The Chess Classic has started in London!

12/4/2015 – The main elite event with an average rating of 2784.2 has begun. Before the start World Champion Carlsen appeared on a prime time BBC, managing to checkmate his opponent in 17 seconds. Amruta Mokal of ChessBase India has sent us exclusive pictures of the preparation of the event. A new development: You can watch the games live in her news report!

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The 7th London Chess Classic, England's premier tournament, takes place at its traditional venue of Kensington Olympia from Friday December 4th to Sunday December 13th. The main event, the strongest ever held in the UK, is a nine-round ten-player super tournament played at a rate of 40 moves in 2 hours, followed by the rest of the game in one hour with a 30-second increment from move 41. The overall prize fund is $300,000, with the winner getting $75,000.

Watch it live on Playchess!

When the games are running, clicking on the above link will take you to our live broadcast. It is free and open to all – as a Premium Account member you have access to the Live Book, Chat, chess engine analysis – all in your browser, on a notebook, tablet or even your smartphone. And the Let's Check function will show you what the most powerful computers in the world think of the current position, as each move is being played. Below are the four most-watched boards.

Preparations for the Chess Classic in London

Pictorial report by Amruta Mokal

The main event at the London Chess Classic featuring eight of the top ten players of the world begins from the 4th of December 2015. On the previous day I visited the playing venue Olympia in Kensington, London and witnessed the amount of preparatory work that goes in to organizing such a high class event.

The road outside the Olympia Centre in Kensington, where the tournament is going to take place

The stage on which the gladiators will fight it out

The panoramic view from the stage of the seating arrangements for the spectators

The press conference room where the sound and quality tests were being done to avoid last minute glitches

The huge and spacious playing hall for the FIDE Open which will take place alongside the main event. The tournament, which has the first prize of £5,000, is pretty strong, with players like Evgeny Postny, Tigran Gharamian, Hrant Melkumyan, Edouard Romain and many others.

The lull before the storm!

In between running from one end of the venue to the other, operations director
Tao Bhokanandh takes out a moment to pose for our cameras

The charismatic Jennifer Shahade is here to report for the Grand Chess Tour website

The five-star Hilton hotel is where all the elite players have been given accommodation.
The hotel is just 200 metres away from the playing hall.

Magnus has been recently having a few dismal events which have brought him "down" to 2834 (!)
on the ratings list. He needs to put on his war face and get in to action at the London Chess Classic.

Before the tournament begins the World Champion appeared on the BBC one show with Matt Baker and Alex Jones on the 3rd of December. The other celebrity next to Magnus was the singing star Josh Groban

Magnus played a bullet game with Matt Baker where he had 30 seconds as opposed to his opponent’s two minutes. The World Champion checkmated his opponent in just twelve moves with thirteen seconds left on his clock.

[Event "The One show"] [Site "?"] [Date "2015.12.03"] [Round "?"] [White "Baker, Matt"] [Black "Carlsen, Magnus"] [Result "0-1"] [ECO "D00"] [PlyCount "24"] [EventDate "2015.??.??"] 1. d4 d5 2. f3 {Novelty?!} e5 3. b4 exd4 4. f4 Bxb4+ 5. Kf2 Nf6 6. Nf3 Ne4+ 7. Kg1 Bc5 8. Qd3 Nc6 9. g4 Bxg4 10. Nxd4 Bxd4+ 11. Kg2 Qh4 12. Ba3 Qf2# {[#]} 0-1

When Magnus was asked how far he thought in his game against Matt Baker he replied:
“It was difficult to think ahead because I couldn’t guess any of your moves!”
If you live in the UK you can replay the entire show here. The chess part starts from 12m 45s.

The player’s posters have been made in “old West Wanted style”

The creative minds behind this idea for the posters are Geoff, Mark and Gerald of Create Services

You have to make sure that good food is available for the participants!

IM Malcolm Pein – he looks completely cool on the outside, but everyone knows the amount of work
that has to be done by a tournament director one day prior to the start of such a huge event

The tournament begins today at 16.00 hours local time with the following pairings:

Round 1 Friday 4 Dec, 16.00-23.00
Veselin Topalov
-
Anish Giri
Alexander Grischuk
-
Hikaru Nakamura
M Vachier-Lagrave
-
Magnus Carlsen
Fabiano Caruana
-
Levon Aronian
Viswanathan Anand
-
Michael Adams

The players are not only playing for the London Chess Classic title but also for the additional prize money and Grand Chess Tour standings (full details here). The players are also fighting for the top three Grand Chess Tour prizes. That’s how the GCT standings look currently:

All pictures for these reports were taken by Amruta Mokal, who is a not only an enthusiastic photographer but also a professional chess player with four WIM norms. Photography is her passion and she loves to cover tournaments, capturing various expressions and emotions of chess players so engrossed in the game. She is also the wife of ChessBase editor Sagar Shah, with whom she has founded ChessBase India.

Amruta is also recording videos for ChessBase. If you have a Premium Account
(or Playchess Premium) you can watch her lecture on the Sicilian Paulsen here.

Schedule of the London Chess Classic 2015

Round 1 Friday 4 Dec, 16.00-23.00
Veselin Topalov
-
Anish Giri
Alexander Grischuk
-
Hikaru Nakamura
M Vachier-Lagrave
-
Magnus Carlsen
Fabiano Caruana
-
Levon Aronian
Viswanathan Anand
-
Michael Adams
 
Round 2 Sat. 5 Dec, 14.00-21.00
Anish Giri
-
Michael Adams
Levon Aronian
-
Viswanathan Anand
Magnus Carlsen
-
Fabiano Caruana
Hikaru Nakamura
-
M Vachier-Lagrave
Veselin Topalov
-
Alexander Grischuk
Round 3 Sunday 6 Dec, 14.00-21.00
Alexander Grischuk
-
Anish Giri
M Vachier-Lagrave 
-
Veselin Topalov
Fabiano Caruana
-
Hikaru Nakamura
Viswanathan Anand
-
Magnus Carlsen
Michael Adams
-
Levon Aronian
 
Round 4 Monday 7 Dec, 16.00-23.00
Anish Giri
-
Levon Aronian
Magnus Carlsen
-
Michael Adams
Hikaru Nakamura
-
Viswanathan Anand
Veselin Topalov
-
Fabiano Caruana
Alexander Grischuk
-
M Vachier-Lagrave
Round 5 Tuesday 8 Dec, 16.00-23.00
M Vachier-Lagrave 
-
Anish Giri
Fabiano Caruana
-
Alexander Grischuk
Viswanathan Anand
-
Veselin Topalov
Michael Adams
-
Hikaru Nakamura
Levon Aronian
-
Magnus Carlsen
 
Wednesday 11 Dec – Free day
Round 6 Thursday 10 Dec, 16.00-23.00
Anish Giri
-
Magnus Carlsen
Hikaru Nakamura
-
Levon Aronian
Veselin Topalov
-
Michael Adams
Alexander Grischuk
-
Viswanathan Anand
M Vachier-Lagrave
-
Fabiano Caruana
 
Round 7 Friday 11 Dec, 16.00-23.00
Fabiano Caruana
-
Anish Giri
Viswanathan Anand
-
M Vachier-Lagrave
Michael Adams
-
Alexander Grischuk
Levon Aronian
-
Veselin Topalov
Magnus Carlsen
-
Hikaru Nakamura
Round 8 Saturday 12 Dec, 14.00-21.00
Anish Giri
-
Hikaru Nakamura
Veselin Topalov
-
Magnus Carlsen
Alexander Grischuk
-
Levon Aronian
M Vachier-Lagrave
-
Michael Adams
Fabiano Caruana
-
Viswanathan Anand
 
Round 9 Sunday 13 Dec, 14.00-21.00
Viswanathan Anand
-
Anish Giri
Michael Adams
-
Fabiano Caruana
Levon Aronian
-
M Vachier-Lagrave
Magnus Carlsen
-
Alexander Grischuk
Hikaru Nakamura
-
Veselin Topalov

Live commentary on Playchess

Day and round English German
04.12 Friday Round 1 Merijn van Delft Sebastian Siebrecht
05.12 Saturday Round 2 Oliver Reeh/Karsten Müller Sebastian Siebrecht
06.12 Sunday Round 3 Merijn van Delft Oliver Reeh/Karsten Müller
07.12 Monday Round 4 Merijn van Delft Georgios Souleidis/Dorian Rogozenco
08.12 Tuesday Round 5 Merijn van Delft Oliver Reeh/Dorian Rogozenco
10.12 Thursday Round 6 Merijn van Delft Sebastian Siebrecht
11.12 Friday Round 7 Mihail Marin Sebastian Siebrecht
12.12 Saturday Round 8 Georgios Souleidis/Oliver Reeh Sebastian Siebrecht
13.12 Sunday Round 9 Yannick Pelletier Oliver Reeh/Martin Breutigam

Links

The games are being 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 or any of our Fritz compatible chess programs.
 


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KevinC KevinC 12/5/2015 01:01
And Matt Baker looks like he is rated about 400, so RIGHTLY, Magnus should have mated him with time to spare.
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