NCCL
North Circular Chess League
2023-24 Season

Chess News

Tata Steel Masters 2024
Wei Yi brilliantly wins Tata Steel in blitz playoff
Wei Yi wins tata

It was a thrilling event from start to finish. The final round of the Tata Steel Masters saw four co-leaders grabbing wins to set up a four-way blitz playoff. Wei Yi, Gukesh D., Anish Giri and Nodirbek Abdusattorov played the knockout tiebreaker, which saw 24-year-old Wei claiming overall victory after showcasing his well-known tactical sharpness in the deciding stage. Meanwhile, Leon Luke Mendonca took clear first place in the Challengers after beating Divya Deshmukh with the white pieces.
A long time coming
In March 2013, almost exactly ten years ago, Wei Yi became the fourth youngest-ever grandmaster in the world after scoring a 7½/10 score at the Reykjavík Open, where he defeated, among others, a 22-year-old Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. That same year, in November, he became the youngest player to ever surpass the 2600-rating mark (a record that has been broken since), after knocking out Ian Nepomniachtchi and Alexei Shirov in the first two rounds of the FIDE World Cup. Wei was 14 at the time.
The prodigy’s deep chess understanding and incredible tactical eye prompted pundits to often refer to him as Magnus Carlsen’s biggest threat for the coming years. Up to August 2017, Wei continued his quick ascent, as he reached his peak rating of 2753 shortly after winning his third consecutive Chinese Chess Championship. At that point, the rating growth stopped, though. Since the second semester of 2017 until the end of 2023, Wei’s rating never fell below 2700, but he seemed to had hit a wall just when he was about to become a fixture in the elite circuit. The Chinese talent never quite modified his attacking style to obtain better results in strong tournaments, while some of his younger colleagues — e.g. Alireza Firouzja, Nodirbek Abdusattorov or Gukesh — surpassed him in the world ranking and collected triumphs in top-notch events.
Now, at 24 (still very young), the man from Yancheng has collected the biggest victory of his career at the Tata Steel Masters. His 8½/13 performance also gained him 14.8 rating points, which means he has joined the world’s top-10 in the live ratings list and achieved a new peak rating of 2755 — just two points higher than his rating in August 2017.
An exciting penultimate round saw Vidit Gujrathi beating Nodirbek Abdusattorov to create a climactic scenario for Sunday — five players entered the final round sharing first place, while Praggnanandhaa and Alireza Firouzja (who stood a half point back) still had theoretical chances to win the event.
Only in one of the seven games two of the co-leaders were paired up against each other (Wei v. Vidit), while the three remaining co-leaders were set to face players with scores below 50%.
At the end of the day, all three players facing contenders out of contention for tournament victory scored full points, while Wei defeated Vidit in the marquee matchup of the round. Thus, four players ended tied for first place, each with 8½/13 points in the final standings.
Following an unpleasant controversy in the 2021 edition of the Tata Steel Masters, the organizers created a new tiebreak system, which considered the players’ fatigue after 13 rounds of classical games. As per the new rules, the four players tied for first went on to fight in a blitz knockout (semifinals and finals) with sudden-death games in case of a tie.

Rapid World Championship 2023
Magnus Carlsen wins fifth World Rapid Championship title!
Carlsen win Rapid 2023

Yet another stunning performance, yet another title! Magnus Carlsen scored 10/13 points throughout three days of play to grab his fifth World Rapid Championship title in Samarkand. The Norwegian obtained two wins in a row at the start of day 3 and managed to win the tournament outright with draws in the final two rounds. In the women’s tournament, Anastasia Bodnaruk beat Humpy Koneru in a blitz playoff to claim the title.
Magnus Carlsen continues to collect World Championship titles. Thanks to a brilliant 3-day performance in Samarkand, the Norwegian grabbed his fifth World Rapid Championship title after obtaining an undefeated 10/13 score.
Since 2013, Carlsen has won 16 World Championship titles. The first one he got was, in fact, the classical title — in Chennai. The very next year he grabbed the ‘triple crown’, after winning both the rapid and blitz categories in Dubai.
The 33-year-old went on to win four more matches for the world crown in classical chess and collected five more blitz titles and (now) four more rapid titles. As pointed out by Tarjei J. Svensen, perhaps the most impressive fact if we look back on Carlsen’s performance on these all-important events is his incredible stability. In ten World Rapid Championships, the ace has never finished below fifth place!

Adams wins London Classic 2024

Michael Adams became the first Englishman to win the London Chess Classic. At 52, the former World Championship candidate described this victory as “the best ever” in his career. In the final round, Adams drew Shreyas Royal with black, which meant Royal finished with 4/9 points, the score he needed to collect a second GM norm. The one decisive result of the day saw Hans Niemann beating Gukesh. Amin Tabatabaei, who signed a draw with Jules Moussard, got sole second place.
Malcolm Pein, the organizer of the London Chess Classic, confessed that he “couldn’t have asked for more” from the thirteenth edition of the now traditional tournament. Besides English legend Michael Adams clinching the title and English rising star Shreyas Royal collecting his second GM norm at 14 years of age, the tournament was one of the most entertaining classical-chess events of the year.
While a lot of the attention throughout the round-robin went to the race for the Candidates, 52-year-old Adams quietly showcased his class to get a plus-three, undefeated score that granted him outright victory. The man from Truro beat Amin Tabatabaei, Mateusz Bartel and Jules Moussard on his way to what he described as “probably my best result ever”.
Adams explained that his biggest successes came when he was in his prime as a player, while this triumph, obtained at 52 years of age, feels entirely different. To get the title, he outscored the likes of Gukesh and Hans Niemann, two of the strongest and most ambitious juniors in the world. Not to mention the ever-dangerous Amin Tabatabaei and Nikita Vitiugov. A few of the many professional achievements of Adams’ include: Reaching the final of the 2004 FIDE World Championship knockout, where he lost to Rustam Kasimdzhanov in tiebreaks.
Winning the 2013 Dortmund super-tournament with a 7/9 score and a 2925 TPR. Adams outscored Fabiano Caruana (rated 2796) and ‘Mr. Dortmund’ Vladimir Kramnik (2784).
Being an 8-time British champion, having won the title for the first time in 1989 and for the last time this year in Leicester!
Fittingly, Adams became the first English player to win the London Chess Classic.

Saint Louis Sinquefield Cup 2023
Caruana wins Sinquefield Cup for a third time
Caruana wins Sinquefield Cup

With a final-round win over Richard Rapport, Fabiano Caruana secured tournament victory at the Sinquefield Cup in Saint Louis. This was Caruana’s third victory in this event, as he had previously won it in 2014 (when he famously grabbed seven wins in a row) and in 2018. Sole second place went to Leinier Dominguez, who drew Levon Aronian with the black pieces on Thursday.
Despite having collected success after success during an illustrious, lengthy chess career, Fabiano Caruana confessed that he was very nervous during his final-round Sinquefield Cup game against RIchard Rapport. The 30-year-old scored a convincing win to claim his third victory in this event. In the Sinquefield Cup, he had previously stunned the chess world by winning seven games in a row in 2014 and tied for first with Magnus Carlsen and Levon Aronian in 2018.
Caruana is having a great year, with classical wins at the Superbet tournament in Romania and at the U.S. Championship, not to mention his strong showing at the FIDE World Cup, where he secured third place to get a spot in the 2024 Candidates Tournament.
The string of good results allowed the Italo-American grandmaster to again cross the 2800 mark in the ratings list, as he now stands in the clear second spot ‘only’ 26 points behind the virtually unreachable Carlsen — notably, though, Hikaru Nakamura now stands 16 points behind Caruana, while world champion Ding Liren stands 8 points further back.
The tournament winner noted that this was his last classical tournament of the year. Caruana will not participate in the 2024 edition of the Tata Steel Masters, but will make his way to the Weissenhaus Resort in Germany to face Carlsen & co. at the recently announced Freestyle Challenge, a chess960 tournament set to take place in February.
Caruana’s strong showing in the 2023 Grand Chess Tour gained him US$ 310,000 in prize money, with Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Wesley So — placed second and third respectively — obtaining less than half that amount for their (still strong) performances. In sole second place finished Leinier Dominguez, who was undefeated throughout the event and grabbed wins over Anish Giri and Richard Rapport. The Cuban-born grandmaster gained 11.2 rating points in Saint Louis, which allowed him to climb to seventh place in the live ratings list (overtaking an out-of-form Alireza Firouzja).
Dominguez thus found himself unexpectedly in the fight to reach the Candidates by rating. However, he is still 1 point behind So, and is forced to play one more tournament in December to become eligible in the rating race. Moreover, the GM now representing the United States needs to play outside the U.S. after FIDE published a clarification regarding the World Championship cycle regulations. The last-minute announcement was harshly criticized by former Women’s World Champion Susan Polgar.
Nonetheless, a level-headed Dominguez told Anastasiya Karlovich after drawing Levon Aronian in the final round that he will look for ways to make the most of this unexpected opportunity as “it’s not every day that you get a chance to fight for a place in the Candidates”.

Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz 2023
Fabiano Caruana beats MVL
Caruana wins Saint Louis 2023

Fabiano Caruana became the 2023 Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz champion after a dramatic final day of blitz, which came down to a winner-take-all last round game against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. Caruana ended with 21/36 points, Vachier-Lagrave finished second with 20.5, while Ian Nepomniachtchi and Le Quang Liem tied for third place with 20 points each. | Photo courtesy of Saint Louis Chess Club, Lennart Ootes
Fabiano Caruana became the 2023 Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz champion after a dramatic final day of blitz, which came down to a winner-take-all last round game against Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. Caruana ended with 21/36 points, Vachier-Lagrave finished second with 20.5, while Ian Nepomniachtchi and Le Quang Liem tied for third place with 20 points each.
The Day 4 leader, MVL, struggled on the final day, losing his first two games to Liem and Nepomniachtchi before stabilizing with a much-needed win over Firouzja: Vachier-Lagrave would go on to score five draws and a loss to So, but would still have chances in the very last game against Caruana. Fabi's road to the top was also rocky, after starting the day with 5.5/7 which included three straight wins over Nepo, Firouzja, and Giri, he flagged in a rook and bishop vs. rook ending against Robson in the penultimate round.
Heading into the final round, Caruana was ahead of MVL by half a point, and faced him with the White pieces. MVL played excellently in a Semi-Slav to achieve a winning endgame, but blundered his advantage in a single move, allowing Caruana to save the game and clinch the tournament.
Finishing in a tie for third place were Nepomniachtchi and Liem, each with different paths. Nepo was close to the lead for most of the day, but never managed to pull ahead, losing his chances after a penultimate round collapse against Firouzja.

AI Cup Final
MVL beats Carlsen twice, wins AI Cup
MVL wins AI

With a remarkable performance, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave got to beat Magnus Carlsen in two consecutive matches to win the AI Cup, the sixth and final ‘regular’ event of the 2023 Champions Chess Tour. Carlsen had defeated MVL in the final of the winners’ bracket, before the Frenchman gained the right to a rematch by beating Ian Nepomniachtchi in the final of the losers’ bracket.
Magnus Carlsen has shown incredible results throughout the 2023 Champions Chess Tour (and since the start of the era of online, elite tournaments during the pandemic). Out of the six ‘regular’ events, he played in five, won three, and his worst performance was a third place in the Chessable Masters. Now, in the AI Cup, he seemed headed to yet another victory. To reach Friday’s Grand Final, the Norwegian beat none other than Hikaru Nakamura, Ian Nepomniachtchi and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, scoring 4 wins, 7 draws and a single loss. In fact, after beating Nakamura in the first round, Carlsen had this to say when asked about who he considered to be his biggest rivals:
Given his track record, both in over-the-board chess and especially in the online tours, this is surely a fair assessment.
Beating Nepo in the second round only made Carlsen more of a favourite, but the fact that he needed Armageddon to beat MVL in his third match of the event showed that the Frenchman was in excellent shape. Losing to Carlsen sent MVL to the losers’ bracket, where it was his turn to beat Nepo, who came from obtaining a remarkable victory at the strong Levitov Chess Week tournament (which was played over the board, but also with a rapid time control). Thus, the French grandmaster gained the right to a rematch against Carlsen — to win the event, though, he would need to beat the former world champion twice in a row.
In the Grand Final, MVL beat Carlsen by a 2½-1½ score. Then, in the Grand Final Reset, a 2-0 victory gave allowed the French star to grab the title. Carlsen later noted: That was a fair outcome. [...] There was never really any reason for [MVL] all of a sudden to be falling off — this is the level he’s always been capable of playing at. Thanks to this win, Vachier-Lagrave qualified to the series’ finals, set to be played in Toronto in December. Carlsen, of course, had already qualified, as he ended in clear first place with a massive advantage over second-placed Fabiano Caruana and Nodirbek Abdusattorov.
Vladimir Fedoseev beat Vladislav Artemiev to win Division II, while Sam Sevian beat Rauf Mamedov to win Division III.

Armageddon Grand Finale
Jan-Krzysztof Duda wins final
Duda wins Armageddon

Polish grandmaster Jan-Krzysztof Duda emerged victorious in the thrilling 2023 Armageddon Championship Series, clinching a remarkable €80,000 prize. Wesley So secured the runner-up position with a commendable €20,000 prize. This championship marks a significant milestone in the world of chess, highlighting the growing importance of short-form chess formats and broadcasting innovations.
Armageddon Championship series winner: Duda’s chess brilliance led to his well-deserved championship win, solidifying his position as a formidable chess player on the global stage. He managed to perform the best under enormous pressure.
Diverse competitors: The grand finale featured a star-studded lineup of chess talents, including Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Bibisara Assaubayeva, Humpy Koneru, Jan-Krzysztof Duda, and Richard Rapport. Their intense battles captivated audiences worldwide, with huge interest coming from India, the Philippines, Germany, and the US.
Global broadcast: The 2023 Armageddon Championship Series became one of the year's most-watched chess events, reaching audiences through 18 online and TV platforms. Major networks like CNBC, BeIN Sports, Channel 4, and FOX Australia brought the excitement of chess to a global audience.
Modern presentation: World Chess, the event’s organizing body, unveiled a custom-made studio that redefines chess aesthetics. This innovative approach emphasizes chess as a dynamic, contemporary, and electrifying spectacle, setting the stage for the future of the game. The broadcast featured the players’ heart rates, one of the most talked-about features in the series.
The Armageddon format has injected a new dimension of excitement into chess. It challenges players to balance strategy and speed, making it a true test of skill under pressure. This groundbreaking format has captured the imagination of chess enthusiasts worldwide, reinvigorating the game for modern audiences.
Ilya Merenzon, CEO of World Chess, commented: "The Armageddon Championship Series has not only increased engagement but also brought a fresh perspective to chess. We anticipate the next season, where top-tier players will once again go head-to-head in this dynamic format. We also feel that the event is a sandbox of chess innovations, and we will continue adding features that make chess a spectator sport".
Andrey Insarov, Chief Executive Officer at it.com Domains, expressed his enthusiasm regarding the recently concluded Armageddon Championship Series 2023: "We are delighted to have witnessed the remarkable fusion of intelligence and skill in the Armageddon Series. We extend our heartfelt congratulations to the deserving winner for their truly outstanding performance. It was an incredible spectacle! At it.com Domains, we are genuinely excited about our meaningful partnership with World Chess and our role in supporting this prestigious sport".

Carlsen wins World Cup

Magnus Carlsen has won it all. The world number one beat Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu in tiebreaks to win the FIDE World Cup for the first time in his career. After his victory, the Norwegian noted that he will not attempt to recover the World Championship title unless there is a major change in the format, especially regarding the shortening of time controls. Meanwhile, third seed Fabiano Caruana beat Nijat Abasov in the match for third place to secure a spot in the 2024 Candidates Tournament.
There is no hiding the fact that a new generation of elite chess players is slowly taking over the sport. In the final of the FIDE World Cup, Magnus Carlsen, who was born in 1990 and obtained his GM title in 2004, defeated a player born in 2005 — the talented and ever-humble Praggnanandhaa.
Also known as Pragg, the youngster from Chennai had a remarkable showing in Baku, as he knocked out both Hikaru Nakamura and Fabiano Caruana (seeded second and third respectively) before reaching the final against Carlsen. For his efforts, the prodigy gained 20.2 rating points in classical chess, thus climbing to the 20th spot in the live ratings list.
Pragg also climbed to the 3rd spot among the juniors (under-20 players), as he now stands only behind Alireza Firouzja and Dommaraju Gukesh. The top-3 are joined by yet three more prodigies who have already crossed the 2700 rating barrier. Or as Carlsen put it in an interview conducted by the chess24 commentary team: I think this generation of players born 1990-94 really have dominated for a long time, and finally now with these youngsters born 2003 and after, we have a generation that’s worthy of succeeding us when the time comes — the time could be fairly soon!
It will certainly be exciting for chess fans to see this story unfolding as time goes by. Will it be Firouzja who goes on to dominate? Or will it be one of the three Indians — Gukesh, Pragg and Arjun Erigaisi? Perhaps Nodirbek Abdusattorov, or the steady climber Vincent Keymer...
For now, however, the likes of Carlsen, Caruana, Nakamura and world champion Ding Liren are still going strong! The 32-year-old has won it all, as the World Cup was the one big trophy missing in his cabinet. Besides beating formidable opponents in five World Championship matches, Carlsen won the Rapid and Blitz Championships multiple times and has accumulated no fewer than eight triumphs at the traditional Tata Steel Masters in Wjik aan Zee.
Of course, what most fans were wondering after this victory was whether Carlsen is planning to fight to regain the World Championship title by playing the Candidates. In line with previous comments on the subject, the Norwegian asserted: The one non-negotiable point for me, if I ever were to play the World Championship again, is that there would have to be more games and shorter time controls. [...] With the classical time control, I think there is just no way.
If that is the case, Nijat Abasov will get an invitation to the 2024 Candidates Tournament, which already has Ian Nepomniachtchi, Praggnanandhaa and Caruana in the list of participants. The remaining contenders will be decided by rating, according to the FIDE Circuit ranking and in the FIDE Grand Swiss.

British Chamionship 2023
Michael Adams and Lan Yao
win British Championships
Michael Adams British Champion 2023

Michael Adams and Lan Yao (Women's Championship) are the new British National Chess Champions. This is Michael Adams' eighth National Championship, while Lan Yao not only won the title but also made a WGM norm. A big surprise is the second place of the untitled Steven Jones, who started as 32nd seed.
Michael Adams was the favourite going into the 109th British National Championships and he more than lived up to that role. The former World Championship contender won the tournament with 7.5/9 to become British National Champion for the eighth time. Adams remained unbeaten, winning six games and drawing three and in the end was a full point ahead of his nearest rival.
Michael Adams won his first national championship in 1989 at the age of seventeen. He won the title again in 1997, this time with Matthew Sadler. He also won the National Championships in 2010, 2011, 2016, 2018 and 2019.
The second place finish of Steven Jones was a surprise. With an Elo rating of 2175, the 31-year-old untitled Jones was 32nd on the seeding list, but in the final standings he was the only player with 6.5 points. Jones lost two games, to new champion Michael Adams in round one and to Ankush Khandelwal in round four. But he also had six wins (and two draws) and defeated GM Daniel Fernandez in the final round. Fernandez was still the top-ranked player in the group with six points and won bronze.
As the best woman in the field, the women's championship went to Lan Yao. She scored 5.5 points, finished 36th and made a WGM norm.
The British Championships have been held since 1904. This year, De Montfort University in Leicester hosted the event from 20 to 30 July 2023. In addition to the championship tournament, a nine round Swiss which featured 64 players, the British Senior and Youth Championships were also held. The supporting programme also included a general open, weekend, rapid and blitz tournaments.
Keith Arkell was Senior Champion +50, Alan Punnett Senior Champion +65.

Women's World Chamionship 2023
Ju Wenjun Wins 4th Women’s World Champion
Ju Wenjun World Champion

Ju Wenjun won the twelfth and final classical game of her match against Lei Tingjie to successfully defend the Women’s World Championship title. This is Ju’s fourth victory in a fight for the biggest title in women’s chess. The 32-year-old from Shanghai grabbed the women’s crown for the first time in 2018 and is set to continue her reign for at least one more year.
Two Chinese players have recorded the biggest successes in Women’s World Championship cycles since the turn of the century: Hou Yifan and Ju Wenjun.
With her 6½-5½ victory over Lei Tingjie, Ju has triumphed in battles for the title no fewer than four times, much like Hou, who collected her four triumphs between 2010 and 2016. Despite having given up classical chess almost completely, Hou is still the highest-rated woman player in the world, but her leaving the Women’s World Championship cycle allowed for a new queen to ascend.
Ju is, in fact, the second-highest rated woman player in the world, as her 2568 live rating is a notch above that of Aleksandra Goryachkina, Humpy Koneru, Kateryna Lagno and her last challenger, Lei Tingjie — all formidable players who have failed to outperform the 32-year-old from Shanghai. The fact that Ju has already beat Tan Zhongyi, Goryachkina and now Lei speaks volumes about her ability to deal with high-pressure situations. The one time she won the title in a knockout tournament, back in 2018, she was trailing Lagno by a point going into the final classical game of their match — Ju won the game on demand and went on to outscore her opponent in playoffs. In 2020, she also beat Goryachkina in rapid tiebreakers, right after the Russian star had herself won game 12 on demand. Now, in the all-Chinese confrontation against Lei, we got to see another match going down to the wire, with an exciting final classical game tipping the balance in the defending champion’s favour. Talk about entertainment value at the very highest level!
Game 12 was by no means a boring affair. Instead of signing a quick draw and taking the match to rapid playoffs (where the fact that there are more games lessens the damage provoked by single mistakes), the Chinese duo entered a double-edged opening variation. With connected passers on the queenside for White, and Black having a strong pawn centre and the more solid structure, it seemed increasingly likely that the game would end decisively. Ju’s decision to get two minor pieces for a rook and a pawn (one of the dangerous passers) further sharpened the position
The queens were already off the board when Lei erred strategically with 22...e5. From that point on, Ju showed her class and went on to get the 62-move win that allowed her to keep the women’s world champion crown!
The closing ceremony of the Women’s World Championship match was held at the grand hall of the Changshou District Office Service Centre, the same venue where just two days earlier, Ju Wenjun defeated challenger Lei Tingjie in the crucial twelfth game of the match. “There are many memorable moments, and this is one of them”, said the world champion.

Norway Chess 2023
Nakamura beats Caruana to win Norway Chess
Nak wins Norway 2023

A final-round win over long-time leader Fabiano Caruana gave Hikaru Nakamura outright victory at the 11th edition of the Norway Chess super-tournament. Nakamura scored three wins and no losses in his nine classical games, which allowed him to climb to the second spot in the live ratings list. Caruana finished second, while 17-year-old Dommaraju Gukesh impressed by grabbing third place.
In February 2022, Hikaru Nakamura shocked the chess world by winning the first leg of the FIDE Grand Prix in Berlin. His winning a tournament was not that surprising given his illustrious career, but the fact that he did it two and a half years after playing his last classical, rated game was nothing short of impressive. Moreover, he had knocked out a number of active, elite grandmasters in the process. A year and four months later, Nakamura, who continues to stream constantly on his incredibly successful channels, has accumulated more triumphs in all time-control formats, including classical. Only this year, the 5-time US champion has won the American Cup, the Chessable Masters and now the Norway Chess super-tournament. Last year, he fell just short of finishing the Candidates in second place (which would have granted him a spot in this year’s World Championship match) and won the Fischer Random World Championship in Reykjavík.
Nakamura’s victory in Stavanger came after a remarkable showing in the final round. Fabiano Caruana, who grabbed the lead right from the get go by beating Magnus Carlsen in their first-round classical encounter, had a 2½-point advantage over his compatriot. Only a win in classical would allow Naka to get tournament victory. And that is precisely what he did, showcasing his brand of impassive chess to grab a couple of pawns in a technical position before converting his material advantage into a 55-move win.
The tournament winner’s classical-chess performance was remarkable, as he collected three wins and six draws to gain 12.2 Elo points and climb to second place in the live ratings list. Out of the six Armageddon deciders played by Nakamura, he won three and lost three, including his encounter against Magnus Carlsen. The well-known rapid-play specialist

World Chess Armageddon
Richard Rapport wins European leg
Rapport

Richard Rapport emerged victorious in the Armageddon Championship Series, dominating the world’s top players and winning the Europe & Africa qualifier. This victory secured his spot in the Grand Finale in September, where he will be joined by the tournament’s runner-up, GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda, alongside a formidable lineup of finalists including Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Bibisara Assaubayeva, and Humpy Koneru.GM Richard Rapport emerged victorious in the Armageddon Championship Series, dominating the world’s top players and winning the Europe & Africa qualifier. This victory secured his spot in the Grand Finale in September, where he will be joined by the tournament’s runner-up, GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda, alongside a formidable lineup of finalists including Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Bibisara Assaubayeva, and Humpy Koneru. They will compete for the coveted prize of €200,000.
The Armageddon Championship Series is not a typical chess tournament with its awe-inspiring visuals, intense time pressure, nerve-wracking drama, and soaring heart rates. With esteemed players, such as Michael Adams (England), Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France), Richard Rapport (Romania), Jan-Krzysztof Duda (Poland), Jorden van Foreest (Netherlands), Vincent Keymer (Germany), Matthias Bluebaum, and Alexander Donchenko, this competition has captivated chess enthusiasts worldwide, embarking on an exhilarating journey.
As one of the most spectacular and widely broadcasted chess events of the year, the Armageddon Championship Series is live-streamed on over 18 online and TV platforms. Exciting moments from the tournament will be featured globally on networks like CNBC, BeIN Sports, and FOX Australia.
The Grand Finale of the tournament will be held from September 14th to 20th, following the same dramatic format and intense time pressure as the previous events. Chess enthusiasts can catch all the exciting action and highlights on World Chess’s official YouTube channel.

World Chess Women's Armageddon
Bibisara Assaubayeva beat Humpy Koneru
Assaubayeva wins Armageddon

After a week of intense and exciting blitz matches, the Armageddon Women's Week in Berlin came to an end on Sunday. In the final, Bibisara Assaubayeva beat Humpy Koneru. The organisers, World Chess, measured the players' heart rates during the games: The highest was 173 beats per minute.
World Chess organised a "Women's Week" in Berlin at its World Chess Club unter den Linden as part of its "Armageddon" series with eight players competing in a double knockout system: players who lost in the Champions group were given a second chance in a consolation group. The participants played mini-matches with two blitz games each against each other. In the event of a tie, there was an Armageddon match.
During the games, the heart rates of the players were measured to determine the strain on the athletes. The top performer in this regard was Gunay Mammadzada, who reached 173 beats per minute in one game on 14 May. The resting heart rate is around 75. In the final, 19-year-old Bibisara Assaubayeva from Kazakhstan triumphed 1.5:0.5 over Humpy Koneru.
The two finalists have qualified for the Armageddon Grand Final, which will feature Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D and Nodirbek Abdusattorov among others. The winner of the final tournament will receive €200,000.
The next Armageddon tournament will take place from 12 to 18 June, again in Berlin.

Superbet Chess Classic
Fabiano Caruana outright winner in Bucharest
Caruana Grand Chess Tour

A draw with black in his game against Richard Rapport was enough for Fabiano Caruana to win the Superbet Chess Classic in Bucharest. None of the four players sharing second place before the final round managed to score a full point on Monday, thus allowing Caruana to claim clear first place, the $100,000 top prize and 13 GCT points. Meanwhile, world champion Ding Liren beat Bogdan-Daniel Deac with the black pieces.
Fabiano Caruana scored back-to-back wins in rounds 3 and 4 — over Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Ian Nepomniachtchi — and drew his remaining games to secure clear first place at the Superbet Chess Classic. The current US champion was a deserved winner, as he showed the most stable performance in Bucharest, showing good preparation with black and managing to put pressure on his famed opponents with the white pieces.
Perhaps the one regret for the 30-year-old is his missed chance in round 6, when he failed to convert a clearly superior endgame against world number 2 Alireza Firouzja. Caruana’s 5½/9 performance nonetheless gained him 8.9 rating points, leaving him in sixth place in the live ratings list, only 2 points behind Hikaru Nakamura. Getting clear first place in the inaugural event of the 2023 Grand Chess Tour also gained him the $100,000 top prize and 13 GCT points.
Following a rather inconsistent 2022, Caruana kicked off this year with a 7/13 performance in Wijk aan Zee. His victory in Bucharest, given the strength of the field, is his best showing TPR-wise since his extraordinary performance at the 2020 Tata Steel Masters.
Caruana’s final draw in Bucharest was not safe nor boring. Facing Richard Rapport, who famously was Ding Liren’s second during the World Championship match in Astana, the eventual tournament winner played a critical line, one that was seen in game 10 of the match.
The ensuing struggle was quite lively, with both players showing great calculation skills to achieve a 30-move draw. Rapport was one of four players who finished the event with a 5/9 score, a half point behind Caruana. As per the latest contenders for the world title, Ding got to finish the event with a victory, as he defeated underdog Bogdan-Daniel Deac with black.
While the world champion’s 4/9 was disappointing, as he lost 9.4 rating points in the process, Nepo’s 3½/9 was much more unsatisfactory — in first place, Nepo cannot rest on the fact that he just won the world crown, and what is more, he failed to convert a superior position against Anish Giri in his final game in Bucharest.

World Championship
Ding Liren is the 17th World Chess Champion
Liren World Champion

The most exciting world championship match in recent history has come to an end and has produced the first Chinese World Chess Champion in Ding Liren. Ding is the 17th World Chess Champion and the new figurehead of world chess.
By winning game 4 of the rapid tiebreakers — after three draws — Ding Liren became the 17th undisputed world chess champion! Ian Nepomniachtchi seemed to have things under control in the deciding game, and even a bit of an advantage at times, but he overestimated his chances and allowed Ding to get a dangerous passer. Ding kept his nerves and converted his advantage brilliantly. A new world chess champion has been crowned, and what a match it has been! Three Sundays ago, on April 9, the first classical game was played, and now, following a nerve-racking rapid playoff, Ding Liren has become the 17th undisputed holder of the biggest title in chess.
Ian Nepomniachtchi was a worthy opponent, one that could have easily won the match, had he made the most of his chances in some of the games. In the end, it all came down to nerves, and Ding proved to be the stronger contender. After game 8 (out of 14), multiple world champion Viswanathan Anand described the contest as “a match for the ages”, and the remainder of the duel was as epic as the first half. Dramatic games full of ups-and-downs were followed by a couple of extremely tense draws. The rapid playoff was the cherry on the cake, with both players keeping the tension throughout, until it was Ding who prevailed in the final hurdle.
As he had done throughout the match, first as a commentator and then as a social-media (deluxe) kibitzer, Anand shared an on-target final assessment from his Twitter account: It’s impossible to praise both players enough. Even today, they went at it with full energy and the fourth game was so draining. However, Ding survived so many setbacks and saves his best for last!
Nepo deserved more, and this match was so thrilling because he was one of the two players. Someone had to lose and sadly for Ian, it was him. Nepo’s meltdown in game 12 had been painful enough, and now, his losing a second consecutive match for the title (after winning a second Candidates Tournament in a row, in style) makes us wonder whether he will end up becoming one of the famous chess superstars who never quite makes it to become world champion. He would join a club full of renowned players, if so. As noted by Indonesian IM Irene Sukandar: At the end of the day, though, chess is a sport, and there must be a winner. Ding, as modest as ever, later confessed that “it’s not so important to become the world champion”. His emotional outpouring when Nepo resigned game 4 of the playoff was incredibly moving, nonetheless.

Chessable Masters
Hikaru Nakamura beats Fabiano Caruana
Nakamura Chessable Masters

An exciting pair of matches, featuring seven decisive games, saw Hikaru Nakamura beating Fabiano Caruana twice to win the Chessable Masters. Nakamura played the Smith-Morra Gambit twice with white, including a game in which he only needed a draw. In Division II, Nodirbek Abdusattorov got the better of Maxime Vachier-Lagrave to secure a spot in Division I of the next Champions Chess Tour event.
Seven decisive, thrilling games
Much like in the American Cup, the Chessable Masters saw two players facing each other three times in the deciding phases of the tournament. And, once again, it was Hikaru Nakamura who emerged victorious. Unlike what happened in the American Cup, though, Nakamura came from behind this time around. The 5-time US champion lost the final in the winners’ bracket against Fabiano Caruana, but then beat Magnus Carlsen in the final of the losers’ bracket to get a rematch against his compatriot. Since he came from the losers’ bracket, Nakamura needed to beat Caruana twice in a row to win the event, and that is precisely what he did, in an eventful pair of matches.
In the first, 4-game match, the contenders traded wins with black in the first two encounters. Nakamura then grabbed two wins in a row to force the rematch. Playing black in game 3, the famed streamer prevailed in an endgame position with queens and bishops of opposite colours. Caruana was two pawns down when he made the final, losing mistake.
Abdusattorov wins Division II
Similarly to Nakamura, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave gained a rematch against the player who had beat him in the winners’ bracket final. To get his spot in the Grand Final, MVL defeated Anish Giri on Thursday. The Frenchman, however, could not force a Reset, as he was defeated by Nodirbek Abdusattorov for a second time in three days, this time by a 2½-1½ score. With his win, Abdusattorov gained a spot in Division I of the next Champions Chess Tour event (Nakamura, Caruana and Carlsen also qualified). The Uzbek prodigy had a remarkable performance, convincingly beating Giri, Arjun Erigaisi and Denis Lazavik before getting the better of MVL twice in a row.

2023 Tata Steel Masters
Anish Giri wins Tata Steel Masters
Anish wins Tata Steel

In a late twist at the Tata Steel Masters, Anish Giri leapfrogged Nodirbek Abdusattorov on the final day of action to claim a first title in his home super-tournament. In round 13, Giri defeated Richard Rapport, while 2021 champion Jorden van Foreest got the better of long-time leader Abdusattorov. Meanwhile, Magnus Carlsen and Parham Maghsoodloo also ended the tournament with wins to their names. A long time coming Anish Giri first participated in a Wijk aan Zee tournament back in 2009. As a 14-year-old FIDE Master still representing Russia (he was born in Saint Petersburg), he scored 8½/13 points to finish in shared second place behind Filipino rising star. Wesley So. After winning the ‘B group’ the very next year, he was ‘promoted’ to the main event in 2011, and has played in every single edition of the Masters since then. Five times he finished in second place, and now he has finally grabbed his first title — like in his debut, with an 8½/13 score. Already a well-known name in the elite chess circuit, Giri is regarded as a veteran among the very best in the world. But he is only 28 years old, which means he is very likely to get more chances to fight for the World Championship title in the future. He participated in two out of the last three Candidates Tournaments, and had a strong performance at the 2020-2021 edition in Yekaterinburg.
In Wijk aan Zee this year, Giri finished undefeated with four wins to his name, and clinched the title thanks to a final-round win over Richard Rapport. On his way to tournament victory, the Dutchman beat the two highest-rated players in the field (and in the world), Magnus Carlsen and Ding Liren. Such a formidable performance gained him 15.4 rating points, which leaves him in fifth place in the world ranking, 20 points shy of the 2800-rating mark.
To finally win his home super-tournament after beating Rapport, Giri needed for long-time leader Nodirbek Abdusattorov not to beat Jorden van Foreest. And Van Foreest, who won the event in 2021 after beating Giri in playoffs, managed to inflict the first loss of the event on the 18-year-old. Thus, Giri, somewhat unexpectedly, got to win the tournament outright.
The ever-eloquent Dutch number one was rather modest during his post-game interview, noting that had Abdusattorov beat Van Foreest he would have once again fallen short of winning the event. Giri mentioned that he began to work with Jan Gustafsson as a second in this tournament, and thanked other players, which he could not name publicly, for their help. Giri thus presented his plan for this year: "There will be a lot of classical chess for me. [...] I’m not sure if I’ll be able to deliver such results as this one, but I’ll certainly take what I learned here and try to apply it. I’ll have many classical tournaments, and I hope that by the end of the year I’ll have a good rating to qualify to the Candidates, that’s what matters". Indeed, given the level he has shown in the past two weeks, we are likely to see Giri near the top of the world ranking for quite a while!
Following the exciting penultimate round in what is a long and exhausting tournament by today’s standards, it would have not been very surprising to see the contenders for first place keeping it safe on the final day of action. But, to the contrary, imbalances were quickly created both in Abdusattorov v Van Foreest and Rapport v Giri. Moreover, two other players who came from getting good results in the previous rounds also seemed resolute in their decision to look for winning chances in their
final-round encounters. At the end of the day, both Magnus Carlsen and Parham Maghsoodloo were rewarded for their efforts with full points. For the world champion, his victory over Arjun Erigaisi allowed him to catch Abdusattorov in the standings, getting shared second place despite losing back-to-back games in rounds 4 and 5, against Giri and Abdusattorov, coincidentally. Maghsoodloo, in the meantime, inflicted Levon Aronian’s first loss of the event in what was his third consecutive victory. A late replacement of Jan-Krzysztof Duda, the Iranian grandmaster finished the event with 7/13 points and gained 9.3 ratings points to climb to number 23 in the live ratings list. Aronian’s loss meant only Giri and Wesley So managed to end the tournament undefeated. So collected 2 wins and 11 draws for a 7½ score, which got him sole fourth place in the standings.

Club Results
Chess Board

26th September: With a great turn-out for our internal club Penalty Rapid evening and a big thanks for coming along with about 16 players it was a bit chaotic keeping score but a clear winner emered! Brian with he's steadfest 'Hippopotamus' won the day! Robin finished second. I hope you enjoyed the evenings of rapid chess and back to normal next week.

Club News
Chess Board

Great News over the board meches return to the NCCL and Chingford 3rd team open the new season on the 18th October so good luck to all players in all three divisions.
An over the board club friendly has been arranged between Chingford and Wanstead for 7.30pm Tuesday October 19th at Wanstead House. Any Chingford member wanting to play should contact Brain Spears.
Club is now open again on Monday nights at 7.00-10.30pm
Due to the Covid19 virus there was no AGM in 2020

Useful Sites
Chess Board

chessbase

 

gingergm

 

chess24

chess.com

Chessable

chess and bridge ecf ilchess


Make A Note
Chess
News and Events

WCh-Singapore

FIDE World World Championship 2024
November 20th - December 15th 2024
*********
The Singapore Chess Federation, supported by the Government of Singapore, has won the bid to host the FIDE World Championship Match 2024. The Match will feature the defending Champion Ding Liren from China and the Challenger Gukesh D from India, and will take place between November 20 and December 15, 2024

The Match, which boasts a sensational prize fund of 2.5 million USD, is set to take place between November 20 and December 15, 2024.

The FIDE World Championship Match is one of the most important and widely watched chess events globally. Held every two years, it features the defending World Champion and the Challenger, chosen through a qualification process culminating in the Candidates Tournament, which includes eight of the world's top players.

The defending Champion is Ding Liren, who won the title after defeating Ian Nepomniachtchi in Astana, Kazakhstan, in April 2023 on tiebreaks. The Challenger is the 18-year-old Gukesh D from India, who won the Candidates Tournament in April 2024 in Toronto.

The World Championship Match will consist of 14 games. The player who scores 7.5 points or more wins the Match, and no further games are played. If the score is equal after 14 games, the winner is decided by a tiebreak.

New York Rapid small

FIDE World Rapid and Blitz Championship 2024
December 2024
*********
FIDE has announced the venue for the 2024 World Rapid and Blitz Championships. The tournament will take place in New York in the last week of December this year.

FIDE World Rapid and Blitz Chess Championships - are coming to the Big Apple in the last week of December for the first time in history! This globally renowned tournament celebrated as one of the most eagerly anticipated, most exciting and most followed in the chess world, promises a week-long extravaganza of unparalleled intensity.

Featuring top players from across the globe, the event will provide five days of non-stop chess excitement and spectacular matchups. This prestigious tournament, renowned as the most globally followed chess event - along with the World Championship Match – last year had over 250 million views globally, with the expectation for the record to be broken this year.

The official announcement of the event was made at the closing ceremony of the World Corporate Chess Championship – Presented by Freedom Holding Corp., which took place in the business heart of New York from June 15 to 17.

The world's best players, including great champions such as Magnus Carlsen, top U.S. grandmasters Hikaru Nakamura, Fabiano Caruana, as well as Women's World Champion Ju Wenjun and U.S. top woman player Irina Krush are expected to take part.


FIDE Logo

FIDE World Ranking List:
July 2024
*********
With a current rating of 2832 Magnus Carlsen leads the world ranking list from July 2024. He is 30 rating points ahead of Hikaru Nakamura, who is the world's number 2 with 2802 points. Nakamura swapped places with Fabiano Caruana, number 3 on the ranking list. Hou Yifan is still number 1 on the Women's World Ranking list, while Nodirbek Abdusattorov is the world's best junior. Bibisara Assaubayeva defended her position as the world's best female junior.

*********

Since July 2011 Magnus Carlsen has led the world rankings, and in July 2024 he is still at the top of the list. In June he played in the Norwegian Chess Tournament in Stavanger and although he lost to Praggnanandhaa at the start of the tournament, he still won the tournament and gained two rating points.

Hikaru Nakamura, who swapped places with Fabiano Caruana, is second in the world rankings. Nakamura gained eight points and, with an Elo rating of 2802 and 30 points behind Carlsen, is currently the only other player with an Elo rating above 2800. Caruana lost nine points and slipped below the 2800 mark.

The rise of Arjun Erigaisi has been remarkable. The young Indian grandmaster won 17 points at the French Team Championships and at the Jermuk tournament in Armenia and is now the best Indian and fourth in the world rankings.

The other young Indian grandmasters are not far behind. World Championship challenger Gukesh is number seven in the world rankings and Praggnanandhaa, who won 10 points in Norway, is number eight. The Indian chess legend Anand, already 55 years old, is still number eleven in the world.

Aravindh, Chithambaram VR, is another Indian grandmaster to break the 2700 barrier and Nihal Sarin has also gained 13 points. Hans Niemann (plus 15) has also returned to the 2700 club.

The big loser of the month is world champion Ding Liren, who has dropped 17 points and is now ranked 13th in the Elo list.

Men's Top Five

1
Carlsen, Magnus
NOR
2832
2
Nakamura, Hikaru
USA
2802
3
Caruana, Fabiano
USA
2796
4
Erigaist, Arjun
IND
2778
5
Nepomniachtchi, Ian
RUS
2770
49
Vitiugov, Nikita
ENG
2678
52
Howell, David
ENG
2675
55
Adams, Michael
ENG
2672
100
Jones, Gawain
ENG
2640


*********
A Norway Women's Chess was also held in Stavanger for the first time. Women's World Champion Ju Wenjun particularly impressed. She won 8 ratings points and remains in second place behind Hou Yifan in the women's world rankings, ahead of Lei Tingjie and Tan Zhongyi (plus 5). Four Chinese women are therefore at the top of the women's world rankings. Anna Muzychuk has improved to eighth place with a plus of 16 points.

Women's Top Five

1
Hou, Yifan
CHN
2632
2
Ju, Wenjun
CHN
2566
3
Lei, Tinglie
CHN
2548
4
Tan, Tingjie
CHA
2545
5
Goryachkina, Aleksandra
FID
2545


*********

There were no changes at the top of the junior world rankings. Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Gukesh D., Praggnanandhaa R. and Vincent Keymer occupy the first four places, all with Elo ratings above 2700. Nihal Sarin in fifth place has narrowed the gap somewhat.

Junior's Top Five

1
Abdusattorov, Nodirbek
UZB
2769
2
Gukesh, Dommaraju
IND
2763
3
Praggnanandhas, R
IND
2757
4
Keymer, Vinvent
GER
2721
5
Nihal, Sarin
IND
2682
60
Royal, Shreyas
ENG
2487


*********

India's Dviya Deshmuk moved up 8 points to second place behind Kazakhstan's Bibisara Assaubayeva in the list of the top 100 juniors. The top climbers are Mariam Mkrtchyan (Armenia, up 28), Ravi Rakshitta (India, up 37) and Sahithi Varshini M (India, up 32).

Junior's (Female)Top Five

1
Assaubayeva, Bibisara KAZ 2472
2
Divya, Deshmukh
IND
2464
3
Garifullina, Leya
FID
2449
4
Lu Miaoyi
CHN
2449
5
Velpula, Saraya
IND
2384
58
Sivanandan, Bodhana
ENG
2185
66
Karas, Eugenia
ENG
2173


*********

National Team Top Five

1
USA 2742
2
India 2713
3
China 2685
4
Russia 2683
5
Azerbaijan 2646
14
England 2599


NCCL logo

NCCL 2023-24 Season
League Results
*****
A Division

1st Wanstead 1
2nd Ilford
3rd Barking 1
4th Chingford 1

B Division

1st Wanstead 2
2nd Chingford 2
2nd Barking 2
2nd Loughton
5th Enfield 1
6th Enfield 2

C Division

1st Wanstead 3
2nd Chingford 3
2nd Enfield 2

Lawrance Cup

1st Wanstead 1

Finchley Cup

1st Wanstead 2

Baum Trophy A Division

1st  

Baum Trophy B Division

1st  

NCCL 2024 Summer Season
League Results
*****
Buam Tropy

Baum Trophy A Division

28 May Wanstead 2

vs. Wanstead 1

4.5 - 9.5

Baum Trophy B Division

28 May Wanstead 4

vs. Wanstead 3

2.5 - 5.5
28 May Wanstead 5

vs. Wanstead 4

5.5 - 2.5
28 May Wanstead 3

vs. Wanstead 5

5 - 3
03 Jun Ilford 2

vs. Chingford 2

4.5 - 3.5

Baum Trophy A Division

10 Jun Chingford 1

vs. Barking 2

3.5 - 4.5
17 Jun Chingford 1

vs. Wanstead 2

2.5 - 5.5
18 Jun Wanstead 1

vs. Ilford 1

10 - 2

Baum Trophy B Division

18 Jun Enfield 3

vs. Wanstead 3

2 - 6

Baum Trophy A Division

24 Jun Barking 1

vs. Ilford 1

3 - 5

Baum Trophy B Division

24 Jun Ilford 2

vs. Wanstead 4

6.5 - 7.5

Baum Trophy A Division

25 Jun Wanstead 2

vs. Enfield 1

10 - 2
27 Jun Barking 2

vs. Barking 1

0.5 - 11.5
02 Jul Wanstead 2

vs. Barking 1

1.5 - 6.5

Baum Trophy B Division

02 Jul Wanstead 4

vs. Enfield 3

4.5 - 3.5

Baum Trophy A Division

08 Jul Chingford 1

vs. Ilford 1

2 - 10

Baum Trophy B Division

09 Jul Wanstead 3

vs. Ilford 2

15.5 - 2.5
09 Jul Enfield 3

vs. Enfield 2

1 - 9

for full NCCL match details visit:
www.northcircularchess.com


Chess

Club Events
What's On

July

July8 Baum Trophy
Chingford 1

2
A Division
vs. Ilford 1

10
July15

Baum Trophy
Chingford 2

B Division
vs. Enfield 3
July16 Baum Trophy
Enfield 1
A Division
vs. Chingford 1
July22 Baum Trophy
Chingford 2
B Division
vs. Wanstead 3
July30 Baum Trophy
Wanstead 4
B Division
vs. Chingford 2

 

2024
Chess Calendar

January
11-15 January
European Women’s Rapid and Blitz Championship. Monte Carlo – Monaco

12-28 January
Tata Steel Chess, Masters and Challengers
Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands

13-14 January
Bundesliga, Rounds 5 and 6
Solingen, Hamburg, Heimbach-Weis-Neuwied, Ötigheim
20-21 January
Women’s Bundesliga, Rounds 5 and 6
Norderstedt, Leipzig, Solingen
31 January - 7 February
Champions Chess Tour, Event 1 - Online

February
3-4 February
Bundesliga, Rounds 7 & 8
Dresden, Deizisau, Kirchweye, Solingen
3-4 February
Bundesliga Second Division, Rounds 7 & 8
9-16 February
Freestyle Chess G.O.A.T Challenge
Weissenhaus, Germany
19-25 February
Fischer Random World Championship
23-25 February
Bundesliga, Rounds 9, 10 & 11 - Viernheim
27 February - 7 March
Prague Chess Festival, Masters, Challengers, Futures, Open - Prague, Czech Republic
March
15-21 March
Reykjavík Open 2024 Reykjavík, Iceland
16-17 March
Bundesliga, Rounds 12 & 13
Dresden, Baden-Baden, Munich, Hamburg
16-17 March
Bundesliga Second Division, Rounds 9 & 10
20-24 March
Austrian Bundesliga, Rounds 7 to 11
23-24 March
Women’s Bundesliga, Rounds 7 & 8
Karlsruhe, Deizisau, Rodewisch
April
2-25 April
Candidates Tournament 2024
Toronto, Canada
2-25 April
Women’s Candidates Tournament 2024
Toronto, Canada
18-30 April
European Women’s Championship 2024
Rhodes, Greece
25-29 April
Cadet World Rapid and Blitz Championship 2024 - Durrës, Albania
27-28 April
Bundesliga, Rounds 14 & 15
Hannover, Kiel, Mülheim-Nord
27 April - 3 May
TePe Sigeman & Co - Malmö, Sweden
May
6-13 May
Grand Chess Tour Superbet Poland Rapid & Blitz - Warschau, Poland
6-16 May
European Senior Championship 2024
Terme Catez, Slovenia
8-15 May
Champions Chess Tour, Event 2 - Online
9.-12. May
Plus City Grand Prix - Pasching, Austria
19 May - 2 June
Schachfestival Munich - Munich
27 May - 7 June
Norway Chess - Stavanger, Norway
30 May – 8 June
European School Championships 2024
Limerick, Ireland
June
1-14 June
World Junior Championships - Delhi, India
7-9 June
Women’s Bundesliga, Rounds 9 to 11
Germany
15-16 June
German Team Championship R1 - Germany
20-28 June
European Youth Team Championship 2024
Rhodes, Greece
22 June - 3 July
World Cup for Youngsters 2023 (U8, 10, 12)
Batumi, Georgia
25 June - 6 July
Grand Chess Tour Superbet Chess Classic
Bucharest, Romania
30 June - 13 July
European Individual Championship 2024
Jerusalem, Israel
July
1-12 July
Senior World Championship - Kraków, Poland
8.-15. July
Grand Chess Tour SuperUnited Croatia Rapid & Blitz - Zagreb, Croatia
13.-26. July
Biel Festival 2024 - Biel/ Bienne, Switzerland
17-24 July
Champions Chess Tour, Event 3 - Online
August
10-17 August
Grand Chess Tour Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz
Saint Louis, USA
10-18 August
Dortmund Chess Festival 2024
Dortmund, Germany
15-20 August
European Youth Rapid and Blitz Championship 2024 Prague, Czech Republic
17-31 August
Grand Chess Tour Sinquefield Cup
Saint Louis, USA
21 August – 1 September
European Youth Chess Championship 2024
Prague, Czech Republic
24 August - 1 September
European Amateur Championship 2024
Mali Losinj, Croatia
September
10-23 September
Chess Olympiad - Budapest, Hungary
10-23 September
Women’s Chess Olympiad - Budapest, Hungary
25 September - 2 October
Champions Chess Tour, Event 4 - Online
October
22 October - 2 November
World Youth Championship
Florianópolis, Brazil
18-29 October 2024
European Senior Championship 2024
Lignano Sabbiadoro, Italy
19-27 October
European Club Cup 2024
Vrnjacka Banja, Serbia
19-27 October
Women’s European Club Cup 2024
Vrnjacka Banja, Serbia
24-26 October
Saint Louis Chess Conference -Saint Louis

November
16-17 November
FIDE World Championship
20 November 15 December
Women’s Bundesliga 2024/25, Rounds 1 & 2
22-24 November
European Corporate Chess Championship 2024 - Paris, France
December
6-22 December
European Rapid and Blitz Championship 2024
Skopje, North Macedonia
6-22 December
Women’s European Rapid and Blitz Championships 2024
14-21 December
Champions Chess Tour, Finals - Online
26-30 December
World Rapid and Blitz Championships

Past Chess News
in Brief

Meltwater Championship final small
Magnus Carlsen had secured first place with a round to spare at the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour Finals, but nonetheless finished the tournament with a seventh straight win in San Francisco. Carlsen’s win over Jan-Krzysztof Duda allowed Le Quang Liem to climb to third place thanks to a victory over Shakhriyar Mamedyarov. Wesley So, who lost to Anish Giri, remained in second place. Despite having won both the series and the tour in advance, Magnus Carlsen arrived in San Francisco’s Ferry Building ready to fight on Sunday. He had to face none other than Jan-Krzysztof Duda, who finished the series in second place and was sharing the lead in this tournament until the third round. Carlsen won games 2 and 4, both with black, to end the event with yet another win, a seventh in a en converted a superior endgame with a minor piece (and a row — six of which did not include blitz tiebreakers.
Naka Fischer Random Champ 2022 small
An Armageddon game decided the Fischer Random World Championship 2022. In the finals of the World Championship Hikaru Nakamura played against Ian Nepomniachtchi and after a 2-2 tie in the four games of the initial mini-match, an Armageddon game had to decide. Here, Nakamura won with White to become new Fischer Random World Champion. The placement matches all ended 3:1: Magnus Carlsen won against Nodirbek Abdusattorov and came third, Vladimir Fedoseev beat Wesley So and came fifth, Matthias Blübaum made it to 7th place with his win against Hjorvar Steinn Gretarsson.
In addition to the title, "Naka" received 100,000 USD in prize money - and a sculpture made of lava stone.

Caruana US winner small
Fabiano Caruana won the 2022 U.S. Championship with an undefeated +4 score after drawing Levon Aronian in the final round of the tournament in Saint Louis. Ray Robson finished in clear second place, while Leinier Dominguez and Awonder Liang shared the third spot in the standings.
It has been a crazy month and a half in the chess world. After a still unresolved scandal was born at the Saint Louis Chess Club during the Sinquefield Cup on September 6, the famous club in Missouri hosted the U.S. Championships with fourteen participants both in the open and the women’s sections. Luckily for spectators, there were no real scandals during what turned out to be a really entertaining event.

Yu Wins US Title small
Jennifer Yu defeated Irina Krush in a rapid
and blitz playoff to claim her second U.S. women’s title. The contenders traded wins with white in the 2-game mini-match and decided the championship in an Armageddon encounter. Yu blundered a piece on move 9, but kept on fighting and ended up flagging her renowned opponent. Yu: “I like to create messes”
The deciding playoff in the Women’s U.S. Championship featured an attractive clash of styles. Jennifer Yu, aged 20, reached the tiebreaker after scoring 8 wins and losing 3 games ‘in regulation’. Irina Krush, 38, finished the classical section of the event undefeated, as she collected 5 wins and 8 draws. Krush also got comfortable positions out of the opening in most of her games. It was a confrontation of youth against experience; fighting spirit against positional mastery.

Duda wins Aimchess small
Jan-Krzysztof Duda won the 2022 Aimchess Rapid online tournament after beating Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in what somewhat unexpectedly turned out to be a hard-fought final match. After getting a clear victory in the first set, Duda got a superior position in Friday’s first game. Shakh first managed to turn the tables in that game and then scored 1½ points in the next two encounter to take the match to tiebreaks. Duda won back-to-back blitz games to secure overall victory.
Jan-Krzysztof Duda fended off a fierce comeback from Shakhriyar Mamedyarov to win the £150,000 Aimchess Rapid

Carlsen 2022 tour winner
Three long-standing elite GMs defeated younger opponents in the quarterfinals of the Aimchess Rapid online tournament, as Magnus Carlsen, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Richard Rapport knocked out Arjun Erigaisi, Nodirbek Abdusattorov and Gukesh Dommaraju, respectively. The one exception to this rule was Jan-Krzysztof Duda, who got the better of Vidit Gujrathi. By reaching the event’s semifinals, Carlsen secured overall tour victory with one tournament to spare!
Lagno wins Womens Grand Prix
Kateryna Lagno won the first stage of the Women’s Grand Prix series with an undefeated 8/11 score. Lagno finished a half point ahead of Aleksandra Goryachkina (pictured, left), who scraped a half point in the final round after Vaishali Rameshbabu failed to convert a winning rook endgame. Chinese youngster Zhu Jiner grabbed third place. Zhansaya Abdumalik and Dinara Wagner scored full points on the last day of action.
Carlsen wins Generation Cup
Magnus Carlsen won the final match of the Julius Baer Generation Cup in the lowest possible number of games. The world champion beat Arjun Erigaisi 2½-½ in the first set, and then scored back-to-back wins in the second set to secure tournament victory as quickly as it is allowed by the rules. Despite losing the match, Arjun gained a spot in the final major of the Champions Chess Tour season, set to take place in November in San Francisco. Arjun Erigaisi’s task on Sunday could not have been harder.
alireza-firouzja-wins-sinquefield-cup
Alireza Firouzja beat Ian Nepomniachtchi in play-offs to win the ninth edition of the Sinquefield Cup. Firouzja also grabbed an extra $100,000 for winning this year’s Grand Chess Tour. The youngster came from winning the Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz Tournament a couple of weeks ago. This was Firouzja’s first trip to Saint Louis, one that he is sure to remember for time to come!
Magnus wins FTX
Magnus Carlsen won the FTX Crypto Cup in Miami after losing in tiebreaks against Praggnanandhaa in the final-round tournament-deciding match. Pragg stood two points behind the world champion before the round, so his victory was not enough to claim first place (he gained 2 points to Carlsen’s 1). The youngster nonetheless finished in second place, despite tying on points with Alireza Firouzja, as he had defeated the Frenchman in their round-1’s direct encounter.
magnus-wins
World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen will no longer defend his crown, but normal service was resumed in Zagreb as he won the SuperUnited Rapid & Blitz Croatia with a round to spare. Amazing last days saw Alireza Firouzja and MVL finish just half a point behind, though only after Magnus lost his last two games. Magnus Carlsen picked up $40,000 for winning the SuperUnited Rapid & Blitz Croatia after finishing on 22.5 points out of a possible 36.
Carlsen wins Norway Chess 2022
Magnus Carlsen won the Norway Chess Tournament for a fourth time in a row after beating Veselin Topalov in Armageddon on Friday. The world champion would not have grabbed the title had Shakhriyar Mamedyarov defeated Teimour Radjabov in their classical game. Radjabov held the draw despite having almost no time on the clock, allowing Carlsen to once again win his home event.

Ding Liren won the Chessable Masters after beating 16-year-old Praggnanandhaa in the final match’s tiebreaks. The Chinese had won the first set on Wednesday, but saw his opponent bouncing back in the second 4-game mini-match. A clear rating favourite, Ding defeated his prodigious rival in the deciding blitz tiebreaker.
Lagrave wins Superbet Chess Classic small
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave won the Superbet Chess Classic after outscoring Wesley So and Levon Aronian in rapid playoffs. MVL had caught up with the co-leaders after beating Alireza Firouzja with black in their classical, round-9 encounter. The Frenchman beat both US grandmasters in the rapid-chess single round-robin that followed to claim the title.
Fabiano wins American Cup
GM Fabiano Caruana clinched clear 1st place in the inaugural 2022 American Cup, after defeating GM Levon Aronian in the second classical game of the final.
A quiet line of the English Opening saw the players reach a dynamically balanced middlegame, with the pair of bishops for Caruana in exchange for a more harmonious position for Aronian. Caruana showed flawless technique to win the game and the match without needing a playoff.

krush wins American Cup
Women’s Field, GM Irina Krush completed her campaign for the title as well, securing the victory after drawing the second game in her match against FM Alice Lee.
Utilizing a solid variation of the Slav Defense, Krush gave up a tempo in the opening in order to saddle Lee with an isolated queen pawn. Needing a win to force a playoff, the up-and-coming prodigy tried various piece maneuvers but just couldn’t make headway against Krush’s defenses. As more pieces came off the board the position became more and more drawish, until eventually the players found themselves in a dead drawn king and pawn endgame.

Duda esports winner 2022
Polish star Jan-Krzysztof Duda pulled off a stunning late charge to clinch the $210,000 Oslo Esports Cup, the first Major of the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour season. The 24-year-old took full advantage as both World Champion Magnus Carlsen and India’s boy wonder Rameshbabu Praggnanandhaa – the two hot favourites – fell at the final hurdle. On a day of high-pressure chess, Duda stayed calm as everyone around him panicked. Round 7 started with four players in with a chance, but out of them only Duda managed to win a match in regulation time. He takes home $35,000 – $2,500 per point scored – and the Oslo Esports Cup NFT trophy. Duda also has the honour of ending Carlsen’s run of Tour victories.
Pragga Wins Reykjavik
An eventful Kvika Reykjavik Open came to an end as 245 players from 39 countries played their final moves of the event. The Indian sensation Praggnanandhaa was the soler winner clocking in with an impressive 7½ pionts in the 9 rounds. The prize giving ceremony was held at the Reykjavik Ciy Hall and Pawel Bartoszek, member of city council, welcomed players with some impressive flexing of his chess vocabulary when he weaved in that he didn’t rage quit and how his opening repertoire had stayed the same for too long. He gave out the prizes along with ICF president Gunnar Bjornsson and vice president Jóhanna Björg Jóhannsdóttir.
Berlin Grand Prix third leg
With a 1½-½ victory in the rapid tiebreakers, Wesley So became the winner of the FIDE Grand Prix’s third leg in Berlin. So beat Hikaru Nakamura with the white pieces in game 2 of the playoff to take home €24,000 in prize money and finish the series in third place overall. Wesley So defeated Hikaru Nakamura in tiebreaks to win the third leg of the FIDE Grand Prix in Berlin. A couple of fighting, mistake-ridden rapid games were played on Monday, with So scoring a win with the white pieces after drawing the first encounter to clinch the title.
Carlsen wins Charity Cup
After getting a clear victory on Friday and kicking off Saturday’s second set with a win, Magnus Carlsen seemed to be headed to a swift triumph in the final of the Charity Cup. However, Jan-Krzysztof Duda did not just give up, as he incredibly scored back-to-back wins to take the match to tiebreakers. In the blitz encounters, Carlsen regained his composure and won both games to claim his second consecutive title in the Champions Chess Tour.
Rapport wins GP
A win with white in Sunday’s second game of the final gave Richard Rapport tournament victory at the second leg of the FIDE Grand Prix in Belgrade. Rapport beat Dmitry Andreikin after rejecting a draw by triple repetition in a double-edged position. This victory, combined with his reaching the semifinals in the first leg of the series, places him as a clear favourite to get a spot in the Candidates Tournament. There is only a 3.3% chance of Richard Rapport not qualifying to the Candidates Tournament after having won the second leg of the FIDE Grand Prix in Belgrade.
England vs Sweden
In London, a match facing David Howell and Nils Grandelius was held at the residence of the Swedish Ambassador. The occasion was the 30th anniversary of Chess & Bridge. The 10-game confrontation was won by David Howell. Three games ended decisively, and all of them had plenty to offer chess-wise. On the occasion of its 30th anniversary, the London Chess Centre organized a match between two top grandmasters from England and Sweden. The competition took place on March 2nd-12th and was held at the Swedish Ambassador’s residence in London.