Monday, March 03, 2014
Ivanchuk confirmed for Capablanca Memorial
Ivanchuk confirms participation in Havana's chess tour
HAVANA, March 2 (Xinhua) -- Ukrainian Grandmaster Vassily Ivanchuk will be the main figure to participate in the Capablanca Memorial Chess Tournament, to be held in Havana, Cuba, from May 7 to 18, organizers informed on Sunday.
Ivanchuk, with 2,739 points in Elo ranking, confirmed his participation among the six elite-group players invited to the tournament.
Ivanchuk's presence consolidates Copablanca Memorial tournament as one of the best ones with high rivalry among the elite group, according to Jose Luis Ramirez, spokesman of the Cuban Chess Federation.
The Ukrainian player, winner of the 2005, 2006, 2007 and 2010 editions of the Havana's tour, will visit the island for the sixth time, where the chess fans consider him an idol.
Ivanchuk leads the ranking of winners of the oldest chess tournament in the continent.
He will play in the elite group against grandmasters Hungary's Zoltan Almasi (2,707), who is the current champion, Spain's Francisco Paco Vallejo (2,707), the Philippines' Wesely So (2,738) and Cubans Lazaro Bruzon (2,676) and Leinier Dominguez (2,757).
The players from the elite group have an average Elo ranking of 2,720.6 pints.
Copablanca Memorial tournament was born in 1962, as an initiative of legendary Ernesto "Che" Guevara. The first winner was Argentine Miguel Najdorf, followed by Russians Boris Spassky, Vassily Smyslov and Lev Polugaesky.
Since 1974, the Copablanca Memorial included two groups, while in 1980 it increased to four groups until 2006, when it established the current division of one double-round elite group including six players, making the tournament the most important one held in Cuba.