30 June 2021

A New Cycle Is Starting

The last time I posted about the next FIDE World Championship cycle, A New Cycle Is Coping Nicely (June 2021), I noted an additional twist:-
FIDE's Handbook, D. Regulations for Specific Competitions (handbook.fide.com), includes the usual qualification paths for the 2021 World Cup, and adds a new one:- "VIII. One hundred (100) players are determined according to the Final Ranking of the Chess Olympiad 2020 open section."

The 2021 World Cup starts in a few weeks, so I added basic info about the new cycle to my index page for the World Chess Championship. I also added a new page 2021 World Cup; Sochi (Russia), VII-VIII, 2021. It currently consists mainly of excerpts from the regulations governing the tournament, but much more will be added over the next few months.


23 June 2021

2019-20 WGP, Last Actions

Last week's post 2019-20 WGP Crosstables listed a number of finishing touches for my page on the 2019-2020 FIDE Women's Grand Prix. These have all been implemented.

The chart on the left was the working document used to update the World Chess Championship : Index of Women Players. Of the 20 players listed, two were new to the index: Irina Bulmaga and Gunay Mammadzada. Both played in a single event, Gibraltar, but I could find no explanation for their participation.

The chart also shows that four women played 11 games (one event) and four others played 22 games (two events). This was probably due to covid complications, but I'll leave the whys and the wherefores for another time. The FIDE report on the last round of the last event, Gibraltar, Round 11: to Zhansaya, the glory; to Kateryna, the ticket to the Candidates (fide.com), reported,

Kateryna Lagno of Russia drew her game with Mariya Muzychuk of Ukraine to finish on 6.5 and clinch her place in the Candidates' tournament alongside Humpy Koneru, who also qualifies via the Grand Prix series, and Aleksandra Goryachkina of Russia, who qualifies as runner-up in the last Women’s World Championship.

Humpy Koneru achieved the goal despite having participated in only two events. For the previous final report on a WGP see 2015-2016 Women's Grand Prix, the Players, (December 2016), including links to older WGP final reports.

16 June 2021

2019-20 WGP Crosstables

Continuing with last week's post, 2019-20 WGP Gibraltar (June 2021), where 'WGP' stands for Women's Grand Prix, I added the crosstables for the four individual events to my page 2019-2020 FIDE Women's Grand Prix. I still have a few finishing touches to do:-
  • Add PGN
  • Add 4 x event logos
  • Add FIDE press releases
  • Update the index of players

I should be able to finish those for the next post.

09 June 2021

2019-20 WGP, Gibraltar

A few weeks ago, in More Notes on the Women's Championship (May 2021), I wrote,
Still missing is any trace of the Women’s Candidates tournament. FIDE partially compensated for this requirement by making a key announcement...

Following the link I gave for that announcement, 'Qualification for FIDE Women’s Candidates Tournament 2022 (fide.com)', one point gave a welcome confirmation:-

The eight spots in the Women’s Candidates Tournament 2022 will be allocated based on the following criteria [...] B. 2 spots – FIDE Grand Prix Series 2019-20 • The players who finish 1st and 2nd in the FIDE Grand Prix Series 2019-20. If one or two of these players is/are GM Ju Wenjun and/or GM Goryachkina, the reserved spot(s) is (are) awarded to the next non-qualifying player(s) in the final ranking of the FIDE Grand Prix Series 2019-20.

In past posts I repeatedly decided not to document the 2019-20 FIDE Grand Prix on my own pages:-

  • 2019-10-02: Status of the Women's World Championship • 'For this post I intended to add a new page for the 2019-20 Women's Grand Prix, because the first event, held in Skolkovo (Russia), finished a few weeks ago. [...] I'll wait until FIDE has published the necessary documents before I tackle the new cycle.'
  • 2019-12-18: 2019-20 Women's Grand Prix • 'The second event in that Grand Prix, held in Monaco, has ended and there is still no sign of documentation covering the full cycle.'
  • 2020-04-22: 2019-20 WGP, Lausanne • 'The necessary documentation is still not available, nor is there any sign of activity.'

Reversing that decision, I created a new page, 2019-2020 FIDE Women's Grand Prix (m-w.com), including the recently finished 2021 Gibraltar, and added it to the index page World Chess Championship for Women (ditto). • Next step: For the four events that were played in the Grand Prix, add the crosstables and PGN to the new page.

02 June 2021

A New Cycle Is Coping Nicely

A couple of months ago, in A New Cycle Is Struggling to Survive (March 2021), I gathered available info on the next FIDE World Championship cycle. That's the cycle that follows the forthcoming title match, Carlsen - Nepomniachtchi, Dubai, XI-XII, 2021. I'm happy to report that the cycle is not only surviving, it appears to be thriving.

The 'Struggling to Survive' post included the dates for the next world class event:-

FIDE World Cup; Sochi, Russia; 10 Jul; 03 Aug

That's next month! FIDE's Handbook, D. Regulations for Specific Competitions (handbook.fide.com), includes the usual qualification paths for the 2021 World Cup, and adds a new one:-

VIII. One hundred (100) players are determined according to the Final Ranking of the Chess Olympiad 2020 open section.

The top one hundred (100) national federations are given one qualification spot (hereinafter referred to as Olympiad spot). If any federation is represented by two (2) or more teams, it cannot get more than one Olympiad spot. Not more than forty (40) federations per Continent may get Olympiad spots. If there are more than forty federations from the same Continent in top 100 of the Final Ranking, Olympiad spot(s) go(es) to the next federation(s) in the Final Ranking.

Each Continent has [the] right to transfer up to 50% of the eventual respective Continent’s Olympiad spots to Continental events (see Article 2.1.V). Such a decision is to be announced by March 1st 2020. If this decision is taken, the remaining Continent’s Olympiad spots are given to the best federations representing the respective Continent according to the Final Ranking of the Chess Olympiad 2020.

Each national federation having won the Olympiad spot needs to work out qualification criteria for its representative. The Olympiad spot is to be given to one of the Olympiad 2020 national team members. If all Olympiad 2020 national team members qualify to World Cup by other paths or decline participation, the spot can be given to any other player.

All the Olympiad spots are to be announced between June 1st and July 1st 2021.

It remains to be seen how that will work in practice, especially the provision to 'transfer up to 50%', which I don't understand. The two most recent issues of TWIC ('The Week in Chess' by Mark Crowther) mentioned a number of World Cup qualifying tournaments.

The AICF Qualifier was a special event brought on by the covid crisis:-

FIDE has already issued reports on two of the Continental qualifiers:-

  • 2021-05-30: 36 European players qualify for 2021 FIDE World Cup (fide.com) • 'The European Hybrid Qualification Tournament for the FIDE World Cup took place from May 24-30 on Tornelo online platform. All the federations had specially designated and approved venues supervised by local arbiters and monitored by cameras. The event brought together 264 players from 35 European federations.'

  • 2021-05-31: Eight American players qualify for 2021 FIDE World Cup (ditto) • 'The American Hybrid World Cup Qualifier was an 8-group (16 players in each) knockout tournament taking place from May 22-29. The winner of each group qualified for the 2021 FIDE World Cup that will be held in Sochi, Russia from July 10 to August 7. All the games were played online on Tornelo platform from designated venues.'

'China Zonal 3.5' was missing from the 'Struggling to Survive' post. As for the other events covered by the TWIC reports, I'll wait for official reports before I go any further.

I discussed the hybrid format in FIDE Hybrid Competitions (March 2021), where I wrote, 'In a few months we'll learn how well this works for World Championship qualifiers.' The results so far appear to be positive.