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The 2022 Candidates Tournament to be held in Madrid

The tournament that will decide the 2023 Challenger, the Candidates Tournament, will be held in Madrid, Spain on the 16th of June until the 7th of July, 2022.

Photo: FIDE (Lennart Ootes)

The 2021 World Championship is still very close to our memories, yet the next Candidates Tournament brings us high hopes for the 2023 World Championship. The previous Candidates tournament was held in Yekaterinburg, Russia partly in 2020 and partly in 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This year’s Candidates will be held in the capital of Spain, hopefully in one part, and with some minor but crucial changes.

So far, six players have qualified for the 2022 edition:

Ian Nepomniachtchi as the 2021 World Championship runner-up. Teimour Radjabov as the Candidate nominated by FIDE. Jan-Krzysztof Duda, and Sergey Karjakin as the top two finishers of the 2021 World Cup. Alireza Firouzja, and Fabiano Caruana as the two finishers of the 2021 FIDE Grand Swiss.

The final two players will come from the 2022 FIDE Grand Prix, to be held February-April 2022.

“Chess has always been very popular in our country, and well respected as an educational tool, with hundreds of thousands of children engaged in chess activities in schools. Hosting a top sporting event like the Candidates brings media attention, and gives all these kids something to look up to.”, said Javier Ochoa, President of the Spanish Chess Federation.

It’s not the first time that Spain has hosted major chess events. Some memorable moments were the 1987 Kasparov-Karpov World Championship in Seville, the Susan Polgar- Xie Jun Women’s World Championship match in Jaen in 1996, and the Chess Olympiad in Calvia in 2004.

Despite the place, the new rules, and the remaining two GMs that will enter the Tournament, there is still one major question. Will the World Champion defend his title if Firouzja doesn’t win?

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