In a rare outbreak of common sense, the start of the world championship match between Vishy Anand (pictured) and Veselin Topalov has been postponed by one day.
Anand had requested a three-day postponement and the Bulgarian organisers had refused to make any change at all, so this seems a sensible compromise to allow Anand some extra time to recover from his unexpectedly gruelling journey to Sofia.
Therefore, the first game of the match will take place on Saturday 24 April, with the whole match schedule being moved forward one day. Look out for more details here soon in a full match preview.
Good luck to both players. Let's hope for a great match. Gens Una Sumus!
Hon. Prime Minister Boyko Borisov Chairman of Organising Committee of FIDE World Championship Match 2010 Sofia Bulgaria
Sofia, 21 April 2010
Dear Hon. Prime Minister,
In my capacity as FIDE Supervisor for the World Championship Match 2010, I have consulted with all the parties to try and resolve the “force majeure” situation which has arisen these last few days. It is clear that we have reached an impasse in the discussions and a decision must be made. I also requested a meeting with you, but I was informed, that unfortunately this was not possible.
After reviewing the World Champion’s request for a three day postponement, I understand that this would create enormous difficulties for the Organisers. Similarly, starting the match on Friday 23rd would cause enormous difficulties for the World Champion. I appreciate that whilst the one day postponement may cause some problems, it is justified by the circumstances that the whole world faced last week and ensures a fair play situation for both players.
Therefore, in accordance with chapter 7.4 of the match regulations as well as article 2.4 of our 2010 World Chess Championship Agreement, I would like to inform you that the 1st game of the match will be postponed by 1 (one) day to start on Saturday, 24th April 2010, for the following reasons:
a) As a result of the eruption of the Eyjafjallajokull volcano in Iceland which caused the cancellation of thousands of flights from most European airports, including Sofia, we faced serious problems, not only with the late arrival of World Champion Vishy Anand in Sofia but also with the late arrival of FIDE officials and principals of the match. It is obvious that this is an “Event of Force Majeure” [pages 2 and 12 (article 11) of our 2010 World Chess Championship Agreement] which has resulted in an unfair position for World Champion Vishy Anand as he has not taken full benefit of the seven-days period (article 8.2 of our 2010 World Chess Championship Agreement) in order for him to acclimatize to the conditions and ensure that all his team will be organised to support him logistically and technically in the match.
b) According to the 2010 World Chess Championship Agreement, the final inspection of the match was to be held on the 18th April 2010, five (5) days before the 1st game (article 3.9). This deadline was not followed due to the Organiser’s delay and it has been agreed by all parties that the final inspection will be held on the morning of the 21st April 2010. Therefore a postponement is also needed in order to secure that all organisational requirements will be met in the remaining three days before the start of the match in lieu of the five days originally envisaged for such compliance.
The opening ceremony will not be postponed and will be held on 21st April 2010 as originally planned.
The whole world will undoubtedly appreciate the efforts that Bulgaria has made not only to organize such a prestigious match, but also to find a fair and equitable solution to this problem.
I would like to thank you for your understanding and all your commitment for this match to be organized at the highest level possible.
FIDE Deputy President
FIDE Supervisor for the World Championship Match 2010