In an earlier
interview with the Russian chess magazine "64" last week world
champion Veselin Topalov's manager Silvio Danailov stated that his client was
interested to play a match against Vladimir Kramnik or Garry Kasparov, "from
a creative point of view." Now Topalov has made the point much more explicit.
In an interview with the Russian magazine Sport Express he stresses
that he is not going to accept an unscheduled challenger by a player who is
60 points below him in the ratings list.
Garry Kasparov agrees with Topalov and thinks the Bulgarian who won the FIDE
championship ahead of the strongest active players in the world does not need
to play Kramnik. "The schism in the chess world is over," he told
us. "It was brought about by the world champion not being the best player
in the world. Now that he is, the matter can be closed."
Here's the Sport Express interview with Veselin Topalov:
Topalov is not willing to put his title on the line against Kramnik
Translated from Russian by Aryan Arghandewal
Newly crowned World Champion Veselin Topalov has no plans to put his title
on the line in a possible match against Kramnik. “So far this year I
have won my third Super Tournament. Vladimir Kramnik is an outstanding player
of modern chess, one of the best players of the last decade. However, he is
currently number seven in FIDE world rankings, and I don’t think he has
the right to challenge me. When I was the world's number seven player it never
occurred to me that I had the right to challenge world's number one,”
the Bulgarian Super GM is reported to have said in San Luis.
Topalov stressed that Kramnik had been invited to San Luis, but had refused
to participate. Hence, in Topalov’s opinion, Kramnik has automatically
lost the right to contend for the title. Topalov is also reported to have said
that from January 1st he was going to have the highest rating, leaving aside
the retired Garry Kasparov (still the highest rated player). It is certainly
true that five years ago Kramnik had defeated Kasparov. However, according
to Topalov, Kramnik’s latest results do not provide sufficient grounds
to have any claims for the title.
“There’s a big difference in our ratings," Topalov stressed.
"In chess 60 Elo points means a different class altogether. If Vladimir
was offered to play against someone 60 Elo points below himself he’d
simply burst out laughing. If there is going to be a Topalov-Kramnik match,
it will be on purely commercial basis. I do not believe we can play for the
title because I’ve already won it here in San Luis. A Topalov-Kramnik
match for the title is out of question, because FIDE has organised a two-year
cycle for the world championship, analogous to the one we had in San Luis,
where eight qualifiers will fight for the title. Thus the tournament shall
determine the new holder of the Crown. That is the plan.”
FIDE President Kirsan Illumzhinov had earlier indicated that, in principle,
a match between the winner of the World Championship in San Luis and Vladimir
Kramnik was possible, providing the Kramnik camp comes up with a minimum of
two million dollars.