Bilbao will receive from September 2 to September 13, the strongest tournament of the History of the Chess. A tournament of the category XXII with Elo’s average of the participants of 2775,63. For the first time ever in the world an event of such characteristics will take place in the street, in the Plaza Nueva, right in the centre of Bilbao’s Old Town from 17:00hrs. To this end a huge soundproofed and air-conditioned glass case will be fitted out under a marquee where the games will be played.
The big deployment of computer and audiovisual means and the comments, interviews and analysis by journalists and presenters will allow and excellent entertaining and amusing follow up of this tournament for the people turning up at the Plaza Nueva.
The six participating players will be headed by world’s champion and number one Viswanathan Anand. Along with him, Magnus Carlsen (number two), Vasili Ivanchuk (number three), Véselin Topálov (number six and ex world’s champion), Teimur Radyábov (number seven) and Levon Aronián (world’s number ten currently) will compete in Bilbao. No tournament had managed so far to gather such a high Elo’s average level (scoring system to order players’ ranking).
The Grand Slam Final Masters has the official recognition of the International Chess Federation (FIDE) and it will be played in a double round league during ten days (plus a two-day break). The total prize money amounts to €400,000, sum only exceeded by World Chess Championships.
Official website: http://www.bilbaofinalmasters.com/en_index.asp
The drawing of lots will begin tomorrow morning. It is my understanding that my LIVE commentary with my friend Leontxo Garcia, who I believe is the greatest chess commentator, will be available online.
Former World Champion Boris Spassky will take over the commentary duty for me when I have to leave Bilbao. The only player I have seen so far is Levon Aronian. This will be an incredible event as the #1 world ranking is on the line. Anand is still #1 but Ivanchuk and Carlsen are closing the gap.
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– GM Susan Polgar