The opening ceremony of “ShamkirChess 2019” Super-tournament

The Gala Opening Ceremony of “ShamkirChess 2019” Super - tournament devoted to the memorial of late grandmaster Vugar Hashimov has been held on March 30th.

In the opening ceremony of the competition, organized for the sixth time in the center named after Haydar Aliyev, the video tape dedicated to the Vugar Hashimov has been shown firstly.

The executive chief of the Shamkir region, Alimpasha Mammadov stated that every year the high-level organization of this event leads to the huge interest of world chess community. He noticed his gratification to SOCAR for supporting the super-tournament being held in high-level. The Chief Executive emphasized that Shamkir has been turned into the Linares of World Chess.

The Ministry of the Youth and Sports, Azad Rahimov called the participation of outstanding grandmasters to “ShamkirChess 2019” as an example of support to sport, particularly to chess in Azerbaijan. Minister stated: “We are really pleased that we have hosted the International Chess Olympiad. Even during the nationwide leader Heydar Aliyev, up to 70 chess schools were built under his administration. I hope that this tournament will be a great support in attracting especially children to chess in Azerbaijan.” Minister has wished lucks to the players.

The vice-president of SOCAR, Khalig Mammadov, stated that having held “ShamkirChess 2019” for the sixth time is an example of interest towards chess in the country.

Father of Vugar Hashimov, Gasim Hashimov stated his thankfulness to the President of the Azerbaijan Republic on holding such a respectable competition which has already turned to be a traditional event. He called this action of Azerbaijani people as an obvious example of accepting Vugar as their own son, and he expressed his gratitude to all organizers. “After watching the short film about Vugar, and seeing this audience, addressing my speech is quite difficult to me. The assemble of prominent grandmasters is the indicator of the gained respect of my son in the world”.

The director of the Organization Committee of “ShamkirChess” and the vice-president of Azerbaijani and International Chess Federation, Mahir Mammadov emphasized that the strong grandmasters are attending in the tournament once again. The adaptation of the State Program did not pass without any effect. Our team consisting men have been the three-time European Champions. I am very grateful to the President Ilham Aliyev for the attention and care towards chess”.

Additionally, M.Mammadov stated that the participation of the new FIDE President, Arcadi Dvorkovich is expected in the tournament.

The vice-president of the Azerbaijan Chess Federation, Faig Hasanov expressed that they achieve the participation of the strongest grandmasters at “ShamkirChess” every year. The Federation Official noted that this year the competition will be very interesting. He stated that the reigning world champion, Magnus Carlsen scored his highest rating point exactly in “ShamkirChess”.

Afterwards, the toss of the competition was rolled.

The ceremony continued with the concert program.

Noting that 10 strong grandmasters being in the high places on the FIDE rating will compete again in the 22 category Memorial of Vugar Hashimov which is supported by SOCAR, Ministry of the Youth and Sports, Azerbaijan Chess Federation, and with the partnership of “Synergy Group”. The reigning World Champion, Magnus Carlsen, Ding Liren (China), Anish Giri (The Netherlands), Indian former World Champion, Wishvanatan Anand, Russian grandmaster Alexsander Grishuk, the winner of the World Cup, participant of the Chess Crown Competition, Sergey Kariakin (Russia), the World champion on FIDE version, Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria) and Czech David Navara will participate in the tournament.

Azerbaijan will be represented by the two-time winner of the ShamkirChess Super Tournament, three-time Europe champion, the world champion on the Rapid Chess, being in 5th place on the FIDE rating, Shahriyar Mammadyarov (2790), the three-time European champion, the bronze winner of the World Championship, Teimur Radjabov (2756).

The top rating favorite of the Super Tournament category 22nd will be the Norwegian representative Magnus Carlsen. The reigning World Champion is in the 1st place on the International Chess Federation rating list with 2845 scores.

The tournament will end up on 9th of April.

The Press Service of "Shamkir Chess 2019"