FIDE's April 2007 rating list
The list published
by FIDE on March 31 lists the following top rankings:
|| Topalov, Veselin
|| Anand, Viswanathan
|| Kramnik, Vladimir
|| Aronian, Levon
|| Mamedyarov, Shakhriyar
|| Morozevich, Alexander
|| Leko, Peter
|| Radjabov, Teimour
|| Ivanchuk, Vassily
|| Adams, Michael
|| Gelfand, Boris
|| Svidler, Peter
|| Polgar, Judit
|| Navara, David
|| Ponomariov, Ruslan
|| Grischuk, Alexander
|| Bacrot, Etienne
|| Jakovenko, Dmitry
|| Kamsky, Gata
|| Shirov, Alexei
According to calculations made by chess experts all over the world Anand should
have been in the number one spot, after his superb win in Morelia/Linares (where
Topalov, at the same time, shed a number of rating points).
The final games in Linares were played on March 10th, 2007, and thus the tournament
could be considered ineligible for the calculations of the April list, since
the deadline for submissions
of tournaments for the April ratings is Feburary 28.
However, in the past FIDE has always included this key tournament in its April
list. This is certainly true of the April lists for 2006 (Linares finished on
March 11 that year); 2005 (finished on March 11); and for the previous years
2004, 2003 and 2002. That is as far as we have easily accessible records on
the subject. Colleagues in India tell us that the practice of including Linares
goes back to when the April list was first introduced.
So why was Linares excluded this time? FIDE Presidential Board member Nigel
Freeman has posted
a statement on the subject: "Before the conspiracy theories get out
of hand, perhaps I can explain what happened to the best of my knowledge. With
regards to Morelia-Linares etc., in order to be completely fair, the Ratings
Committee has decided that only tournaments that finished a month before the
rating list comes into effect should be rated. Once one starts to make exceptions,
where does one stop? Why Morelia-Linares and not a whole host of others?"
Two points can be made here: Why, then, was Linares included in the calculations
of all previous April lists? When was a change in the practical application
of the guidlines for the ratings decided? Was it (and this is the key question)
done before Morelia/Linares, or did the decision come after the event had been
completed? We have addressed these questions to the FIDE Ratings Commission.
Important addendum on April 1st 2007
We have just received word from the Rating Commission that Morelia/Linares
(and the Gibtel tournament in Gibraltar) will be included in a corrected
April 2007 rating list.
And secondly: if we are not mistaken the 2007
Asian Cities Chess Championship in Tehran, which was held entirely in March
(from 1st to 9th) was included in the
tournaments used to calculate the April 2007 list. At least three other
events that spilled into March were used in the calculations. So Morelia/Linares
would not have been the only "exception". And looking back: the 15th
Asian Games tournament finished on December 14, 2006 and was rated for the January
There are a few other incongruities in the current FIDE list, e.g. the "Top
50 Women" list only has 20 players. In the past FIDE has issued corrections
to its rating lists a few days after publication, so we will wait to see
if new lists are pending. This is certainly the expectation of the following
AICF PRESS RELEASE
AICF Takes Up Linares Issue With FIDE
The All India Chess Federation has taken up the rating issue of the Morelia/Linares
Chess Tournament with FIDE, the World Chess Body for excluding the World's Premier
event from the April 2007 rating list. The AICF has requested FIDE to follow
normal norms and rate this event as was done before. Viswanathan Anand had won
this event and rating it would make him the No.1 in the World Ranking list as
of April 1, 2007.
FIDE had published the list of events rated for the April 2007 list and had
excluded the Morelia/Linares event. The AICF has asked FIDE to rate this event
as done in the past 15 or more years. The Linares Tournament has been traditionally
been included in all rating lists published by FIDE in April and excluding it
this time will be injustice to Indian chess and Viswanathan Anand.
Including the Morelia/Linares Tournament will pull down Veselin Topalov (who
finished last at Linares) and Viswanathan Anand would be the No.1. Viswanathan
Anand himself is in Germany playing the Bundesliga for defending champion Baden
Baden and was not available for comment.
The AICF Secretary D.V.Sundar has taken up the issue with FIDE and expects
the correction by FIDE as early as Monday.
Incidentally Anand (above right, photo Zugzwang.de)
has just added a few more rating points to his FIDE account by beating Luke
McShane (left) with the black pieces in the penultimate round of the German
Bundesliga. Anand's team beat Werder Bremen by 6:2 and is already German Team
The Indian broadsheets were all out to celebrate the first Asian to become
the world's number one FIDE rated player (with five predecessors in history:
Fischer, Karpov, Kasparov, Kramnik, Topalov). Many newspapers have already carried
articles in their weekend issues. Below is a sample, on Monday comes the backlash.