PRESS RELEASE - SAINT LOUIS, August 11, 2011 -- Former World Champion Grandmaster Anatoly Karpov will join the Kings team in the upcoming Kings vs. Queens tournament, scheduled to be held in Saint Louis September 9-16.
The Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis is hosting the tournament to coincide with the grand opening of the World Chess Hall of Fame, which will open to the public on September 9 in Saint Louis. Kings vs. Queens: A Battle of the Sexes will feature some of the top chess players in the world in a 5-on-5 team event.
The addition of Anatoly Karpov to this already impressive field will only serve to heighten the intensity of this battle, said Tony Rich, the executive director of the CCSCSL. It will be an honor to welcome Karpov to the club.
The Queens field is headlined by the strongest female player in chess history, GM Judit Polgar. US #1 and Rapid specialist GM Hikaru Nakamura will lead the Kings into battle.
The players, including FIDE ratings and the federation each represents, are as follows:
GM Judit Polgar (2699) - Hungary
GM Kateryna Lahno (2536) - Ukraine
IM Anna Zatonskih (2522) - U.S.
GM Alexandra Kosteniuk (2497) - Russia
IM Irina Krush (2486) - U.S.
GM Hikaru Nakamura (2770) - U.S.
GM Anatoly Karpov (2617) - Russia
GM Ben Finegold (2488) - U.S.
IM Jacek Stopa (2474) - Poland
IM Marc Arnold (2445) - U.S.
The average team rating of the Queens is 2548 FIDE and the Kings average rating is 2559 FIDE. This will be a Scheveningen-paired tournament, in which each of the five team members will play each of the opposing team members twice: once in a Fischer Random (Chess 960) game with a time control of G/25 + 10-second increment and once in a rapid game with a time control of G/25 with a 5-second increment.
The Opening Ceremony for the tournament will take place on September 9, and the first round will begin at 3 p.m. CT on Saturday, September 10.
The winning team of the event will win $20,000, divided equally between each member of that team. In addition, individual prizes will be awarded based on final standings and are are as follows:
Individual prizes total $32,500 and, when coupled with the team prize, the total prize fund for this event is $52,500.
Karpov replaces GM Timur Gareyev on board two for the Kings. IM Martha Fierro of Ecuador will serve as an alternate for the queens.
GM Yasser Seirawan and WGM Jennifer Shahade will provide live commentary of the event, which will be open to the public. The event also will be broadcast live via the CCSCSLs Livestream web channel: www.livesteam.com/uschess.