London Classic starts Saturday, Carlsen's second denied a visa
The 4th edition of the London Chess Classic takes off this Saturday. It runs 1-10 December 2012 at the Olympia Conference Centre in Kensington, London. The pairings are already known, and the first round will have McShane-Carlsen, Aronian-Nakamura, Kramnik-Polgar and Jones-Adams. Top seed Magnus Carlsen has to do without his second Ian Nepomniachtchi, who was denied a visa and could not travel to London.
It's less than three days until the now traditional chess spectacle in London starts. The line-up for the 4th edition is stronger than ever, with an average rating higher than any previous chess tournament held in the UK. Heading the list are World Champion Vishy Anand, former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik, and the top two players on the FIDE rating list, Magnus Carlsen and Levon Aronian. Playing for the first time is the world’s best ever woman player Judit Polgar. Completing the line-up are US champion Hikaru Nakamura and three leading players from Britain: Luke McShane, Michael Adams and Gawain Jones.
Nepomniachtchi's visa denied
Magnus Carlsen will have to do without a second in London. The Norwegian was planning to bring Ian Nepomniachtchi with him, but, as VG reports today, the British embassy in Moscow has denied the Russian top GM a visa. Carlsen's manager Espen Agdestein told VG that Carlsen is quite upset about the matter.
Even though they can contact each other via Skype, Magnus will play with a handicap this tournament.
Agdestein also explained that they wanted to test their cooperation with Nepomniachtchi before the Candidates tournament in March next year.
Press conference on Friday
On Friday, 30 November (incidentally Carlsen's 22nd birthday) at 14:00 GMT (15:00 CET, 09:00 EST) there will be a press conference at the venue, followed by a London Classic Stars versus the Twittersphere exhibition match played via Twitter, allowing the world’s chess players and fans to test their mettle against Carlsen, Anand and co. The press conference will be streamed live via the net.
The organizers invite chess fans around the world to join in; questions are welcome and may be sent in advance to email@example.com or in real-time via the official Twitter feed, which is @LondonClassic. (Do use the hashtag #londonchess in your tweets.)
The opening ceremony for the Classic will take place at 13:45 GMT (14:45 CET) on 1 December, with play beginning at 14:00 GMT (15:00 CET, 09:00 EST). Play will be streamed live via the official website.
Chess in schools and communities
The London Chess Classic is a festival of the world’s most enduring game, which is staged by Chess in Schools and Communities, a UK registered charity whose mission is to deliver chess to primary schools in UK inner cities. There was recent UK national press coverage at The Independent and The Daily Mail.
As we reported earlier, the drawing of lots has already been done, and so the full pairings are available. We give them below:
|Round 1||01.12.12||15:00 CET||Round 2||0212.12||15:00 CET|
|Anand||bye||Assisting the commentary||Adams||bye||Assisting the commentary|
|Round 3||0312.12||15:00 CET||Round 4||04.12.12||17:00 CET|
|McShane||bye||Assisting the commentary||Polgar||bye||Assisting the commentary|
|Round 5||06.12.12||15:00 CET||Round 6||07.12.12||15:00 CET|
|Aronian||bye||Assisting the commentary||Nakamura||bye||Assisting the commentary|
|Round 7||08.12.12||15:00 CET||Round 8||09.12.12||15:00 CET|
|Kramnik||bye||Assisting the commentary||Carlsen||bye||Assisting the commentary|
|Round 9||10.12.12||13:00 CET|
|Jones||bye||Assisting the commentary|
Timetable, course details and tickets are available here: www.londonchessclassic.com. The 4th edition takes place 1-10 December in Kensington, London.
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