Nepo Loses Game 9 (and Possibly the Match) Despite Adult Film Star’s Support
Ian Nepomniachtchi just lost game 9 of the Championship Match and probably lost a shred of chances to capture the Championship title (the Match score after game 9 is 6 — 3 with 5 games to go). To make things worse, a popular adult film star has offered the Russian player to spend a night with him (if he wins). He lost. The Russian challenger simply can’t get a break.
Of course, the casual offer by MihaNika69, a digital creator, is a somewhat clever media stunt (and Nepo has a girlfriend and does not use Instagram during the Championship), but it shows the level of support the Russian chess player is getting from his compatriots and the level of disappointment his fans feel after it became clear that Nepo’s chances to win the Match have been crushed.
The event has been attended by the top Russsian officials, including the powerful mayor of Moscow and the minister of industrial development. The match is also extensively covered by the Russian state-controlled media, showing that should Nepo win the Match, his achievement would be celebrated both by the chess fans and by the government.
He is still going to be a household name following the Match, and the pundits still expect him to put up a very strong fight. After all, he does not have much to lose, and so much to gain.