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Round 2: Aronian and Radjabov first winners at Candidates
IMG 2103Levon Aronian and Teimour Radjabov are in shared first place after two rounds at the FIDE World Chess Candidates' Tournament in London. Aronian won against Boris Gelfand, who blundered material. Radjabov outplayed Vassily Ivanchuk, who eventually lost on time in what should be a lost position. Magnus Carlsen got no opening advantage against Vladimir Kramnik and the two quickly drew. Alexander Grischuk and Peter Svidler also split the point, but not before both players had had an advantage in the game.
SOCAR reception
IMG 1966On Friday evening at the Royal Horseguards Hotel a reception and dinner was held with the tournament's main sponsor, the State Oil Company of Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR). After short speeches by SOCAR Vice-President Elshad Nasirov and FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov the guests enjoyed jazz, food and wine. After their games had finished, Levon Aronian and Teimour Radjabov attended the reception. Pictures are here.
Round 1: Candidates’ Tournament starts peacefully
IMG 1846The FIDE World Chess Candidates' Tournament started on Friday with all four games ending in draws. In the first round the players playing the black pieces were all slightly higher rated than their opponents, and all four managed to avoid serious problems.
Over the last few days the IET’s Lecture Theatre has been transformed into an atmospheric chess arena, with specially designed tables, chess pieces and logos. Asked about his opinion, Magnus Carlsen of Norway said: “To say something about that I guess I need to play some more games, and perhaps some longer games as well!" The world’s number one drew rather quickly with world number three Levon Aronian of Armenia.

World's best chess players to play for shot at world title at IET London

IMG 1671Opening ceremony report

The long-awaited FIDE World Candidates Tournament 2013 was officially opened on Thursday night by FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov at IET London, Savoy Place. The tournament's opening ceremony was attended by chess officials, sponsors, and international chess media. Over fourteen rounds, eight of the very best chess players in the world will fight for the right to challenge World Champion Viswanathan Anand in a world title match later this year.

At the start of the ceremony, head of AGON Andrew Paulson presented the specially designed Championship chess set of World Chess, and gave the very first set to Mr. Ilyumzhinov. Designed by Pentagram, the chess set will be available for sale in a number of different editions.

Player Statistics
Player Stats by Geoffrey Borg

Recently Chessbase started to run a series of articles on the individual Candidates and the direction of the articles prompted me to try and find out the overall percentages and interesting statistics of the various Candidates.

There are few comprehensive sources on the internet to compile the data in full, and take account of all the games ever played between these illustrious players. I decided to refer to which is regularly updated and probably the most detailed source for the results.

Grischuk - Gelfand - London FIDE GP 2012
Photo by Fred Lucas from London GP 2012

I would like to add the disclaimer that they clearly state "The figures above are based only on games present in our database which may be incomplete."  So, if any reader finds a missing game, kindly head over to Chessgames and update the database as I am sure you would be doing a good deed for the whole chess world !
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