Armageddon Grand Final: Duda, So, Gukesh in action!

by ChessBase
9/13/2023 – The Armageddon Championship Series Finale is set to start in Berlin, Germany. An eventful year of chess rounds up with the most exciting format of them all — Armageddon. Taking place from September 14th to 20th, this high-stakes series will be broadcast across a network of 17 international television channels, making it an event of unparalleled magnitude.

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The journey to the Grand Finale has been marked by hard-fought victories in regional qualifiers and the special Women's Week (click to enlarge): 

Top-tier chess players, including luminaries such as Wesley So, Sam Shankland, Gukesh D, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Bibisara Assaubayeva, Humpy Koneru, Richard Rapport, and Jan-Krzysztof Duda, will converge for a seven-day, double-elimination showdown under intense time pressure. The ultimate goal: to secure the coveted Armageddon Championship Title and a substantial €200,000 prize fund.

Spectators will be witnessing the action featuring daily matchups consisting of two blitz games (with a three-minute base time and a two-second move increment). In the event of a deadlock, the gripping tension will be resolved through an Armageddon game, wherein White has five minutes and Black has four minutes to make their moves - a format that promises heart-stopping drama.

The Armageddon Championship Series Grand Finale boasts an unprecedented prize fund that underscores the significance of this chess event, with remarkable rewards for participants: 1st place - 80,000 EUR, 2nd place - 40,000 EUR, 3rd-4th places - 20,000 EUR each, and 5th-8th places - 10,000 EUR each.

An electrifying experience is guaranteed for viewers of the Grand Finale, complete with thrilling battles between women and men, and an array of captivating features. These include real-time tracking of players' heart rates and expended calories, alongside lightning-fast moves and cutting-edge analysis from GM Simon Williams and WGM Jovanka Houska.

To catch the action, tune in to the World Chess YouTube channel or any of the 17 global television platforms.

Short info on the Armageddon players

GM Wesley So (blitz rating: 2765):
Wesley So is a Grandmaster representing the USA, a winner of the Armageddon Championship Series: Americas. He is 3-time US Champion, and Random Chess World Champion. His peak rating of 2822 in March 2017 made him the World No.2 behind Carlsen, placing him among the top 5 in the world in the all-time rating list that was once topped by Kasparov.

GM Sam Shankland (blitz rating: 2668)
Sam Shankland is an American grandmaster, the runner-up of the Armageddon Series: Americas. He became the 2018 US Chess Champion and was the California State Champion four times between 2008 and 2012 and the State Champion in 2009. His achievements also include a bronze medal at the 2008 World U18 Championship and the title of US Junior Champion in 2010. It is noteworthy that, in addition to being a long-time elite player, Sam is also a respected author.

GM Gukesh D (blitz rating: 2659):
Grandmaster Gukesh D, a prodigious chess talent from India, clinched victory in the Armageddon Championship Series: Asia & Oceania. Renowned for his exceptional strategic insight and dynamic gameplay, Gukesh achieved the grandmaster title at a remarkably young age, making him one of the youngest grandmasters in chess history, as well as the youngest player to break the 2750 mark.

GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov (blitz rating: 2708):
Uzbekistani chess prodigy GM Nodirbek Abdusattorov secured the grandmaster title at a mere 13 years, 1 month, and 11 days, a record acknowledged by FIDE in April 2018. He is the runner-up in the Armageddon Championship Series: Asia & Oceania. Abdusattorov's accomplishments include becoming the youngest-ever World Rapid Chess Champion at 17 years and 3 months, surpassing even Magnus Carlsen. He also played a pivotal role in Uzbekistan's gold medal victory at the Chess Olympiad and holds the distinction of being the youngest player to exceed a 2400 rating.

IM Bibisara Assaubayeva (blitz rating: 2478):
International Master Bibisara Assaubayeva, born on February 26, 2004, is a Kazakh chess sensation who emerged victorious in the Armageddon Championship Series: Women’s Week. Holding the titles of International Master and Woman Grandmaster, she is a two-time reigning Women's World Blitz Chess Champion. FIDE recognized her as the Outstanding Female Chess Player of 2021 in Asia, and her remarkable achievements culminated in her securing a spot in the Guinness World Records as the youngest women's World Blitz Chess Champion, a title she claimed in 2021 and defended in 2022.

GM Humpy Koneru (blitz rating: 2448):
Grandmaster Humpy Koneru, born on March 31, 1987, is an Indian chess icon who emerged as the runner-up in the Armageddon Series: Women’s Week. She clinched the FIDE Women's Rapid Chess Championship in 2019. Notably, she became the youngest female Grandmaster at the age of 15 years and 1 month in 2002, surpassing Judit Polgár's record by 3 months. In October 2007, Humpy achieved an Elo rating of 2606, joining Polgár as the second woman to exceed 2600.

GM Richard Rapport (blitz rating: 2748):
Hungarian chess grandmaster Richard Rapport, born on March 25, 1996, and now representing Romania, emerged victorious in the Armageddon Championship Series: Europe & Africa. A prodigy, he secured the grandmaster title at a remarkable age of 13 years, 11 months, and six days, establishing himself as Hungary's youngest-ever grandmaster. Rapport's accolades include winning the Hungarian Chess Championship in 2017 and ranking as the fifth-highest-rated player globally as of May 2022.

GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda (blitz rating: 2751):
Polish chess prodigy GM Jan-Krzysztof Duda, born on April 26, 1998, emerged as the runner-up in the Armageddon Championship Series: Europe & Africa. He achieved the grandmaster title at just 15 years and 21 days in 2013. Presently, he holds the No. 1 rank in Poland and is ranked No. 24 globally (as of May 2023). Duda's achievements encompass victories at the Polish Championship (2018) and the Chess World Cup (2021), and he has been honored with the Golden Cross of Merit.

Leading partners supporting the Armageddon Championship Series

  • Kaspersky as the Official Cybersecurity Partner;
  • FIDE Online Arena as the Official Gaming Platform;
  • as the Official Partner.

Official website: with Live coverage

About World Chess

World Chess is a London-based chess gaming and entertainment company and FIDE’ official commercial partner. World Chess organized the FIDE Championship Matches in the USA, and the UK, and revolutionized the sport by signing the biggest media partnerships in history. World Chess develops Armageddon, the chess league for prime-time television. World Chess also runs FIDE Online Arena, the exclusive official chess gaming platform. More at

About Kaspersky

Kaspersky is a global cybersecurity and digital privacy company founded in 1997. Kaspersky’s deep threat intelligence and security expertise is constantly transforming into innovative solutions and services to protect businesses, critical infrastructure, governments and consumers around the globe. The company’s comprehensive security portfolio includes leading endpoint protection, specialized security products and services, as well as Cyber Immune solutions to fight sophisticated and evolving digital threats. Over 400 million users are protected by Kaspersky technologies and we help over 220,000 corporate clients protect what matters most to them. Learn more at

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