New Delhi – India dominates the line-up for the next mega Meltwater Champions Chess Tour event with four of its finest young stars from India invited to play this time, scheduled to begin from June 26.
The Goldmoney Asian Rapid will feature a $100,000 prize pot and is leg seven of the prestigious ATP-style season of online chess organized by the Play Magnus Group.
Grandmasters Vidit Gujrathi and Adhiban Baskaran plus two of India’s most talented young hotshots in Gukesh D and Arjun Erigaisi all qualified or were given wild cards.
India’s four invitations in one event is more than any other country has achieved so far on the Tour.
The Goldmoney Asian Rapid is a 16-player online rapid chess event that starts on June 26 and runs over nine days.
Among the participants is World Champion and current Tour leader Magnus Carlsen and a glittering array of top Asian talent.
However, all eyes will be on the in-form 15-year-old Gukesh D, from Chennai, who qualified after winning the recent Gelfand Challenge tournament.
He will face the ultimate test of taking on Carlsen for the first time in the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour’s rapid chess format.
Nashik-born Gujrathi, meanwhile, is India’s No.3 player and commands a strong following among Indian chess fans.
Seventeen-year-old Erigaisi will also be hoping to make a breakthrough at the top level and the hugely-entertaining Baskaran will be displaying the aggressive style that has led to him being given the nickname “The Beast”.
Elsewhere, China’s Hou Yifan, the world’s No.1 female player, will become the first woman to compete in the tour. And Saleh Salem will become the first player from the UAE.
The theme of the tournament is golden moments in chess.
Play Magnus Group CEO Andreas Thome said: “Just as Play Magnus Group is driving innovation to bring chess to a wider audience, Goldmoney is focused on democratizing access to purchasing precious metals through technology. We are excited to partner with Goldmoney, the most innovative name in precious metals.”
Goldmoney is the easiest way for people to acquire physical gold and is the world’s most trusted precious metal trader with silver, platinum, and palladium bullion online all available.
Roy Sebag, CEO of Goldmoney, said: “Chess is a beautiful game which expresses the skill, free will, and intelligence found in human beings. It is a game with a rich tradition spanning at least hundreds of years.
“Likewise, gold has a rich tradition as an element of great wonder which has served as the premier form of money for human civilization for thousands of years.
“We are honoured to partner with the Tour, supporting this rich human tradition of chess while introducing the contemporary chess community to the rich tradition of gold and precious metals.”
So far the Tour has achieved 90 million live broadcast views on online streaming platforms and a record-breaking 283K peak concurrent viewership for professional chess tournaments.
The Goldmoney Asian Rapid will be broadcast live on Norwegian TV station TV 2 and streamed with commentary in several languages on chess24’s YouTube and Twitch channels.
Highlights will also be available in 60 countries on the Eurosport app.
Play begins at the new time of 13:00 CEST to accommodate players in Asia. All games will be played on the chess24.com playzone.