A women’s draught match has nearly triggered a diplomatic incident between Russia and Poland.
Draughts match almost triggers diplomatic incident. During a world championship match a Polish official removed a Russian player’s flag.
Official Damian Reszka apologised after an outpouring of rage from Russians on social media. He is the president of the Polish draughts federation who said that officials had no choice but to comply with the rules that stop Russians from competing under their own flag.
These are the international sporting rules apparently. The Russian player involved in the fracas, Tamara Tansykkuzhina, a six-time world champion, lost the match to Poland’s Natalia Sadowska.
The pair are taking part in the competition in Warsaw until the 3rd May. It’s a nine-game match with Sadowska currently in the lead. Kremlin spokesperson Dmitry Peskov said that their player lost “mainly due to the gross mistake of the official”.
The official who was to blame for removing the flag, Jacek Pawlicki, said in hindsight it may have been better to stop filming so that the incident was not broadcast.
He said “There’s this position on the board called zugzwang – which means there’s no good move to make.
And that’s what we had yesterday, a zugzwang. I’m sure that many Russians are upset, and for that I am truly sorry.”
The World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) confirmed it had requested action over the flag incident however it had not asked for the flag to be removed during the match. They said “The manner in which it was removed is not a question for Wada.”
Sadowska also removed her flag to show support for her Russian opponent.