World Champion Magnus Carlsen will be joined by his greatpredecessors Vishy Anand and Vladimir Kramnik for the chess24 Legends of Chess,the 4th and final event before the Grand Final of the $1 million Magnus CarlsenChess Tour. Boris Gelfand, Vasyl Ivanchuk, Peter Leko and Peter Svidler are theother legends invited to take part alongside qualifiers Anish Giri, Ian Nepomniachtchiand Ding Liren. The event runs from Tuesday July 21st to Wednesday August 5th.
The chess24 Legends of Chess is a 10-player super-tournamentwith a twist. The four semi-finalists of the Chessable MastersMagnus Carlsen,Ding Liren, Ian Nepomniachtchi and Anish Girireceived an automatic invite, makingthe tournaments top seeds four hungry Top 10 players in the prime of their chesscareers, aged 26-30.
Up against them are six legends aged 40-52, who have been atthe top of world chess for two and in some cases well over three decades (the age here is when the event beginsNepo's birthday is tomorrow!).
All are still active players, with Vladimir Kramnik alone in announcing his retirement, but only from classical chess. The Russiangrandmaster took bronze in the 2019 World Blitz Championship, behind Magnus Carlsen and Hikaru Nakamura. He commented:
I am glad to get a chance to play some chess online thanksto the efforts of chess24 to keep it going during this strange and uncertaintime. I hope my play will not be too disappointing, but in any case I willenjoy every minute and every game of this wonderful event!
The legends include the 15th World Chess Champion, VishyAnand, who snatched the crown from Vlad in a tournament in 2007 and thenconfirmed his title by winning their match in 2008. The Indian legendcommented:
I am looking forward to returning to the chessboard andparticularly excited to participate in this inter-generational challenge.
The field also features two players who narrowly lostmatches for that undisputed title. Peter Leko was a draw against Kramnik awayfrom the title in 2004, but lost the final game, tied the match and missed out on the oldrule that the holder retains the title in case of a level score. The Hungarian is also looking forward to the challenge:
It is a great honour to be part of this truly unique event.A battle of the generations and clash of different playing styles makes for awonderful mix at the Legends of Chess.
Boris Gelfand won the World Cup in 2009, the Candidates in 2011 and in 2012 tied a World Championship match against VishyAnand 6:6 only to lose the rapid playoff 2.5:1.5. He commented:
I am delighted to take part in the forthcoming Legendstournament. Looking forward to playing chess against great masters!
Those players are joined by the mercurial Vasyl Ivanchuk, runner-upto Ruslan Ponomariov in the 2002 FIDE World Championship and winner of both theWorld Rapid and Blitz Championships, and Peter Svidler, World Cup winner,8-time Russian Champion and commentator extraordinaire.
Why do I want to play in a chesslegendstournament? My main answer is very simple! I just want to play chess against exciting opponents and I want to enjoy it! In draughts, it is quite common for players to wish a good game for your opponent just before the start I want to do it too! So I hope we have a good time not only all the players, but the organisers and spectators too! I do not have a lot of experience in online tournaments,everything I have played before has been a maximum of two days long. So, it gives me a nice feeling that I am almost a beginner! But in casinos, beginners have success quite often! Is online chess similar to a casinosomehow? I do not know, but we will find out soon, I hope.
The chess24 Legends of Chess will begin with a 10-playerround-robin preliminary stage played over the first 9 days, with each matchbest of four 15+10 rapid games. If tied 2:2 well get an Armageddon game, whereWhite has 5 minutes to Blacks 4, but a draw means Black wins the match. Thereare 3 points for a win without Armageddon, while if the match goes toArmageddon the winner gets 2 points and the loser 1.
The top 4 then go forward to a knockout, with thesemi-finals and final played as best of 3 sets, and each set a 4-gamerapid match. The only difference to the preliminary stage clashes is that if amatch finishes 2:2 there will also be two 5+3 blitz games before Armageddon.
Each day starts at 16:00 CEST and you can download the full regulationshere.
FIDE is proudly supporting the chess24 Legends of Chess, which starts a day after Monday July 20th, International Chess Day and FIDE's 96th anniversaryread more about that celebrationhere.
The longer preliminary stage in the Legends ensures that wellget to see matches between all the participants, including the WorldChampionship rematches Carlsen-Anand and Kramnik-Anand as well as matches wedhave loved to have seen such as Carlsen-Kramnik and Kramnik-Ivanchuk.
The total prize fund is $150,000, with $45,000 for the winner.
Also at stake are places in the $300,000 Grand Final of theMagnus Carlsen Chess Tour that will begin just four days after the end of the chess24 Legends of Chess. The two players so far confirmed for that 4-player event are Magnus Carlsen and Daniil Dubov.
Once again its simpleif a player wins he automatically qualifies,meaning that the legends have a clear path to the final despite only playing inthis one tournament. As well as that, Magnus Carlsen winning two tournaments (the Magnus Carlsen Invitational and the Chessable Masters) has opened up at least one space to the highest scoring non-winner on the tour. Currently that would go toHikaru Nakamura (23 points = 10 points x 2 as a runner-up + 3 points as aquarterfinalist) who is just ahead of Ding Liren (21 points = 7 points x 3 as asemi-finalist).
As Ding plays in the chess24 Legends he can guarantee a place by getting to the Final 4, while if either Magnus or Ding win the tournament then Hikaru would join them and Daniil Dubov in the GrandFinal.
Well once again have live coverage here on chess24 in10 languages, with more legends of chess dropping into the livecommentary. Before, during and after the event theplayers will also be playingBanter Blitz or taking part in Question & Answer sessions challenging the players, asking questions or watching the Q&As is reserved for chess24 Premium members. It's going to start with a bang, with Anand, Ivanchuk and Kramnik lined up for Saturday to Monday.
Now's a great chance to Go Premium as the voucher code CHESSLEGENDS gives you 40% off!
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