Vugar Gashimov Memorial to Start on Sunday

Vugar Gashimov Memorial to Start on Sunday

| 19 | Chess Event Coverage

On Saturday it will be officially opened and on Sunday the first round of the Gashimov Memorial will be played. Earlier this week the official website of the tournament was put up, as well as the Facebook page and Twitter and Instagram accounts. The tournament, which has Magnus Carlsen, Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura, Sergey Karjakin, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov in the top group, promises to be both hard-fought and well organized.

The first Shamkir Chess 2014 tournament will be held 19-30 April in the Heydar Aliyev Center in Shamkir, Azerbaijan. The tournament, sponsored by “Synergy Group”, will be a memorial for Vugar Gashimov, who sadly passed away on the 10th of January this year, at the age of 27.

Vugar Gashimov.

Shamkir, the 8th largest city in Azerbaijan and the capital of the Shamkir Rayon. It is located in the northern foothills of the Lesser Caucasus, on the coast of the Chagirchay River on Tbilisi-Yevlakh highway.

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There will be two groups. The participants of the A group are Magnus Carlsen, Fabiano Caruana, Hikaru Nakamura, Sergey Karjakin, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov. The participants of the B group are Eltaj Safarli, Nijat Abbasov, Gadir Huseynov, Rauf Mammadov and Vasif Durabeyli (all Azerbaijan) and Wang Hao (China), Pavel Eljanov (Ukraine), Etienne Bacrot (France), Radoslaw Wojtaszek (Poland) and Alexander Motylev (Russia).

The time control will be 2 hours for 40 moves, then 1 hour for 20 moves, followed by 15 minutes to end the game with 30 seconds increment from move 61. Besides, the tournament will apply the Sofia rule: “normal” draws before move 40 won't be allowed. The A group has a prize fund of €100,000, the B group €30,000.

Earlier this week the tournament opened its multiple media channels: a website, a Facebook page, a Twitter account and an Instagram account. On the website the playing schedule can be found:

Gashimov Memorial 2014 | Schedule

Day Time Event
Saturday, April 19th 18.30 Opening Ceremony and Drawing of Lots
Sunday, April 20th 15.00 Round 1
Monday, April 21st 15.00 Round 2
Tuesday, April 22nd 15.00 Round 3
Wednesday, April 23rd 15.00 Round 4
Thursday, April 24th 15.00 Round 5
Friday, April 25th Free day
Saturday, April 26th 15.00 Round 6
Sunday, April 27th 15.00 Round 7
Monday, April 28th 15.00 Round 8
Tuesday, April 29th 15.00 Round 9
Wednesday, April 30th 13.30 Round 10
Wednesday, April 30th 20.00 Closing Ceremony

The venue is the Heydar Aliyev Center in Shamkir. The four-storied building, which is surrounded by a large park, is dedicated to the former President and national leader Heydar Aliyev (1923-2003). The building, which was opened in September 2013, includes a museum, a 3D cinema, a rich library (15,000 books), a VIP cafe, conference rooms, a lecture hall and translation cabinets.

Naturally the games can be followed live on the website. There will be video coverage with live commentary in three languages: Azerbaijani (Anar Allahverdiyev & Farid Abbasov), English (Genna Sosonko & Viorel Iordachescu) and Russian (Sergey Shipov). will have live commentary each round on! We'll also be transmitting the games in Live Chess. The author of these lines will be in Shamkir throughout the tournament to provide on-the-spot coverage of the tournament.

Peter Doggers

Peter Doggers joined a chess club a month before turning 15 and still plays for it. He used to be an active tournament player and holds two IM norms.

Peter has a Master of Arts degree in Dutch Language & Literature. He briefly worked at New in Chess, then as a Dutch teacher and then in a project for improving safety and security in Amsterdam schools.

Between 2007 and 2013 Peter was running ChessVibes, a major source for chess news and videos acquired by in October 2013.

As our Director News & Events, Peter writes many of our news reports. In the summer of 2022, The Guardian’s Leonard Barden described him as “widely regarded as the world’s best chess journalist.”

In October, Peter's first book The Chess Revolution will be published!

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