Crystal Hall Baku

My brutally honest view about the role of Olympiad Captains
By Paul Truong

As the Captain of the 2004 US Women’s Olympiad team which brought home a historic 4 medals (most ever in US history – 2 gold and 2 silver), and as a person who is responsible for every single team lineup of the SPICE program since inception, including an unprecedented 6 straight Final Four National Championships, I have to question the sanity and competency of some of the Captains at the Olympiad.

If one accepts the role of Captain of an Olympiad team, the #1 responsibility is to WIN, WIN, WIN! We are not there to have fun. We are not there to party. We are not there to please any individual player’s ego. We are there to WIN as a team! We are there to fight as a team. We are there to win for our countries. We can celebrate and have fun after it is over.

I am just shocked to see that some Captains will allow disruption, lack of unity, lack of team work, and worst of all, allow some players to choose which day, which opponent, and which color they want to play. Some players do not want to play a particular round to “protect” ratings. Are you kidding me?

Captains MUST take inputs from his/her players. But Captains MUST ultimately make decisions which would give his/her team the best chances to WIN. It is NOT the Captain’s job to cater to primadonnas and ignore the rest of the team members.

When a player accepts an invitation to represent his/her country or team, it is their job to give 110% of themselves to the team, and to help any way possible to the success of the team! A divided team is doomed to fail! I am the biggest fighter for my players. but I do expect them to fight hard as a team for their collective goal, which is to WIN!

This is my brutally honest take of the day 🙂

Photos from Baku Chess Olympiad:

Olympiad day 8 photos:

Olympiad day 7 photos:

Olympiad day 6 photos:

Olympiad day 5 photos:

Olympiad day 4 photos:

Olympiad day 3 photos:

Olympiad day 2 photos:

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