26 November 2022

2022 FWFRCC Finals - Live

Last week, in 2022 FWFRCC Finals (November 2022), I recorded the nuts and bolts of the final stage of the 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship'. Now let's have a look at the action on the last day.


Hikaru v. Nepo Final + Can Carlsen Win A Medal? Fischer Random World Championship (6:10:36) • 'Streamed live on Oct 30, 2022'

The description said,

Chess stars Hikaru Nakamura and Ian Nepomniachtchi are competing to become the Fischer Random world champion! The 2022 Fischer Random World Championship is an over-the-board event in Reykjavik, Iceland. Magnus Carlsen also takes on Nodirbek Abdusattorov on the final day of competition!

A link in the description went to 'Oct 29, 2022 - Oct 31, 2022' Fischer Random World Championship Finals 2022 (chess.com). For more from Youtube's Chess.com channel, see:-

The last link leads to the same video shown in the embedded stream above. The last two streams featured commentary by GMs Naroditsky and Hess. I haven't (yet) watched the first three streams to confirm if the same pair commentated all five. In the final post from last month 2022 FWFRCC Follow-ups (October 2022), I wrote,

This past week I managed to watch a few hours of the 2022 FWFRCC group stage. I was amazed by the quality of the games and of the commentary.

I should mention that I watched on the Youtube channel for Chess24. Here's a list of live streams from the same channel [FWFRC = FIDE World Fischer Random Championship]:-

From what I've seen so far, my preferred chess960 commentator has to be Peter Leko. Hungarian GM Leko was one of the earliest practitioners of chess960 and rubbed shoulders with Fischer when the eccentric American GM lived in Hungary. For a previous post on an early high profile match, see 2001 Leko - Adams on Geocities (May 2022).

19 November 2022

2022 FWFRCC Finals

In my previous post on this blog, 2022 FWFRCC Follow-ups (October 2022; FWFRCC stands for 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship'), I ended saying,
This past week I managed to watch a few hours of the 2022 FWFRCC group stage. I was amazed by the quality of the games and of the commentary. Unfortunately, I won't be able to write about the winner until the next scheduled post on this blog next month.

The official announcement of the winner -- 'Hikaru Nakamura is the 2022 FIDE World Fischer Random Champion' -- is shown below.


Source: FIDE Fischer Random World Chess Championship 2022
frchess.com -or- fischerrandom.fide.com

The event was covered by all of the major chess news sites. Let's follow the action on FIDE's own site. All of these stories, plus many more, are also available on the official site(s):-

GM Tisdall has emerged as one of the leading authorities on C960/FRC. For the previous post on this blog, see Chess960 Movers and Shakers (November 2020). As for GM Nakamura, he has been mentioned so many times on this blog that he deserves his own category. Since that's not likely to happen anytime soon, use the search box in the right navigation column. Congratulations on his impressive success in the 2022 FWFRCC!

29 October 2022

2022 FWFRCC Follow-ups

After nearly a half-dozen posts on the 2022 FWFRCC ('FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship'), I have a number of loose ends to tie up. The coverage of the event has been extraordinary.

Nakamura Streams His FWFRCC Qualifiers

The previous post on this blog was 2022 FWFRCC Qualifiers (October 2022). One of the bullets said, '2022-10-07: Lichess Qualifiers Send Nakamura and Abdusattorov to [WFRC]'. GM Nakamura, a popular Twitch and Youtube streamer, recorded his qualification games. Here is the first clip.


Hikaru on Lichess Fischer Random World Champs Qualifier (1:13:57) • '[Published on] Sep 13, 2022'

The video description informed,

Hikaru plays in a qualifier on Sept 11, 2022 held on Lichess for the Fischer Random World Championship being held in Iceland in October. This is the first qualifier, the top 15 will play on Sept 18th in a knockout format. This is part 1. Hikaru recorded this off stream.

That was the first of three videos on Youtube's GMHikaru channel. All of them received viewer comments numbering around low three figures. Here are the videos:-

The eight player group stage of the 2022 FWFRCC was played this past week. Nakamura was one of four players to qualify into the semifinal stage.

Google Accords 'Full Coverage' to the 2022 FWFRCC

In a recent post on my main blog, Chess960 Mania (October 2022), I discussed Google News chess stories for the month of October. For only the third time since I've been following Google News, the tech giant supplemented the 100 chess stories with a special 'Full Coverage' page. This time the coverage was about the 2022 FWFRCC. In that post I promised, 'to cover the FWFRCC final on [my chess960 blog], incorporating Google's 'Full Coverage' into the next post.' So here we are.

The following image was developed for the 'Chess960 Mania' post. The left chart shows news sources that had more than a single story in Google News for October. I discussed these in that original post.

The right chart shows all news sources that had at least one story in the Google 'Full Coverage' section. In other words, 18 stories about 2022 FWFRCC were published by nine different sources (there were also four tweets from Twitter). Five of the stories were from Chess.com. Another five were from sources that accounted for a single story.

Did I say 'nine different sources'? For some reason that isn't immediately clear, ChessBase appears twice in the list. In all fairness I should discuss the five Chess.com stories. The site has been a strong supporter of chess960 since a few years after Chess.com's inception in 2007. It developed software and tools to play chess960 and promoted them through its forums. Two of the four 2022 FWFRCC qualifying events were organized by Chess.com.

For most of that same time ChessBase has been antagonistic to chess960. A few years ago, in Purported Problems with Chess960 (April 2018), I took issue with a long list of chess960 'problems' assembled by ChessBase founder and front man Frederic Friedel. The original ChessBase article is still available on ChessBase.com and undoubtedly still influences people wanting to know more about Fischer's greatest invention.

Here are the four Chessbase stories flagged by Google's 'Full Coverage'. All are from Chessbase.com; the last three are signed by Carlos Alberto Colodro.

Has ChessBase changed its colors? Its tune? You be the judge.

More to come...

This past week I managed to watch a few hours of the 2022 FWFRCC group stage. I was amazed by the quality of the games and of the commentary. Unfortunately, I won't be able to write about the winner until the next scheduled post on this blog next month, but I can already say to the organizers and to others involved in producing the event, 'Congratulations on a great show and thanks!'

22 October 2022

2022 FWFRCC Qualifiers

The last couple of posts have not respected the natural sequence, so let's try to arrange things in the right order.
  • 2022-09-17: 2022 FWFRCC Structure • 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship'
  • [This current 'Qualifiers' post goes here...]
  • 2022-10-15: 2022 FWFRCC Finalists • 'Once again, 'I'll save the details for another post.' [...] This current post!

Chess.com Qualifier 1 [chess.com; FRWC = Fischer Random World Championship]:-

Chess.com Qualifier 2 [chess.com]:-

Lichess [lichess.org; WFRC = World Fischer Random Championship]:-

  • 2022-09-09: Midway Through The [WFRC] Qualifiers on Lichess • 'With the open and invitational arena stage over, we now move to the first Swiss stages marking the midpoint of the qualifiers on Lichess.'
  • 2022-10-07: Lichess Qualifiers Send Nakamura and Abdusattorov to [WFRC] (shows KO brackets without scores) • 'Both Hikaru Nakamura and Nodirbek Abdusattorov were players awarded wildcards from co-organisers; Nakamura’s from the Charlotte Chess Center and North American Corporate Chess League and Abdusattorov’s wildcard was from Offerspill Sjakklubb.'

Here's the same infographic I assembled for the 'Finalists' post. The info above matches the second row below.

15 October 2022

2022 FWFRCC Finalists

In last month's post, 2022 FWFRCC Structure (September 2022; 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship'), after presenting an overiew of the qualifying paths, I wrote,
The two Chess.com qualifiers have already finished. I'll save the details for another post.

Once again, I'm going to kick the can down the road. There is more pressing news to report and I don't have time to cover everything in one post. From Magnus Carlsen to headline FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship 2022 (chessdom.com):-

FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship over-the-board final will take place in the Berjaya Reykjavik Natura Hotel, Iceland, from 25-30 October 2022.

The following image combines two important pieces of info from that article -- the participants and the schedule.

The participants are already known, which means that all of the qualifiers have taken place. Once again, 'I'll save the details for another post.'

24 September 2022

2022 Champions Showdown, St. Louis

The second 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship' -- seen last week in 2022 FWFRCC Structure (September 2022) -- wasn't the only world class chess960 event taking place this month. The last event of the '2022 Champions Showdown' in St.Louis was also a chess960 tournament. Shown here is the final crosstable.


2022 Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX
(uschesschamps.com; see 'Pairings & Results')

That link is to the home page for the event. It explains,

What is Chess 9LX? • Chess 9LX is a tournament hosted by the Saint Louis Chess Club. It is played in the Chess 960 or Fischer Random format. Created by Bobby Fischer in the late 1990s, Chess 960 shuffles the pieces on the home rank, with 960 representing the number of possible starting positions. Players will not know the order of the home rank until 15 minutes before each round.

So who won, Alireza Firouzja or Fabiano Caruana? A press release informed, Fabiano Caruana Wins the 2022 Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX(TM) Tournament (businesswire.com):-

Saint Louis-based Grandmaster Fabiano Caruana was crowned the winner of the 2022 Champions Showdown: Chess 9LX after defeating Alireza Firouzja in Armageddon during their rapid playoff match and taking home the $31,250 first prize.

The following video starts at the point of the rapid playoff match. It first explains the playoff rules and the disposition of the prize fund.


2022 Champions Showdown | Chess 9LX: Day 3 (5:05:39; starts with playoff at 3:43:00) • 'Streamed live on Sep 16, 2022'

For the full Youtube videos on channel 'Saint Louis Chess Club' (SLCC) of all three playing days -- '2022 Champions Showdown | Chess 9LX', streamed live -- see:-

  • 2022-09-14: Day 1 (R1 - 0:00:00; R2 - 1:19:30; R3 - 2:41:30)
  • 2022-09-15: Day 2 (R4 - 0:00:00; R5 - 1:27:15; R6 - 2:49:00)
  • 2022-09-16: Day 3 (R7 - 0:00:00; R8 - 1:33:00; R9 - 2:41:00; TB - 3:43:00)

For this blog's final report on last year's event, see Chess940 in 'Chess Life' (December 2021; 'Earlier this year I covered the '9XL Showdown' event in two posts'). To close this current post, I'll add my usual reminder that the SLCC uses non-standard position numbering propagated by Chessgames.com. To convert to the standard position numbering used everywhere else, see Chess960 Start Position Converter for Chessgames.com (m-w.com). Somewhat curiously, the SLCC got it right for the position used in the first two tiebreak games, SP878 is the same start position (QRKRNBBN) in both numbering systems.

17 September 2022

2022 FWFRCC Structure

Last month, in 2022 FWFRCC Kickoff (August 2022), we had initial news about the second 'FIDE World Fischer Random Chess Championship'. The following chart shows the structure of the event as seen by two of its sponsoring organizations.


Top: Fischer Random World Championship 2022 - Info (chess.com) • Bottom: FIDE World Fischer Random Championship – Update (lichess.org)

Both Chess.com and Lichess will qualify two players into the championship stage. From the Chess.com page:-

Championship [25-31 October 2022]:-
- Four qualified players join the four invited players.
- The players compete in a group stage, followed by the semifinals and finals
- Group Stage [...] The top-two players from each group advance to the semifinals
- Semifinals and finals [...] Players compete in four-game matches

Location: Qualifiers are played online on Chess.com [and Lichess], while the final is an over-the-board event in Reykjavik, Iceland.

The two Chess.com qualifiers have already finished. I'll save the details for another post.