Nazí Paikidze

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Nazí Paikidze
Nazi Paikidze.jpg
Full nameNazí Paikidze-Barnes
Born (1993-10-27) 27 October 1993 (age 25)
Irkutsk, Russia
TitleInternational Master (2012)
Woman Grandmaster (2010)
Peak rating2455 (January 2011)

Nazí Paikidze, sometimes also referred to as Paikidze-Barnes,[1] (Georgian: ნაზი პაიკიძე; Russian: Нази Нодаровна Паикидзе-Барнс; [nɐˈzi pɐiˈkʲidzʲe], born 27 October 1993) is a Georgian American chess player who holds the FIDE titles of International Master (IM) and Woman Grandmaster (WGM). She was twice world youth girls' champion and four-time European youth girls' champion in her age category. She won the 2016 and 2018 U.S. Women's Championship.[2]

Early life[edit]

Paikidze was born in Irkutsk, Russia. Her father was a mechanical engineer, and her mother a biochemist. Her father taught her to play chess when she was four years old. That same year, her parents moved to Tbilisi, Georgia, where she grew up with dual citizenship – Georgian and Russian.[3]

In Tbilisi, Paikidze attended elementary school, where chess was part of the curriculum, and she relates that chess became her favorite class.[4] Her chess teacher recognized her talent and suggested to her parents that they might consider chess as a profession for their daughter. Paikidze has said: "Every family in Georgia owns a chess set and knows how to play. Everyone in the country knows the names and faces of the top Georgian chess players."[3]

In 1999, at the age of 6, Paikidze began working with her first professional chess coach and improved quickly. Just over three years later, in 2003, at the age of 9, Paikidze won her first international tournament: the European Youth Chess Championship, in a category for girls under ten years old. After that tournament she earned the title of FIDE Master. Her family then moved to Moscow in 2006.[3]

Paikidze's brother was a football player.[5]

In 2008, at the age of 14, Paikidze began being coached by Russian grandmaster Vladimir Belov and others. She became a Woman Grandmaster in 2010, then an International Master.[6][7][2]

Chess career[edit]

Paikidze won twelve medals at European Youth Chess Championship, World Youth Chess Championship, and World Junior Chess Championship, including six gold medals, in various age categories. She won the European Youth Chess Championship four times: in Budva 2003 (Under-10 girls' category), Herceg Novi 2005 (U-12 girls), Šibenik 2007 (U-14 girls), and Herceg Novi 2008 (U-16 girls). She won medals in the World Youth Chess Championship in Kallithea 2003 (bronze U-10 girls), Belfort 2005 (silver U-12 girls), Batumi 2006 (bronze U-14 girls), Kemer 2007 (gold U-14 girls), Vũng Tàu 2008 (gold U-16 girls), and Antalya 2009 (bronze U-16 girls). She also won two bronze medals at the U-20 World Junior Girls Chess Championship, in Gaziantep 2008 and Madras 2011.[8]

2009. At the age of 16, Paikidze attained a peak rating of 2455 and was rated 35th in world of the top FIDE-rated women.[2]

2010. Paikidze jointly won the women's open event of the Moscow Open,[9] won the Moscow Women's Championship[10] and the Russian Women's Championship qualifier ("Higher League"),[11] and finished fourth in the Russian Women's Championship Superfinal.[12] In the same year, she was awarded the title of Woman Grandmaster (WGM), for her results in the 2008 Aeroflot Open, 2009 Georgian Women's Championship, where she came equal second, and the 2010 Moscow Open.[13][14]

2011. Paikidze represented Georgia in the 9th European Women's Team Chess Championship in Porto Carras 2011, winning the team bronze medal.[15] In 2012, Paikidze was awarded the title of International Master (IM).[2][16]

2013. Paikidze competed in a small number of international chess events in the United States after moving to Baltimore, Maryland. She then changed her FIDE federation to that of the U.S.[17]

2015. Paikidze made her debut in the U.S. Women's Chess Championship, finishing second with a score of 7½/11 points. Later that year, she won the Boardwalk Open in Galloway, New Jersey, edging out on tiebreak Sergey Kudrin and Igor Sorkin, after all finished on 4/5.[18]

2016. On April 25, Paikidze won the U.S. Women's Championship in her second appearance with 8½ points in 11 games.[19]

In May, Paikidze started teaching lessons in's Prodigy Program chess course.[20]

Paikidze boycotted the Women's World Chess Championship 2017 in Tehran, Iran due to its hijab dress code:[21][22][23] "I will not wear a hijab and support women's oppression. Even if it means missing one of the most important competitions of my career."[24] She received support for her stance from the U.S. Chess Federation, as well as prominent players Nigel Short and Garry Kasparov. Her online petition asking for the championship to be moved or the hijab laws to be relaxed has received over 15,000 signatures.[25] It has been pointed out in this context that the U.S. Department of State has issued a warning that there is a "risk of arrest and detention of U.S. citizens", and also states that travelers "should very carefully weigh the risks of travel and consider postponing their travel".[26]

2018. In April, Paikidze won the 2018 U.S. Women's Championship for the second time, after defeating WIM Annie Wang in the playoff match, which started with 1-1 in the rapid, and finished with Paikidze winning as white in the Armageddon.

Personal life[edit]

Paikidze currently is a full-time chess professional. She married American engineer Greg Barnes and resides in the area of Las Vegas, Nevada, U.S.[27] Paikidze studied at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC), which has a chess program that has won a record number of times both the Pan-American Intercollegiate Team Chess Championship and the President's Cup. She joined the UMBC team in the fall of 2012.[28][29][30]


  • Her Georgian first name, Nazí (ნაზი) translates as "gentle". She has explained that the correct pronunciation is "nah-ZEE". She was named after her grandmother.[28]
  • Her Georgian family name translates as "Pawn's son" or "son of a pawn", with paiki (პაიკი) translating as pawn, dze (ძე) translating as son.[31][32]


  1. ^ CNN Roberts, Elizabeth. "Female chess players protest wearing hijab at Iran world championship". CNN. 30 September 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d Doyle, Jim. "Chess Gym Eat Sleep Repeat; Getting to know the new U.S. Women's Champion IM Nazi Paikidze". Chess Life. August 2016. page 20.
  3. ^ a b c Yuan, Yuanling (28 April 2015). “Top 10 Chess Culture Shocks: Expat Student Champs in the U.S. Tell All”. Wall Street Journal.
  4. ^ interview Castro, Bryan. "Tournament Preparation with US Women's Champion Nazi Paikidze; A Conversation with the Champ". Better Chess Training website. 24 June 2016.
  5. ^ Нази Паикидзе: "Люблю русскую зиму!". (in Russian)
  6. ^ Study-Chess, Biography of Belov, Website of Grandmaster Vladimir Belov, 24 June 2010
  7. ^ Interview de la GMIF Géorgienne Nazi Paikidze. (in French)
  8. ^ [1] Chess Games online database
  9. ^ Moscow Open 2010 C Women's. Tournament report. FIDE.
  10. ^ Women's Moscow Ch. 2010 Final. Tournament report. FIDE.
  11. ^ 60th Women's RUS Chmp. 2010 HL. Tournament report. FIDE.
  12. ^ 60th Women's RUS Chmp. 2010 Final. Tournament report. FIDE.
  13. ^ FIDE Title Applications. FIDE.
  14. ^ McClain, Dylan Loeb. "For Some Women, Russian Championship Is a Warm-up for World Championship". New York Times. 22 November 2010
  15. ^ Nazi Paikidze team chess record at
  16. ^ Kavutskiy, Kostya. "Nakamura & Krush are the New U.S. Champions!" Chess Life. USCF. April 14, 2015.
  17. ^ Guadalupe, Franc. "GM Wesley So & IM Nazi Paikidze Transferred to US Federation". Chess Life magazine. 5 November 2014
  18. ^ "Boardwalk Open 2015 Standings – Open Section". CCA Chess Tournaments. Retrieved 8 November 2015.
  19. ^ Sands, David R. (2016-05-03). "With Krush crush, Paikidze wins chess crown the hard way". The Washington Times, 3 May 2016. Retrieved from
  20. ^ (GeniusKJ), Kairav Joshi. "May 2016 Prodigy Program -".
  21. ^ Rogers, Kate. "American Chess Player Boycotts Championship in Iran Over Hijab Rule". New York Times. 7 October 2016.
  22. ^ Nomani, Asra Q & Alinejad, Masih. "The American chess champion challenging Iran's hijab fetish." The Washington Post. 5 October 2016
  23. ^ "Female chess players protest wearing hijab at Iran world championship". Retrieved 4 October 2016.
  24. ^ Nomani, Asra Q & Alinejad, Masih. "The American chess champion challenging Iran’s hijab fetish." The Washington Post. 5 October 2016
  25. ^ Lucy Clarke-Bilings,U.S. Chess Federation 'Absolutely Supports' Nazi Paikidze in Hijab Row, Newsweek, 13 October 2016
  26. ^ Pesce, Nicole Lyn. "Female chess players to boycott world championship in Iran for being forced to wear hijabs." New York Daily News. 30 September 2016.
  27. ^ Chasmar, Jessica. "Champion U.S. chess player protests Iran World Championship over hijab". The Washington Times - Wednesday, October 5, 2016
  28. ^ a b Doyle, Jim. "Chess Gym Eat Sleep Repeat; Getting to know the new U.S. Women's Champion IM Nazi Paikidze." Chess Life. August 2016. page 20.
  29. ^ "College Chess". Retrieved 6 April 2016.
  30. ^ "UMBC Chess Program - UMBC".
  31. ^ "Georgian-English dictionary entry for პაიკი". Retrieved 6 May 2018.
  32. ^ "Georgian-English dictionary entry for ძე". Retrieved 6 May 2018.

External links[edit]