Meanwhile, in B and C...

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At this time the ninth round of Corus has been played. In group B the French GM Maxime Vachier-Lagrave has increased his lead and is now a full point ahead. He didn't even have to win. A draw against Jan Smeets and a defeat of rival Eljanov against Chessvibes-editor Erwin l'Ami helped the Frenchman further ahead. But there are still four rounds to play, so it can still be anyone's tournament!

On the other hand in group C the 16-year old Nepomniachtchi is moving towards the title with apparently such ease. With a score of 8 out of 9 he leaves the grandmasters far behind. I wouldn't be surprised if the rising star next year, with then a grandmaster title in his pocket, would skip the B-group to compete with the big stars in the A-group. [Already today, the young Ian scored a GM norm at Corus - eds.]

In the group of the young Russian, Manuel Bosboom [celebrating his birthday today! - red.] is performing surprisingly well. With an ELO of 2375 he's number last seeded indeed, but previous to round nine, he was ranked 4th with an excellent score of 5 out of 8! Reason for me to follow his match live online yesterday, against the charming Nadezhda Kosintseva. And of course, as if the devil had a hand in it... Nevertheless I won't withhold you the game:



>> open in a new window "^Reports^^^1169620057^1314786230^jerrel "Grand Slam Chess Association established"^"Last week in Wijk aan Zee, the Grand Slam Chess Association has been established. In September last year, the organizers of the four top tournaments in Bilbao (human-machine), Sofia (MTel), Linares and Wijk aan Zee already got together to discuss their plans. The main goal of the GSCA was then formulated: "The four top players in the world ranking must play in all four of the events or they won't be allowed to play in any of them."

PRESS RELEASE

The Grand Slam Chess Association (GSCA) has been established today in Wijk aan Zee. The Corus tournament (in Wijk aan Zee), Linares, M-tel Masters Sofia and Bilbao will set up this great classical chess circuit, from 2008. The winners of Wijk aan Zee, Linares and Sofia 2008, and a fourth player to be determined will play the Masters in Bilbao (autumn 2008).

Several meetings along the last months have been necessary to reach this basic and fundamental agreement. Each of the four founder members will preserve its identity and independence. The next meeting will be in Linares (March 8th and 9th). The main targets for that meeting are the legal constitution, the official presentation and the publication of much more details. The Grand Slam is open for the incorporation of new members at any time.

The International Chess Federation (FIDE) has been informed immediately, and the Chess Players Association will receive an official letter. It is the GSCA's wish to establish a cordial and fruitful cooperation with both bodies.

In Wijk aan Zee, January 17th 2007

Signed by: Andoni Madariaga (Bilbao) Dolf Vos (Corus Chess Tournament Wijk aan Zee) Juan Fernandez (Major of Linares) Silvio Danailov (M-tel Masters Sofia)
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