Team Magnus arriving in Chennai for recce
Amit Karmarkar, TNN | Aug 18, 2013, 01.39 AM IST
PUNE: There will be two Magnuses arriving in Chennai on Sunday night.
No, this is not world No. 1 and World Championship challenger Magnus Carlsen's new chess trick. It's just that his chef Magnus Forssell is travelling with him. Carlsen will take on multiple world champion Viswanathan Anand at a city hotel in a 12-game match in November. He will be in Chennai for three days doing a recce of sorts. And going by his decision to bring in his cook, it can be safely assumed that he won't be experimenting too much with food during his November stay.
Carlsen's agent Espsen Agdestein told TOI: "Our mission is to get a feel of the venue, and to get all the first impressions now, instead of just before the start of the match."
According to FIDE vice president DV Sundar, 22-year-old Carlsen is expected to play a simultaneous exhibition event at MOP Vaishnav College on Monday. "He will pose for pictures with kids. We are also trying to set up a meeting between Carlsen and chief minister J Jayalalithaa on Tuesday," added Sundar. It will be Carlsen's first visit to India, and only a second to any Asian country.
Apart from the chef, Carlsen will be accompanied by his manager Agdestein and father Henrik. Carlsen and Anand have already signed their match contracts. But it's unclear if the Norwegian has received additional 100,000 euros from the organizers (as stipulated in the match regulation) for agreeing to play in the opponent's home country. The regulations also make him eligible for 200,000 euros towards inspection expenses.
The Tamil Nadu government has taken the financial undertaking for the match, which is to the tune of Rs 30 crore. Sundar said: "They have already released Rs 18.5 crore. We have handed over half of that sum to FIDE."
Anand's manager and wife Aruna said the champion is "busy preparing for the match outside Chennai." She said that Anand won't participate in any of the activities with Carlsen next week. "Anand has never been to an inspection before the WC matches," said Aruna.