Tata Steel Chess 2012
The 2012 Tata Steel Chess tournament runs from 14-29 January in Wijk Aan Zee in the Netherlands.
Once again some of the best players in the world converge on this small Dutch seaside town for three separate tournaments - the A, B and C Groups. Each tournament being a single round-robin competition of 14 players.
The A Group is the headline event, with top seed Magnus Carlsen facing a hugely impressive field - not just for their chess ability but also their fighting spirit. A truly excellent line-up of crowd-pleasing chess talent!
The time control is 100 minutes for 40 moves, followed by 50 minutes for 20 moves, then 15 minutes to a finish with a 30 seconds increment starting from the first move. There are 3 rest days on 18, 23 & 26 January.
The full line-up in the A Group:
|14||Van Wely, Loek||NED||2692|
Hikaru Nakamura will be hoping to put his recent slip-ups at Reggio Emilia behind him to defend the breakthrough Tata title he won last year. Magnus Carlsen lost a game to Anish Giri at last year's event and will want to improve on his third placed finish.
Lev Aronian has consolidated his 2800+ status and is another potential winner. Teimour Radjabov is in good form, but Veselin Topalov and Vassily Ivanchuk both have something to prove. Sergey Karjakin is another previous winner, but Vugar Gashimov plays in Wijk Aan Zee for the first time. Boris Gelfand will want to display some good form ahead of his world title match against Vishy Anand, and Gata Kamsky makes a welcome return.
Young guns Fabiano Caruana and Anish Giri are starting to prove they can mix it with the big boys, David Navara qualified as (joint) winner of last year's B Group, and the experienced Loek Van Wely completes the field.
The B and C Groups:
|1||Bruzon Batista, Lazaro||CUB||2691|
|9||Timman, Jan H||NED||2571|
|1||Sadler, Matthew D||ENG||2660|
Once again the B and C Groups promise to be entertaining tournaments in their own right, with a good mix of experience and youth, and plenty of women players for good measure. The B Group favourites are Lazaro Bruzon and Wijk debutante Vladimir Potkin, but many eyes will be on the great veteran Jan Timman, while C-Group graduates Daniele Vocaturo, Illya Nyzhnyk and Kateryna Lahno will want to make a good impression.
The C Group is headed by semi-retired Matthew Sadler, making a rare and welcome appearance after a recent successful return to competitive chess.
Good luck to all the players! Look out for tournament updates at Chess.com!
UPDATE -The full pairings are now available here.