Two new online tournaments in September, one including Kasparov

by ChessBase
8/22/2020 – The top international chess superstars are set to battle online from September 11-19 in two exciting tournaments hosted by the Saint Louis Chess Club — the Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX and the Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz. World champion Magnus Carlsen will play in both events, while living legend Garry Kasparov will be among the participants of the Fischer Random event. | Photo: Lennart Ootes / Grand Chess Tour

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Fischer Random, Rapid and Blitz 

Press release

The top international chess superstars are set to battle online from September 11-19 in two exciting tournaments hosted by the Saint Louis Chess Club. Champions Showdown:Chess 9LX will feature the world’s top grandmasters including legendary World Champion Garry Kasparov, the reigning World Champion Magnus Carlsen and World Number 2 Fabiano Caruana. The ten grandmasters will be competing online from September 11-13 and the matches will be played in Chess 9LX style, also known as Fischer Random, with a $150,000 prize fund. 

Chess 9LX is another term for Chess 960 or Fischer Random. Chess 9LX is a variant of chess created by Bobby Fischer in the late 1990s in which the pieces on the home rank are randomized, with 960 representing the number of possible starting positions. Players will not know the order of the home rank pieces until they arrive before the start of the round and will have to rely on their creativity in rapid and blitz games.

The Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz will be held September 15-19 online and will showcase some of the world’s top rapid and blitz players including World Champion Magnus Carlsen and a few of the American favorites - Hikaru Nakamura, Wesley So, Leinier Dominguez and Jeffery Xiong. The ten players will be competing for a $250,000 prize fund in nine rapid games and eighteen blitz games over five days of play. The Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz is typically one of the Saint Louis legs of the famed Grand Chess Tour, but due to the COVID-19 pandemic this year’s tour was canceled

“We are thrilled to bring these two fan-favorite tournaments to our global audience this September. While in-person tournaments are still not possible, we know that these upcoming events will intrigue and excite fans around the world,” said Tony Rich, Executive Director of the Saint Louis Chess Club.

Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX Field

Player

URS Rating

Magnus Carlsen

2855

Hikaru Nakamura

2801

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave

2797

Fabiano Caruana

2794

Wesley So

2783

Levon Aronian

2773

Leinier Dominguez

2754

Peter Svidler

2740

Alireza Firouzja

2726

Garry Kasparov

2632

Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz Field

Player

URS Rating

Magnus Carlsen

2855

Hikaru Nakamura

2801

Wesley So

2783

Ian Nepomniachtchi

2777

Alexander Grischuk

2776

Levon Aronian

2773

Leinier Dominguez

2754

Alireza Firouzja

2726

Pentala Harikrishna 

2714

Jeffery Xiong

2687

Both tournaments will include expert commentary featuring GM’s Yasser Seirawan and Maurice Ashley and WGM Jennifer Shahade. Viewers can watch both exciting tournaments on uschesschamps.com or on the Saint Louis Chess Club's Youtube and Twitch.tv channels. 
Games will start daily at 1:00pm CDT (GMT-5) from September 11-13 for Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX and from September 15-19 for Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz. 

About the Saint Louis Chess Club

The Saint Louis Chess Club is a non-profit, 501(c)(3) organization committed to making chess an important part of our community. In addition to providing a forum for the community to play tournaments and casual games, the club also offers chess improvement classes, beginner lessons and special lectures.

Recognizing the cognitive and behavioral benefits of chess, the Saint Louis Chess Club is committed to supporting those chess programs that already exist in area schools while encouraging the development of new in-school and after-school programs. For more information, visit saintlouischessclub.org.

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Jacob woge Jacob woge 8/25/2020 10:55
Watching top flight chess in real life, you do not need any commentator. The games are enough. Just stand still and imagine what you would do to this position. "It's your move", as Chris Ward puts it.

Prioririty of importance: 1. games.

Watching on-line chess, you do need commentary. The quality of the experience depends crucially on who is dealt the task of telling stories. And I must say, in this respect P Leko has been a revelation. The games may or may not be interesting, but Leko and Seirawan never fail to find an interesting angle. Not all have this gift; a few cringeworthy commentators stick around. No names, no blames. Priority of importance: 1. Commentary 2. Result 3. Games.

The FIDE on-line Olympic is underway. Out of curiosity, I have been tracking the results, Games, no. Probably not too interesting. Hands up, if you have seen enough to prove me wrong..

"It's not the real thing" - to paraphrase an eighties coca-cola ad.
genem genem 8/25/2020 10:41
In our age of the Internet and Google/Bing, 'chess9LX' as all *one word* would serve chess much better in the long run, as compared to splitting into multiple words 'chess 9LX'.

In any case, Bobby Fischer would be pleased to see the slow, but now steady, growth of his particular rules design for a start setup other than just the one classic setup.

"Discard the 'Random' from Fischer Random Chess!"
Instead, pick one novel chess9LX setup (avoid corner bishops), and stick with it for a decade, so we can all witness the growth of a second volume of opening theory.
maac2002 maac2002 8/25/2020 09:10
+1 to online tournaments, considering the actual world status.
I prefer of course OTB tournaments but the quality between online
and OTB is not (if at all) very different. GO Online chess!
Dutch Windmill Dutch Windmill 8/23/2020 08:13
Online chess is the future! And Carlsen did win the latest tournament, not "win"....
lajosarpad lajosarpad 8/23/2020 05:08
@NoSystem and @RobertaArdenzi17

I fully agree with both of you. Online tournaments don't really catch my interest. Chess is a board game. It can be played online as well, but it's not the same. And the tendency of creating rapid/blitz tournaments online is disturbing for me, because this trend could endanger normal tournaments. The audience which prefers to see precise, good games will lose interest and a new audience, who is more interested to see the drama than to see good games. The latest tournament was "won" by Carlsen by drawing a game. This does not make much sense to me.
manu1945 manu1945 8/23/2020 04:58
Nosystem you are not alone.
puertolajas puertolajas 8/23/2020 02:41
I could live without Nakamura making faces all the time!! What is he, 6 years old?? He is unbearbale. I would pixelate his face during the whole tournament. Grow up!!
RobertaArdenzi17 RobertaArdenzi17 8/23/2020 03:07
@NoSystem: Fully agree. Online chess is so boring.
sshivaji sshivaji 8/23/2020 12:30
What we can love about chess is that it can be played in full entirety online! No need for players to travel to exotic faraway hotels and for spectators to the same until its safe.

We can enjoy the action perfectly fine online. Even classical class can be online if people are watching via zoom.
ninth-pawn ninth-pawn 8/22/2020 09:37
NoSystem: What is the difference between watching players staring at monitor or staring at chessboard? I think that MCT proved that online competition is (very) viable option, the commentators were unbelievable entertaining I personaly enjoyed whole series :-)
Leavenfish Leavenfish 8/22/2020 09:03
I think the idea of 'sets', instead of the traditional formats is idea for online chess. The time controls were just about right as well. No one who watched the MC Invitational (if that is what it was called) came away 'wanting'. My hope is that the SLCC does away with their traditional broadcast in favor of more action and less...fluff.

We have seen the future of online chess...lets hope they continue in that vein.
sacrat sacrat 8/22/2020 07:23
After watching the epic battle between Magnus Carlsen and Hikaru Nakamura this week, I hope this will be just as exciting. I believe online tournaments are here to stay as part of a suite of competitions. I, for one quite enjoyed the "staring into a monitor" aspect as it was great to watch the Players' expressions, particularly Hikaru, who is the spiritual successor to Gary Kasparov for how animated he is while playing.
NoSystem NoSystem 8/22/2020 06:34
Am I the only fan who is not interested in watching players (world class or otherwise) staring in to a computer monitor? Cannot wait for OTB to start again.
Arutchelvam Arutchelvam 8/22/2020 05:28
Tournament link sir
1