2016 World Championship To Be Held In New York

2016 World Championship To Be Held In New York

| 63 | Chess Event Coverage

The Big Apple, the city that never sleeps, the concrete jungle where dreams are made of.

The 2016 World Championship will be held in New York City, as was announced today by Agon.

Long-held rumors that the next world title match will be held in the United States were confirmed today in a press release by marketing agency Agon, the organizer of the match. For the past few months Agon was in touch with several American cities, and eventually the choice was made: New York.

Like the last six matches, the contest will be a best of 12 and a possible tiebreak. The exact prize fund has not been announced yet but will be at least one million euros (U.S. $1.09 million).

The match will be held between Magnus Carlsen, the reigning world champion, and the winner of the Candidates‘ Tournament, which is scheduled for March 10-30 in Moscow.

Two of the eight participants in Moscow are representing the United States: Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru Nakamura. The other six are Vishy Anand (India), Anish Giri (Netherlands), Sergey Karjakin and Peter Svidler (Russia), Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) and Levon Aronian (Armenia).

“I and all New Yorkers welcome the World Chess Championship back to New York City. What better place to be than the city where parks are often populated by chess enthusiasts," said New York Mayor Bill de Blasio in the official press release.

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“New York is brilliant. We do not know much about the details yet, but this has the potential to be spectacular,” says the manager of Magnus Carlsen, Espen Agdestein, to NRK.

According to the Wall Street Journal, which broke the news earlier today, the organizers are in contact with “a number of New York venues, including the World Trade Center and other Manhattan locations.” Ilya Merenzon, the CEO of Agon, said: “Ideally, we’d like to take over retail spaces along Broadway—we have about five or six locations on the shortlist—so people can walk in and see [the match] through glass.”

The world championship, the pinnacle of chess, returns to New York after 21 years. In 1995 Garry Kasparov defeated Vishy Anand in the PCA Championship held in the World Trade Center. 

A view of Lower Manhattan from the air.

Moscow is an easy winner in the list of cities hosting the most world chess championships: 15 times in total. New York has been the host city six times. 

The first-ever world championship match, between Wilhelm Steinitz and Johannes Zukertort in 1886, was played partly in New York (with St. Louis and New Orleans). In the same city Steinitz defended his title against Isidor Gunsberg in 1890.

Emanuel Lasker took over the title in a match in 1894 played partly in New York, Philadelphia and Montreal. He defended his title in 1907 against Frank Marshall in six U.S. cities including New York.

Eighty-three years later, half of the 1990 match between Garry Kasparov and Anatoly Karpov was held in New York; the other half in Lyon. Five years later Kasparov played the aforementioned match with Anand.

The view from New York Bay. In 1995, Kasparov-Anand was in the World Trade Center South Tower, which no longer exists after September 11, 2001. The tall building on the left, One World Trade, stands near the footprint of that building.

The 2016 World Championship is scheduled for November 10-30.


Date DoW Event Holidays
November 10 Thursday Opening Ceremony
November 11 Friday Game 1 Veterans Day
November 12 Saturday Game 2
November 13 Sunday Rest Day
November 14 Monday Game 3
November 15 Tuesday Game 4
November 16 Wednesday Rest Day
November 17 Thursday Game 5
November 18 Friday Game 6
November 19 Saturday Rest Day
November 20 Sunday Game 7
November 21 Monday Game 8
November 22 Tuesday Rest Day
November 23 Wednesday Game 9
November 24 Thursday Game 10 Thanksgiving
November 25 Friday Rest Day Thanksgiving Weekend
November 26 Saturday Game 11 Thanksgiving Weekend
November 27 Sunday Rest Day Thanksgiving Weekend
November 28 Monday Game 12
November 29 Tuesday Rest Day Possible Closing
November 30 Wednesday Tie Breaks/Closing
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