What's Next? Gibraltar & Zurich!

  • PeterDoggers
  • on 27.01.14, 10:18.

The Tata Steel tournament is over, and the Candidates are more than a month away. But the chess fans don't need to wait long for more exciting games: on Tuesday the Gibraltar Chess Festival starts, and on Wednesday the Zurich Chess Challenge! The following text is largely based on the press releases from the organizers.


The 2014 Tradewise Gibraltar Chess Congress is the 12th edition of the annual tournament in Gibraltar, held in the Caleta Hotel. This edition will be the biggest tournament yet with some 70 grandmasters from all over the world. The number of entries in the Amateur and Challenger events has also risen with a record high of around 130. This year the number of different federations represented is 60.

The playing hall in the Caleta Hotel | Photo © Sophie Triay

The oldest competitor is George Ellison from England who is attending the festival for the first time. He is 81. The youngest, Viviana Galván Cipriani, from Spain, is only 9. There are players from Mongolia who have made the journey: the first ever participants from this nation. Six Chinese are taking part, including 14-year old Wei Yi, already ranked number ten in his country, as well as last year's top female, Zhao Xue.

The 2013 champion, Nikita Vitiugov, whose exceptionally cool nerves under pressure led grandmaster commentator Simon Williams to dub him the 'Iceman', also returns to the Rock, as does Nigel Short, who so nearly won again last year.

Michael Adams, UK number one and world number 13, will have his own ideas about the destination of the £20,000 top prize, as will Vassily Ivanchuk, from the Ukraine, who holds the Gibraltar record score of 9/10, set in 2011.

Former Russian women's champion Natalia Pogonina, who has over 100,000 Twitter followers, makes her second visit.

GM Simen Agdestein of Norway gave a clock simul on Sunday night

All games will be commented live by GMs Simon Williams and Irina Krush and broadcast world wide live via Internet on www.gibraltarchesscongress.com. There you'll also find more information, as well as Masterclasses and interviewsThe festival runs until Thursday, February 6th.

IM Tania Sachdev of India also gave a simul

On Wednesday the Zurich Chess Challenge 2014 starts. The venue is the ballroom of the Hotel Savoy. It is the first tournament in the history of chess to reach category 23 with an amazing average rating of 2801. 

The star of the tournament will be the newly crowned World Champion Magnus Carlsen. During his first tournament appearance since winning the world title last November, the 23-year-old Norwegian will compete against his predecessor and former World Champion, Viswanathan Anand of India (number 9 in the world rankings), the Armenian Levon Aronian (2) who just won the Tata Steel tournament for the 4th time, the American Hikura Nakamura (3), the US-Italian Fabiano Caruana (6), as well as the Israeli Boris Gelfand (8).

There will be many famous guests at the tournament as well, including Peter Leko, Jan Timman and Gennadi Sosonko. Further, the Chinese Women's World Champion Hou Yifan will attend and will be playing a clock simulagainst 6 top Swiss juniors on 1 February at 1 p.m. at the Zurich “Zunfthaus zur Saffran”.

For the Zurich Chess Challenge, a blitz tournament will determine the color distribution on the first day. Five rounds of classical chess will then be played from Thursday to Monday (30 January to 3 February), followed by a rapid tournament with reversed colors on the last day (4 February). A won game in the classical tournament counts two points, draws one point. Wins in the rapid tournament count one point and draws half a point. All games will be commented live by GM Yannick Pelletier and IM Werner Hug and broadcast world wide live via Internet on www.zurich-cc.com.

The Zurich Chess Club was founded in 1809 and is the oldest active chess club of the world. With the Zurich Chess Challenge 2014 it will continue its long-standing tradition of hosting top-level tournaments, which have included such memorable events as the Candidates’ Tournament in 1953, the simul and rapid tournament of all living world champions at the Zurich main train station in 2009, the Zurich Chess Challenge 2012 with Levon Aronian and Vladimir Kramnik as well as the Zurich Chess Challenge 2013 with the four grandmasters Vladimir Kramnik, Viswanathan Anand, Fabiano Caruana and Boris Gelfand.

The main tournament sponsor is chess enthusiast Oleg Skvortsov from the International Gemological Laboratories of Moscow, Russia.

9443 Aufrufe 34 Kommentare
8 Stimmen


  • vor 3 Jahre



  • vor 3 Jahre

    FM gauranga

  • vor 3 Jahre


    break em all Chucky,,squeeze em,,,Sealed

  • vor 3 Jahre


    This is it!!!! guys this is so brilliant, grandmasters again would face to face. Great job!!! it ain't about the rounds, it is a matter of win, draw and loss lol :) GO CARLSEN, ANAND, KRAMNIK, CARUANA AND GEFLAND... MAY THE BEST MAN WIN,, LOL


    dont worry guys, among all that grandmasters, Carlsen is the BEST lol :) PROVE SOMETHING IN THIS TOURNAMENT lol........... good luck everyone

  • vor 3 Jahre


    go carlsen!!!!!!!!!

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Time to bounce back, Nakamura!

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Well the commentary team in Gibraltar certainly get my vote....Irina Krush may just have a new vocation.

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Carlsen, Aronian, and Anand will prolly draw with each other.  Nakamura, Gelfand, and Caruana are not playing well; they will be lucky to draw.

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Now when Im thinking about it.. 

    Yeah.. I agree with some of You, that Zurich should be a DRR tournament.. just like in the old days ;) It would be a super legit 23 category tournament then.. 5 rounds is kinda.. meh

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Man, so looking forward to these tournaments! Especially Zurich, my head is gonna explode from watching lol

  • vor 3 Jahre


    2 great tournaments this week ....the line up in each is very strong & both competitions broadcast live. Couldn't be better for chess fans.

  • vor 3 Jahre


    A 5 round tournament is a bit of a joke... inviting the same ole tired faces (nakamura, caruana, gelfand, aronian, anand) over and over and over,... if Kramnik was invited maybe we would vomit on our shoes.

    But again what do you expect from the boring Swiss.

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Very disappointing that Zurich will only be a 5 round tournament (rapid is entertaining, but meaningless). The organizers are already paying a king's ransom in appearance fees, just go all the way and make it a DRR. I don't see the point of having a 5-round event and then raving about it being Category XXIII.

  • vor 3 Jahre


    That Zurich tournament is unbelievable! 

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Go Magnus!

  • vor 3 Jahre



  • vor 3 Jahre

    IM DanielRensch


  • vor 3 Jahre


    Good thing then they don't use Live ratings!

    Carlsen 2872, Aronian 2812, Nakamura 2789, Topalov 2785, Gelfand 2777, Anand 2773. Average: 2801.33

    I wonder how much distortion occurs because the ratings are not live? Most major sports update rankings weekly. As Aronian is now 2825.7 (live) a win/draw earns an opponent fewer points than they deserve, while a loss is harsher than it should be. 

    The opposite is true for Gelfand/Nakamura, who both shed a lot of points at Wijk Aan Zee. 

  • vor 3 Jahre


    Zurich is being touted as the first Category 23 event (2801-2825 ELO average), but based on the Live Ratings it will just miss out on these dizzy heights.

    Carlsen 2872, Aronian 2825.7, Topalov 2785, Caruana 2780.5, Anand 2773 and Gelfand 2761.4

    Average: 2799.6.

    It's a shame Kramnik isn't playing. What a tournament that would be! 

  • vor 3 Jahre


    rorschach1985agree with you as we both hope Gelfand will do well! Sometimes he is a machine, mowing down his opponents, and sometimes has a bad losing streak, oh well hopefully he will take out the oposition! though i think that Carlsen will win as Aronian stated he wasn't taking the tournament really really seriously.

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