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Saturday, March 6, 2010

March 8 International Women's Day

Hello everybody!

March 8 is a big holiday in Russia. It is called the International Women's Day. If you come to Russia on the 8th of March then you will see that almost every man is bringing flowers (mostly mimosas) to his loved ones. Everybody congratulates women, girls, moms.

I would also like to congratulate women's chess players with this wonderful day! Let me wish all of us happiness and love! Let us wish that our children will be happy and healthy and we always have loved ones next to us.

What is the best way to celebrate this special day? To organize a chess tournament, of course! A women's chess tournament to be precise. That's probably why, every year since 1965 in March there is a very strong women's international chess tournament. The 42nd Women's International 8th of March Tournament is taking place right now in Belgrade, Serbia.

The history of this tournament is fascinating:

The First Women's International March 8 Tournament was organized between March 8 and 24, 1965, in honour of The International Women's Day - March 8.

The International March 8 Tournaments have become a tradition in Belgrade, and with the exception of 1980 and 1984, have been held every year. In 1980, the tournament wasn't held at all due to financial reasons, and in 1984, it was played according to the Swiss system, but only with the participion of local players.

Almost all the leading women chess players have competed in the March 8 Tournaments, including many world champions. The legendary Nona Gaprindashvilli was the seven-times winner and in 1971 she scored 100% - 13 points in 13 games!

Today the organizer of the tournament, the Belgrade Chess Association, tried to save tradition of the tournament and has managed to do that.

This year, the 42nd International Women's Grandmaster Chess Tournament is being held from the 3rd to the 11th of March.

Below is the list of the winners of the Tournament so far:
1. 1965 E. Bilek
2. 1966 N. Gaprindashvili i A. Nicolau
3. 1967 T.Zatulovskaya
4. 1968 N.Gaprindashvili
5. 1969 N.Aleksandria
6. 1970 A.Kushner
7. 1971 N.Gaprindashvili
8. 1972 A.Nicolau / M.Lazarevic
9. 1973 A.Nicolau
10. 1974 N.Gaprindashvili
11. 1975 Z.Veroci / V.Kozlovska / A.Georgieva
12. 1976 N.Gaprindashvili
13. 1977 Z.Veroci / I.Levitina
14. 1978 N. Gaprindashvili
15. 1979 N.Aleksandria
16. 1981 LJ. Zajceva
17. 1982 E.Akhmilovskaya
18. 1983 Z.Veroci
19. 1985 S.Matveeva
20. 1986 N.Gurieli
21. 1987 M.Litinska / S.Matveeva
22. 1989 Z.Veroci
23. 1990 N.Gurieli / N. Bojkovic/ M.Voiska
24. 1991 N.Gaprindashvili
25. 1992 M.Chiburdanidze
26. 1993 I. Umanskaia
27. 1994 A.Galjamova
28. 1995 S.Prudnikova
29. 1996 M.Chiburdanidze
30. 1997 A.Benderac
31. 1998 N.Zhukova
32. 1999 G. Markovic
33. 2000 E.Kovalevskaya
34. 2001 I.Chelushkina
35. 2002 I.Chelushkina
36. 2003 S.Prudnikova
37. 2005 LJ.Drljevic / I.Chelushkina / G.Olarasu / S.Petrenko
38. 2006 S.Petrenko
39. 2007 S.Petrenko
40. 2008 N.Bojkovic
41. 2009 I.Čoluškina

5 rounds have been played so far and Margarita Voiska from Bulgaria is in the lead right now with 4 points out of 5. You can follow how is it going on the official web-site, here.

Posted by: Alexandra Kosteniuk
Women's World Chess Champion

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  • At March 8, 2010 at 7:13 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

    Happy International Women's Day!

    Alot of people don't realise that the majority of people hungry around the world are women... and yet these women produce 60-80% of the food! The answer to hunger, I really believe lies with women. You can send a message of solidarity to women across the world for International Women’s Day at


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