Presenting – Kramnik vs Deep Fritz in Bonn

11/25/2006 – The much-awaited match between the human world champion and the nine million position machine begins on Saturday. On the day before the event tradition dictates a presentation ceremony, press conference and the drawing of colours. And a gala dinner with the FIDE President. Photo report with tumultuous scenes and interesting news.

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The chess duel Man vs Machine, Vladimir Kramnik vs Deep Fritz is being staged from November 25 until December 5th. It is sponsored by the RAG AG, one of Europe's largest energy companies. The venue is the National Art Gallery in Bonn, Germany. Schedule:

Game 1: Saturday 25.11.2006 15:00 h
Game 2: Monday 27.11.2006 15:00 h
Game 3: Wednesday 29.11.2006 15:00 h
Game 4: Friday 01.12.2006 15:00 h
Game 5: Sunday 03.12.2006 15:00 h
Game 6: Tuesday 05.12.2006 15:00 h

There will be full live coverage on the Playchess server, as well as on the official site and a number of partner sites.


Opening and press conference

The match Vladimir Kramnik vs Deep Fritz is set to begin on Saturday, November 25, 2006. All the important protagonists had taken up residence in the former German capital of Bonn a few days before this critical date. The ChessBase team are in the Novotel, about ten minutes by taxi from the playing venue; Vladimir Kramnik and his team are in a separate ("secret") hotel, where he can only be found by journalists and fans who invest some effort in the enterprise.

On Friday afternoon the venue was dressed and the technology up and running – time for the opening press conference and drawing of colours.


The press conference was attended by TV companies from Germany, Russia and other countries


Participants at the press conference were (from left to right) the arbiter Albert Vasser, press officer Rolf Behovits, ChessBase CEO and head of the Fritz team Matthias Wüllenweber, world champion Vladimir Kramnik, translator Patricia Stöcklin, and project manager of the Art Gallery Stephan Andreae


The opponents: Matthias Wüllenweber for Fritz, Vladimir Kramnik for humanity


Matthias speaks (in German) about the new program that will face Vladimir Kramnik...


...who gets every word translated by the highly competent Patricia


The drawing of colours began with a coin toss by arbiter Albert Vasser...


... which determined who would start opening the Matryoshka dolls


Vladimir struggling with the tiniest doll – he got the white pieces in game one


The press photographing and filming the drawing of colours


Then at last the one-on-one (sort of) TV interviews with the world champion


Meanwhile Deep Fritz, not really dressed up for the occasion, sulks in its corner


After the press conference a banquet with sponsors and VIPs


The guests listen to the pre-dinner speeches


At the head of the table Vladimir Kramnik with FIDE president Kirsan Ilyumzhinov


Ilyumzhinov addresses the visitors, his remarks translated by Marina Zakharova


Listening to the words of the President


Kirsan in his element...


...making points that are worthy of discussion.

Okay – and please stop shouting – she is Marie, a French journalist who writes front-page stories for a major Paris newspaper. And yes, they are serious, quite obviously so.

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