First female chess grandmaster inspires young girls
By: Nancy Werteen
Posted: Feb 28, 2019 06:58 AM EST
Chess is often referred to as the greatest board game of all time. This classic game of strategy is beloved by players of all ages. But the world of chess has had its share of controversy, including gender barriers that have limited female representation in tournaments around the world. But there is one master player who broke all those barriers and is now doing what she can to keep those doors open for young girls who love the game.
Susan Polgar has been proving people wrong her whole life.
"I would hear from everybody that 'oh chess is not for girls. Chess is too difficult for girls,'" Polgar said.
She started playing at age 4 in her native Hungary. Six months later, she won a tournament playing kids three times her age.
"Eventually, I mostly played adults and I mostly played against men," Polgar said.
When she set her sights on becoming a chess grandmaster, she was dismissed.
"It became kind of a mission to prove that just because no woman made it to grandmaster yet, it doesn't mean it's not possible," Polgar explained.
At age 21, she made history. She became the first female chess grandmaster in the world. She now runs the Susan Polgar Institute for Chess Excellence at Webster University.
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