Wednesday 14 October 2015

Carlsen wins World Rapid, signs up for Qatar Masters

World Champion Magnus Carlsen has defended one of his other World Championship titles, the World Rapidplay Champion, winning the 2015 event in Berlin. Leading going into the final day, Carlsen beat Zhigalko and Ivanchuk in the first 2 rounds, and after that the pack could not run him down.
While winning this title isn't a surprise, the fact that Carlsen has signed on to the Qatar Masters is. For a reigning World Champion to play in an Open Swiss (albeit one with a lower limit of 2300) is very unusual, as most top ranked players normally avoid risking rating pints against lower ranked opponents. But the growth in big money events (with good conditions) seems to be changing the attitude towards swisses (Millionaire Chess being an obvious example), so maybe his decision isn't as much a surprise as a recognition that the older way of doing things is changing.


Shyly said...

Anand is in Gibraltar maybe just as surprising. Already Kramnik/Giri in Qatar was notable. My guess is that the appearance fee for Carlsen is likely 25-50K, and for Anand perhaps 10-15K.

MorlieTow said...

At Linares 2009, Topalov was going to be getting 40000-50000 USD as an appearance fee. It says so right in the Dresden FIDE 2008 Minutes, and they gave him 15000 instead to play Kamsky at that time.