My Top 10 Most Memorable Moments in Chess (Part 3)
I have experienced hundreds if not thousands of exciting, wonderful and memorable moments during my chess career, a career that has spanned almost 40 years. It was not easy, but I have narrowed these moments down to the top 10. This is a short preview of my best selling book Breaking Through. 10. Meeting Bobby Fischer 9. Scoring 10-0 at the 1973 Budapest Championship for girls under 11 at the age of 4! 8. Winning 1981 World Junior Championship for girls under 16 7. Winning the gold medal at the 1990 Olympiad 6. Becoming the first woman ever to break the gender barrier, qualifying for the Men’s World Championship Zonal Tournament. 5. Becoming the #1 ranked woman player in the world at age 15 4. Winning the 1992 Women’s World Blitz and Rapid Championship 3. Winning the 1996 Women’s World Chess Championship 2. Winning the gold medal at the 1988 Olympiad 1. Becoming the first woman ever to break the gender barrier, earning the Grandmaster title
3. Winning the 1996 Women’s World Chess Championship
Winning the 1996 Women’s World Championship is one of the special highlights of my career. This title gave me the triple crown in chess (Rapid, Blitz and Conventional Time Control). It erased the bad memory of losing the candidate’s match to Ioseliani in 1993 by a coin toss even though I had never trailed at any point in the match. This victory quieted all the doubters who said the Polgar sisters could not play against women, only against men.
The final score was a lopsided 8½- 4½. It seemed to be an easy victory. But such was not the case. I won the match despite facing many personal problems that I have never talked about before. After two games, the score was 1½-½ for my formidable opponent. I opened the third game, for the first time in serious competition, with 1. e4!? This was a shock for my opponent. I obtained a slight advantage but since I was in time pressure already, I decided to offer a draw to my opponent and she accepted the offer. My main strategy was to conserve energy and to recuperate.
This is when things started to go wrong. I had a team that had been with me a long time: my mother, my sister Judit and my trainer GM Lev Psakhis. These are the people I trust and who have known me best in my career. My ex-husband decided to invite his parents from Israel to the match. I repeatedly objected but it did not help. I did not want to have any distractions, especially from the in-laws. He did not care and they arrived on February 1.
To make matters worst, upon arriving back from dinner following the third game, I received news that Mr. Rentero, the match organizer, had fined both my opponent and me $25,000 each for a quick draw in game 3. His decision was absolutely illegal and the tone of his letter was rude and obnoxious. It severely affected me both emotionally and psychologically. I am sure it also affected my opponent as well.
The Chinese delegation was ready to pack up and leave. Both sides were very upset and insulted. After consulting with my trainer, my sister Judit, and my parents, I decided to try to put aside the problem with Mr. Rentero and the in-law situation and played on. At the time, I felt that my decision was right. But there was no guarantee. Chess players react differently when dealing with crises. I felt I got stronger and more focused. I went on to score 4½ points in the next 5 games. The rest is history.
I am still hopeful that maybe one day in the future, the great Women’s World Champion Xie Jun of China and I will have a chance to play another match. Now that I live in and play for the United States, a match like this can only create more excitement and help popularize chess a lot more in both countries.
2. Winning the gold medal at the 1988 Olympiad
This was simply and incredible moment in my life as well as in the lives of my sisters. As a matter of fact, it was a big moment for Hungary. There were many meaningful storylines for the Polgar sisters at the 1988 Olympiad. * This was the first time ever that a non-Soviet team had won the gold medal, ending its dominance of women’s chess. * This was the first time that 3 sisters had played on the same gold medal winning team. * We had a very young team with members of the team ranging from 12-19 years of age. * We went from being the main controversy of the game because of our approach to chess to being loved, admired and adored by millions in Hungary and worldwide. * This was the first time that the Polgar sisters had competed in the world stage against other women players. * It also put to rest the ridiculous accusation that the Polgar sisters could not compete against other women players and somehow it is easier to play against men.
My sister Judit won an individual gold medal with the amazing score of 12½/13. She had missed a win against Levitina which would have given her a perfect 13/13 score.
I got an individual bronze on board 1 with the score of 10½/14. We also had strong contributions from my other sister Sophia Polgar and from Ildiko Madl.
We narrowly edged out the Soviet team by the score of 33 to 32½, outdistancing the Yugoslavian team that had finished with 28. Prior to coming to this Olympiad, very few people believed that we could win. After all, Soviet teams have dominated the Women’s Olympiad since its inception. Most people/experts, and even some of our coaches would have been happy with the silver medal.
The three sisters and our parents were the only one who believed we could win. We worked as a team. We cheered each other on. Even though the Soviet team was much stronger than we on paper, this clearly showed what teamwork and confidence could do for the underdog.
I truly hope that our 2004 US Women’s Olympiad Team can follow along the same path. Camaraderie and teamwork can sometimes make up for ELO points. Winning the team gold in 1988 is something I will treasure for the rest of my life. Now that my sisters and I are living on separate continents, we will probably never play on the same Olympiad team together again. But the great memories will live on forever. 1. Becoming the first woman ever to break the gender barrier, earning the Grandmaster title
When I was growing up, Vera Menchik, Lyudmila Rudenko, Yelizavyeta Bykova, Olga Rubtsova, Nona Gaprindashvili, and Maia Chiburdanidze were the names of Women’s World Champions. They were at the top of Women’s Chess in their respective eras. But none of them was able to earn the grandmaster title the traditional way with norm qualifications as their male counterparts had done. Both Gaprindashvili (2 GM norms) and Chiburdanidze (1 GM norm) had some wonderful results against men in their careers; they simply were not able to surpass that threshold.
Gaprindashvili and Chiburdanidze were awarded the grandmaster title for winning the Women’s World Championship although they had never actually fulfilled the qualifications to become grandmasters. I find it interesting that FIDE never went back and awarded the title to the previous four women’s world champions, Vera Menchik, Lyudmila Rudenko, Yelizavyeta Bykova, and Olga Rubtsova.
Most people did not believe that women could compete against men on the same level. Most people could not imagine that a woman could actually be good enough to “earn” the grandmaster title the same way as men do. Since I was brought up differently, it was very important for me to prove otherwise. I believe men and women can compete at the same level in any given tournament even though women’s professional chess careers are usually shorter due to many factors, as I have mentioned in earlier ChessCafe.com articles.
I earned my first grandmaster norm at Royan, France in June/July1988, finishing second in the tournament behind Victor Korchnoi. My second grandmaster norm came in June 1989 when I tied for first with GM J. Pinter at a tournament in Leon, Spain. My third and final grandmaster norm was at Pamplona, Spain between December 1990 to early January 1991 when I took third place behind GM Yudasin and Korchnoi.
Even though I had become the youngest women’s grandmaster in history at that time at the age of 12, my sight was set on the overall grandmaster title. I believe this accomplishment made a very big impact on women’s chess. Someone had finally broken through this gigantic gender barrier. About a year later, my sister Judit became the second woman to “earn” the Grandmaster title and became the world’s youngest grandmaster in history, breaking Bobby Fischer’s record. In 1992, my good friend Pia Cramling of Sweden became the third woman in history to do the same.
Now, it is no longer uncommon for a woman to become a grandmaster. The future generations of women’s players now know that it is possible to do so. I believe that this is one of the biggest accomplishments in women’s chess and therefore this is my number one most memorable moment in my professional chess career, to have become the first woman ever to “earn” the overall grandmaster title.
Susan Zsuzsa Polgar – Jonathan Speelman Brussels, 1985
European Small Nations Team Championship was held in Monte Carlo, Monaco from 25th November to 1st December 2013. Ten teams from Andorra, Cyprus, Faroe Islands, Guernsey, Jersey, Liechtenstein, Luxemburg, Malta, Monaco and San Marino participated in the tournament held under the patronage of FIDE President. The venue of the tournament was the Hotel Hermitage. FIDE President participated in the awarding ceremony together with the President of Monaco Chess Federation Mr. Jean-Michel Rapaire.
Grandmaster-elect Danyyil Dvirnyy convincingly won the 73rd Italian Chess Championship by finishing the event with 8,0/11 points, a full point ahead of the last-year champion GM Alberto David and GM Sabino Brunello.
The Championship was held from 21st November to 2nd December at the Hotel Villa Maria Regina, via della Camilluccia 687, in Rome. Earlier Rome hosted the prestigious event 66(!) years ago.
Despite the notable absence of Fabiano Caruana, the Championship featured five Grandmasters and had a field with the average elo 2478.
The playing format was 12-player round robin. The total prize fund was 14,000 EUR, with 3000 EUR awarded to the winner. Final standings:
Susan Polgar Explains the French Defense, Lines with 3. Nc3 Posted on December 05,2013 By William in Strategy & Game Review, Chess Openings, All Articles w/ Videos, Beginner's Corner. The French Defense is a fantastic opening to add to your repertoire because it is extremely solid and black should have an easy time of emerging from the early moves with good play in the center. This chess video excerpt from Susan Polgar's chess DVD ¨Master the French, part 3 of 3¨ focuses specifically on all lines of the French Defense starting with 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 - including 3. ..Bb4; 3. ..dxe4; 3. ..Nf6 4. e5; and 3. ..Nf6 4. Bg5. G[...] Susan Polgar Explains the French Defense, Tarrasch Variation Posted on November 28,2013 By William in General Chess Articles. The Tarrasch Variation is one of the most common lines against the French Defense, starting with 1. e4 e6 2. d4 d5 3. Nd2 as white protects his pawn on e4 but does not want to allow 3. Nc3 Bb4 - pinning the knight and doubling white's pawns for the rest of the game. However the Tarrasch Variation also has it's drawbacks as white will spend a lot of extra time to complete his development because his knight on d2 will be blocking natural developing[...] How to Attack like a Grandmaster by GM Damian Lemos Posted on November 25,2013 By GM Damian Lemos in General Chess Articles. Many beginner chess players are nervous at the board and this translates into timid play. If you prefer to build a solid position and wait for a mistake by your opponent, you are not playing good chess! If you want to win games, you have to attack your opponent at every chance. You must capitalize on every opportunity to make threats against your opponent and create problems that your opponent will be forced to solve. In this chess video excerpt [...] Master the French Defense with GM Susan Polgar Posted on November 25,2013 By OnlineChessLessons.NET Contributor in General Chess Articles. The French Defense is the perfect opening choice for the beginner and intermediate chess player as it is an extremely solid defense against 1. e4, relying on a clear positional foundation to guide play in the opening and middlegame. The French Defense has been played by countless top players including Mikhail Botvinnik, Ulf Andersson, Vassily Ivanchuk, Hikaru Nakamura, Magnus Carlsen, etc.. so it is clear that this is an opening you can play thro[...] OnlineChessLessons.net is a producer of thousands of free chess articles and free chess videos by FIDE chess masters. They recently released the renowned Empire Chess series that has been taking the chess world by storm. Please consider checking out their chess blog and chess shop with tons of free updated previews.
My Top 10 Most Memorable Moments in Chess (Part 2)
I have experienced hundreds if not thousands of exciting, wonderful and memorable moments during my chess career, a career that has spanned almost 40 years. It was not easy, but I have narrowed these moments down to the top 10.
6. Becoming the first woman ever to break the gender barrier, qualifying for the Men’s World Championship Zonal Tournament
This was a historic moment for me as well as for women’s chess. A woman chess player finally had been able to break through the gender barrier and qualify for the “Men’s World Championship” Zonal tournament. This is a moment I will always cherish. Unfortunately, this occasion brought me both wonderful memories as well as horrific ones.
Between April and May of 1986, I participated in the Hungarian National Championship in Budapest. Going into the tournament, all participants were told that the top 3 finishers would qualify to play in the “Men’s” World Championship Zonal Tournament. I had just turned 17 right before the tournament and until then, nobody would even think about a woman qualifying for the “Men’s” World Championship.
But I was brought up differently by my parents. I was taught that I could accomplish anything I want if I put in the hard work. I had put in a lot of hard work since I had been 4 or 5. Unfortunately, I was not told that as a woman and Jew, I would be black-listed. By the time my younger sisters had begun to play serious chess, my battles had cleared the way for them.
The unexpected happened. Knowing that I needed to finish in the top 3 to achieve the unthinkable, I paced myself to accomplish just that. I finished tied for 2nd with IM Laszlo Hazai, behind Grandmaster Ivan Farago. I was very happy of what I have accomplished. I had become the first woman ever to quality for the “Men’s World Championship” Zonal tournament.
But The happy moment quickly turned sour. Many people were not happy. The Hungarian Chess Federation announced that only the top two would represent Hungary and not the top three.
No problem, I said to myself. So we will have a play-off between IM Hazai and me and the winner will move on. Wrong! The decision was made. Susan Polgar is not going to the “Men’s World Championship” Zonal tournament. IM Hazai had a better tie-break and he will represent Hungary.
After I legitimately qualified and broke the gender barrier, I learned rules can be changed at any time (especially if you are a Jewish woman). To add more insult to injury, FIDE also refused to allow me to participate in the Men’s World Championship Zonal tournament. The reason? The word “Men’s Championship” speaks for itself.
Dr. Laszlo Lako of Hungary stated that he would not allow Polgar or any other Hungarian women to play in the Men’s World Championship Zonal tournament even if FIDE would have agreed to let me play. The Hungarian federation and FIDE succeeded in stopping me from participating even though I had earned my spot. However, they could not stop women forever. They had to change the name to the World Chess Championship in the following cycle and the word ‘Men’ was removed.
Fortunately, my loss was a gain for women in chess. Now, all women can compete in the overall World Chess Championship. Someday, hopefully another woman can break through the next barrier and win it all. But in the meantime, I am very proud to be able to chisel through the wall of gender discrimination in chess for future generations. I am happy to see so many good women players besides my sisters such as GM Hou Yifan, GM Humpy Koneru, Anna Muzychuk, the Kosintseva sisters, and other Chinese women players, etc. I hope this trend will continue.
Another reason why this event was one of the most memorable moments for me is because it made me a stronger player and a better human being. Rather than dwelling on the discrimination and unfairness, I used it as a motivational tool. I realized that I had to work even harder to accomplish my goals. I also learned to be more compassionate and understanding to everyone because I want no one to experience what I had experienced.
5. Becoming the #1 ranked woman player in the world at age 15
At the age of 15, I became the #1 ranked woman player in the world. This was quite a memorable moment for me. My ELO at that time was the highest of any woman in history. In addition, I was also the youngest woman player in the top 25 in the world ranking. I may have been ranked #1 even sooner had I been allowed to travel freely to play. Unfortunately, I had very limited opportunity to play to gain ELO points. This was how things used to work in the Communist countries at that time. Many similar stories existed in the Soviet Union as well.
Beside the personal satisfaction of beating the system and gaining the #1 ranking in spite of so many roadblocks, the door was opened for me to travel to the West. I also had helped from the Western and domestic media, hounding the Hungarian Chess Federation. Finally, the Hungarian Chess Federation could no longer prevent me from playing abroad. And this also helped my 2 younger sisters, Sofia and Judit.
Therefore, even though I was not chasing after the #1 women’s ranking because I was going after the overall World Championship, this event changed my life and my the lives of my family. The Polgar name was then known worldwide. The long-kept secret was out.
In addition, beside the great player from Sweden Pia Cramling and me at that time, no one else could come close to the Soviet women. They had dominated the game for decades. In a way, I have to thank my friend Pia for my achievements in chess. We helped push each other toward the top. It was the kind of friendly rivalry that was needed to help both players.
Once I had the opportunity to play, good things happened. At the age of 16, I had a higher rating than the great world champion Anatoly Karpov at that same age. The following year at 17, I became the top-rated overall junior under 18 in the world, boys or girls. My success continued. By looking back, becoming #1 in the world was a stepping-stone for my professional chess career toward the bigger picture. This is one moment I would never forget.
4. Winning the 1992 Women’s World Blitz and Rapid Championship
In the preceding year (January 1991), I had become the first woman ever to earn the overall grandmaster title through norm qualification. At the end of 1991, my baby sister Judit became the second woman to do the same, followed by Pia Cramling in 1992.
As 1992 began, the Soviet women seemed to have something to prove. At the World Blitz and Rapid Women’s Championship, the big guns came to put on a show. The top 10 women who participated in both of these World Championships were: Judit Polgar; Susan Polgar; M. Chiburdanidze; K. Arakhamia; S. Matveeva; Sophia Polgar; A. Galliamova; A. Maric; E. Sakhatova; and M. Voiska
Even though our official ratings were only 20 points apart, my sister Judit was the odds-on favorite to win both of these world championships. I was the considered to be the contender for the silver medal in both events. The battle in both championships was quite intense. The competition was tough.
In the World Blitz Championship, I finished 1st with 22½ points out of a grueling 26 games, all in one day! With 26 rounds, there could be no luck. It was a battle of chess, mental toughness, physical endurance, and raw nerves. My sister Judit finished right behind me with 22 out of 26. Alisa Galliamova finished 3rd with 20 and my other sister Sophia finished tied with Women’s World Champion Chiburdanidze for 4th with 19½.
In the World Rapid Championship, the race was even closer. Going into the last round, my sister Sophia was leading both Judit and I by one-half point with World Champion Chiburdanidze a half-point behind Judit and me. Therefore, any of us had the chance to win. Both World Champion Chiburdanidze and I won while Judit drew.
Unfortunately, Sophia lost. Therefore, I finished 1st with 12 out of 15 while Sophia had to settle in a 3-way tie for second with 11½. However, Sophia got 2nd place on tie-breaks, with World Champion Chiburdanidze in 3rd and Judit in 4th.
This was a bittersweet moment for me. Even though I was ecstatic that I had won both World Championships, I was sad that it had to be over my two younger sisters. I wish I could have had both of them share the glory with me. How can you enjoy what supposed to be very happy moments when your own sisters did not do as well? It is like Serena and Venus Williams battling it out for the top spot in a Grand Slam. One has to win and one has to lose.
Winning these two World Championships gave me two of the three legs needed to win the Triple Crown in chess (Rapid, Blitz and Conventional Time Control). Only one more and I would accomplish something that had never been done by anyone in chess, male or female, and that is winning the Chess Triple Crown. Therefore, this was a very special moment for me.
Susan Polgar (2550) – Bent Larsen (2560) Veterans - Women, Monte Carlo, 1994
Polgar: My Top 10 Most Memorable Moments in Chess (Part 1) By Susan Polgar July 23, 2011 Over the years, one of the most popular questions which I am being asked is what are some of the most memorable moments in my career? I have experienced hundreds if not thousands of exciting, wonderful and memorable moments during my chess career that has spanned almost 40 years. It was not easy, but I have narrowed it down to the top 10.
10. Meeting Bobby Fischer
If you randomly ask someone on the street to name one chess player, chances are the name Bobby Fischer will come up. Some consider him the greatest world champion ever. Some consider him the most eccentric. People may disagree with his views on various issues. However, no one can ever dispute what he has done for chess. No one can doubt his love and passion for the game and definitely no one can question his skills in chess.
Bobby Fischer is a chess genius. He is a chess legend. He raised chess to another level. One of my memorable moments in chess was meeting him. He visited my family and me in Hungary and stayed in our summer home. Even though it was supposed to be a secret, he could not escape the media frenzy.
When Bobby did not talk about issues that were very dear to his heart or chess, he was a very friendly, funny, and definitely a “normal” person. When he talked about issues he feels strongly about, he became very “passionate”. Whether I agree with his views or not is irrelevant. It does not change my respect and admiration for his abilities, knowledge and accomplishments in chess. He was simply one of best ever. And he was definitely one of the most colorful and one of the most recognized world champions ever.
It was such a unique experience for me to be able to play (Fischer Random Chess) against Bobby. Some of the games were blitz at home. Others were played while we were in restaurants. We also analyzed some positions.
Everyone knew what Bobby used to think about women’s chess. After our many games, even though I was not able to change his mind about many other topics, I am sure that I changed his mind about women’s chess. I had very good results against Bobby. But the final score is something I have not revealed out of respect for him. Trust is something that was very important to him.
We even agreed to play an official “Battle of the Sexes Fischer Random Chess Match” on the world stage. Bobby believed that Fischer Random Chess is a true test of skills and talents, without just relying on home analysis. I agree with him. I wish this game would be more popular. Unfortunately, the match did not happen. Now that he has passed, it never will. Overall, it was a very good and, undoubtedly, a memorable moment in my chess career.
9. Scoring 10-0 at the 1973 Budapest Championship for girls under 11 at the age of 4!
When I first started to play chess at the age of 4, no one could ever predict what the future would hold for me. I of course did not know it myself. But when I competed and won the Budapest Championship for Girls under 11 with a perfect 10-0 score, my life was changed once and for all. Winning any tournament with a 10-0 result is incredible. To do so at the tender age of 4 against other girls who were as much as twice my age was something I can never forget.
I was so small I could not reach the chessboard. I had to sit on pillows just to be able to see the pieces. I was just a little munchkin. After this tournament, I realized that I could compete. My parents began to recognize my potential in the game. This one tournament changed my life. It set a direction for my future. Four world championships and ten Olympic medals later, I looked back and understood that this tournament was the turning point of my life. 8. Winning the 1981 World Junior Championship for girls under 16
Another milestone in my life was winning the 1981 World Junior Championship for girls under 16-years old. Some may wonder what is so special about a winning a World Junior Championship when I have won many other prestigious titles? Because it was another confirmation during my career that I could compete in chess at a world-class level.
Prior to this tournament, I had never been allowed to travel to the West to play chess. When one has not competed against a wide range of international players, it is difficult to validate one’s ability. In addition, to be able to win a big tournament the first time out under extreme pressure and incredible expectations from countless people was a test for me to see. Not only that, if I did not do well, I may not have been allowed to travel to compete and represent my country again.
I succeeded with flying colors. It confirmed once again that I could play chess. It proved that I could handle pressure. That is why this event was a memorable one. In a way, it helped shape my chess career and my future. It resulted in headlines in many newspapers in the West. The name (Susan) Polgar would now be a name to be reckoned with.
7. Winning the gold medal at the 1990 Olympiad
Prior to Hungary winning the gold medal in the 1988 Chess Olympiad, the Soviet women had ruled the chess world. Because the Polgar sisters usually only competed in men’s tournaments until then, many people felt that we would not do well in a women’s tournament.
After the Polgar sisters stunned the chess world by taking the gold medal in the 1988 Olympiad, becoming the first non-Soviet team to do so, many people still did not
believe that we were good. Many people believed that we were just lucky. This is why returning two years later with the same unit to win the gold again was important to us. We wanted to prove to the world, not to mention ourselves, that we could do it. In a long and nerve-wracking event such as the Olympiad, anything can happen. Nothing can be taken for granted.
We did what we had to do. We took care of business. We came away with back-to-back gold medals, ahead of the Soviets once again. I think this victory shut down all talk about the Polgar sisters not being able to compete against other women. This myth has been put to rest for good. It certainly was a memorable moment of my career.
Chess Column By: Cecil Rosner Posted: 11/30/2013 1:00 AM
One of the most absurd aspects of the recent world chess championship match was the press conference that followed each encounter.
After hours of gruelling play, Vishy Anand and Magnus Carlsen were forced to answer some strange and often inane questions. Much of it was almost too painful to watch.
As a professional journalist, I am generally in favour of full transparency and expansive media access. Sometimes grandmasters can offer interesting insights into the games they have just played, but that doesn't mean it always makes sense.
I think back to some of the gruelling and emotionally draining games I played in my career and wondered what it would be like to have to answer questions immediately following a harrowing loss. What can you say? Yes, I was an idiot. No, I guess I should not have blundered.
Here is one exchange that occurred after Game 6, when Anand had just suffered his second straight loss to Carlsen.
"Mr. Anand, you said it was a blow to you," said Ole Rolfsrud of Norwegian television. "How will you now work out of this blow?"
"Well, you just do your best," was Anand's polite and sensible answer.
After another question from an Indian journalist who wanted Anand to comment on the retirement of a popular Indian cricket player ("There are other things on my mind," said Anand), Rolfsrud was back for more.
"I am still wondering if Mr. Anand will elaborate by what you mean by doing your best?"
This seemed to be the final straw for the former world champion, who snapped back: "Doing your best means doing your best. I don't know why you don't understand English."
My full sympathies are with Anand on this. In football or hockey, you can sometimes blame conditioning or injuries or a variety of other factors for a lack of success. In chess, it usually comes back to your own mind. The reason you lost or didn't play well is because you screwed up. The synapses in your brain were not firing as well as the other guy's.
The post-game press conference seems like a strange sort of public flagellation for the losing player. They are forced to explain the unexplainable. Then when they fall short of doing so to the satisfaction of the flagellators, they are asked to elaborate on the unexplainable.
Here is my unsolicited advice to the organizers of major matches: Make the press conferences voluntary. Let the loser grieve in peace. Internet audiences all around the world will thank you.
London Chess Classic seeds announced Hikaru Nakamura, Vishy Anand, Peter Svidler and Fabiano Caruana make up the top pool, reports By Malcolm Pein, Chess correspondent 1:49PM GMT 04 Dec 2013
The seedings for the London Chess Classic Super-16 have been prepared. The players will be divided into four groups consisting of one from each pool (below) in a draw to be performed by the chess team of Ravenscroft Primary School in Newham, London, who were the first school to take part in the Chess in Schools and Communities scheme in 2010. The school has excelled in local competition and will receive an award for outstanding achievement from the British Chess Educational Trust at the London Chess Classic next week.
Seedings are based on FIDE rapid play ratings. If a player has no rapid play rating, the standard rating is used:
Pool 1: Hikaru Nakamura 2812; Vishy Anand 2794; Peter Svidler 2789; Fabiano Caruana 2783.
Pool 2: Vladimir Kramnik 2777; Michael Adams 2746; Boris Gelfand 2718; Nigel Short 2711.
Pool 3: Luke McShane (2684); Judit Polgar 2669; David Howell 2649; Matthew Sadler (2646).
Pool 4: Gawain Jones 2615; Jonathan Rowson (2569). Plus two qualifiers from the FIDE Open.