Levon Aronian on his Baku style and Armenian nationalism

Chess player Levon Aronian, who recently announced that he was leaving Armenia and would perform under the US flag, spoke about the nationalist movement in Armenia, when he, half Jewish, was not given the opportunity to study at an Armenian school in Yerevan, haqqin.az reports. link to the Levitov Chess YouTube channel.

“A national movement arose in Armenia at one point,” says Aronian. “I spoke bad Armenian as a child, because my dad (Grigory Leontyevich Aronov – Ed.) is Russian-speaking, he is from Belarus. Because of this We often spoke Russian at home. And when nationalist movements started in the 90s, all Russian schools in Armenia closed. There was only one left, but it was very far from my house. It was in the center, and we lived in a residential area. I went to an Armenian school. It was not very good there … I am a redhead after all … That is, it was a time of troubles … “.

According to Aronian, faced with the problem of nationalism in the Armenian school, his parents decided that he should study at home. Although, as Levon himself admits, he did not study much, but he was actively engaged in chess. His first coach was Melik Khachiyan from Baku, who, having moved from Azerbaijan to Yerevan, lived with Aronian’s family for several years.

“Melik had nowhere to live, and my parents told him:“ Live with us, and in exchange train our son. ”For five years Melik lived with us. So I had a very strong first coach. We played more blitz, solved all kinds of tactical problems, played blindly. Openings were crowned ones. I know all Baku openings well. Yanish, “Dragon”, Grunfeld … That is, what was popular at that time.

Of course, my first coach had a big influence on my style. Because he was from Baku. And, of course, it was such a Kasparov style. This is what we all aspired to. Dynamics, deep play, with nuances … Not as clean as Karpov’s. There were more mistakes and a desire for complications in Kasparov’s game. But I immediately had a love for this style. “

Let us remind you that at the end of February Aronian officially announced that he was leaving the country and would no longer play for the Armenian national team. He moves to the USA. The reason for this decision was the unfulfilled promises and the indifferent attitude of the Armenian leadership.

2021 began for Aronian with a defeat to Teymur Rajabov in the final match of the Airthings Masters online rapid chess tournament. The Armenian chess player lost to the Azerbaijani grandmaster twice – 1.5: 2.5 and 1: 2.

These days Aronian plays in another similar competition – Magnus Carlsen Invitational. In the 1st round, he lost to Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, and in the 4th round he drew with Teymur Rajabov.