Megastars to meet in Mumbai

9/3/2003 – A top chess event has just been announced for December in Mumbai. 13 GMs will participate in the category 20 round robin tournament, including (are you holding on?) Kasparov, Karpov, Anand, Kramnik, Leko, Grischuk, Shirov, Svidler, Polgar, Bareev, Adams, Short. Maybe even Ponomariov and Ivanchuk. What a lovely Christmas present...

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The Times of India reports that the this chess spectacle will feature superstars Garry Kasparov, V. Kramnik, V. Anand, Anatoly Karpov and Judit Polgar. The tourney will be the largest ever to be held in Asia. The Category 20 Super Grandmaster World invitation tournament will be held under the auspices of the All India Chess Federation (AICF) will be played under the all-play-all format. The event will be organised by the Venus Chess Academy and is being managed by SportzPR, India’s first and only sports communication company. Chess king Garry Kasparov and the other stars have agreed in principle to take part. The dates, however, when these players are free have yet to be finalised.

The Hindu confirms: Chairman of Mumbai Chess Association Raghunandan Gokhale told reporters here today that Arch-rivals and the present and former world champions Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov are among the top 13 Grandmasters to be seen in action in the Category-20 Super Grandmaster World Invitation Chess tournament to be held in Mumbai in December. The Indian challenge would be spearheaded by Vishwanathan Anand. The tournament will also witness special lectures series and training sessions by Super GMs apart from a series of rapid games, blindfold games, where a top super GM will play blindfolded exhibition matches.

Indian Television quotes Raghunandan Gokhale as saying: "Our goal is to make this an annual event. In December we expect around 5000 people to be in attendance". In addition Venus Chess Academy will also organise the Commonwealth Chess Championship in February 2004. This will be done on behalf of the Commonwealth Chess Association. The AICF is hoping to host this event annually as well if the other commonwealth nations do not express interest.


Picture from ACM India Studies

Mumbai, formerly known as Bombay, is the commercial center of India, an archipelago located on the west coast, with a population between ten and eighteen million (depending on which extended suburbs are counted). The city's Victorian townscape is home to the glamour of Bollywood cinema, cricket on the maidans, bhelpuri on the beach and red double-decker buses. Mumbai is the industrial hub of everything from textiles to petrochemicals, and responsible for half of India's foreign trade. More at Lonely Planet.


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