'Despite GM So's fall, Britton World Chess Cup will go on'

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'Despite GM So's fall, Britton World Chess Cup will go on'

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"In chess, knowledge is a very transient thing. It changes so fast that even a single mouse-slip sometimes changes the evaluation." 

-- Viswanathan Anand

By Alex P. Vidal

NEW YORK CITY -- Mansion World Chess Cup Blitz Championship organizer and chief arbiter Rainier M. Labay vowed to continue holding the five-round tournament despite the elimination of Filipino Grand Master Wesley So in the ongoing FIDE World Chess Cup 2017 in Tbilisi, Georgia. 

The Mansion World Chess Cup was conceptualized after So, 24, a Cavite-born Filipino who now plays for the United States, vaulted into the sem-final of the 128-player single elimination chess tournament.

So lost to upset-conscious Chinese Ding Liren, who is now playing Armenian Grand Master Levon Aronian for the championship in the Biltmore Hotel.

RATED

"Our own version of the World Chess Cup is for the players rated 2200 and below, including those unrated," said Labay, a blitz champion and one of the highest rated Filipino players now based in the United States.

The Mansion edition will be on its sixth edition this week. 

"We will also have a tournament for the rated players," added Labay, former coach of the dreaded De La Salle University Chess Team.

A trophy is awarded to the edition champion plus cash.

"We are inspired by Grand Master So's conquest because even if he is playing for the United States, he is still a Filipino by heart," stressed Labay of Valenzuela City in the Philippines.

KNOCK-OUT

The Georgia World Chess Cup tournament is a knock-out, with the exception that there was a provision for the two semi-final losers to play off for third place if necessary.

Matches consist of two regular time limit games (except for the final, and playoff for third if required, which consist of four regular time limit games). 

For these two games, players have 90 minutes for the first 40 moves followed by 30 minutes for the rest of the game, with an increment of 30 seconds per move from the start of the game.

The champion gets $120,000 while the runner-up will bring home $80,000.

Aside from So, among those highest rated super grand masters who have been ousted were reigning FIDE world champion and top-seeded Magnus Carlsen of Norway, third-seeded Fabiano Caruana (USA), fourth-seed Vladimir Kramnik (Russia), and eight-seeded Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France) who lost to Aronian in another semi-final tussle.