Opening Ceremony in Tromso

by Alejandro Ramirez
8/2/2014 – It's official! The Tromso festivities have begun. With over 180 countries in attendance, the opening ceremony has inaugurated what is sure to be a fabulous event. Most players have arrived and the pairings of the first round are set. We bring you a report of the opening ceremony as well as a preview of what will take place in the first round of Tromso 2014.

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Opening Ceremony

The Opening Ceremony was held about 20 minutes away from the city center, near the Scandic Hotel which hosted the FIDE World Cup last year. The event was quite lively and it had a fast pace, moving from music to speeches to music seamlessly. It was broadcasted live by Norwegian television.

VIPs: Susan Polgar and Anatoly Karpov

not to be left behind: FIDE President hopeful Garry Kasparov. He was also World Champion or something.

Minister of Finance of Norway Siv Jensen and FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov

At one point the entire list of participating countries (180!) was read, and the teams cheered when their country was called.

Southeast Asia and African countries were by far the most enthusiastic

The Norwegian team was introduced to the world. Carlsen talked about the difficulties of playing in a team. Mainly trying to overlook his teammates' mistakes!

Afterwards Carlsen drew the colors for the top boards. Black for China as the top seeded Women's team and Black for Russia in the Open!

There were many musical performances

And what Olympiad Ceremony is complete without an inspiring speech by the FIDE President?

Things wrapped up with a local band playing

Round One Pairings

Of course because of the Swiss system the first rounds tend to be not too difficult for the higher rated teams. However some surprises might happen and it will be interesting to see if any top team suffers in the first round. Here are the top twenty boards:

Open:

No. Team Pts. MP Res. : Res. MP Pts. Team
1 Jordan 0 0   :   0 0 Russia
2 Ukraine 0 0   :   0 0 Tunisia
3 Norway 0 0   :   0 0 Yemen
4 Zambia 0 0   :   0 0 France
5 Armenia 0 0   :   0 0 Japan
6 Algeria 0 0   :   0 0 Hungary
7 USA 0 0   :   0 0 Uganda
8 Guatemala 0 0   :   0 0 China
9 Kyrgyzstan 0 0   :   0 0 Israel
10 England 0 0   :   0 0 Wales
11 Andorra 0 0   :   0 0 Netherlands
12 Germany 0 0   :   0 0 Iraq
13 Puerto Rico 0 0   :   0 0 Cuba
14 Angola 0 0   :   0 0 Poland
15 Czech Republic 0 0   :   0 0 Libya
16 Malaysia 0 0   :   0 0 Spain
17 Bulgaria 0 0   :   0 0 El Salvador
18 Syria 0 0   :   0 0 India
19 Italy 0 0   :   0 0 Barbados
20 Nigeria 0 0   :   0 0 Georgia

Women:

No. Team Pts. MP Res. : Res. MP Pts. Team
1 Russia 0 0   :   0 0 Jordan
2 Norway 0 0   :   0 0 South Korea
3 Luxembourg 0 0   :   0 0 Ukraine
4 Georgia 0 0   :   0 0 Kyrgyzstan
5 New Zealand 0 0   :   0 0 India
6 Romania 0 0   :   0 0 Paraguay
7 Finland 0 0   :   0 0 USA
8 Poland 0 0   :   0 0 Algeria
9 Malaysia 0 0   :   0 0 France
10 Armenia 0 0   :   0 0 Guatemala
11 Nicaragua 0 0   :   0 0 Spain
12 Germany 0 0   :   0 0 Albania
13 Bolivia 0 0   :   0 0 Hungary
14 Monaco 0 0   :   0 0 Serbia
15 Netherlands 0 0   :   0 0 Tajikistan
16 Portugal 0 0   :   0 0 Kazakhstan
17 Slovakia 0 0   :   0 0 Syria
18 Costa Rica 0 0   :   0 0 Cuba
19 Vietnam 0 0   :   0 0 Uruguay
20 Jamaica 0 0   :   0 0 Iran

You will find one important team missing from the top boards... China! They are playing the International Blind Association, which as a courtesy always sits on the board closest to the entrance. This time that is board 49.

The rounds will start tomorrow at 3 p.m. local time, one hour later than the rest of the event.

Photos by Pascal Simon

All you need to know about the Olympiad

  • Full information on the games, the venue, the atmosphere and what's happening on and off the chessboard – 68 pages in PDF, 45 MB in size.
  • All practical details you need to know before and after your arrival, including information about money, the climate, arriving at Oslo and Tromsø Airports, lost or delayed luggage, check-in at the hotels, the accreditation desk, information offices and the opening ceremony.

All ChessBase reports on the 2014 Olympiad in Tromsø




Grandmaster Alejandro Ramirez has been playing tournament chess since 1998. His accomplishments include qualifying for the 2004 and 2013 World Cups as well as playing for Costa Rica in the 2002, 2004 and 2008 Olympiads. He currently has a rating of 2583 and is author of a number of popular and critically acclaimed ChessBase-DVDs.
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Najdork Najdork 8/2/2014 05:31
Lol no official website link 'cause it's the competition's website
Kandi Ravi Kandi Ravi 8/2/2014 04:35
I wish good luck to Indian team
firestorm firestorm 8/2/2014 03:35
Thank you Catullus :)
VGerber VGerber 8/2/2014 02:24
@juanviches
Russia shouldn't play...
Catullus Catullus 8/2/2014 02:17
The official website is

https://chess24.com/en/olympiad2014
firestorm firestorm 8/2/2014 01:59
Regarding "Israel shouldn't play", it is often the case that people think that to punish the bad conduct of governments, they should punish the sportsmen/chess players by excluding them from events- easy to do without actually having any effect on the issue you want to address. "What they're doing ..." - who- Boris Gelfand? Any of the other Israeli team members? What exactly have they done? They're probably just as much against the war in Gaza as you or I.

On a more relevant tack, is there an olympiad website with live games? Normally there is a link on Chessbase, but if it is there I'm not seeing it.
lhl lhl 8/2/2014 11:19
Why is Norway playing board 3?
juanviches juanviches 8/2/2014 10:58
Israel shouldn't play, what they're doing it's a shame and the worst to humankind.
dr.genial@yahoo.com.br dr.genial@yahoo.com.br 8/2/2014 10:40
Let the hostilities begin
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