All Chess.com members were invited to the Third Death Match Qualifier, the first of many in 2014. February's Death Match 21 qualification period is now over, and the list of invitations goes out today. Below you'll see who finished on top in the ratings list (of those who played the minimum 100 games in bullet or blitz). The match is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, February 15.
Note that Death Match 20 will take place before this match. If you didn't see the announcement, read about GM Yury Shulman and GM Daniel Fridman facing off here. That match will be Saturday January 18 at noon Eastern (New York time), just after our live commentary of the Tata Steel Tournament, so go ahead and cancel all of your plans that day!
Here are the highest-rated players that played 100 blitz games or 100 bullet games in the month of December. The first player gets the invitation. If he declines, Chess.com reserves the right to invite another player from the list. Ratings listed are as of January 1, 2014 at midnight Pacific time.
1. GM Imre Balog (Imre91), 2526 (played 117 games)
Balog's Chess.com photo. His play was "Amazing."
The real GM Balog!
2. FM Evan Ju (Eilyisum), 2513 (201 games)
3. GM Robert Hess* (RLH2), 2490 (288 games)
4. IM Dejan Stojanowski (ChessTrener), 2461 (268 games)
5. Daniel Paras (abyss25), 2413 (122 games)
1. GM ???** (Phoenix), 2826 (115 games)
Phoenix might be a man and could be a legend. Right now he's just myth.
2. GM GeorgMeier (GeorgMeier), 2753 (133 games)
3. unidentified member** (Nouki), 2675 (148 games)
4. FM Kazim Gulamali (Gulamali-BOS), 2631 (406 games)
5. GM Imre Balog (Imre91), 2583 (188 games)
Chess.com will announce the player's officially, and confirm the date and time once both players accept!
*Hess is eligible to play in a second Death Match since he would not get the first invitation, as Balog would have to decline for him to have a chance (as per the posted rules).
**Both GM "Phoenix" un-titled/unconfirmed account and "Nouki" would have to verify their identities in order to be eligible, also as per the rules.