27 August 2020

Top News/Tournaments in August

At the end of last month, in a post titled Top Tournaments in July (July 2020), I took a survey of chess news stories reported by Google News and came up empty-handed for anything out of the ordinary. This current month had a number of good stories, all of them related to online chess. Here's the first:-

I mention the author because we already saw her in Coronavirus Candidates (March 2020), where I noted,

Going back even further in time, most -- if not all -- of the older ESPN chess stories had something to do with India. Take this next one, for example. [2020-01-09: Q&A with Viswanathan Anand; ...] The same Susan Ninan was the writer of the four stories on the Candidates.

Two more Google News stories highlighted two of the most visible (and vocal) players of our time:-

On the Carlsen story, the headline is more accurate -- 'richest and most-watched *online* chess event ever' -- but I'm not complaining. In 'Top Tournaments in July' I identified the top five events in each weekly edition of Mark Crowther's 'The Week in Chess' (TWIC). Let's do the same for August.

1) Introduction

THE WEEK IN CHESS 1343 - 3rd August 2020
2) Legends of Chess 2020
3) 53rd Biel Chess Festival 2020
4) Polish Chess Championship 2020
5) ACP - Chessbase Knock-Out 2020
6) FIDE Online Olympiad 2020

THE WEEK IN CHESS 1344 - 10th August 2020
2) Legends of Chess 2020
3) Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour Final 2020
4) 7th Prague Summer Open 2020
5) 4th Irena Warakomska Memorial 2020
6) Polish Women's Championship 2020

THE WEEK IN CHESS 1345 - 17th August 2020
2) Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour Final 2020
3) 56th Rubinstein Memorial 2020
4) 91st ch-GER 2020
5) Barcelona August Closed Tournaments 2020
6) Santo Tirso Chess Tournament 2020

THE WEEK IN CHESS 1346 - 24th August 2020
2) Magnus Carlsen Chess Tour Final 2020
3) 31st Porto San Giorgio Open 2020
4) BSSZ Aranytiz 2020
5) Plzen Chess Festival 2020
6) ch-ISL 2020

The 'M.C. Chess Tour' received TWIC's top billing for the last two weeks listed above. In his introduction to TWIC 1346, Crowther wrote,

Magnus Carlsen won his tour final against Hikaru Nakamura but it was an extremely close contest settled by an Armageddon tie-break that could have gone either way. Nakamura showed that his online skills are pretty much undimmed and Carlsen clearly was very frustrated with the problems he set him. Already Chess24 have announced another longer tour starting in November and running well into 2021. I've said many times that we're not getting back to normal any time soon and we will be reliant on chess online to keep us going.

After a few words about the Armageddon format that decided the Carlsen - Nakamura match, Crowther signed off with:-

There will be more online chess from Saint Louis next month. Right now the Online Chess Olympiad is reaching its climax with some very strong players competing and the many of the usual suspects making it to the final eight next week that decides the prizes. Still plenty to look at.

It's curious that the Olympiad received top-five billing only once in August. In TWIC 1346 it was listed at no.21 out of 23 events, just behind the 'PNWCC Online Blitz - Jackpot XVIII'.

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