Adams, Not Carlsen, Completes Field For London Chess Classic

Adams, Not Carlsen, Completes Field For London Chess Classic

39 | Chess Event Coverage

If there was still any doubt left about Magnus Carlsen's participation, that ends now. It is Michael Adams who got the wild card for the London Chess Classic in December. 

All ten names for the London Chess Classic are known, now that the organizers have announced Adams as the wild card. Below is the full list, based on the August Elo ratings.

London Chess Classic participants

No. Country Name Age Rating Ranking
1 Maxime Vachier-Lagrave 25 2819 2
2 Vladimir Kramnik 41 2808 3
3 Fabiano Caruana 24 2807 4
4 Levon Aronian 33 2792 5
5 Hikaru Nakamura 28 2791 6
6 Wesley So 22 2771 7
7 Viswanathan Anand 46 2770 8
8 Anish Giri 22 2769 9
9 Veselin Topalov 41 2761 12
10 Michael Adams 44 2727 28

At an early stage, World Champion Magnus Carlsen said that he would only play the first two tournaments of the Grand Chess Tour  in Paris and in Leuven  but nonetheless some chess fans (including experts!) kept hopes of his participation in London. But, with Adams, the organizers have found both a logical and excellent alternative.

Adams recently won the British Championship in Bournemouth with the superb score of 10.0/11, equaled only by Julian Hodgson in 1992. He is the long-time highest-rated English player on the FIDE rating list. One of his best achievements was winning sole first place at the Dortmund super-tournament in 2013. Nine years earlier in 2004, he reached the final round of the FIDE knockout world championship, defeated by Rustam Kasimzdhanov in rapid tiebreaks.

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave is currently the top seed in London, thanks to his 2819 rating. He's had a great string of results at the French Team Championship, Dortmund and Biel, but at the Sinquefield Cup he "only" scored 50 percent. Vladimir Kramnik had to withdraw from that tournament with back problems, but he will return to the Grand Chess Tour in London.

The London Chess Classic will take place from Dec. 9 to 18, yet again at the Olympia Conference Centre in Kensington, London. It is the final leg of the Grand Chess Tour. At the moment, Wesley So is leading the Tour, and mathematically only Levon Aronian and Hikaru Nakamura have a chance to overtake him in London.

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