Sixteenth Melody Amber has started

| 0 | Chess Event Coverage
Today the sixteenth Melody Amber Tournament in Monaco has started. Till March 29th, a group of the world's best players have gathered in the constitutional monarchy near Nice, France where the immensely rich business man Joop van Oosterom (by the way a.k.a. the 18th world champion of correspondence chess) has been organising his special chess tournament since 1992, named after one of his daughters. (Few chess players know that Van Oosterom also organises a billiards tournament every year, named after his other daughter Chrystal Kelly!) This year Anand, Kramnik, Ivanchuk, Leko, Aronian, Morozevich, Gelfand, Radjabov, Svidler, Carlsen, Van Wely and Vallejo Pons show their tricks Monaco.


Google Map: Monaco

The dwarf state Monaco has already existed since 1297. Its area is only 2 square meters kilometres and with its 32.543 inhabitants in 2006, Monaco is the most densely populated country in the world.

In the sixties of the last century, Van Oosterom was one of the founders of the very succesful IT company Volmac. In the late eighties, Volmac entered the Stock Exchange and a bit later it was taken over by the French Cap Gemini. It all didn't do Van Oosterom any harm, to put it mildly.

For his yearly chess tournament he manages to contract the world's best chess players every time. And it's really something different for them; only rapid and blindfold games are played. No doubt this generates a certain relaxed atmosphere, since the expensive rating points are not at stake. Add to this the glamourous surroundings of Monte Carlo, and it's clear that all participants must love playing there.

The favourites are Anand, Kramnik and Morezevich, who all three have won the tournament several times. It's the first time for Magnus Carlsen. He has practiced and he has shown good form lately, so who knows what he's up to this time.

The tournament is held in the Fairmont Monte Carlo Hotel.

Results of the 1st round:


Aronian      - Vallejo Pons   1-0
Leko         - Svidler        0-1
Gelfand      - Carlsen        ?Ǭ?-?Ǭ? 
Radjabov     - Kramnik        0-1
Van Wely     - Ivanchuk       0-1
Morozevich   ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú Anand          1-0


Vallejo Pons ?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú Aronian        0-1
Svidler      - Leko           0-1
Carlsen      - Gelfand        ?Ǭ?-?Ǭ?
Kramnik      - Radjabov       ?Ǭ?-?Ǭ?
Ivanchuk     - Van Wely       1-0
Anand        - Morozevich     ?Ǭ?-?Ǭ?

Blindfold standings:

  1-5. Aronian, Svidler, 
       Kramnik, Ivanchuk,
       Morozevich               1
  6-7. Carlsen, Gelfand         ?Ǭ?
 8-12. Anand, Leko, Radjabov, 
       Vallejo Pons, Van Wely   0

Rapid standings:

  1-3. Aronian, Leko, Ivanchuk  1
  4-9. Carlsen, Gelfand, 
       Kramnik, Radjabov,
       Anand, Morozevich        ?Ǭ?
10-12. Svidler, Vallejo Pons,
       Van Wely                 0

Combined standings:

  1-2. Aronian, Ivanchuk        2
  3-4. Kramnik, Morozevich     1?Ǭ?
  5-8. Carlsen, Gelfand,
       Svidler, Leko            1
 9-10. Anand, Radjabov          ?Ǭ?
11-12. Vallejo Pons, Van Wely   0

Blindfold games round 1:

Rapid games round 1:

The playing schedule:

Saturday  17 March  round 1
Sunday    18 March  round 2
Monday    19 March  round 3
Tuesday   20 March  round 4

Wednesday 21 March restday

Thursday 22 March round 5 Friday 23 March round 6 Saturday 24 March round 7 Sunday 25 March round 8

Monday 26 March restday

Tuesday 27 March round 9 Wednesday 28 March round 10

Tomorrow at 15.00 CET is the start of round 2:


Anand        - Radjabov  
Ivanchuk     - Morozevich  
Kramnik      - Van Wely  
Vallejo Pons - Carlsen  
Svidler      - Gelfand  
Aronian      - Leko

Radjabov     - Anand  
Morozevich   - Ivanchuk  
Van Wely     - Kramnik  
Carlsen      - Vallejo
Gelfand      - Svidler
Leko         - Aronian
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