Chess professional vs soccer star in Tromsø

6/4/2010 – Last weekend more than 200 people from the Sports Board and athletic federations in Norway met in Tromsø, Norway, to discuss sporting issues. To kick things off the world's highest ranked player, Magnus Carlsen, played an exhibition game – two minutes vs five minutes – against Norwegian soccer star Sigurd Rushfeldt. The event was carried on national TV.

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The Arctic Circle city of Tromsø is an applicant to stage the 41st Chess Olympiad in 2014, for which the Norwegian government has guaranteed a $12 million budget. The meeting was held at the Rica Ishavshotel, where the Board of Tromsø 2014 usually convenes. On the first day, to kick things off, the world's number one and world blitz champion Magnus Carlsen played an exhibition game against Sigurd Rushfeldt.


We meet at last! The chess professional vs the football star

The football star plays for Tromsø I.L. in the top Norwegian football league, which is leading the league in front of Rosenborg. Rushfeldt has played for clubs like Austria Wien and Racing Santander. Besides being a footballer, he is also a keen chess player.


Magnus had white and two minutes, Sigurd black and five minutes for the game


About 250 spectators watched the game in Tromso

In the blitz game between Magnus Carlsen and Sigurd Rushfeldt the chess professional had white and his opponent received a time handicap – five minutes for Rushfeldt and two minutes for Carlsen. Here is the game:

Carlsen,Magnus - Rushfeldt,Sigurd [B33]
Rica Hotel Tromsø, 28.05.2010

1.e4 c5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.d4 cxd4 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5.Nc3 e5. A Sicilian Sveshnikov, where one normally sees Magnus on the black side of the board. 6.Ndb5 d6 7.Bg5 a6 8.Na3 b5 9.Bxf6 gxf6 10.Nd5 Be6 11.c3 Rc8 12.Nc2 Be7 13.Nce3. This position has occurred in a number of games before, but White won all of them. 13...0-0 14.Qh5 Kh8 15.Rd1 Rg8 16.g3

16...a5? Black gives up his b-pawn without compensation. 17.Bxb5 Qd7 18.Nb6. And now a deadly fork of the queen and rook. 18...Qd8 19.Nxc8 Qxc8 20.Nf5 Bxf5 21.Qxf5 Nd8??

22.Qxc8 Oops, the queen was hanging, the game is over. 1-0.

Jan S. Berglund was the commentator during the game, which was accompanied by laughter and encouraging words from the audience as Rushfeldt lost more and more material. The game was shown in Norwegian TV.


Click on the above image for the report (in Norwegian), which is the first 1:12 minutes.

Thanks to Gunnar Berg Hanssen from Tromsø, Norway, for the information.


Previous ChessBase reports on Tromsø

Norway, Albena submit Olympiad bids
03.05.2010 – The bids to host the 41st Chess Olympiad in 2014 were due on April 30, 2010. One came from the Arctic Circle town of Tromsø and carries a government guarantee of NOK 70 million (US $12 million). The other was a last-minute bid by the Bulgarian Chess Federation for the Black Sea town of Albena. Our report includes an interview with Morten Sand, international FIDE advisor. Who will win?

Norway provides US $12 million for Olympiad bid
23.12.2009 – Good news. Boosted by the world number one place of Magnus Carlsen, the Government of Norway has just released the sum of NOK 70 million ($12 million) to support the bid of Tromsø, an island city in the Arctic Circle, to host the 41st Chess Olympiad in 2014. It would be a great place for chess players to go, as we have shown in many past reports. Today we add to these with a whale of a story.

Interview with Monika Socko, winner of the Arctic Challenge
20.08.2009 – Grandmaster Monika Socko is from Poland, married to Polish GM Bartoz Socko, who is two hundred points higher than her on the FIDE scale. Still, Monika finished first in the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø, with 7.0/9 and a rating performance of 2639, while her husband came 13th, a full point behind her. Son Szymon also played. Misha Savinov spoke to the winner.

How young Ray made his first GM norm
13.08.2009 The Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø ended last Sunday, with four players sharing the top score of 7.0/9 points. One of them, a 14-year-old lad, stood to make a GM norm. But to do so Ray Robson had to hold the Swedish Champion GM Emanuel Berg to a draw in the final round, with the black pieces. To compound matters Berg was desperate to win. Pictorial report by Misha Savinov.

Tromsø 2009 – Socko, Petrov and Robson lead
08.08.2009 – Make no mistake, it is GM Monika Socko, not her top-rated husband Bartosz, who is leading the Arctic Challenge with 6.0/7 and a 2703 performance. No less sensational is that 14-year-old IM Ray Robson is sharing first with a 2679 performance. The action is exciting ("hammer time") and the landscape lovely in the land of the midnight sun. Big illustrated report by Misha Savinov.

Tromsø 2009 – four lead in Arctic Chess Challenge
06.08.2009 – At the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø 120 players are competing in the year’s most prestigious Norwegian event. After five of nine rounds there are four players in the lead. Three are GMs, one a female, but the fourth is of particular interest: 14-year-old US American IM Ray Robson, whom some people are calling the new Bobby Fischer. Pictorial report by IM Torstein Bae.

Tromsø 2009 – the Arctic Chess Challenge
02.08.2009 The Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø is this year’s most prestigious event in Norway. More than 35 titled players are taking part, including 13 GMs. Top seed is Polish GM Bartosz Socko, rated 2656, with three more super-GMs just below him. The tournament is truly an international open: the 118 participants hail from 26 countries, and from all parts of the world. Pictorial report.

Tromsø 2009 – the Arctic Chess Challenge
22.07.2009 – The city of Tromsø, located within the Arctic Circle in Norway, has become a hot-bed of chess. Not only is Tromsø bidding for the Chess Olympiad 2014 – every year they stage a very attractive chess tournament in this beautiful location. This year the Arctic Challenge will be staged from August 1st to 9th, with 132 entries and lots of title holders – an ideal opportunity to make norms.

Tromsø – a Chess Olympiad in the midnight sun?
18.11.2008 – It lies well within the Arctic Circle and has a history of chess activity. Now the city of Tromsø is bidding to host the 2014 Chess Olympiad in one of the most attractive regions of Europe. A full presentation is being made at the Olympiad in Dresden. We visited the city this summer and support their bid with some WYSIWYG evidence of why it is ideally suited for an Olympiad. Photo report.

Chess in the Arctic Circle – GM Igor Kurnosov triumphs
18.08.2008 – For the third time the Tromsø Chess Club staged an International Open in the Arctic Circle. It ran from August 2nd to 10th 2008, with sky high prizes, by Norwegian standards (total prize fund 11,000 Euros). The venue is spectacular, the atmosphere warm and generous. And the place is full of Carlsens: Magnus, Henrik, Sigrun, Ellen, Ingrid and Signe. Part one of our big pictorial report.

Moiseenko wins the Arctic Chess Challenge
12.08.2007 – In the end it was a super-GM who took the unshared first place in the Tromsø Midnight Sun tournament: Alexander Moiseenko of the Ukraine scored 7.5/9 to overtake the long-time leader, "Mr Sunshine" Kjetil Lie, who had beaten him in round four. Top seed Magnus Carlsen recovered from a poor start to share 2-4. Like his parents we expect Magnus to scale the Store Blåmannen.

Carlsen vs Carlsen – Magnus beats his dad
10.08.2007 – That is hardly a surprise, since the 16-year-old is over six hundred points stronger than his first teacher. But then again Henrik Carlsen has grounding powers... After seven rounds of the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø it is Norwegian GM Kjetil A. Lie who is in the lead, with 5.5 points, followed by four players with 5.0 points each. Report with pictures and videos.

Second Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø
07.08.2007 – The Norwegian island town of Tromsø lies well within the Arctic Circle, which means that this time of the year the sun never sets. Tromsø is playing host to a strong GM tournament from August 4th-12th, 2007. Top seed is Magnus Carlsen, who rushed in from his victory in Biel and did not have a great start here (3.0/4, place ten). Two other GMs, Macieja and Lie, lead with 4.0/4. Round four report.

Shipov wins Midnight Sun, Carlsen second
03.07.2006 – The Midnight Sun Chess Challenge in Tromsø, Norway, was won by Russian GM Sergei Shipov, who scored 7.5 points in nine rounds. Second was fifteen-year-old Magnus Carlsen with 7.0, who beat Leif Erland Johannessen on tiebreak points. We bring you a final report with pictures from Whale's Island.

Carlsen leads the Midnight Sun Challenge
28.06.2006 – A fifteen-year-old super-grandmaster, blessed with an Elo of 2646, is leading the Midnight Sun Chess Challenge in Tromsø. Magnus Carlsen of Norway looks set to break a few new records with the form that he is showing these days. The event is being held well within the Arctic Circle, where at this time of year the nights are bright as day. Misha Savinov reports.

Midnight Sun Chess Challenge in Tromsø
26.06.2006 – There are parts in the world where, during a certain period of the year, the sun never sets. The northern Norwegian town of Tromsø, which lies well within the Arctic Circle, is one such place. From June 24th to July 2nd, in the middle of the midnight sun period, it is holding chess festival with GMs like Krasenkow and Magnus Carlsen. Big illustrated report.

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