News Poll: Levon Aronian Is The Right Candidate Poll: Levon Aronian Is The Right Candidate

| 57 | Chess Event Coverage

Levon Aronian is the right choice as the wildcard for the 2016 Candidates’ Tournament according to the members. After almost 4,800 votes of our current poll, 52 percent voted for the Armenian number one.

Last month it was announced that Aronian got the wildcard, and this choice was approved by an absolute majority in our community. Some 21 percent of the voters would have prefered to see Vladimir Kramnik playing in the Candidates’, and 8 percent went for Wesley So.

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave received 5 percent of the votes, Ding Liren 4 percent and then there was another 6 percent that had someone else as their personal favorite. The results so far:

The poll is heavily debated, with one of our members sporting a Russian flag to his account hoping Aronian “gets humiliated in the most embarrassing fashion,” and another saying he “has been far more active lately and I think he was the right decision!”

A name mentioned several times there was Wei Yi. However, the rating of the Chinese prodigy was not high enough on July 1 to be eligible for the wildcard.

Several members expressed the opinion that a wildcard is not a good idea, and all eight places in the Candidates’ should be earned by the players.

Levon Aronian, the 2016 wildcard candidate.

Aronian's wildcard was also discussed in Episode 10 of ChessCenter, where Shaun McCoy stated that it was “a very ethical and sound choice. Him winning in St. Louis. That was a very powerful tournament, and a tournament similar to the Candidates'.”

Here's Levon Aronian showing his win against Magnus Carlsen at the European Team Championship in Reykjavik eight days ago. The Armenian grandmaster said about the wildcard choice:

“I got very lucky that a sponsor of Armenian origin that lives in Russia is willing to trust in me. I'll try to do everything in my power to show that his trust has a basis.”

The Candidates’ Tournament will take place March 10-30, 2016 in Moscow. The winner will earn the right to challenge Magnus Carlsen in a match for the world championship, scheduled for late 2016.

The other seven participants of the 2016 Candidates’ Tournament are Viswanathan Anand, Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura, Sergey Karjakin, Peter Svidler, Veselin Topalov and Anish Giri.

Giri's participation can be considered certain now, although FIDE hasn't officially announced yet. Topalov has stated that he will decide on his participation after seeing the players’ contract. The first substitute is Dmitry Jakovenko, who came third in the Grand Prix. 

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