PRO Chess League Summer Series: Race Intensifies; Armenia, Sao Paulo In Trouble
After a slow start in the group's opening week, both teams desperately need to win in Saturday's Summer Series encounter.

PRO Chess League Summer Series: Race Intensifies; Armenia, Sao Paulo In Trouble

IsaacSteincamp
IsaacSteincamp
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11 | Chess.com News

PRO Chess League Summer Series action resumes on Saturday as the Armenia EaglesMoscow WizardsMumbai Movers and the Sao Paulo Capybaras each look to take a step closer to the Summer Series Championship this August.

As fans pick which teams to play for in the second week of Group C (July 20, 7 a.m. PDT), these will be the two key questions they have for each matchup:

1. Is "the curse of five" real? The Mumbai Movers opened group play with five points, but both the San Francisco Mechanics and the Barcelona Raptors failed to qualify for the Summer Series Championship, despite tallying five points on the opening weekend. The Movers will take on the Moscow Wizards on Saturday morning in what promises to be a tight match.

2. Are the Armenia Eagles on their way out? After a one-point performance last week, the Eagles desperately need to beat the Capybaras on Saturday. Another lackluster showing from Armenia this week could see the 2018 league champions eliminated in favor of Sao Paulo, the PRO Chess League's newest team.

2019 PRO Chess League Summer Series | Group C Standings

Team Points Club
Mumbai Movers 5 Fan Club
Moscow Wizards 4 Fan Club
Sao Paulo Capybaras 2 Fan Club
Armenia Eagles 1 Fan Club

While teams will be counting on their star players, they will also be counting on you, the fans, to help them progress to the Summer Series Championship! To help your favorite teams make the cut, make sure to join their clubs and play in this Saturday's Live Club Matches.

Moscow Wizards vs. Mumbai Movers
Saturday, July 13, at 7 a.m. Pacific

Why Mumbai wins: Replicating GM Farrukh Amonatov's perfect showing might be tough, but GM Diptayan Ghosh is a seasoned PRO Chess League veteran. After drawing Armenia last week, the Movers have gained more than 200 fans this week, and are now poised to take on the Wizards on Saturday. A match win here for Mumbai puts the Indian side one step closer to the Summer Series Championship. Expect fireworks and a close match.

GM Diptayan Ghosh has been a cornerstone of the Mumbai Movers since 2017. How will the Indian grandmaster perform in the Summer Series?

Why Moscow wins: Last week the Wizards dominated the biggest Summer Series matchup ever, beating the Capybaras by 50 points! GM Vlad Dobrov's army is real, and Moscow should expect their fans to support them once again. GM Boris Savchenko returns after a solid performance last week, where he beat both GM Firouzja and GM Andriasian. Another strong showing this weekend puts the Wizards one step closer to the postseason.

GM Savchenko is the only returning player in this week's field. Can experience put the Moscow Wizards on top on Saturday?
Armenia Eagles vs. Sao Paulo Capybaras
Saturday, July 13, at 9:30 a.m. Pacific

Why Armenia wins: After the Eagles notched a one-point week last week, the 2018 PRO Chess League champions need a strong performance this week if they want to avoid elimination. Sao Paulo will likely bring more fans to the match, but Armenia's strongest fans are all dangerous, and could prove to be a threat to the Capybaras. GM Samvel Ter-Sahakyan makes his Summer Series debut, where he'll be counting on his 2018 experience to beat the Brazilian side.

GM Ter-Sahakyan did not play as much in 2019, but was critical to the Eagles' 2018 Championship campaign.

Why Sao Paulo wins: Despite the opening-week loss, General Manager GM Krikor Sevag Mekhitarian has continued to bring in fans to the Brazilian side. The Capybaras now have the biggest club in the PRO Chess League, and with GM Sandro Mareco set to make his debut on Saturday, Sao Paulo will be gunning for an elusive six-point week. This team will need to make up for lost ground on Saturday, but don't be surprised if the Capybaras make a jump in the standings.

GM Mareco last played in the PRO Chess League for the Buenos Aires Krakens in 2018. This Saturday will be a key test for the Argentinean free agent.
Predicting the PRO Chess League Summer Series Champion: Fan Take With IM Danny Rensch

Each week Chess.com will reach out to various guests to make their picks for the Summer Series Championship. IM Danny Rensch (@DanielRensch) is this week's featured guest as one of Chess.com's main hosts for the PRO Chess League.

When asked about his picks for the PRO Chess League Summer Series Championship, Rensch said:

The Wizards really shook up my bracket by beating Sao Paulo last week, but I think the Summer Series will be the breakthrough moment Chengdu has been waiting for. Montreal should make a deep run for the title, even besting the Gnomes to get there!

I can't wait to watch the Summer Series Championships play out with the rest of you! 

Danny Rensch's Bracket:

Rensch sees the Chengdu Pandas as a favorite to win the Summer Series Championships.

Disagree with Danny's picks? Make your picks in the comments and play in the PRO Chess League Summer Series this Saturday, July 20 at 7 a.m. Pacific. To watch the official coverage, visit Twitch.tv/chess and follow the channel to get notifications for the Summer Series.

Just learning about the PRO Chess League Summer Series? Visit the site and check out the official information article.

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