Elsewhere on the Web : An Eventful Season
Saturday February 19, 2005
The chess cup runneth over.
This week we offer an overview of upcoming world class events, including
the Linares super grandmaster tournament,
the Aeroflot Open,
the HB Global Challenge,
World Championship reunification,
the FIDE World Cup (World Championship) in Vietnam, and
the Accoona Women's World Championship.
Linares 2005, the 22nd edition of the annual super grandmaster tournament takes place 22 February - 10 March 2005, in the Andalusian region of southern Spain.
The seven players at this year's event include five of the world's top-8 players :
Garry Kasparov (no.1, RUS, 2804 FIDE rating, age 41),
Viswanathan Anand (no.2, IND, 2786, 35),
Veselin Topalov (no.3, BUL, 2757, 29),
Peter Leko (no.5, HUN, 2749, 25),
Michael Adams (no.7, ENG, 2741, 33),
plus Spanish star
Francisco Vallejo Pons (no.18, ESP, 2686, 22), and
FIDE World Champion
Rustam Kasimdzhanov (no.25, UZB, 2678, 25).
The average rating of 2743 will make the event a
category 20 tournament for the fourth consecutive year.
Since the double round robin format was first introduced in 1998, the event has never been less than category 19.
The Linares series has been marred in recent years by a high percentage of drawn games.
Last year's edition, which World Champion Vladimir Kramnik won with a score of +2-0=10, saw only nine decisive games out of 42 played.
For more background and a brief history of the event, see
Linares!, our report on Linares 2003.
The start of Linares, which is typically the strongest closed tournament of the year, overlaps the end of the
4th Aeroflot Open,
one of the world's strongest open tournaments.
The Moscow event, which takes place 15-23 February, boasts over 120 grandmasters including 36 of the world's top-100 FIDE rated players.
The only comparable tournament would be the FIDE World Championship Knockout held last year in Tripoli, Libya, which had 61 of the top-100.
For more information see the official site
Aeroflot Open 2005.
As strong as it is, the Aeroflot Open may soon be overtaken by the HB Global Challenge, 'the richest open tournament in the history of chess'.
The new event, to be held 18-22 May in Minneapolis, Minnesota (USA), boasts a $500.000 guaranteed prize fund, with $50.000 to the winner of the top section.
'is a nonprofit organization that promotes the cognitive and academic benefits that children and youth gain from learning, and practicing, the game of chess'.
Maurice Ashley, CEO of
is serving as tournament organiser.
('It is the mission of Generation Chess to excite the fans.')
See Elsewhere on the Web
15 May 2004
for more about Ashley.
Call it World Championship unification or call it reunification, but don't call it dead.
FIDE published an interview with
FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov by Yuri Vassiliev of Sport-Express, under the title
'It is too early to bury the unification'.
After blaming Kasparov for the collapse of discussions, Ilyumzhinov said, 'I am looking into the future optimistically. And I see a united World Champion in this future.'
When asked about the next FIDE World Championship, Ilyumzhinov replied, 'As for the next World Cup (this is how it is now called), it is to take place in this yearís December. We have the consent of the Government of Vietnam to organize this tournament in Ho Chi Min.'
See Garry Kasparov : Reunification++
4 February 2005
for our previous report.
Someone should tell the Vietnamese sponsors about the FIDE World Cup name change.
Vietnam to host World Chess Championship 2005
was widely reported in the Vietnamese press.
'Vietnamís Ho Chi Minh City is to host the 2005 World Chess Championship at the end of this year, according to a dispatch from the Government Office this week.'
For more about the most recent FIDE World Championship, held last year in Tripoli, Libya,
see our FIDE World Championship 2004 reports,
Chess is undergoing a surge of popularity in the Southeast Asian country :
Chess player named athlete of 2004
'Chess Grandmaster Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son became first among equals when he topped a poll to choose Viet Namís best sports persons and coaches of the year.'
Finally, Accoona, the 'artificial intelligence web search company', is back with exhibition chess in New York City.
Steve Forbes To Introduce The Accoona Women's World Chess Championship :
'Chinese World Champion, Zhu Chen, 27, to Oppose American Star Irina Krush, 21'.
Although the status as a Women's World Championship is an overstatement, the two young women are both among the world's top-20 women players :
Zhu Chen (no.6, CHN, 2494, age 28) and
Irina Krush (no.17, USA, 2466, 21).
'Accoona enjoys a unique partnership in China with the China Daily Information Company, the largest and official English Language Web destination in China, from which Accoona has access to over 10 million unique visitors per day.'
See Elsewhere on the Web
25 September 2004
for our report on the previous Accoona match, held last September.
Index of all World Championship blog posts