Tuesday 29 August 2017

2017 World Cup

The 2017 FIDE World Cup begins in a few days in Tbilisi, Georgia. The 128 player knockout will see the top 2 players go forward into the Candidates Section of the World Championship cycle, as well as providing a substantial prize pool for all the participants (eg First round losers still earn $4800 USD)
Oddly, World Champion Magnus Carlsen has decided to take part in the tournament, raising the issue of what happens if he finishes in the top 2. I assume he isn't going to be seeded into the tournament that determines the challenger to his own title (unless we wish to see a Monty Python inspired World Championship match), so a playoff for third might be required.
Also taking part is Australian IM Anton Smirnov, with a seeding of 117. This means he has challenging first round match against faces GM Sergei Karjakin. Also taking part are a couple of players with Australian connections in the shape of Armenian GM's Melkumyan and Aronian. Both are in the top half of the draw and should make it to the second round at least.
The tournament starts on the 2nd of September (play starting on the 3rd). Rounds start at 3pm local time, which translates to 9pm Canberra time. You can find out more information, as well as follow the event at the official website.

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