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Tatev Abrahamyan a 16 year old chess prodigy from Glendale placed 2nd in the woman’s divison of the U.S. Chess Championships in November 2005. Before her entrance into the competition she had just returned from Greece where she placed 16th in the World Youth Championships.
Tatev stated; "I got in better shape as I played one tournament after another," Tatev said. "I got in shape in Greece."
Tatev is a junior at Clark Magnet High School. She started playing chess eight years ago when her family still lived in Yerevan, Armenia. She saw her father playing chess and it caught her interest. Her father took her to the Chess Olympiad, the chess version of the Olympics, and not long after she started lessons and playing competitively.
Three years ago Tatev and her family moved from Yerevan to Glendale. She continued to play in tournaments with a private coach. She tired out for the United States’ Olympiad team but unfortunately did not qualify but will eventually according to chess experts.
According to John Henderson, press officer for America’s Foundation for Chess says Tatev is a good thinker who doesn’t get flustered when she plays, which are good qualities if you are a serious chess player. “If she loses, she takes it in stride and gets ready for the next game. That’s a good attribute to take when you’re playing chess.” stated Henderson.
"There are a lot of prodigies in chess, and she's one of them. She has a bright future."
At the U.S. Championships Tatev was playing one six-hour game per day for nine successive games. Playing against both male and female in the competition her record was 4-4-1. Forcing a tie-breaker with Rusudan Goletiani, 24, of Hartsdale, N.Y., for the best woman’s score, Tatev lost in two 25 minute matches.
"I was really nervous and very tired," Tatev said. "The game didn't go well."
After Tatev graduates from Clark Magnet, she would like to take a year off to focus on chess. She is considering eventually becoming a coach.
"I like playing," Tatev said. "I like the fighting, I like coming up with new ideas, I like being better than other people."