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Thursday, November 1, 2012

Strongest-Ever Thanksgiving Chess Open at St Louis Chess Club

Chess blog for latest chess news and chess trivia (c) Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2012

Hi everyone,
SAINT LOUIS: Grandmaster Wesley So of the Philippines and Grandmaster Georg Meier of Germany will be top seeds at the the strongest field in the history of the Thanksgiving Open, scheduled to be held at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis November 23-25. This FIDE-rated event features a guaranteed prize fund of more than $10,000.

The featured titled players that have committed as of October 31 include:
GM Wesley So
GM Georg Meier
GM Anatoly Bykhovsky
GM Fidel Corrales
GM Ben Finegold
GM Andre Diamant
GM Denes Boros
WGM Anna Sharevich
IM Steven Zierk
IM Priyadharshan Kannappan
IM Mac Molner
IM Justin Sarkar
IM Vitaly Neimer
IM Levan Bregadze
IM Angelo Young

The tournament features two-day and three-day options and three separate sections: Open (FIDE rated), U1800 and U1400. Immediately following the Thanksgiving Open, the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis will host the 2012 CCSCSL Invitational, a GM and IM norm event. The GM Invitational will take place November 26-30, and will feature the following line-up:

GM Ben Finegold: USA 2493
GM Denes Boros: HUN 2492
GM Andre Diamant: BRA 2471
IM Mac Molner: USA 2489
IM Darwin Yang: USA 2485
IM Steven Zierk: USA 2483
IM Marc Esserman: USA 2445
IM Justin Sarkar: USA 2408
IM Priyadharshan Kannappan: IND 2407
IM Vitaly Niemer: ISR 2373

Tournament organizers expect players will need to score 6.5/9 to secure a GM norm.

The field features a number of strong contenders for norms. Both Zierk and Yang are perennial Junior Championship participants, and Kannappan has turned in an unparalleled performance in the U.S. Chess League, securing the MVP title with three weeks left in the regular season. Neimer recently earned a GM norm with a superb performance at this year's SPICE Cup, which was held in Saint Louis this past week, and Esserman just wrote a thoroughly ground-breaking work in the Morra Gambit Sicilian published by Quality Chess.

The IM norm event will be held in conjunction with the GM norm event. A complete list of players is being finalized, so stay tuned for more details.

Since its inception in 2007, the CCSCSL has worked to promote chess locally and nationally by offering lessons and classes at its world-class facility, bringing chess programming to schools all across the greater Saint Louis area and by hosting major events like the U.S. Championships, international matches between the world’s best players and special training camps for the country’s top talent.

Hosting GM and IM norm events allows us to provide even more opportunities for U.S. chess players to bring their game to the next level. 

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