing for the US championship. We consider chess a sport and the way she was dressing has nothing to do with sport or with competition, but with fashion shows. Probably she needs to feel confident about her image, so that she can feel confident about her chess. Annie Wang did not need this artificial way to build self-confidence. She was dressing casual and in a way that was more appropriate for a sports competition. Annie was transmitting an image of a woman competing in a tournament. Nazi was transmitting an image of a woman trying to look good for the audience. This is the classical stereotype that has been so harmful for women themselves. Anyways, we can easily imagine, that a big part of the 25.000 $ that she got will go directly to her closet!

But we cannot finish with Nazi without speaking about the shoes she was wearing during the play off. We can only define them as kitsch and we hope that she got them for a good price in a second-hand shop. If she payed much for them…Nazi…really, they looked really vulgar! And, finally, when we believed that this could not go much worse we saw the final photos, where she poses together with Sam Shankland and we were just horrified about her dress with a big red bow covering her bust. We could dedicate much more time to the kitsch and out of place dressing code of Nazi, but we will stop here. Judge by yourself checking the pictures at the Saint Louis Chess Club flickr.

We can also speak about the rest of the girls and we will start saying that we did not like the dressing style of Irina Krush. Her haircut was also not great. She really seemed to be much more concentrated on her chess than on her look. In the case of Wang this made sense, but in the case of Irina something in her global image was not coherent. It looked like she was trying to take care of her image, but something was not really working.

Anna Sharevich was also one of those, as Nazi, taking a lot of care of her look. But this time Anna showed a very correct image, not trespassing the line of what can be considered vulgar. Anna dressed like an upper class American housewife, even showing a Christian cross sometimes, so that her beliefs are clear for all. This is not the wild Anna of the past and, we have to say, we saw her looking older than her age. She is only 33 and  in our opinion she was looking much older during the tournament, showing tired eyes and prominent bags under them. Maybe the quiet life of a married woman is not doing much good to her or maybe the tournament was very tiring. Maybe she is just not sleeping well or maybe her little dog demands a lot of attention. We are a bit concerned about her.

Rusudan Goletiani’s style was very special, clothing and haircut,  different from the rest. She was elegant and this is not easy when you are running some risks, as she did during the second round with her XIX century blouse. The style of Anna Zatonskih was appropriate for the tournament. She tried to look good but not exaggerating and she was dressing very casual in general. But what can we say about Dorsa Derakhshani? Is this diadem that she is wearing all the time something typical in Iran? Otherwise we would really recommend her to get rid of it. We respect all cultural traditions, but an adult woman wearing such a thing looks really weird. And we will not forget of course Tatev Abrahamyan because we have to congratulate her. She was able to keep the balance with a very particular look. We liked her style during the whole tournament and it is not easy to like someone’s style when she is wearing lilac hair and a lilac leather skirt at the same time!!!! But somehow her personality makes it look like full of sense. She was anyways sometime near to the, let’s say, kitsch border, but did not cross it. She was for example really near during the first round. We had different opinions about it, but finally we decided that this look was also somehow coherent with her personality and was not forced at all.

Sam and the boys were very correct, but Varuzhan worried us. Alexander was the most elegant…no doubt.

Sam Shankland won the tournament and he was also very correct with his dressing code. Elegant pants and shirts for every game was his choice for such an important tournament and we believe that he succeeded. He was also dressing very well during the closing ceremony. We are very proud to have a national champion that not only plays well, but dresses with good taste and is a man of good character. The only thing about his dressing code that we did not like was that he was most of the time not using a belt. We believe that it would fit, taking in account his style. But we also have to say that he, as well as most of the boys, did not run any risks with their clothes and haircuts. The girls were much braver.

The exception was Varuzhan Akobian, who, we could say it this way, ran apparently a lot of style and health risks. Maybe he was just not aware of it. He puzzled us directly during the first round with his strange t-shirt. But he amazed everybody even more when he was wearing the same t-shirt for the second round. And we were really dumbstruck when we saw him again wearing the same t-shirt for the third round. Then he was wearing the same t-shirt AGAIN for the 4th round and we really could not believe it. He still used the same famous t-shirt a couple of times more during the tournament. We really hope that he just has many of them and brought all to the tournament.

What can we say about Hikaru Nakamura and his grunge very casual style? Well, we liked it. We found that this casual beard, sports clothes and so on was much like him. He should definitely follow this way, which made him also different from the main stream dressers of the tournament. We would also like to speak about Alexander Onyschuk, who dressed very correctly, with some really special elegant moments, as during the sixth round. For the last round he chose a very classical look, but not without its risks. In fact, we think that Alexander was the most elegant player of the tournament.

We cannot finish this without speaking about Zviad Izoria and his old time Soviet Union dressing style. He reminded us of these Soviet champions of the 60s and the 70s….many years before we were born. Maybe it was just his own vintage clothing style.

Zviad could have been a part of this picture, next to Smyslov, and nobody would notice that he is a man from the XXI century

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