Maharashtra Chess League starts in Pune

by ChessBase
4/27/2013 – An exciting bidding process by private sponsors determined the team line-ups to be used in the Maharashtra Chess League. Some of the top Indian players are participating in the event, and the World Champion himself was there to grace the opening ceremony. This rapid tournament has already produced many exciting games. Read about the first two rounds in our big pictorial report.

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The Maharashtra Chess League, sponsored by Johnson Tiles, is taking place from April 24th to April 28th in the western Indian city of Pune from the state of Maharashtra. The event is a six board rapid team round robin. The tournament attracts the top players from Maharashtra as well as many of the top players of the country, both male and female. Corporate sponsors took over a team and engaged in a bidding war to determine what their line-ups would be. Here are the teams and their corresponding sponsors:

Ahmednagar Chckers RBX Sports Ethix
Jalgaon Battlers Jain Irrigation
Mumbai Movers Shell Extrusion
Nagpur Royals Gaikwad-Patil Group
Pune Attackers Goel Ganga Group
Thane Combatants MEP Infrastructure Developers

Each team has their own identifying logo and flag

On April 13th, all the registered players were chosen for individual teams after fierce bidding, and the individual team line-ups were picked up. Each team had Rs. 3,00,000 (About 5800 USD) from which they could select as many players as necessary. All players had a base price, from which they were bid upwards, with the final price going to the player as the fee for playing the event. The base prices were: GM Rs.60,000 (~1100 USD), WGM Rs.30,000, IM Rs.30,000 and untitled Rs.10,000.

On April 3rd Anand took a small break from his extremely busy schedule to celebrate the inauguration of the event's logo and presented all the team owners with their flags.

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The elegant opening ceremony was worthy of any top tournament

Possibly the most important battlefield to determine the final standings: the auction for the team line-ups!

The most expensive player in the tournament here with black: Ganguly cost a hefty Rs.115,000 or 2,150 USD

Swapnil Dhopade (white) was the costliest non-GM at Rs.8,1000 or 1,500 USD. He seems to be worth his price as his f6 pawn is now crushing Mary Ann Gomes' position.

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This novel style of tournament seems to have brought out some great fighting spirit from the players. The draw percentage has so far been extremely low, and the clashes between teams who preferred to go top heavy against those that went for a more balanced approach have yielded interesting results. The tournament continues until the 28th when we will see which corporate sponsor did the best auctioning.

Replay games from rounds one and two

Select games from the dropdown menu above the board



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