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Chess player banned by Iran gets a new start in St. Louis

October 6, 2017

ST. LOUIS (AP) — A 19-year-old Iranian woman banned from competing in the name of her county after attending an international competition without an Islamic headscarf has taken her game to St. Louis University.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that freshman Dorsa Derakhshani says she doesn’t know “why some people have enough free time to worry about what I wear.” Issues arose when she didn’t wear a headscarf during a February competition in Gibraltar.

Her arrival in St. Louis comes as the city becomes a major player in the chess community. The university’s team is new but highly ranked.

The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of St. Louis was founded by Republican millionaire activist Rex Sinquefield. It hosts several national competitions.

Derakhshani wants to become a grandmaster, the top designation for a chess player.

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