The Candidates Tournament: The first moves have been made!
On April 19, the FIDE Candidates Tournament resumed in Yekaterinburg, Russia
The technical opening of the Candidates Tournament took place before the start of the 8th round at the Hyatt Regency hotel. The anthems of Russia and FIDE were played during the ceremony and the tournament was officially resumed by FIDE President. The symbolic first moves in the games were made by the First Deputy Governor of the Sverdlovsk Region Alexander Vysokinsky, FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich, State Duma deputy, multiple world chess champion Anatoly Karpov and the owner of the Sima-Land company, President of the Chess Federation of the Sverdlovsk Region Andrey Simanovsky.
Albert Stepanyan, Director of the Candidates Tournament:
- Today in Yekaterinburg we are glad to welcome everyone including our distinguished guests and our players, who will soon appear in this hall in order to start the second half of the Candidates Tournament. We have been looking forward to the moment, when the pandemic would allow us to create the necessary conditions to resume the tournament, and today that day has come!
Alexander Vysokinsky, First Deputy Governor of the Sverdlovsk Region:
- Dear friends, colleagues, on behalf of the Governor of the Sverdlovsk Region Yevgeny Kuyvashev, let me welcome all the participants of our event! The tournament took much more time than we had planned. In 2020, when we suspended the tournament, there was uncertainty ahead, now, as we continue the event, I am very happy to state that we see a way out of the global crisis.
Arkady Dvorkovich, FIDE President:
- Congratulations on the resumption of the Candidates Tournament in Yekaterinburg! 389 days have passed since the tournament was adjourned. It was a difficult decision, but I am grateful to all chess players, partners, and organizers for their patience. Now we are together again.
Arkady Dvorkovich also expressed his gratitude to general partner - the company "Sima-land" and personally Andrey Simanovsky, to the Government of the Sverdlovsk Region, the Chess Federation of Russia and the Chess Federation of the Sverdlovsk Region for organizing the tournament, as well as to the partner companies: Algorand, Kaspersky, PhosAgro, Mercedes-Benz, Pine Creek Golf Resort, and Chessable.
Anatoly Karpov, State Duma deputy, multiple world chess champion:
- Dear friends, the historical moment has come, the second part of the longest tournament in the history of chess begins. There were no problems closed borders, and we were able to invite all the participants of the tournament here. When I sat in a chair and looked at the eight participants, I was thinking of the time when I was fighting for the world champion's title: we already had the Candidates' Matches, there were no Candidates Tournaments. But before this, there were also the Candidates Tournaments with eight players, who had to play not two circles but four, which means they had to play 28 games. It was a very long tournament, a super marathon. Now the grandmasters have an easier task, especially since the tournament was split into two parts.
Andrey Simanovsky, owner of Sima-Land:
- All the words have been spoken. I am very glad that for the first time in history it was possible to gather the best chess players in the world in our city. This is a great event for the Sverdlovsk region.