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Wesley So Spearheads St. Louis PRO Team

Wesley So Spearheads St. Louis PRO Team

Dec 12, 2016, 2:08 PM 3

It's no secret that St. Louis is one of the rising chess cities in the world.

Ever since Rex Sinquefield and the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis came into existence, it has been hosting major events such as the U.S. chess championship and the Sinquefield Cup. GM Magnus Carlsen, GM Hikaru Nakamura, GM Viswanathan Anand and even GM Garry Kasparov have played at the club since it's opened.

However St. Louis isn't only interested in hosting top level over-the-board events; it also wants to win the world's premier international online competition. The city has put together an absolutely fearsome lineup of stars for the inaugural season of the PRO Chess League.

With the marquee signing of world top-10 player GM Wesley So, the Arch Bishops are showing how serious they are about winning the PRO Chess League. Let's look at a few of their key players:

GM Wesley So: So is currently ranked number-four in the world and at just 23 years old, is still rising in the world rankings. He is already the strongest player ever from the Philippines and recently became just the 12th player to ever cross 2800. So has proven that he is a great speed chess player, as demonstrated by his incredible victory over GM Garry Kasparov in the Ultimate Blitz Challenge. With the time controls being just 15 minutes, we look forward to more incredible wins like this one!

GM Alejandro Ramirez: Known as "LittlePeasant" online, Alejandro is the strongest player ever from Costa Rica. He was a chess prodigy as he earned GM title at just 15 years old, becoming the first-ever grandmaster from Central America. Ramirez's career highlight came when he tied for first with GM Gata Kamsky at the 2013 U.S. championship, losing in tiebreakers. He now coaches the chess team at Saint Louis University.

GM Dariusz Swiercz: 22-year-old Dariusz sent shockwaves through the U.S. Chess community when he won the 2016 Millionaire Chess Open for a huge payday of $30,000. He was born in Poland and now attends Saint Louis University.

GM Yaroslav Zherebukh: A Ukrainian-born grandmaster who is now attending Saint Louis University, Zherebukh has been over 2600 FIDE for all but three months since March of 2012. In the 2011 World Cup, Yaroslav caused a sensation as a relatively unknown player by knocking out super grandmasters Pavel Eljanov and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in consecutive rounds.

Other top players include GM Varuzhan Akobian and Saint Louis University students GM Francesco Rambaldi and IM Cemil Can Ali Marandi. With such a strong lineup, the Arch Bishops are going to be a favorite to win their division in 2017.

The PRO Chess League welcomes the St. Louis Arch Bishops! 

Read up on everything you need to know about the PRO Chess League:

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