Kolkata:aTata Steel Chess India, country’s first international chess tournament, will be held in Kolkata from November 9 to 14, 2018. The tournament, which will be hosted at Indian Council for Cultural Relations(ICCR) centre on Ho Chi Minh Sarani of the city,  will witness the participation of the world’s current top Grandmasters, including our own Vishwanathan Anand, who has not played in a tournament of this scale in India for over two decades.

A total of 11 top-ranked players will take part in the tournament, which will be played in Rapid and Blitz formats. The total prize money in the two events is US$ 40,000 with first prizes of US$, 10,000 and US$ 7,500 in the Rapid and Blitz games, respectively.

Jeroen van den Berg, director of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament held at Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands, will be the director of Tata Steel Chess India as well.  The participants will play a single round robin (all play all) Rapid Tournament on November 9th, 10th, and 11th followed by a double round robin Blitz tournament on November 13th and 14th.

Tata Steel Chess India will be part of the FIDE (International Chess Federation) calendar. The tournament has been conceptualised and will be conducted by Gameplan Sports Pvt Ltd, a 20-year-old sports marketing company that has been involved with several top sports tournaments in India over the last two decades.

Speaking on the occasion, Sunil Bhaskaran, vice president (corporate services), Tata Steel,said: “Tata Steel intends to make Tata Steel Chess India a world-class and most sought-after event in professional chess in the years to come. “

Tournament director Jeroen van den Berg said he was happy with the new challenge of hosting a world-class tournament in India.

Jeet Banerjee, managing director, Gameplan Sports Pvt Ltd, said: “Tata Steel Chess India will signal a proud moment for the sport in India as it brings in some of the most respected and decorated international chess players to India.”