Russian Chess Grandmaster unveils schools project in Malawi

Russian Chess grandmaster Garry Kasparov has unveiled a plan to adopt 10 schools across the country where his foundation will support while building chess profile.

The former long-time undisputed champion told reporters  in Lilongwe on Wednesday  after meeting senior government officials.

“I am excited to be here and share my vision with the government of Malawi, we had a fruitful discussion. Everywhere I go I get warm reception,” said Kasparov.

After a closed-door meeting with senior government officials, including the Minister of Sports and Minister of Education, Enock Chihana and Eunice Kazembe respectively, he also met Chess Association of Malawi officials and chess players.

Kasparov playing chess with a junior player
Kasparov playing chess with a junior player

Kasparov said he was delighted to share his experience with the players and officials.

“Our vision is that children should be talking about the chess experience and incorporate education in their way of life. We will support 10 schools for four years.

“Our main objective is to support chess activities as a tool for education and social development across the African continent,” said Kasparov who arrived in the country alongside officials from his Kasparov Chess Foundation Africa.

He said African players had great potential but said lack of infrastructure across the continent was thwarting their efforts.

The Russian Grandmaster expressed his hope cooperation between local chess authorities and his foundation will unearth future grandmasters in the country.

Chess Association of Malawi President Kenzie Msukwa said the association was delighted to host the high profile player.

He said his visit would yield no fruits if the association do not make the best out of opportunities availed by the foundation.

Sports Minister Chihana echoed Msukwa’s sentiments saying the ministry would support the association and collaborate with the education ministry for the country benefit from the foundations’ initiative.

“From the onset, we are very excited and support the idea. Chess is regarded as a minority sport but has potential to put Malawi on the map. Even the mere presence of Kasparov here puts us on the map and we would like Malawian players to share the stage with world stars like him,” said Chihana.

Kasparov is visiting several African countries and has so far visited Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa and Uganda.

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