Reports | August 15, 2007 0:57

[lang_nl]Grand Slam-toernooi aangekondigd[/lang_nl][lang_en]Grand Slam Tournament announced[/lang_en]

[lang_nl]In een persbericht is het Grand Slam-toernooi van volgend jaar aangekondigd. Van 15 tot en met 27 september 2008 wordt in Spaanse Bilbao het eerste Grand Slam Toernooi gespeeld, met een prijzenfonds van maar liefst 400.000 euro. Deelnemers zullen zijn de winnaars van Corus (Wijk aan Zee), Linares, Mtel (Sofia) en het nieuwe toernooi Ciudad de Mexico. Verrassend genoeg wordt dit veld nog aangevuld met twee wildcards.[/lang_nl][lang_en]In a press release the Grand Slam Tournament has been announced. From 15 till 27 September 2008 in the Spanish town of Bilbao the first Grand Slam Tournament will be played, with a big prize fund of 400,000 euros. Participants will be the winners of Corus (Wijk aan Zee), Linares, Mtel (Sofia) and the new tournament Ciudad de Mexico, plus two wildcards.[/lang_en]

[lang_nl]

PERSBERICHT

Het Grand Slam Schaakfestival ?¢‚Ǩ?ìBilbao Final Masters Tournament 2008?¢‚Ǩ? zal worden gehouden in Bilbao, hoofdstad van Vizcaya. De data en prijzen van het toernooi zijn al bevestigd; het vindt plaats van 15 tot en met 27 september 2008 en het zal waarschijnlijk een van de beste schaaktoernooien in de geschiedenis worden. Het totale prijzenfonds voor het toernooi is 400.000 euro, ?¢‚Äö¬¨ 150.000 voor de eerste prijs, wat de hoogste prijs in een internationaal schaaktoernooi is, de prijs voor het FIDE-wereldkampioenschap niet meegerekend.

De spelers die meedoen in de Masters Final zullen de winnaars zijn van de volgende toernooien: Corus (Wijk aan Zee, 11-27 januari), Linares (Spanje, 15 februari - 9 maart), MTEL (Sofia, Bulgarije, 6-18 mei) en Ciudad de M?ɬ©xico (Mexico, 21 juni - 6 juli). Aan deze vier winnaars zullen nog twee spelers worden toegevoegd, die hun plaats verdienen door een ander toptoernooi te winnen of speciaal door de organisatie worden uitgenodigd.

Het primaire doel van de Grand Slam Toernooien is om het schaakspel meer waardigheid te geven en te moderniseren, dit alles samen met het doel om het eliteschaak om te turnen tot een fantastisch sportspektakel. We werken met dit doel door speciale aandacht te besteden aan het goede beeld van het schaakspel en de spelers (regels vaststellen om snelle remises te verminderen of helemaal uit te bannen); door een sterke samenwerking met de FIDE te ontwikkelen; door relaties met de media te verbeteren; door Information Society tools te incorporeren in termen van het implementeren van nieuwe manieren om fans toernooien te kunnen laten volgen en aan toernooien te laten deelnemen (of ze nu toernooien bezoeken of via internet bereiken) en ten slotte door initiatieven te promoten die de sociale en educationele rol van het schaakspel verbeteren.

Bilbao, 9 augustus 2007

Laat ik voorop stellen dat ik in principe voorstander ben van het Grand Slam-principe. Verdere professionalisering van de schaaksport is hard nodig en alles wat lijkt op wat er met een grote sport als tennis gebeurt, is alleen maar toe te juichen. Het nieuws maakt de schaakwereld er alleen niet overzichtelijker op. Ik heb al meerdere, vrij intelligente mensen de begrippen Global Chess, Grand Slam, Grand Prix, World Cup en WK volledig door elkaar horen halen. Velen zien door al die nieuwe bomen die maar geplant worden het bos niet meer. Het zijn bovendien dure woorden die de heren in Bilbao in de laatste alinea gebruiken; hopelijk draagt het allemaal bij tot een gezonder schaakklimaat met behoorlijke sponsoring en media-aandacht. Enne, waarom die wildcards trouwens? Past dat wel bij het Grand Slam-principe?

Voor de duidelijkheid, onze eerdere artikelen over de Grand Slam:

>> "Persconferentie Grand Slam Chess Association" (10 maart 2007 - met filmpjes!)
>> "Grand Slam Chess Association opgericht" (24 january 2007)[/lang_nl][lang_en]

PRESS RELEASE

The Grand Slam Chess Festival ?¢‚Ǩ?ìBilbao Final Masters Tournament 2008?¢‚Ǩ? will be held in Bilbao, capital city of Vizcaya. The dates and prizes of the tournament have already been confirmed, it will take place from the 15th of September to 27th of September 2008 and it will probably be among the world best tournaments in chess history. The total prize fund for the tournament is 400,000 euros, ?¢‚Äö¬¨ 150,000 for the first prize, being the highest prize in world chess tournaments, excluding the one from the Fide world chess championship.

The players who will take part in the Masters Final will be the winners of the following tournaments: Corus (Wijk aan Zee, The Netherlands, January 11-27), Linares (Spain, February 15 - March 9), MTEL (Sofia, Bulgaria, May 6-18) and Ciudad de M?ɬ©xico (Mexico, June 21 - July 6). To these four winners will join two more players, who will earn a place by winning a world top tournament or by special invitation made by the organization.

The primary objective of the Grand Slam Tournaments is to dignify and modernize chess, all of this together with the task of turning elite chess into a magnificent sport spectacle. We are working with this aim in taking special care of the good image of chess and players (establishing rules to cut down or eliminate short draws); developing a strong collaboration with FIDE; improving relationships with the media; incorporating Information Society tools in terms of implement new ways to allow fans to follow and participate in the tournaments, whether it be by attending them or through internet portals, and finally, promoting initiatives that enhance the social and educational role of chess.

Bilbao, 9th August, 2007

At first I want to make it clear that I'm not against the Grand Slam idea. To professionalize chess even more is very important and of course we should encourage anything that looks only a bit like what is happening with a big sport like tennis. However, the news makes the situation in the chess world even more complicated. I've heard several, quite intelligent people mix up notions like Global Chess, Grand Slam, Grand Prix, World Cup and Wch. They just can't see the wood for all those new trees anymore. And it's a very ambitious last paragraph by those guys in Bilbao; hopefully it will all add to a healthier chess climate with normal sponsoring and media attention. And by the way: why those wildcards? Does this really fit into the Grand Slam principal?

For clarity, our earlier reports on the Grand Slam:

>> "Press conference Grand Slam Chess Association" (March 10, 2007 - with videos!)
>> "Grand Slam Chess Association established" (January 24, 2007)[/lang_en]

Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of ChessVibes.com, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.

Chess.com

Comments

Lajos Arpad's picture

It is for us, but they are wealthy.

peter's picture

"If Topalov wins, he is no longer interested in the grand slam,and if he loses, Kramnik will be no longer interested in it."

Ehm... I think a ?¢‚Äö¬¨ 150,000 first prize will always be interesting.

Lajos Arpad's picture

I think the wild cards are for players with best Elo points who didn't win one of the tournaments mentioned above. Let's take a look at the next FIDE rating list.
1. Anand
2. Ivanchuk
3. Kramnik
4. Topalov
...
If Kramnik wins the world championship he will have to play with Topalov if i'm not mistaken. If Topalov wins, he is no longer interested in the grand slam,and if he loses, Kramnik will be no longer interested in it. Anand and Ivanchuk remains. I think it is very probable that Ivanchuk or Anand will win a tournament. If they are not going to win one, they are going to lose Elo points. So, it is very probable, that Topalov will be one in the top 2 of the GM's who didn't win a tournament(and he could win one himself), so there is a high probability that Topalov will get a wild card on this base. And if he is not going to, Danailov and the others can always find an excuse why did they invite Topalov and not Anand or Ivanchuk.
Examples:
"In San Luis Topalov was first, and Anand only second"
"Topalov lost in Elista only in tiebrakes"
They can also do something interesting:
To invite players between 2650-2700 to Sophia, and in that case Topalov would be clear favourite.
FIDE has made a mistake to put Danailov in such a position because:
1) He has financial interest in Topalov's success
2) In the past he made "dirty tricks" against Kramnik
3) He is the organizer of the Sophia Masters, and he can manipulate that tournament in Topalov's favour
And those wild cards should be given by a well known rule to avoid any kind of "calculated rules".
I think Eiae is right and the worst thing in this is the fact that the world championship is directly affected by this tournament.

Eiae's picture

I wonder what the odds are that Topalov will not be in that final tournament. You'd probably have a better chance of winning in the lottery, I bet.

I wish the GMs of the World were organized enough to influence the rules for participation to avoid favoritism, cause this all seem corrupt to me. I wonder for how long Wijk will be a part of it. Oh well, we'll see, I hope for the best.

Lajos Arpad's picture

I just hope you are right.

Eiae's picture

Well, I didn't write anything about being against Topalov. I just look at the announcement.

pete's picture

mate, the rules are not made by Danailov, at least not only by him, as you know Danailov is the organizer of MTel Masters, as such he has a lot of power, but the rules (I think) are made by the organizers of all 4 tournaments, therefore if will be a mutual decision who will get the final invitation.

Lets give them time to show what they got, so far I haven't seen anything wrong. We all know Danailov is hated by everybody for his role in the WC match, but that's a completely different thing.

pete's picture

I don't know why everybody is against Topalov, after all the guy was not favored in Mtel Maters so far, he won all 3 tournaments rightfully. Also the odds that he will not participate in the last tournament in Bilbao are low not because Danailov will help him but because he is the 2nd rated player in the world and it is absolutely normal if gets an invitation, as it will be normal Kramnik to receive one too ;).

Lajos Arpad's picture

Ok, but the rules are made by mr. Danailov, and he is considering the fact that Topalov is high rated in his calculations. He has direct interest in helping Topalov. Yes, Topalov is of course a great player, no one even argues that. My problem is that the chief organizer, Danailov is also the manager of Topalov. Pete, i think that the objectivity of Danailov as the organizer in this situation is questionable. I hope that i'm wrong.

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