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Candidates – pairings and commentary schedule

3/12/2013 – Friday March 15, 14:00h London time: Levon Aronian will play  Magnus Carlsen in the first round of the Candidates Tournament for the World Championship 2013. On Playchess, starting at around 15:00h GM Daniel King will be commenting. In this  preview of the event we bring you a charming anecdote by Malcolm Pein, some interesting statistics and predictions, and  full pairings of all rounds.
 

The Norwegian is already the world's number one player, a status he achieved in London at the first London Chess Classic staged at Olympia in 2009 when, at 19, he became the youngest to top the rankings. Since then, Carlsen has set about putting an almost unprecedented distance between himself and second ranked Vladimir Kramnik of Russia, a former world champion who is 62 points behind on 2810, to Carlsen's 2872. Since capturing the world number one slot, Carlsen has won nearly every event he has played in, bullying the opposition with a combination of strategic mastery, and, in games that sometimes go to a seventh hour, superior physical endurance.

It's hard to grasp the all encompassing knowledge Magnus possesses, but this anecdote gives some insight into his incredible brain. Last year I met him in Dublin ... where I mentioned that I was playing a tournament in Norway the week after in a small fishing town called Harstad in the north of the country. I had played there once before in 1995 . I described how the journey to the fringes of the Artic Circle was so tiring I had fallen asleep during one of my games. Quick as flash, with the slightly self-effacing smirk he produces when he knows he is going to freak you out, Carlsen turned to me and said: "Was that the Botvinnik game?" That's chess code for: the game you lost like an idiot while playing against the Botvinnik Variation of the Slav Defence. It gradually dawned on me that he had total recall of a game I played in a totally insignificant tournament 17 years previously. It wasn't even a good game. Magnus hadn't even learnt the rules when it was played. I was so shocked, I couldn't ask him how he could possibly know about it, never mind remember the detail.

Read the full article in The Telegraph here


Carlsen is not taking success in London for granted. "Having a high rating doesn't help me in the Candidates," he says. "The others won't be intimidated." But nor is he given to false modesty. "I have no doubts that when I am playing at my best I am the best. The ratings don't lie."

He is an odd combination of shyness and self-confidence. Socially reserved – though less so than he used to be – he nevertheless enjoys being No 1. "It's important to be self-confident and optimistic," he says. "If you're not optimistic, you're not going to grab your chances when they're there."

We meet in the plush Oslo waterfront offices of one of his Norwegian sponsors, legal firm Simonsen Vogt Wiig. Carlsen is wearing fashionably distressed jeans and an expensive-looking striped shirt emblazoned with his sponsors' names. Almost singlehandedly, he is trying to bring chess into the world of 21st-century sport. He earns €1m (£870,000) a year, has a full-time manager, has just been on a two-week training camp in the Canary Islands and for a couple of years was the global face of Dutch fashion company G-Star Raw. For the Cinderella sport of chess, Carlsen offers hope of a ticket to the ball.

Read Stephen Moss' full article in The Guardian


Who will win?

Player Stats by Geoffrey Borg

In a recent article the CEO of FIDE writes: "Recently ChessBase started to run a series of articles on the individual Candidates and the direction of the articles prompted me to try and find out the overall percentages and interesting statistics of the various Candidates." Borg provides the following statistics:

Total Games between all players    1,303
Most number of games 95 (Ivanchuk-Kramnik)
Least number of games 24 (Carlsen-Grischuk)
Most games 448 (Ivanchuk)
Least games 250 (Radjabov

"So who will win?" writes Borg. "Well, statistics only assist by referring to the past and fail to take account of the player psyche on the day, form during the tournament, opening preparation success and a number of other factors. These players are all extremely strong and solid players and in reality anything is possible in London! I will let the readers dissect the tables below but there are some very interesting player pairs!"

The full spreadsheet with the individual results, openings, etc., can be downloaded here.

The Candidates Tournament in London

The London Candidates 2013 will be the strongest tournament of its kind in history. The Prize Fund to be shared by the players totals €510,000. The winner of the Candidates will become the Challenger to Viswanathan Anand who has reigned as World Champion since 2007.

Players

Seed 
Rank 
 Name
Country
Rating
B-Year
1
1
 Carlsen, Magnus
NOR
 2872
 1990
2
2
 Kramnik, Vladimir
RUS
 2810
 1975
3
3
 Aronian, Levon
ARM
 2809
 1982
4
4
 Radjabov, Teimour
AZE
 2793
 1987
5
10
 Grischuk, Alexander
RUS
 2764
 1983
6
13
 Ivanchuk, Vassily
UKR
 2757
 1969
7
14
 Svidler, Peter
RUS
 2747
 1976
8
18
 Gelfand, Boris
ISR
 2740
 1968

Venue: The IET at 2 Savoy Place, 2 Savoy Place, London WC2R 0BL

London and the Thames, with the IET Savoy Place on the right bank


Explore the venue in Google Maps or view it on a larger screen

Schedule and results

Round 1 March 15 at 14:00
Levon Aronian
-
Magnus Carlsen
Boris Gelfand
-
Teimour Radjabov
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Alexander Grischuk
Peter Svidler
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Playchess commentary: GM Daniel King
Round 2 March 16 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Alexander Grischuk
-
Peter Svidler
Teimour Radjabov
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Levon Aronian
-
Boris Gelfand
Playchess commentary: GM Chris Ward
Round 3 March 17 at 14:00
Boris Gelfand
-
Magnus Carlsen
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Levon Aronian
Peter Svidler
-
Teimour Radjabov
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Alexander Grischuk
Playchess commentary: GM Yasser Seirawan
Round 4 March 19 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Alexander Grischuk
Teimour Radjabov
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Levon Aronian 
-
Peter Svidler
Boris Gelfand
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Playchess commentary: GM Daniel King
Round 5 March 20 at 14:00
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Magnus Carlsen
Peter Svidler
-
Boris Gelfand
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Levon Aronian
Alexander Grischuk
-
Teimour Radjabov
Playchess commentary: GM Yasser Seirawan
Round 6 March 21 at 14:00
Peter Svidler
-
Magnus Carlsen
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Alexander Grischuk
-
Boris Gelfand
Teimour Radjabov
-
Levon Aronian
Playchess commentary: GM Chris Ward
Round 7 March 23 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Teimour Radjabov
Levon Aronian
-
Alexander Grischuk
Boris Gelfand
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Peter Svidler
Playchess commentary: GM Alejandro Ramirez
Round 8 March 24 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Levon Aronian
Teimour Radjabov
-
Boris Gelfand
Alexander Grischuk
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Peter Svidler
Playchess commentary: GM Alejandro Ramirez
Round 9 March 25 at 14:00
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Magnus Carlsen
Peter Svidler
-
Alexander Grischuk
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Teimour Radjabov
Boris Gelfand
-
Levon Aronian
Playchess commentary: GM Maurice Ashley
Round 10 March 27 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Boris Gelfand
Levon Aronian
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Teimour Radjabov
-
Peter Svidler
Alexander Grischuk
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Playchess commentary: GM Yasser Seirawan
Round 11 March 28 at 14:00
Alexander Grischuk
-
Magnus Carlsen
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Teimour Radjabov
Peter Svidler
-
Levon Aronian
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Boris Gelfand
Playchess commentary: GM Chris Ward
Round 12 March 29 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Boris Gelfand
-
Peter Svidler
Levon Aronian
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Teimour Radjabov
-
Alexander Grischuk
Playchess commentary: GM Daniel King
Round 13 March 31 at 14:00
Teimour Radjabov
-
Magnus Carlsen
Alexander Grischuk
-
Levon Aronian
Vladimir Kramnik
-
Boris Gelfand
Peter Svidler
-
Vassily Ivanchuk
Playchess commentary: GM Daniel King
Round 14 April 1 at 14:00
Magnus Carlsen
-
Peter Svidler
Vassily Ivanchuk
-
Vladimir Kramnik
Boris Gelfand
-
Alexander Grischuk
Levon Aronian
-
Teimour Radjabov
Playchess commentary: GM Maurice Ashley

The games start at 14:00h = 2 p.m. London time = 15:00h European time, 17:00h Moscow, 8 a.m. New York. You can find your regional starting time here. Note that Britain and Europe switch to Summer time on March 31, so that the last two rounds will start an hour earlier for places that do not swich or have already done so (e.g. USA).

The commentary on Playchess begins one hour after the start of the games and is free for premium members.

Links

The games will be broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server Playchess.com. If you are not a member you can download a free Playchess client there and get immediate access. You can also use ChessBase 12 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.

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Topics Candidates

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