So, Aronian and Caruana top seeds in Düsseldorf

by André Schulz
8/26/2023 – From Saturday to Monday, the first edition of the World Rapid Team Championship will take place in Düsseldorf. More than 80 grandmasters, including many big names — but also numerous amateurs — are taking part. Four former world champions will participate: Vladimir Kramnik, Vishy Anand, Hou Yifan and Alexandra Kosteniuk.

ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024 ChessBase 17 - Mega package - Edition 2024

It is the program of choice for anyone who loves the game and wants to know more about it. Start your personal success story with ChessBase and enjoy the game even more.


World Champions to play alongside amateurs

Holding a World Team Championship in rapid chess is an idea of entrepreneur Wadim Rosenstein, who is organising the first edition of this event together with FIDE in Düsseldorf this weekend.

Wadim Rosenstein

The tournament is played with teams of six players, whereby each team must have at least one female player in their ranks and one amateur player, who must not have a FIDE rating above 2000 in any category.

A total of 38 teams registered for this highly remunerated tournament, including 82 GMs and 7 WGMs. No fewer than 14 players with a 2700+ rating are taking part.

Rosenstein himself plays in his team WR Chess, and he made sure to get strong colleagues on the adjacent boards. With Yifan Hou and Alexandra Kosteniuk, two former world champions will represent the organizer’s team. The squad also includes Vincent Keymer, the best German player and the only player who defeated Magnus Carlsen in the World Cup.

World Rapid Team Championship 2023

Freedom, the team that tops the starting rank and has 15th world champion Vishy Anand in its roster, has an even higher rating average.

World Rapid Team Championship 2023

Vladimir Kramnik, Anand’s predecessor on the World Championship throne, will also play, as he will represent the Chess Pensioners.

Many teams, especially the top teams, include players from different countries, but there are also a few national teams and strong regional teams in the field.

Team MGD1 plays almost exclusively with Indians (with one exception). Team Armenia is the Armenian national team without Aronian, who has transferred to the USA. He plays for the Kompetenzakademie Allstars. The Columbus Energy Kings of Chess Kraków plays with an almost purely Polish selection. Germany and Friends is the German national team without Keymer and the team of the Berlin Chess Federation includes exclusively players from the German capital and is almost as strong as the German national team — at least on paper. Elisabeth Pähtz represents the women’s board in the Berliner squad, on board three.

The tournament is played over 12 rounds according to the Swiss system. The time control is 15 minutes for the whole game, plus 10-second increments per move.

Four rounds will be played daily from Saturday to Monday, with starting times at 1.30 pm, 3.30 pm, 5.30 pm and 7.30 pm (local time).

The games will be broadcast live on the internet.


Round Date Time
1 26.08.2023 13.30
2 26.08.2023 15.30
3 26.08.2023 17.30
4 26.08.2023 19.30
5 27.08.2023 13.30
6 27.08.2023 15.30
7 27.08.2023 17.30
8 27.08.2023 19.30
9 28.08.2023 13.30
10 28.08.2023 15.30
11 28.08.2023 17.30
12 28.08.2023 19.30

List of teams

1 Freedom 2522 Sutovsky, Emil
2 WR Chess 2486 Gustafsson, Jan
3 Team MGD1 2453 Narayanan, Srinath
4 ASV AlphaEchecs Linz 2452 Bacrot, Etienne
5 Armenia 2421 Ter-Sahakayan, Samvel
6 Ashdod Elit Chess Club 2407 Slav, Moshe
7 Kompetenzakademie Allstars 2405 Becker, Rainer
8 Columbus Energy KingsOfChess Kraków 2347 Pakleza, Zbigniew
9 Chessbrah OFM 2344 Hansen, Eric
10 Germany and Friends 2343 Donchenko, Alexander
11 Berlin Chess Federation 2301 Meyer-Dunker, Paul
12 Six-pack 2289 Shaikh, Mohammad Nubairshah
13 Düsseldorfer Schachklub 1914/25 e.V. 2271 Berelowitsch, Alexander
14 Team 2220 Carlstedt, Jonathan
15 Rishon LeZion Chess Club 2216 Lahav, Adi
16 Ukrainian Amators 2190 Maly, Alexey
17 Schachverein Hemer 2153 Schachverein, Hemer
18 Africa 2150 Marochkina, Nadezhda
19 Heilbronn Hustlers 2137 Zuferi, Enis
20 FIDE Management Board 2133 Turlej, Lukasz
21 Deutsche Schachjugend 1 2095 Yelisieiev, Yevhenii
22 Wensing & Pöbel 2084 Bartelt, Max
23 Doppelbauer Kiel 2049 Ermitsch, Michael
24 Mitropa Chess Association 2034 Biagioli, Marco
25 Blerickse Schaakvereniging 2029 Bergmans, Dirk
26 Aachener Schachverein von 1856 2014 Rache, Ralf
27 MagdeBurg and Friends 1970 Domsgen, Bernd
28 Chess Pensioners 1956 Koenig, Dennis
29 The Sharks 1934 Purton, Ben
30 Kenya Commercial Bank Chess Club 1850 Wanjala, Benard
31 École Polytechnique Française de Lausann 1823 Pheng, Wissam
32 Naphtali Team Nigeria 1797 Akomaka, Apollos
33 Neustadt Weinstraße 1757 Schulz-Knappe, Florian
34 PhileKhoob Chess Club 1693 Shamsi, Mohammadhossein
35 Unischach Bayreuth 1686 Glock, Benjamin
36 Chess Wizzards 1677 Westerhoff, Ralf
37 Deutsche Schachjugend 2 1513 Thielsch, Norman
38 Club de Jeu d'échecs de la Cité Christop 1309 Gamba, Merveille Gloria

Top players according to rating

Name Team
So, Wesley WR Chess
Aronian, Levon Kompetenzakademie Allstars
Caruana, Fabiano Kompetenzakademie Allstars
Nepomniachtchi, Ian WR Chess
Vachier-Lagrave, Maxime ASV AlphaEchecs Linz
Duda, Jan-Krzysztof WR Chess
Rapport, Richard Freedom
Anand, Viswanathan Freedom
Kramnik, Vladimir Chess Pensioners
Svidler, Peter Chess Pensioners
Abdusattorov, Nodirbek WR Chess
Grischuk, Alexander ASV AlphaEchecs Linz
Dubov, Daniil Freedom
Dominguez Perez, Leinier Chess Pensioners
Maghsoodloo, Parham ASV AlphaEchecs Linz
Vidit, Santosh Gujrathi Freedom
Erigaisi, Arjun Team MGD1
Bacrot, Etienne ASV AlphaEchecs Linz
Nihal, Sarin Team MGD1
Van Foreest, Jorden Chessbrah OFM
Jobava, Baadur Columbus Energy KingsOfChess Kraków
Praggnanandhaa, R WR Chess
Eljanov, Pavel Ashdod Elit Chess Club
Keymer, Vincent WR Chess
Saric, Ivan Chessbrah OFM
Harikrishna, Pentala Team MGD1
Gukesh, D Kompetenzakademie Allstars
Volokitin, Andrei Ashdod Elit Chess Club
Baklan, Vladimir Ukrainian Amators
Svane, Rasmus Germany and Friends
Rodshtein, Maxim Rishon LeZion Chess Club
Sargissian, Gabriel Armenia
Moussard, Jules Chessbrah OFM
Bluebaum, Matthias Germany and Friends
Sadvakasov, Darmen Chess Pensioners


André Schulz started working for ChessBase in 1991 and is an editor of ChessBase News.