Ulaanbaatar Women FIDE Grand Prix

30th July to 11th August in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia

The opening ceremony of the 5th Women FIDE Grand Prix chess tournament was held at Ulaanbaatar city center and the heart of Mongolia – Sukhbaatar Square – on July, 29th, 2010. For the first time in the government district was allowed to lead the opening of sports competition.

Round one pairings were drawn as follows: Humpy Koneru (India) – Shen Yang (China); Hou Yifan (China) – Tatiana Kosintseva (Russia); Marie Sebag (France) – Xu Yuhua (China); Maia Chiburdanidze (Georgia) – Batkhuyag Munguntuul (Mongolia); Zhu Chen (Qatar) – Stefanova, Antoaneta (Bolgaria); Yildiz Betul Cemre (Turkey) – Zhao Xue (China).

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Earlier, the press conference took place at the Presidential Residence near Ulaanbaatar. FIDE also was represented by FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, FIDE General Secretary Ignatius Leong and Vice President Geoffrey Borg, while Mongolian organizing Committee was represented by Minister of Education, Culture and Science Yondon Otgonbayar and President of Mongolian Chess Association Suuri Enkhtsag. Journalists from the Mongolian main TV broadcasting and newspaper media were present, as well as representatives from foreign Embassies to Mongolia.

The press conference was opened by Minister of Education, Culture and Science Yondon Otgonbayar:

- I wish to express my gratitude to all ladies and gentlemen for coming here. The most outstanding 12 players from 8 countries, including Mongolia, France, Qatar, Turkey, China, will be competing in this round-robin Grand Prix tournament. This 5th Grand Prix tournament in Mongolia features the highest ranked players in the world including 4 world champions. Mongolia is represented by grandmaster Munguntuul.

Ulaanbaatar Batkhuyag Munguntuul

Batkhuyag Munguntuul representing Mongolia

FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov expressed his gratitude to Mr. Otgonbayar for all support and assistance in the organizing of the event and emphasized a high level of the participants:

- It is a great pleasure for me that this tournament of the Grand Prix series is being held in this wonderful city of Ulaanbaatar. The previous tournament was held in Armenia in Europe, now Grand Prix continues in Mongolia in Asia and will be concluded in South America in Chile. As the President of FIDE, I would like to emphasize that in regard of level of the participants, this tournament is the highest ranking in the history of women’s chess championships and tournaments. In this tournament 4 world champions will compete simultaneously, including the famous and legendary world champion Maya Chiburdanidze. The present highest ranking player Humpy Koneru from India will participate as well. It is also a pleasure to note that a Grand Prix international tournament is being held for the first time in Mongolia.

- We heard that foundation for the Chess Academy will be laid today. How is this project founded?

- FIDE has a project to open chess schools in various countries and Mongolia is included in this project. For implementation of this project we have commercial partners. The Chess Academies are being planned as a commercial project, therefore we have agreements with local businesses and commercial structures. FIDE is a commercial organization and last year’s financial crisis has somewhat affected our and our business partners’ interests. Nevertheless, we did not stop our project, it just slowed down.

Longer articles available on the Ulaanbaatar Grand Prix official website

Ulaanbaatar Koneru

Top seeded player is Humpy Koneru of India

Ulaanbaatar Stefanova

Former World Champion Antoaneta Stefanova

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