Reports | June 07, 2010 20:56

Anand, Carlsen, Kramnik in 2010 London Chess Classic

Carlsen beats Kramnik in first round London Chess ClassicWorld Champion Viswanathan Anand will play in this year's London Chess Classic, where he will face Magnus Carlsen and Vladimir Kramnik as his main rivals. Hikaru Nakamura, Michael Adams, Nigel Short, Luke McShane and David Howell complete the field of the second edition that runs 8-15 December 2010 at the Olympia Conference Centre in London.

PRESS RELEASE by John Saunders

Viswanathan Anand will become the first reigning world chess champion to play in a major tournament in London since Anatoly Karpov in 1984 when he joins the eight-player field for the second London Chess Classic, which runs from 8-15 December 2010 at the Olympia Conference Centre.

Vishy Anand is the one change from the stellar field which brought spectators flocking to London to watch elite chess in December 2009. The great Indian player, who will turn 41 during the tournament, recently retained his title as the undisputed champion of the world by defeating Veselin Topalov in the latter’s home city of Sofia, Bulgaria. In London he will meet his immediate predecessor as champion, Vladimir Kramnik, 36, of Russia, and also the young man who is currently riding high as the world’s highest rated player and widely tipped to be Anand’s next challenger – Magnus Carlsen of Norway, who will be 20 by the time the tournament starts.

London is thus privileged to witness a clash of the past, present and likely future chess champions. At the time of writing Carlsen is world number one on the FIDE (World Chess Federation) Rating List, Kramnik is number three and Anand number four. Looking forward, London is also bidding to host the 2012 World Championship title match, so Anand’s clashes with Carlsen and Kramnik could well be a preview of what happens in London’s Olympic year.

Five more players make up the field of eight, all of whom played in the exciting 2009 event. Each one earned his place for his fighting play last year. The fourth non-British player is Hikaru Nakamura, USA, who will turn 23 during the London event. The American is known as the ‘H-Bomb’ for his explosive and totally uncompromising style of play. He has won the US Championship twice and also won major events in San Sebastián and Gibraltar in the past couple of years. He is improving all the time and can be expected to press hard for wins against the leading trio of players.

England has an established quartet of elite players and all four will be playing in London. Michael Adams, 39, from Cornwall, has recently wrested back his position as England number one and he spent a number of years as the world number four. He is fresh from winning the prestigious Gibraltar International. Nigel Short, 45, became a chess legend when he broke the Kasparov-Karpov stranglehold on world title matches, beating Anatoly Karpov on the way to a title match with Garry Kasparov in 1993. He is still one of the most entertaining players on the circuit – and not to be missed in the commentary room after the game! Luke McShane, 26, started a financial career after university but couldn’t resist the lure of the international chess scene. He is now re-establishing his status as one of the most talented of the world’s young grandmasters. David Howell, 20 in November, had a sensational elite tournament debut in this event last year when he finished third behind Carlsen and Kramnik. He had recently won the British Championship by a handsome margin and has subsequently shared first at Hastings and won the British Rapidplay Championship for the second year in succession.

London Chess Classic 2010 | ParticipantsLondon Chess Classic 2010 | Participants

Read full players profiles here.

It's great to see a very successful first London Chess Classic getting an even stronger sequel. Last year's field will be there again except for Ni Hua from China, who was substituted for the world champ himself, making it even harder to avoid visiting this tournament in the second week of December. ChessVibes won't even try. ;-)


Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of, 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.


Suneet's picture

@sergio: good one! I hope to see more e4 now!

An Afghan's picture

everybody draw with each other and beat nakamora

Sergio's picture

Looking forwards to see Anand play against his seconds.

john's picture

Looks like a UK national event where 3 popular players are invited to attract sponsors and spectators.

matthew's picture

"everybody draw with each other and beat Nakamura"
LMAO! good one

Bert de Bruut's picture

No john, it's not that, but the Brits simply enjoy a good spanking by foreigners :-)

chessfan's picture

geesh, time flies! So Anand replaces Ni Hua? Guess that is in half a year or so.

Serdal's picture

Personally, I would have hoped to see a slightly different line-up this year. Nothing against the field, but a little change is always welcome.

Niels Chr. Davidsen's picture

I hope it will be super.

akbardeen's picture

anand is number one always

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