FIDE World Chess Championships

from Mark Crowther's page

The opening ceremony for the FIDE World Chess Championships will take place on December 8th 1997 in Groningen in the Netherlands. 96 players will play in Groningen and after seven rounds of elimination matches the winner will qualify to play Anatoly Karpov in a 6 game match in the Olympic Museum, Lausanne, Switzerland. This final series of games will take place January 1st - 9th.1998. Play will be daily starting at 1-30pm local time. The rapidplay and sudden death games that are required take place on the same day as the second normal time rate game.

Is this a real World Chess Championships?

This is the first time the knockout formula has been used to settle FIDE's World Championships and has been introduced as a result of the decline of interest in sponsoring the old format after Garry Kasparov started to organise his own World Championship events. Most of the World's best players are taking part. The two most notable absentees are Garry Kasparov and Vladimir Kramnik, number one and number two in the international rating list respectively. Kasparov is not playing because he has some strong claims to be the true World Champion and Kramnik because he believes the seeding of Karpov to the final is wrong. FIDE have made it clear that the winner of this event will join the event early on next time. The knockout formula over such short matches certainly takes the event out of the tradition of World Championships in the past. The form of these championships may be subject to great alteration the next time the event runs. The question of whether it will become regarded as the event to establish the World Chess Championship is one for the future. Garry Kasparov's bad relations with many of his closest rivals may make a deal to have a World Title series for the title he claims very hard to obtain. His credibility in the long term will depend on him playing the most credible challenger. There is not long term stability in the situation. The players will be highly motivated in Groningen, not least because of the money, but the winners will belong to a different tradition to the first 13 Champions, a lineage that may have come to an end. The long term support of the players in the way they regard the winner is very important.

How does the event work?

The first 6 rounds consist of a series of two game matches at standard time rates, in round 7 there will be four normal time rate games, in round 8 in Lausanne there will be six normal time rate games. There will be additional rapidplay games followed by a single sudden death game if the matches are tied. The games will be timed using electronic game timers. These allow the use of time increments per move played.

Playing schedule


Rounds 2-6 take place over three days. The first two days for normal time-rate games, the third day for rapidplay tie-breaks.

Round 1 December 9-10 1997
Round 2 December 11-13 1997
Round 3 December 14-16 1997
Round 4 December 17-19 1997
Round 5 December 20-22 1997
Round 6 December 23-25 1997
Round 7 December 26-30 1997
Round 8 January 1-8 1998
Standard time rate games:
The standard time rate for the games will be 40 moves in 100 minutes, then 20 moves in 50 minutes followed by the rest of the moves in 10 minutes. In addition to this allotment of time the players will receive an additional 30 seconds per move played. An unusual regulation this time is that the players are not required to record their moves as this will be taken care of by electronic means.

Initial rapidplay time limit:

If the match of standard time rate games is drawn then the players will play two rapidplay games at a time rate of 25 minutes for all the moves with the addition of 10 seconds a move.

Secondary rapidplay time limit:

If the first series of rapidplay time rate games is drawn then the players will play two further rapidplay games at a time rate of 15 minutes for all the moves with the addition of 10 seconds a move. [This second series of games will not apply to the first round where the players will move straight to the sudden death games.]

Sudden death time limits:

The tight scheduling necessitates provision for sudden death games to bring a definite end to matches. The players will draw lots before each game for colour and white will receive four minutes and black five minutes. There will be an additional 10 seconds per move played. These games will be played until there is a decisive result. If due to a number of draws the arbiter decides these sudden death games are going on too long they will move to a single game where white receives 6 minutes with no additions and black 5 minutes. In this case the winner of the game goes through to the next round or in the case of a draw the player with the black pieces.

What is the prizefund?

The prize-fund is $5 million distributed in the following way.

Losers in round 1 $6000
Losers in round 2 $12000
Losers in round 3 $24000
Losers in round 4 $48000
Losers in round 5 $96000
Losers in round 6 $192000
Losers in the semi-final $375000
Loser in the final $768000
Winner $1,370,000
[There is a straight 20% deduction on all figures above which goes straight to FIDE.]

The pairings

Layout by Massimiliano Orsi. Names in brackets indicate the expected qualifier in terms of rating.

Gelfand, B......BLR 2695 ..\

bye..................... ../Gelfand........ ..

bye..................... ..\bye............ ..\

bye..................... ../         Gelfand........ ..

Barua, D........IND 2515 ..\         (Lautier)...... ..\

Hracek, Z.......CZE 2605 ../(Hracek)....... ../         |

bye..................... ..\Lautier........ ..          |

Lautier, J......FRA 2660 ../                (Gelfand)...... ..

Salov, V........RUS 2680 ..\                (Salov)........ ..\

bye..................... ../Salov.......... ..          |      |

Tkachiev, V.....KAZ 2615 ..\(Tkachiev)..... ..\         |      |

Fominyh, A......RUS 2535 ../         (Salov)........ ../       |

Oll, L..........EST 2645 ..\         (Oll).......... ..        |

Petursson, M....ISL 2555 ../(Oll).......... ../                |

Morozevich, A...RUS 2590 ..\(Morozevich)... ..                 |

Smyslov, V......RUS 2480 ../                      (Gelfand)...... ..

Seirawan, Y.....USA 2630 ..\                      (Ivanchuk)..... ..\

Anastasian, A...ARM 2545 ../(Seirawan)..... ..                 |     |

bye..................... ..\Ivanchuk....... ..\                |     |

Ivanchuk, V.....UKR 2725 ../         (Ivanchuk)..... ..        |     |

Kaidanov, G.....USA 2600 ..\         (Zvjaginsev)... ..\       |     |

bye..................... ../Kaidanov....... ../         |      |     |

Zvjaginsev, V ..RUS 2635 ..\(Zvjaginsev)... ..          |      |     |

Benjamin, J.....USA 2580 ../                (Ivanchuk)..... ../      |

Sadler, M.......ENG 2665 ..\                (Sadler)....... ..       |

bye..................... ../Sadler......... ..          |            |

Ehlvest, J......EST 2610 ..\(Ehlvest)...... ..\         |            |

Van Der Wiel, J.NED 2525 ../         (Sadler)....... ../             |

Dreev, A........RUS 2640 ..\         (Dreev)........ ..              |

bye..................... ../Dreev.......... ../                      |

Nenashev, A.....UZB 2585 ..\(Nenashev)..... ..                       |

Hoeksema, H.....NED 2400 ../                            (Ivanchuk)..... ..

Anand, V........IND 2765 ..\                            (Anand)........ ..\

bye..................... ../Anand.......... ..                       |     |

bye..................... ..\Nikolic........ ..\                      |     |

Nikolic, P......BIH 2630 ../         (Anand)........ ..              |     |

Khalifman, A....RUS 2655 ..\         (Khalifman).... ..\             |     |

bye..................... ../Khalifman...... ../         |            |     |

Nijboer, F......NED 2605 ..\(Nijboer)...... ..          |            |     |

Glek, I.........RUS 2505 ../                (Anand)........ ..       |     |

Polgar, J.......HUN 2670 ..\                (Polgar)....... ..\      |     |

bye..................... ../Polgar......... ..          |      |     |     |

Almasi, Z.......HUN 2615 ..\(Almasi)....... ..\         |      |     |     |

Peng, X.........CHN 2530 ../         (Polgar)....... ../       |     |     |

Jussupow, A.....GER 2640 ..\         (Jussupow)..... ..        |     |     |

bye..................... ../Jussupow....... ../                |     |     |

Illescas, M.....ESP 2585 ..\(Illescas)..... ..                 |     |     |

Gretarsson, H...ISL 2475 ../                      (Anand)........ ../      |

Shirov, A.......ESP 2700 ..\                      (Shirov)....... ..       |

bye..................... ../Shirov......... ..                 |           |

Granda Zuniga...PER 2625 ..\(Granda Zuniga) ..\                |           |

Kurajica, B.....BIH 2545 ../         (Shirov)....... ..        |           |

Yermolinsky, A..USA 2650 ..\         (Yermolinsky).. ..\       |           |

Kindermann, S...GER 2570 ../(Yermolinsky).. ../         |      |           |

Milos, G........BRA 2590 ..\(Milos)........ ..          |      |           |

Murshed, N......BAN 2490 ../                (Shirov)....... ../            |

Akopian, V......ARM 2660 ..\                (Akopian)...... ..             |

bye..................... ../Akopian........ ..          |                  |

Portisch, L.....HUN 2610 ..\(Portisch)..... ..\         |                  |

Luther, T.......GER 2525 ../         (Akopian)...... ../                   |

Vaganian, R.....ARM 2640 ..\         (Vaganian)..... ..  _________________/

bye..................... ../Vaganian....... ../         /

Bologan, V......MDA 2585 ..\(Bologan)...... ..         |

Umgayev, A......RUS 2000 ../               (Anand)........

..\Karpov......... ..

Azmaiparashvili.GEO 2645 ..\               (Topalov)......

../(Anand)........ ..

bye..................... ../Azmaiparashvili ..         |

Leko, P.........HUN 2635 ..\(Leko)......... ..\         \_________________

Slobodjan, R....GER 2550 ../         (Azmaiparashvi) ..                   \

Aleksandrov, A..BLR 2660 ..\         (Aleksandrov).. ..\                   |

Gulko, B........USA 2580 ../(Aleksandrov).. ../         |                  |

Hjartarson, J...ISL 2605 ..\(Hjartarson)... ..          |                  |

Sulskis, S......LTU 2510 ../                (Aleksandrov).. ..             |

Bareev, E.......RUS 2670 ..\                (Bareev)....... ..\            |

bye..................... ../Bareev......... ..          |      |           |

Malaniuk, V.....UKR 2615 ..\(Malaniuk)..... ..\         |      |           |

Hamdouchi, H....MAR 2535 ../         (Bareev)....... ../       |           |

Krasenkow, M....POL 2645 ..\         (Krasenkow).... ..        |           |

Van Der Sterren.NED 2555 ../(Krasenkow).... ../                |           |

Sutovskij, E....ISR 2590 ..\(Sutovskij).... ..                 |           |

Garcia, G.......COL 2480 ../                      (Bareev)....... ..       |

Beliavsky, A....SLO 2710 ..\                      (Beliavsky).... ..\      |

bye..................... ../Beliavsky...... ..                 |     |     |

bye..................... ..\Timman......... ..\                |     |     |

Timman, J.......NED 2625 ../         (Beliavsky).... ..        |     |     |

Rublevsky, S....RUS 2650 ..\         (Rublevsky).... ..\       |     |     |

Spraggett, K....CAN 2575 ../(Rublevsky).... ../         |      |     |     |

Morovic, I......CHI 2600 ..\(Morovic)...... ..          |      |     |     |

Shaked, T.......USA 2500 ../                (Beliavsky).... ../      |     |

Short, N........ENG 2660 ..\                (Short)........ ..       |     |

bye..................... ../Short.......... ..          |            |     |

Korchnoi, V.....SUI 2610 ..\(Korchnoi)..... ..\         |            |     |

Hernandez, G....MEX 2525 ../         (Short)........ ../             |     |

Chernin, A......HUN 2640 ..\         (Chernin)...... ..              |     |

Istratescu, A...ROM 2550 ../(Chernin)...... ../                      |     |

Sokolov, A......RUS 2585 ..\(Sokolov, A)... ..                       |     |

Kobese, W.......RSA 2315 ../                            (Beliavsky).... ../

Topalov, V......BUL 2745 ..\                            (Topalov)...... ..

bye..................... ../Topalov........ ..                       |

bye..................... ..\Piket.......... ..\                      |

Piket, J........NED 2630 ../         (Topalov)...... ..              |

Van Wely, L.....NED 2655 ..\         (Van Wely)..... ..\             |

bye..................... ../Van Wely....... ../         |            |

Hansen, C.......DEN 2600 ..\(Hansen)....... ..          |            |

Miladinovic, I..GRE 2500 ../                (Topalov)...... ..       |

Georgiev, K.....BUL 2670 ..\                (Georgiev)..... ..\      |

bye..................... ../Georgiev....... ..          |      |     |

Alterman, B.....ISR 2615 ..\(Alterman)..... ..\         |      |     |

Wells, P........ENG 2530 ../         (Georgiev)..... ../       |     |

Andersson, U....SWE 2640 ..\         (Andersson).... ..        |     |

Christiansen, L.USA 2550 ../(Andersson).... ../                |     |

Kotronias, V....GRE 2585 ..\(Kotronias).... ..                 |     |

Milov, V........SUI 2635 ../                      (Topalov)...... ../

Adams, M........ENG 2680 ..\                      (Adams)........ ..

bye..................... ../Adams.......... ..                 |

Giorgadze, G....GEO 2625 ..\(Giorgadze).... ..\                |

Bacrot, E.......FRA 2545 ../         (Adams)........ ..        |

Rozentalis, E...LTU 2645 ..\         (Rozentalis)... ..\       |

Lerner, K.......UKR 2560 ../(Rozentalis)... ../         |      |

bye..................... ..\Tiviakov....... ..          |      |

Tiviakov, S.....RUS 2590 ../                (Adams)........ ../

Svidler, P......RUS 2660 ..\                (Svidler)...... ..

bye..................... ../Svidler........ ..          |

Adianto, U......INA 2610 ..\(Adianto)...... ..\         |

Wang, Z.........CHN 2520 ../         (Svidler)...... ../

Sokolov, I......BIH 2635 ..\         (Sokolov, I)... ..

bye..................... ../Sokolov, I..... ../

bye..................... ..\Epishin........ ..

Epishin, V......RUS 2570 ../