Chennai, September 8
The Candidates chess match to determine the challenger for world champion Magnus Carlsen will resume on November 1, the International Chess Federation (FIDE) introduced on Tuesday.
“The International Chess Federation is happy to announce the resumption of the Candidates Tournament, the occasion that decides who would be the challenger to Magnus Carlsen’s reign,” FIDE mentioned in an announcement on its web site.
“The 8th round has been scheduled for November 1, 2020,” it added.
Yekatrinburg in Russia, which hosted the match in March when it was halted because of the COVID-19 outbreak, would nonetheless be thought-about the host metropolis with Tbilisi in Georgia as a substitute.
“According to the contract, Yekaterinburg, the town that organised the primary spherical on the highest degree in March 2020, remains to be thought-about because the internet hosting metropolis.
“However, considering the epidemiological situation, FIDE has designated a reserve venue: the city of Tbilisi, in Georgia, has been officially approved as an alternative, and it is ready to host the tournament in the same time frame,” it mentioned.
The match, performed beneath a double round-robin format, was suspended after the seventh spherical when the Grandmasters Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France) and Ian Nepomniachtchi (Russia) had been main with 4.5 factors.
Since half of the video games had already been performed, the laws set up that the outcomes stand, somewhat than having the match re-started from scratch, mentioned FIDE.
The Candidates match kicked off on March 15 in Yekaterinburg at a really early stage of the coronavirus outbreak.
With solely eight individuals, the occasion was deemed protected to go forward beneath the situation that it was performed behind closed doorways, with no public current on the auditorium, and lowering employees to the very minimal.
Players, arbiters, and officers had been examined for COVID-19 twice a day, the assertion mentioned.
“The health and safety measures were very similar to the ones currently being applied at the US Tennis Open and other sporting events, but at the time, all this was uncharted territory,” mentioned FIDE president Arkady Dvorkovich.
However, the occasion got here to an abrupt finish because the well being disaster worsened and compelled the Russian authorities to shut its borders.
“Today’s announcement in regards to the resumption of the Candidates is one other constructive step for chess followers and gamers.
“The World Championship cycle is without doubt one of the oldest sports activities traditions on the planet, and it’s FIDE’s responsibility to guard it and guarantee its continuity.
“This is also a crucial event in order to increase the popularity of chess around the world,” the FIDE chief added.
The international governing physique’s director normal Emil Sutovsky mentioned, “Apart from Tbilisi, we are also in touch with other potential host cities from several countries where the event could be moved to, in case additional restrictions reappear in Russia and Georgia.”
The individuals on the Candidates match are Fabiano Caruana (USA), Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Hao Wang (China), Ding Liren (China), Ian Nepomniachtchi (Russia), Anish Giri (the Netherlands), Alekseenko Kirill (Russia) and Alexander Grischuk (Russia).
The title match has been postponed to 2021. PTI