17-year-old U.S. Chess Champion Grandmaster Hikaru Nakamura and World Women’s top-ranked Grandmaster Susan Polgar have agreed to play a unique exhibition game during the Millennium Chess Festival on February 26, 2005, in Virginia Beach, Virginia, USA, it was announced today.
The unique annual event is called the “GM Dinner / Exhibition Match”, and features two grandmasters playing each other from separate rooms before a live audience with moves relayed by radio. As they play, the GMs explain for the audience what they are thinking about and why they are choosing certain options. For the average casual player it is an opportunity for insight into the amazing mind of a chess grandmaster. (The GMs play on “wallboards” that allow the audience to follow along with the moves he/she is discussing.)
This year’s event, the fourth in a popular series started in 2002 at the Millennium Chess Festival, features two very famous players:
GM Susan Polgar was a child prodigy in her native Hungary, and became the first woman to earn the men’s chess Grandmaster title. She taught her two younger sisters how to play and they also became grandmasters (the youngest, Judit, now ranked #9 on the world men’s rankings list.).
Susan won her 4th World Championship title in 1996 before retiring to have a family. Now a U.S. citizen she returned to chess in 2004 to lead the USA to a first-ever medal in the prestigious World Chess Olympiad. In addition to the team Silver medal, Susan also captured two additional individual Gold medals and one Silver medal including best overall performance of the Women’s Olympiad bringing her total medal count to 10 (5 Gold, 4 Silver and 1 Bronze).
In addition, she has a 56 consecutive Olympiad game scoring streak without a single loss (this is comparable to Joe DiMaggio's incredible 56-game hitting streak in baseball). In fact, she has never lost a single game in the Olympiads.
GM Hikaru Nakamura last month won the U.S. Chess Championship, at just age 16. He is now ranked in the world's top 100 and last year also reached the round of 16 in the 2004 FIDE World Championship matches. Nakamura broke Bobby Fischer's record of the youngest U.S. grandmaster by four months, at age 15 years 2 months. Known for his aggressive and imaginative play, many experts regard him as the first home-grown American since Fischer to have a chance to one-day challenge for the world championship.
The GM Dinner / Exhibition Match will take place Saturday, February 26, 2005, at 7:30pm, at the Millennium Chess Festival at the Ramada Plaza Oceanfront Resort, 57th & Atlantic Street, in Virginia Beach, Virginia.
The Millennium Chess Festival (Feb 25-27) is sponsored by the consulting firm of Booz Allen Hamilton and is presented by Beach Events and the city of Virginia Beach.
The Festival also includes the main tournament, in which many GMs and other players of all strengths will compete in various class sections, plus other special events including a lecture by Susan Polgar and a “Fischer-Random Chess” blitz tournament.
For more information: Millennium
Chess Festival homepage
Contact: Tom Braunlich, tom.braunlich (at) cox.net Tel: (918) 749-3163