Garry Kasparov returns to competition!

7/5/2017 – This is neither prank nor clever wording: Garry Kasparov will be playing in the official St. Louis leg of the Grand Chess Tour from August 14-19, 2017. Please note that this is the Rapid and Blitz competition, just as the ones held in Paris and Levuen these last weeks, and not the classical events. However, this is not an exhibition event, and will determine the official Grand Chess Tour rankings as well as FIDE ratings of the players. Here is the press release.

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Historic Sinquefield Cup Brings Top World Chess Talent to Saint Louis; Legendary World Champion Garry Kasparov Comes out of Retirement for Inaugural Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz Event

World's Best Face-off at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis Aug. 2-19, 2017

SAINT LOUIS, July 5, 2017  -- History is being made this August in Saint Louis. The world's most elite chess players of both past and present will be facing off in the U.S. Chess Capital during the Sinquefield Cup, the most prestigious chess tournament hosted on U.S. soil. Following the Sinquefield Cup, legendary World Champion Garry Kasparov will be coming out of retirement to compete against world's top chess talent of modern time in the inaugural Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz tournament as a wildcard. The Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz tournament is the newest stop on the 2017 Grand Chess Tour.

Sinquefield Cup Boasts One of Strongest Fields in Tournament's History

The Sinquefield Cup, held at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis (CCSCSL) Aug. 2-12, 2017, will feature ten of the top chess players from around the globe competing for a total prize fund of $300,000. The tournament is the third of five stops on the 2017 Grand Chess Tour (GCT) - a circuit of international chess events featuring the world's elite chess talent, created in partnership between the CCSCSL, Chess Promotions, Ltd. (London Chess Classic) and the Kasparov Chess Foundation. The tournament is named after Dr. Jeanne and Rex Sinquefield, founders of the CCSCSL.

The Sinquefield Cup headliners include World Champion and No. 1 ranked player, Magnus Carlsen, who will be returning to Saint Louis to take on the reigning Sinquefield Cup champion, World No. 3 ranked player, American Grandmaster Wesley So. Not far behind is World No. 5 ranked player and fan favorite, American GM Fabiano Caruana, who will be in the hunt for the trophy as well. The third and final American player participating in the 2017 Sinquefield Cup is GM Hikaru Nakamura, ranked No. 7. Once again, the U.S. is the only country with three players ranked in the top ten globally.

History to Be Made: Garry Kasparov Will Return to Competition Play

Legendary World Champion and 13TH World Champion in chess history, Garry Kasparov, will be competing in the Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz competition Aug. 14-19, 2017, which features six of the Grand Chess Tour players and four wildcard picks playing for a total prize fund of $150,000. The Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz competition is the fourth stop on the Grand Chess Tour.

Kasparov came to international fame as the youngest world chess champion in history in 1985 at the age of 22. He retired from professional chess in 2005 after a record 20 years as the world's top-ranked player, and now – 12 years post-career – he's coming back to the board in Saint Louis.

Garry Kasparov during the Ultimate Moves exhibition event in St Louis (photo by Lennart Ootes)

"It's a thrill to officially be returning to the game, and certainly not something I would have anticipated more than a decade after my retirement," said World Champion Kasparov. "Coming back to the board in Saint Louis is truly an honor – I wouldn't want to commemorate this moment anywhere else."

"It's a pleasure to host the Sinquefield Cup again this year as one of the United States stops on the Grand Chess Tour," said Tony Rich, Executive Director of the CCSCSL. "Not only is the caliber of talent historic in this year's tournament – but the fact that legendary World Champion Kasparov has chosen to come out of retirement for this inaugural Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz event is truly unprecedented."

Play Continues with Ultimate Moves

Finally, at the conclusion of the Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz, the CCSCSL will host the Ultimate Moves blitz games Aug. 19. Ultimate Moves is an event featuring a lively series of rapid and blitz games among Grand Chess Tour players and special guests.

The 2017 Sinquefield Cup and Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz rounds, as well as the Ultimate Moves games will be streamed live daily on www.grandchesstour.org, featuring play-by-play and analysis from the world-renowned commentary team of GM Yasser Seirawan, WGM Jennifer Shahade, and GM Maurice Ashley, as well as Spanish commentary by GM Alejandro Ramirez. Live spectators may view the action in the tournament hall and enjoy additional GM-led commentary on-site.

In addition to the Sinquefield Cup, the U.S. Championship and U.S. Women's Championship, and the U.S. Junior and U.S. Girls' Junior Championship, make up the most prestigious chess tournaments held in the United States each year – all held at the CCSCSL.

For more information, visit www.saintlouischessclub.org or www.grandchesstour.org.

2017 Sinquefield Cup Field
Title Name URS Ranking *FIDE Rating Age Federation
GM Magnus Carlsen 1 2832 26 Norway
GM Hikaru Nakamura 2 2785 29 U.S.
GM Wesley So 3 2812 23 U.S.
GM Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 6 2796 26 France
GM Fabiano Caruana 7 2808 24 U.S.
GM Levon Aronian 8 2793 36 Armenia
GM Sergey Karjakin 10 2781 26 Russia
GM Viswanathan Anand 12 2786 47 India
GM Ian Nepomniachtchi 13 2732 26 Russia
GM Peter Svidler Wildcard 2756 40 Russia
*FIDE Classical Rating, June 2017 

 

2017 Saint Louis Rapid and Blitz Field
Title Name URS Ranking *FIDE Rating Age Federation
GM Hikaru Nakamura 2 2796 29 U.S.
GM Fabiano Caruana 7 2752 24 U.S.
GM Levon Aronian 8 2797 36 Armenia
GM Sergey Karjakin 10 2773 26 Russia
GM Viswanathan Anand 12 2789 47 India
GM Ian Nepomniachtchi 13 2819 26 Russia
GM David Navara Wildcard 2737 32 Czech Republic 
GM Le Quang Liem Wildcard 2747 26 Vietnam 
GM Lenier Dominguez Wildcard 2796 33 Cuba 
GM Garry Kasparov Wildcard  N/A 54 Russia 
*FIDE Rapid Rating, June 2017

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Rational Rational 8/15/2017 05:01
If Fischer had had modern day computers, then everybody else would have had a 3200 Elo computer as well. so therefore Fischer's advantage due to his opening preparation would have been reduced so the gap between him and the other players would have been less. This was also true for Kasparov the time he was furthest ahead of the rest was in 1990 , when he'd got the experience of matches with Karpov and computers were not that strong yet so as to help ALL GMs with their preparation
Enpris Enpris 8/14/2017 01:54
So exciting to see you back Garry! Looking forward to some rich chess from a true artist.
K_Kara87 K_Kara87 7/24/2017 02:13
I wish Tal, Alekhine and Fischer could play as well. It could be better :)
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/12/2017 05:26
@ drcloak : "Haha, Garry is going to get smashed. You heard it here first."

In my opinion, to "get smashed", for Kasparov, in these circumstances, would more or less mean to be in the second half of the overall rankings.

As for me, I think that Kasparov will be nearly certainly in the first half, that he can very possibly be on the podium, and that it is even quite possible that he will won the event.

We will see who will be right !...
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/12/2017 05:25
I finally think that the number of commentators is probably more significant in itself that the number of posts (cf. the two last posts - the number of posts by commentator can introduce, in a way, some sort of a bias), even if, nonetheless, the number of posts isn't devoid of interest, in my opinion.

So there it is : there were 35 commentators under this article. In my opinion, this is also a very good number.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/11/2017 05:48
@ Leavenfish : If you think that half are mine, I very much fear that, for you, there is some room for improvement in the arithmethic area...
Leavenfish Leavenfish 7/11/2017 04:30
Petrarlsen ...I think half must be yours....
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/11/2017 12:52
6 days of comments under this article, for a total - for now - of 70 posts ! And - if I remember well - only one commentator who really disagrees with the considerable interest aroused among ChessBase readers about Kasparov's return to official competition.

All this speaks volumes about the importance of this new development for the chess world...
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/11/2017 12:35
@ imdvb_8793 : "(...) so it's definitely one of the most awesome developments in modern chess..." I fully agree indeed !!!
imdvb_8793 imdvb_8793 7/11/2017 12:18
"On that exactly, yes, but, if I remember well, Kasparov said, after last year's event, that he hadn't prepared very much for it. And, for me, Kasparov being what he is, it is obvious that, for an official competition, he will have prepared intensively, with the consequence that, necessarily (in my view...), he will play better chess (slightly better or much better, I don't know, but the answer will be given after this next tournament !)."

It'd be great if he did prepare very seriously for it! (Given the time available to him, what with all of his other interests.)

"But it is clearly better than nothing to see him playing in rapid and blitz tournaments... (I know that you will agree on this point !) "

Much, MUCH better, indeed. :) I never thought I'd see him play top level tournaments again until 2-3 years ago, so it's definitely one of the most awesome developments in modern chess...

"Today, Anand's Classical (2783), Rapid (2789), and Blitz (2766) ratings are exactly at the same level, so I rather think that his advantage in these time-controls disappeared, and that, in these time-controls, he is now a "normal player", if I can say it that way..."

True. This is probably precisely due to the age thing. And, as expected, the blitz rating is clearly the lowest...
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/9/2017 10:56
@ Leavenfish : And, by the way, I have absolutely nothing against Karpov who is a very great champion. But to be a very great champion doesn't render anyone infallible...
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/9/2017 10:49
@ Leavenfish :

"You disagree so you 'play the envy card'. Nice...
I wish I had your psychic abilities."

Oh, I'm so sorry ! I forget that, in 2017, we are supposed to talk the language of political correctness 24 / 24 - 365 / 365... My bad...

And, also, it is quite well known that envy exists only in books ; I've never seen anyone displaying envy against anyone else ; obviously, this never happens, so it is very very bad of me to suggest such an hypothesis. It is obviously false ; it couldn't be anything else... what was I thinking of !!

Two grave errors like that in one post ; I'm really atrociously embarrassed !

"I wish I had your psychic abilities."

Don't worry, with a little training and a little less political correctness, you can do it too !



As for the rest of your same post, it is more related to politics than to chess, and I'm not on ChessBase to discuss politics... What interests me about Kasparov's return to official chess is to see a chess-legend who had retired 12 years ago playing against the top-players of today, and that's all.
tom_70 tom_70 7/9/2017 08:21
I'm sure Kasparov will do well. Even he has admitted that while he may no longer have the hours on end concentration needed for classical chess anymore, none of that is required in blitz and rapid. I doubt he'll win, but I bet he won't be in last place either.
Leavenfish Leavenfish 7/9/2017 06:39
All that said, I am happy to see him play!
Leavenfish Leavenfish 7/9/2017 06:35
@Petrarlsen 10 hours ago

@Petrarlsen :" Brian Smith : Karpov can say what he wants, but it isn't because he says something that it will automatically become convincing.

I suppose that Karpov musn't be very pleased to see Kasparov being so much in the spotlights with his return to official competitive chess, and, so, he prefers to downplay the importance of this return (as it wouldn't be anymore possible for him at all to arouse such an interest with his own chess-playing"
------------
You disagree so you 'play the envy card'. Nice...
I wish I had your psychic abilities.

Also, it won't be FIDE rated...FIDE has banned him for 2 yrs (I think) for voter fraud.

If anything it will be that fake 'Universal Rating' system which will be destined for the dust-heap. Has ANYTHING not under the auspices of FIDE ever 'continued'? I've heard 'Joe's Rating System' is an option.... :-)

Remember, Kaspy looks to do 2 things:

1. Get under the skin of the authorities
2. Promote himself.

Keep that in mind with everything he does.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/9/2017 04:18
@ imdvb_8793 :

"I don't necessarily think Garry ever plays at less than 100% (...)"

On that exactly, yes, but, if I remember well, Kasparov said, after last year's event, that he hadn't prepared very much for it. And, for me, Kasparov being what he is, it is obvious that, for an official competition, he will have prepared intensively, with the consequence that, necessarily (in my view...), he will play better chess (slightly better or much better, I don't know, but the answer will be given after this next tournament !).

"I doubt we'll ever see Garry play a classical tournament again, unfortunately..." Yes, I fully agree. I would be VERY much surprised if Kasparov was to participate again in a classical tournament. But it is clearly better than nothing to see him playing in rapid and blitz tournaments... (I know that you will agree on this point !)

"The fact that it's precisely Anand (who is one of the fastest players ever) is actually a bit inconvenient." Today, Anand's Classical (2783), Rapid (2789), and Blitz (2766) ratings are exactly at the same level, so I rather think that his advantage in these time-controls disappeared, and that, in these time-controls, he is now a "normal player", if I can say it that way...
imdvb_8793 imdvb_8793 7/9/2017 01:49
"For me, as last year's blitz tournament was unrated, it isn't the same thing"

Good point! Hadn't thought of that aspect. I don't necessarily think Garry ever plays at less than 100% - he doesn't seem the type -, but it's true there might be a difference in the play of his opponents due to the tournament this year being rated... Also, of course, we now get a game of rapid in the mix, too.

"In my opinion, if Kasparov comes back from retirement, it isn't to play only one tournament, to return afterwards for good into retirement."

Trust me, I very much hope you're right! :) But I'm 90-95% sure this is another one-off thing. I don't think he cares about ratings that much. At least rapid ratings. At most, he'll play a few more rapid or blitz events in the coming years. I doubt we'll ever see Garry play a classical tournament again, unfortunately... But, yes, it is interesting that he chose the tournament where Carlsen isn't playing! You might be on to something there... (But, again, if it's an indication of anything, I think it's an indication of a return to competitive rapid/blitz chess, not classical.)

"Essentially and approximately, my idea is to see the oldest of the present-day's top-players against a still older (but probably very strong nonetheless !) Kasparov."

Come to think of it, you make a good point here, too. (I'm not sounding surprised, I'm just acknowledging I hadn't thought of these things before you expressed them.) These players have no age advantage (or far less of one) on Garry, yet they're active and up to date with modern theory, so this will be an interesting way of gauging just how much that matters and how much this supposed major progress that has been made since the early 2000's really affects one's practical playing strength. The fact that it's precisely Anand (who is one of the fastest players ever) is actually a bit inconvenient. I would've liked to have seen Kramnik in there too, for a more relevant assessment. But it is, still, rather more interesting than I had originally thought. If Vishy dominates Garry in their three games, I'll be impressed, and I might be more inclined to agree with the theory that the progress that's been made since Kasparov retired is as big as most people think it is. (Which I don't, for now.) The old inflation vs. actual progress debate... :)

@ turok - "It does not take a genius to figure out just how deadly a player he would have been with computers and if he was now playing he would probably be heading to a 3000 rating."

We can never know for sure, but, yes, if we go by pure logic, there's no way of outright refuting this theory, either, or claiming there's a demonstrably better one (which contradicts it) that can be advanced. (That I can think of...) So, in short, I agree.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/9/2017 07:52
@ Brian Smith : Karpov can say what he wants, but it isn't because he says something that it will automatically become convincing.

I suppose that Karpov musn't be very pleased to see Kasparov being so much in the spotlights with his return to official competitive chess, and, so, he prefers to downplay the importance of this return (as it wouldn't be anymore possible for him at all to arouse such an interest with his own chess-playing).

And, I'm sorry, but, Karpov or not Karpov, like you, he IS comparing apples with oranges, as last year's event was an UNRATED event, an EXHIBITION TOURNAMENT. This year, Kasparov will participate in an OFFICIAL competition ; it isn't at all the same thing.

It indeed seems to me quite obvious that, in this case, Karpov is seriously biased on the subject of Kasparov's return from retirement.

Two last things : 1) This quotation from Karpov is very short, and it would be useful to see the rest of this interview (if it was indeed an interview) to check if this quotation really expresses Karpov's thought. 2) This quotation is a translation, and it would be interesting to see the original text - translations aren't at all necessarily accurate... But still, even if this quotation really reflects Karpov's thought, and if its translation is accurate, it doesn't change anything : what Karpov says isn't at all logical, in this case. Yes, he is an ex-World Champion, but this certainly doesn't make true everything he says...
Brian Smith Brian Smith 7/9/2017 06:59
As Karpov said in TASS:

“I do not understand why this is such a big sensation. He already played in St. Louis a year ago and decided to continue,” Karpov noted. “One cannot say that he is coming back from somewhere.”
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/9/2017 06:20
@ turok :

I think that it isn't simple at all to compare players of different times. And the Elo rating isn't supposed to permit a comparison between players of different epochs, so it can't give a really reliable indicator on this subject.

But it is quite true that GIFTS represents something quite different from STRENGTH. And it is in my opinion obvious that, if we suppose that a given player of today has the same global playing level (including notably openings) than Fischer, with the computers, etc., he will necessarily be MUCH less gifted than Fischer was at his time...

Another question could be that, perhaps, some of the great players of the past wouldn't have liked at all the modern, "computer-assisted" chess. Some wouldn't perhaps have excelled at it, or, even, some would perhaps not have interested themselves at all in chess in the present, very "computer-dependent", form (for this last hypothesis, I would personally rather think of Capablanca, for example, but I could obviously very much be wrong on this point...).
Iforidiot Iforidiot 7/9/2017 05:27
Will finish in the top 3. Will not finish first because he has been out of competition. He will have winning positions in every single game.
turok turok 7/8/2017 08:02
Here is what I find amazing. I talk about inflated ratings and people get all bent out of shape. The main claim is that the players nowadays are better mainly because of computer use. OK-so let me go along with that assumption which does make sense. here is what I find ironic. The same people who say todays players are stronger than in the past like Fischer forget one huge item. Pre-and post computers: Nowadays players or the top like a carlson has reached above 2800. A few others have as well. But this WAS WITH COMPUTERS!!!! That also includes Kasparov. So now lets look at this from a simple noraml conclusion. All you have to do is look at a rating like Fischer had which just about match nowadays players With computers. So just think about this and it includes those pre-post players like Spassky etc. But I am mainly talking fischer. Can you imagine that talent with COMPUTERS!!!!!! It does not take a genius to figure out just how deadly a player he would have been with computers and if he was now playing he would probably be heading to a 3000 rating. The fact is the generation without computers you can see would have been very talented if computers were given to them. Fischer and the players of his generation with computers just by logic would have been 2800+ in droves since they achieved such high ratings without computers. Debate it all you want but Fischer with computer would in all likelyhood be near invincible in his prime.
mderisio mderisio 7/8/2017 09:58
This is great news and I am very happy to see him back.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/8/2017 08:50
@ imdvb_8793 : I left unfinished the last sentence of my next to last post to you ! It should have been :

"And, personally, I wouldn't be surprised - but this is only a pure intuition, not grounded on any objective facts - that the fact that the first tournament after Kasparov comes back from retirement doesn't count Carlsen in its line-up is a deliberate choice from Kasparov (...this for Kasparov to be really ready for Carlsen, when he will play against him !...)."
turok turok 7/7/2017 10:27
@Petrarlsen actually I rarely go back and read much of the comments after I comment. To be honest I havent taken the time to get into detail to defend what I am saying vs you.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 07:23
@ imdvb_8793 : "As for Anand, he has obviously played Garry quite a bit in his career (...)" Yes, obviously, but, personally, for the reasons that I stated before, I would nonetheless be very interested in seeing the 2017 Anand against the 2017 Kasparov ! Essentially and approximately, my idea is to see the oldest of the present-day's top-players against a still older (but probably very strong nonetheless !) Kasparov.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 06:42
@ imdvb_8793 : Two little points :

1) For me, as last year's blitz tournament was unrated, it isn't the same thing : even if Kasparov played Nakamura (and played against Nakamura...) last year, it is quite different : Nakamura will probably not play in exactly the same way (for the better or for the worst, I'm not sure...), and I rather think that Kasparov will have prepared himself much more seriously than last year. So, for me, even if the "protagonists" (for these two...) are the same, this year's competition represents something really different nonetheless.

2) In my opinion, if Kasparov comes back from retirement, it isn't to play only one tournament, to return afterwards for good into retirement. And I would prefer to see Kasparov play Carlsen later, in the next tournament, for example. And, personally, I wouldn't be surprised - but this is only a pure intuition, not grounded on any objective facts - that the fact that the first tournament after Kasparov comes back from retirement doesn't count Carlsen in its line-up (...this for Kasparov to be really ready for Carlsen, when he will play against him !...).
imdvb_8793 imdvb_8793 7/7/2017 05:50
@Petrarlsen: It's true, it's going to be the first rapid tournament Kasparov has played for some years. But he did play that blitz last year... But, yes, of course, Carlsen would be a favorite against him in rapid. Perhaps even a big favorite, though I think not quite that much. And in classical, it's another matter altogether... I very much doubt Carlsen could show any kind of superior understanding or psychological domination against Garry, the way he does against most of his strongest contemporaries. (Aronian being one of the counter-examples; Giri, too.) G.K. was always a beast, mentally. And his understanding was/is second to none. Carlsen's only advantages would be age, tournament practice and, obviously, superior knowledge of opening theory. If Garry prepared a bit, I'm not AT ALL sure, even at this age, and being retired, that he would lose a match vs. Magnus. And, in his prime, I've always been of the opinion he would have definitely beaten, perhaps even crushed, the Norwegian. But, anyway, it would definitely be highly interesting for me to see a Kasparov-Carlsen duel in 2017, even in rapid/blitz, regardless of the result. Again, contrast of styles, and all - same goes for Wesley So.

I'm not as excited about seeing Kasparov play Nakamura in blitz because I already saw that matchup in that Ultimate Blitz Challenge (I think that's what it was called) that I keep mentioning, from last year. (True, Kasparov also played Wesley So there, but the one-move blunders very much affected the results in their games, as Garry was dominating pretty clearly, so a rematch would be especially interesting in that case.) As for Anand, he has obviously played Garry quite a bit in his career, and he's also definitely at least a bit past his prime, unlike the other players we're talking about. In any case, for me, Anand is no longer a genuine contender for the title of World Champion (and, on a side note, if I'm being honest, although I'm always rooting for him so heavily whenever he plays in any tournament, I'm 90% sure Kramnik isn't one, either, for various reasons that have nothing to do with talent or chess understanding.) These guys (So, Carlsen, Nakamura), for better or worse (I'm looking at you, Naka!), all are.

Of course, these are all fascinating potential matchups, regardless. And seeing how Kasparov will do against anyone in this field will be very interesting for making some sort of cross-era comparison. Like I said, the whole thing, round one to round 27, is absolutely mouthwatering! But I've always been obsessed with the question of the fight for the World Title, and so I'm inevitably far more drawn to games that involve either the reigning champion or his most likely future challengers.

"A small complementary element that goes in the same direction : the average birth year of the Top-Ten in Rapid is 1983, compared to 1985 in Classical and 1986 in Blitz."

Wow, that's a very nice stat! And it makes a lot of sense, too, I agree. Apart from the openings thing, indeed, in classical, the older players probably get a bit tired by the end, when a lot of games (that aren't early draws) are decided. In blitz, they aren't as good because it's too fast and, the older you get, the less capable you are of very fast calculation and intense concentration, I should think. But rapid is right there in the sweet spot in-between... They have just enough time to calculate all of the relevant stuff, and just little enough to not get tired, plus time to re-focus between rounds. Cool!...
ChesstoImpress ChesstoImpress 7/7/2017 03:07
Very exciting news! :)
samirkasparov002 samirkasparov002 7/7/2017 07:59
Kasparov !!!
Mark S Mark S 7/7/2017 05:33
Wow! Good to see legendary Kasparov returning to competitive chess. Probably one of the most popular world champions, tied or maybe next to Fischer. Fischer made chess popular in my very small country. Kasparov also very popular here.
Raymond Labelle Raymond Labelle 7/7/2017 05:01
Anatoly Karpov did more Rapid chess in the later part of his (still continuing) career. Classical is more demanding physically.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 02:46
@ Brian Smith : Yes, it is much more simple not to answer my last post to you, as you would probably not know what to say... it is much simpler to affirm out of the blue (without proving anything, of course...) that Rapid and Blitz chess are not "real chess"... And, as for last year's event, it was not rated, so you are comparing apples with oranges.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 02:46
@ imdvb_8793 : Also, about Classical and Rapid chess, I think that Classical chess is more tiring for older players than Rapid chess.
Brian Smith Brian Smith 7/7/2017 02:28
He's not coming out of retirement for real chess...he even played in this event last year.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 02:27
@ imdvb_8793 : This seems logical (about Rapid chess favoring older players) : in Rapid chess there is at the same time a smaller importance of opening preparation than in Classical chess, and a smaller importance of pure speed than in Blitz chess.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 02:20
@ imdvb_8793 : "I think Garry will do quite well in the rapid! Better than in the blitz. I'd probably be willing to bet money on that last part."

A small complementary element that goes in the same direction : the average birth year of the Top-Ten in Rapid is 1983, compared to 1985 in Classical and 1986 in Blitz.

So, it seems that the rapid time-control is (at least marginally) the best time-control for the older players.
Petrarlsen Petrarlsen 7/7/2017 01:29
@ imdvb_8793 : "Sucks that it's precisely the leg with no Carlsen or Wesley So"

For me and for this first competition after this "new debut" of Kasparov, I consider Nakamura + Anand to be the best pair of players for Kasparov to play against.

Why ? Because, as for Carlsen, he is, for the moment, "one of a sort", in Rapid and Blitz (he was also for several years "one of a sort" in Classical, but isn't anymore, at least for now) - for example, I think that no other player could for the moment dominate a tournament in such an impressive fashion as what he did, for example, in Leuwen. And I think that, for this first competition after Kasparov's return, such an exceptional player is not the ideal reference point (later, yes, but not immediatly).

And, after Carlsen, Nakamura is, for now, the best player, globally, in faster time controls (he is one of the two players besides Carlsen to have a 2800+ rating both in Rapid and in Blitz, the other being Grischuk, and, taking their average Rapid + Blitz rating in the July 2017 lists - 2845 for Nakamura and 2826 for Grischuk - and their average Rapid + Blitz places in the same lists - (5 + 3) / 2 = 4 for Nakamura, and (2 + 8) / 2 = 5 for Grischuk -, Nakamura is globally slightly above Grischuk).

As for Anand, among the ex-World Champions or ex-World n° 1 who are above 2750 (in Classical, in Rapid, and in Blitz) today, he is the oldest. And, as his best Classical rating was between 2800 and 2850 (2817, precisely) and as he is now still permanently between 2750 and 2800 (2783 in July 2017), his level didn't decrease much since his peak (...furthermore, for each of his world titles, he was under the 2800 mark, so he was in fact in the same "Elo zone" - from 2750 to 2800 - as today...). And in Rapid and Blitz also, he is still above 2750, so this is true in these time controls too.

So, with Nakamura, we have the best "normal" player, and with Anand, the oldest ex-World Champion or ex-World n° 1 to be still one of the top-level players of today (...interesting, as Kasparov is 6 years older still than Anand...).

It is for these reasons that, for me, these two players are the ideal references for Kasparov's first competition after he comes out of retirement.
Resistance Resistance 7/7/2017 12:03
Good for Garry! It's gonna be tough, though. He will be playing some of the best players from today, and will have to withstand 5 days of pretty intense chess. Is he up for the challenge? No question he's still brilliant at the board, but without proper physical preparation, it might turn into a nightmare for him... I wish him the best.
imdvb_8793 imdvb_8793 7/6/2017 11:36
"Could be embarrassing to lose in ~20 moves."

You forget Garry (and all other top players, ever) isn't a moron! :) He won't allow sharp, deeply theoretical opening variations to happen in his games (unless he's prepared SOMETHING), but will play/prepare safer, more offbeat things. Like the Scotch he kept using in the blitz he played last year (?) vs. the top 3 from the US Championship. He played some even more offbeat things in that one, if I recall correctly...

I think Garry will do quite well in the rapid! Better than in the blitz. I'd probably be willing to bet money on that last part.