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Showing posts with label fide. Show all posts
Showing posts with label fide. Show all posts

Monday, October 28, 2013

India, France have Highest Number of Rated Chess Players in the World

India has just moved up to join France as the No. One ranked chess nation in terms of FIDE rated players. India rose to 35,200, and this number will be moving back and forth in the next few days until November when India is expected to be No. One.

Strangely, 35,200 is the same as France, the leader for over ten years. But India is growing steeply and France moderately. This had to happen. This week, one can expect India to surge ahead of the French number and never look back! Asia set to rule world chess.

About four decades back, India had just Manuel Aaron on the rating list. People still remember him since his name was the first entry in the rating list for many decades. For many years he was the only Indian and later among the few Indians.


Since, Anand won the World Junior in 1987 and then went on to became World Champion in Tehran 2000, the numbers tended to grow sharply. More players took to the game in the summer of 2001 and the progress kept growing.

Anand might be the primary cause for all this but the organisers, particularly, the All India Chess Federation did plenty of ground work. Rated events were organised all over the country and particularly more in the state of Tamil Nadu, Anand's home state.

In Europe, when Veselin Topalov emerged, Bulgaria's mobile networks supported elite events. In India it was even more basic. NIIT together with many state Governments supported school chess. On its part, Gujarat and Tamil Nadu went several steps ahead and cleared the way for chess in schools programme. Children in the age group 7-17 play chess in Tamil Nadu. Many states have chess in schools programme, but Tamil Nadu is one step ahead. They also practically implement it.

Two years back, India had overtaken the Germans and the Russians in the rating list. Earlier this year, the Indians went past Spain. Now, when experts were expecting India to get the better of France around March 2014, this sudden surge in the chess activity related to the world championship has helped India go past or equal France in October.

India's growth style is pyramid. The base is broad. A recent study related article in The Economist said more Indians play chess than any other nation. This number comes as no surprise. But that it came a few months ago needs to be analysed, since we might be observing a 2013 wave on the back of this Anand v Carlsen match, which could be several times bigger than the 2001 Anand wave after he won the world title in 2000.

The AICF and its administrators have laid a perfect platform for chess to grow in the land which invented the game. Our style will soon be copied by leading lights and European nations. Anand is in his final phase of preparation and not available to react to this good news. "It is all team effort," said V. Hariharan, Honorary Secretary of the All India Chess Federation while reacting to this news. "This is great news," said Bharat Singh, CEO of the AICF. D.V. Sundar, Vice President of FIDE was delighted about the timing of this achievement as India is making the final touches to the organising of the Anand v Carlsen match from Nov 7-28. (AICF Press Release – 28.10.2013)

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Fide Defends Chennai Choice

Baku 06.05.2013 Press release

Since the Candidates’ Tournament ended, and GM M. Carlsen became the challenger of the coming World Championship Match there have been several developments, mails exchange between all parties (Carlsen, Anand, FIDE), questions asked, and also speculations.

FIDE would hereby like to put forward the current situation regarding this event.

Directly after the 2012 match was awarded to Moscow, FIDE agreed to grant an option to Chennai. The PB and its meeting in Armenia in January decided that FIDE and AGON, who holds the rights for organizing the whole cycle of the World Championship, were advised that India would take up its option organize the World Championship match. This was done on January 24 in Athens, where both parties agreed not to open a bidding procedure, but to grant an option to India, as requested. We should emphasize that according FIDE rules the World Championship cycle is not included in the list of events, for which FIDE is obliged to do so (like Olympiads, for instance). This has been deliberately done, because in many cases FIDE, having the priority in mind to secure the match and the cycle, was ready to give an option or even to grant the match if the proposal was attractive enough.

Consequently three of the last matches were given to an organizer without a bidding procedure.

On March 15th India asked to extend the option until April 10th and FIDE agreed to it because it was clear that the bid would be accepted and just needed an approval of the Tamil Nadu State Parliament, a session which took place on April 8th. One could ask why was the extension given to a date when the name of the challenger will be known already, and the simple answer is that FIDE, being convinced that the positive answer was just a matter of technicality, did not want to lose this bid for an alternative that gave no guarantee for a better result or any result at all.

When the approval of the bid by India was published and FIDE representative was called to formalize it, on April 8th, GM Carlsen’s manager contacted FIDE and asked to have a meeting to discuss this matter before a formal move is done with India.

Carlsen and FIDE’s representatives met in FIDE office on April 15th, when all claims were brought up by Carlsen’s representatives and were answered by FIDE. Among the points raised and answered we would like to emphasize one and this is the issue which was also raised in media – the question of neutrality. Unfortunately it has always proved difficult to find a sponsor to such a match when the name of the challenger is not known yet. Therefore most of matches in the past were organized in one of the participant’s countries. Consequently both World Champions Anand and Topalov played in their opponent’s country – a natural result of the situation.

On that day both parties signed a paper whereby it was agreed to give Norway an option to come up with an organizer for half of the match, provided that India would accept such a solution.

FIDE tried its hardest to convince India to split the match, but they refused India wanted to fulfil what has been approved by the government of the Tamil Nadu State and FIDE had to keep its obligations, and consequently an M.O.U was signed in Chennai on April 19th. One day later, the FIDE President visited France, where he got a proposal to organize the match in Paris. Mr Ilyumzhinov promised to bring the proposal before the Presidential Board. The French proposal was higher than the Chennai one, with more contributions offered. However, the Board decided (unanimously with one abstention) that FIDE must respect its obligation and thanked the French federation and the city of Paris for their proposal, hoping that there will be another opportunity to have a big event in Paris.

FIDE has acted with full transparency during the whole process, trying its best to secure the match and standing by its obligations and reputation. FIDE will do everything to secure equal conditions for both players and also will try and still trying to increase the prize fund for the match.

FIDE wishes these two great players a successful match, and is sure that India, the homeland of Chess will bring to the world a fascinating event.

Gens Una Sumus.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Anand-Carlsen Match: Norway Protests

Norwegian Chess Federation president Jøran Aulin-Jansson has sent an open letter as a "formal complaint" to World Chess Federation (FIDE) on the selection of Chennai as the host of the 2013 World Chess Championship match between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen. The letter calls for a "fair and transparent procedure and competition for the selection of the organizer" while emphasising that the letter is not a campaign against Chennai organisers. 


Dear Mr. Ilyumzhinov / Presidential board 
 

With reference to the discussion that for some time has been going on between FIDE and Magnus Carlsen’s representatives with regard to the venue for the upcoming FIDE World Championship Match, the Norwegian Chess Federation finds reasons to intervene in this dialogue with a formal letter to FIDE.

As you are aware of Mr. Magnus Carlsen has expressed dissatisfaction with the plans to arrange the World Championship Match in Chennai, India without having any formal competition on the venue for this match. Mr. Carlsen’s view has been presented to FIDE both in emails and in a meeting in Athens with his manager and his lawyer.

It is our understanding of the rules and regulations for the FIDE World Championship Match 2013 that any federation or sponsor may bid for being an organizer. We strongly urge FIDE to facilitate a procedure that enables other interested parties to bid for the event. Furthermore FIDE must, based on the regulation consider all bids before making a final decision.

From the regulations, it is not clear that FIDE has the right to grant Chennai an option.We maintain, as expressed by Mr. Carlsen, that it will be an advantage both for the players and FIDE to have a fair and transparent procedure and competition for the selection of the organizer and also for the reputation of chess in general.

Since the Championship is to be held in November, there will be acceptable time to consider other bids and make a qualified decision in due time prior to the event.

The Norwegian Chess Federation expects that FIDE will follow its own regulation for the World Championship Match enabling others to bid for the event as was the procedure for selection of the organizer for the 2014 Chess Olympiad.

We would like to emphasize that this is not a campaign against Chennai as an organizer; it is merely a request to follow the rules and principles of transparency and fairness.

This letter should be regarded as formal complaint on the process for selecting the organizer for theWorld Championship Match 2013.

Sincerely,
Jøran Aulin-Jansson
President
Norway Chess federation

Saturday, April 20, 2013

World Chess 2013: Is it Chennai 100%?


As a chess fan, I am totally confused. Is the World Chess Championship 2013 Match between reigning champion Viswanathan Anand and challenger Magnus Carlsen really going to be held in Chennai this November? Should I book tickets and hotel room?

In the popular 1988 Movie 'Young Guns', actor Emilio Estevez playing 'Billy the Kid' tells his band of outlaws in response to their concern of potential hanging, that if they are caught that they will most certainly get hanged, and then utters the phrase but "There's many a slip twixt the cup and the lip".

In 2012, Fide told All India Chess Federation (AICF), after the latter lost to Moscow as host for World Chess Championship 2012 (between reigning World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand and Boris Gelfand) that AICF would get the first chance to host the World Chess Championship Match 2013, supposedly without any regular bidding procedure...! But... "There's many a slip twixt the cup and the lip".

April 19, 2013: Fide site reads: Today, FIDE Vice President, Israel Gelfer signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the All India Chess Federation in Chennai regarding the World Championship Match 2013. Next are photos:

Photo: (From left) AICF secretary Bharat Singh Chauhan, Fide vice-presidents Israel Gelfer and DV Sundar.


The document states that the organiser is responsible for the conduct of world championship match in Chennai from 6 to 26 November 2013. The AICF will send a working version of the contract and will sign the contract within seven days of its receipt; organiser shall provide the sum of $3,367,250 - 50% percent of which must be transferred to the Fide account by May 20 and the remaining amount by 31 August 2013.


Magnus Carlsen has already called for a "neutral venue" and he has not confirmed the venue yet!

But, what does all this mean? Is Chennai the venue, or is it not yet decided? Is the Indian media and chess fanbase going euphoric for something that might not be? 

Frankly, no one seems to know the answer. Detailed reports are posted at chess news sites like Chessbase, ChessVibes, ChessblogChess-News.ru and the AICF and, of course, Fide websites. But, really, what does it all mean? Is Chennai really 100% the venue? We have to wait, at least until May 20.
  • What happens if some other bids come in for the World Chess Championship 2013? Will Fide not accept them? 
  • What exactly does this MoU mean? Is it a final declaration?
  • If Fide does not intend to accept any other bids, then why not immediately announce that there would be no bidding procedure and indeed Chennai is the venue of the World Chess Championship 2013?
  • Is it legal to have no bidding procedure for an event like the World Chess Championship?
  • Chennai is in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu. It is the Tamil Nadu Government that is offering the bid amount. So, the match cannot be shifted to any other city in India. Except Chennai, parts of Delhi and Kolkatta, the rest of India is at present watching cricket - the IPL T-20. They might not find other sponsors in India.
  • There is no direct word via Fide about Challenger Magnus Carlsen's acceptance of the venue and match conditions.
The most detailed analysis is at Chessvibes which goes: "It could also mean that FIDE is keeping its options open. In general a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) expresses a convergence of will between two parties, indicating an intended common line of action. A MoU is often used in cases where parties either do not imply a legal commitment or in situations where the parties cannot create a legally enforceable agreement.It's well possible that the match will eventually be held somewhere else. At the moment all parties involved have reasons to be not too happy about Chennai: Anand because there might be too much home crowd pressure, Carlsen because the different climate might involve risks, AGON because a different city might be more interesting for sponsors and FIDE because a higher bid also means a higher income for them."


Legendary 13th World Chess Champion Garry Kasparov has reacted strongly: It is a scandal. I've never heard of anything like this. I really hope that this is not the final decision, because it would be illegal.
To Chennai, or not to Chennai is the Big Question.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Neutral Venue Please, Carlsen to NRK

by Zainab Raza Undulusi



"In principle, I think it (World Chess Championship 2013) should be held on neutral ground. It has been the tradition in the past, and that is what seems most fair to me," says World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen. He was speaking to Norwegian website NRKThe Indian media has announced that the match will be held in Chennai this November. However, no formal confirmation has come in from the World Chess Federation (Fide). There is usually an open bidding for the match. 

Magnus Carlsen's manager Espen Agdestein, said, "It is strange that this time they should skip the bidding process. There is great interest in this game and now they have the opportunity to really get very exciting organizer cities. I find a 
deal under the table strange and silly."

He also told NRK, "This is not a neutral ground, and in addition it will be abnormal for Magnus to play in India, including different climate and food." 

Carlsen is still unsure of how much the choice of location will influence the outcome of the match. "I can not say anything until I have seen the playing conditions," he said.
Joran Aulin-Jansson, chess president of the Norwegian Chess Federation is also not thrilled by the news. He said the association stood by Carlsen's decision to play at a neutral venue. But, he said, if Fide approves Chennai, there is not much that can be done.

India is getting the opportunity to hold the match because they lost out on the bid last year (Ref: Anand vs Gelfand World Championship in Moscow, 2012)

Next week a representative from Fide will visit Chennai to assess the venue and speak with the Indian government and the Indian Chess Federation. Fide member Nigel Freeman says, there is no problem if the match is held in one of the finalists' home countries. "There have been games that have been held at non-neutral sites before... when Anand played against Veselin Topalov in Bulgaria." (Photo: Norwegian chess president, Joran Aulin-Jansson, believes such a big event like the World Cup match in chess should be put out to tender.Photo: Junge, Heiko / NTB Scanpix)

Meanwhile, we are yet to hear from Agon which is contracted to hold the complete World Chess Championship cycle.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

WCCh: Carlsen yet to Confirm Chennai

by Zainab Raza Undulusi in New Delhi


World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen is yet to confirm what the Indian media and chess association have already announced! World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand will get to defend his world title in his home city of Chennai this year from November 6-26. The Tamil Nadu government has agreed to sponsor the event.

The world chess body (FIDE) will finalise the venue after Carlsen agrees to it. If Carlsen wants to avoid playing Anand in Chennai, he will have to find a sponsor and a place who would out-bid the one put up by Chennai. Anand will be playing in India for the first time in more than a decade. He instantly welcomed the decision. All the Indian chess fans are jubilant about the decision. The announcement was made in the Tamil Nadu State Assembly on Monday morning. Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa declared that her government would sponsor the match which is estimated to cost around Rs 29 crore.

“I welcome the Chief Minister’s initiative and interest in promoting chess in the country. It’s a high for Indian chess. I’m looking forward to playing at home. The dynamics of the match will surely be different for me playing at home. It will be a new experience but I’m ready for the challenge. Pressure will be there anyways. This, after all, is a World Championship match," Anand told the media.

India lost the World Chess Championship bid last year to Moscow for Anand's match versus Israel's Boris Gelfand. The AICF had time up to April 10 to submit its bid failing which FIDE would have opened up the bidding process. DV Sundar, a vice-president with FIDE, earlier secretary of the AICF, said the proposal had been submitted in time.

Anand, a five-time world champion, last played in India in 2000 when the World Championship was organised in Delhi and Tehran in a knockout format. Anand went on to win the title beating Alexei Shirov in the final in Iran. The Indian super Grandmaster has been the world champion since 2007.

Friday, June 15, 2012

Media Blitz, Corporate Strategy to Make Chess Super-Popular!

Andrew Paulson - Chess Vision
Leading design agency Pentagram has been hired to rebrand the World Chess Championships, after the World Chess Federation (FIDE) accorded the commercial rights to the sport to technology entrepreneur Andrew Paulson.

Mr Paulson struck the deal with Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, president of FIDE, to host the championships and provide long-term commercial structure for the game, with an increased prize fund of 5.4 million euros, according to a latest press release.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Breaking Chess News: Kasparov Committed to Ousting Fide Chief Ilyumzhinov

The legendary
Garry Kasparov
Garry Kasparov has confirmed to Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (news not online yet) that he is firmly committed to push FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov out of office. (The interview was given to Stefan Löffler in Moscow.) The legendary world chess champion said he is likely running himself for Presidency at the next FIDE elections held in Tromsö, Norway, in August 2014, or otherwise, that he will support another candidate. He cites as his main motive the damage done to chess by Ilyumzhinov´s visits to dictators Saddam Hussein, Muammar al Gaddafi and, most recently in late April, to Bashar al Assad.
Having supported Bessel Kok in 2006 and, more strongly, Anatoly Karpov in 2010, Kasparov claims to have learned and is already working hard on a long-term campaign. He considers his worldwide efforts to bring chess into schools as a major part of his strategy and as a lead for FIDE to not just focus on chess as a sport but also to establish chess in the education system.
The story is in today´s (June 14) print edition, but not online (yet).
Link to the chess news break would be updated soon. (Earlier press conference comments in Moscow by Garry Kasparov on the sidelines of the World Chess Championship 2012.)

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Istanbul Chess Olympiad: Turkish Chess Fed Bans Officials from 7 'Anti-Fide' Federations

The Turkish Chess Federation has banned arbiters from seven countries from officiating at the Chess Olympiad due to take place from August 27 to September 10 in Istanbul, Turkey. The Federation has announced that they would not allow arbiters from France, England, Germany, Georgia, Ukraine, Switzerland and USA because these federations "launched or supported court cases against FIDE" which led to financial losses to FIDE and loss of funds that were meant for chess development.

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