Candidates – Carlsen and Paulson in BBC News

by ChessBase
3/20/2013 – On the free day, Monday, the national British TV channel BBC News interviewed the organiser of the Candidates Tournament Andrew Paulson, and the highest-ranking chess player in the world Magnus Carlsen. During the discussion the presenter Ros Atkins played a game against Magnus, in which he was proud to give a check on move eight. Watch it on BBC News.

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From March 14 to April 1, 2013, FIDE and AGON – the World Chess Federation’s commercial partner – are staging the 2013 Candidates Tournament for the World Chess Championship 2013. It will be the strongest tournament of its kind in history. The venue is The IET, 2 Savoy Place, London. 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. The main sponsor for the Candidates is State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic SOCAR, which has sponsored elite events chess in the past.

Magnus Carlsen, the highest-ranking chess player in the world, is in London for a tournament which will choose the player to challenge the reigning world champion, the Indian Viswanathan Anand. BBC presenter Ros Atkins interviewed Carlsen while playing him, and spoke to Andrew Paulson, the tournament organiser.

You can watch the seven-minute interview on this BBC News page or on the above video embed.

Andrew Paulson explains what he is trying to achieve with his involvement in chess: "What we're trying to do is turn chess from a game played by two people into something that's entertaining, something that is spectator sport.

In one interesting section Ros Atkins asks Magnus "What's the dynamic between you and one of your big rivals... Are you aware of the other person, or is all of your focus on the board. Is it like playing a computer for all you care, or does the other person matter?", to which the Norwegian replies: "No, the other person matters. There are certain psychological elements. Sometimes you make decisions that you perhaps wouldn't have made against the computer because you think either for humans in general or for that particular opponent it might be difficult to respond to. That is part of what I like in chess: it is psychological warfare at the board, and when you play computers you lose that element."

Incidentally the opening Ros Atkins played (as White) against Magnus went 1.d4 Nf6 2.Nc3 d5 3.e4, which the BBC man called his "Sicilian Defence, Dragon Variation". It continued 3...dxe4 4.Nxe4 Nxe4 5.f3 Nd6 6.Bf4 e6 7.Bxd6 Bxd6 8.Bb5+ and here Atkins says: "I'll probably never have the chance to say it again against the greatest chess player of all time: check!" Magnus plays 8...c6 and Atkins says: "Sadly that didn't do the trick."

On a rest day in the tournament, Magnus Carlsen spoke to the BBC's Tim Franks and outlined the similarities between chess and physical sports. He said: "I think there are many elements of sport in chess. We prepare very seriously for the games, the main objective is winning, the players prepare physically as well as mentally, and it's very tough – you get seriously tired playing long games." You can listen to the radio interview here.


The games will be broadcast live on the official web site and on the chess server 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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