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Indian team at Nations Cup = Anand, Vidit, Hari, Beast, Humpy and Harika

by Sagar Shah - 24/04/2020

The FIDE chess. com online nations cup will begin from the 5th of May 2020. The participants of all six teams have been revealed. Although only four players will fight it out in each round, each team has six participants. India is by no means the favourite as they start as the fifth seeds out of six teams, but when you have players like Anand, Vidit, Hari, Adhiban, Humpy and Harika in your ranks, you know they can beat the best in the business. China has the strongest team thanks to not just Ding Liren, but also Hou Yifan making a comeback. USA has all their top guns in the fray. Russia as always is a tough nut to crack. Team Europe with MVL, Aronian and Giri looks formidable while Rest of the world with Radjabov, Firouzja and co. is not to be underestimated!

Teams of Online Nations Cup revealed

FIDE Press release

 

The Chinese team, winner of a historic double gold in the last Chess Olympiad, will be the top-seed at the FIDE Chess.com Online Nations Cup, which will take place May 5-10. The field for the event includes six players who have held the title of World Chess Champion, plus 12 others who have been Candidates to the throne at some point. China, with an average elo of 2717, is followed in the initial ranking by Europe (2687), Russia (2662), USA (2641), India (2605) and the "Rest of the World" team (2597).

India:

India will be led one more time by the legendary Viswanathan Anand who, despite having reached the age of 50 in November, is still one among the top 15 players in the world - and remains as dangerous as ever when it comes to rapid play. It is a bit paradoxical that the average age of this team is the highest in the event, when India is producing more young chess prodigies than any other country in the world. But the young Indian cubs are not ready yet to make it into the national team: the generational changeover will have to wait a bit more.

Advisor to the team: Vladimir Kramnik

1. Viswanathan Anand

2. Vidit Gujrathi

3. Pentala Harikrishna

4. Humpy Koneru

5. Adhiban Baskaran

6. Harika Dronavalli

Clockwise from top left: Vishy Anand, Vidit Gujrathi, P. Harikrishna, Harika Dronavalli, B. Adhiban and Humpy Koneru

China

The Chinese team is headed by Ding Liren and Wang Hao, the world's numbers three and twelve respectively. They are two of the eight players who are currently a part of the Candidates tournament - the final stage which decides who will be the finalist in the World Championship Match. But the main news is the return of Hou Yifan to the Chinese national team. The four-time World Champion is a former prodigy and the youngest female player ever to achieve the Grandmaster title. Two years ago Hou won the prestigious Rhodes Scholarship to study at Oxford University, and she put her career on hold, but she is still the highest-ranked female player in ranking. Hou Yifan's temporary return to the board might imply that the reigning Women's World Champion, Ju Wenjun, is relegated to the bench.

 

Captain: Ye Jiangchuan

Ding Liren

Wang Hao

Wei Yi

Hou Yifan

Yu Yangyi

Ju Wenjun

Clockwise from top left: Ding Liren, Wang Hao, Wei Yi, Ju Wenjun, Yu Yangyi, Hou Yifan

Europe

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, from France, will be leading a super-strong European team that also includes Levon Aronian, Anish Giri, and Anna Muzychuk, with Jan-Krzysztof Duda and Nana Dzagnidze as reserve players. But even the best players of the moment are slightly overshadowed when the team captain is a living legend like Garry Kasparov. The multiple-time world champion, who ruled the world of chess for two decades, put an end to his career in 2005 and has barely taken part in any competitive chess activity ever since. His presence in this event, even if only as a team captain, has been a pleasant surprise to chess fans all over the world.

Garry Kasparov will not be playing, but his presence as the captain enhances the stature of the event | Photo: Lennart Ootes

Captain: Garry Kasparov

Maxime Vachier-Lagrave

Levon Aronian

Anish Giri

Anna Muzychuk

Jan-Krzysztof Duda

Nana Dzagnidze

Clockwise from top left: MVL, Aronian, Anish Giri, Nana Dzagnidze, Jan Krysztof Duda and Anna Muzychuk

Russia

Russia no longer dominates the chess world as it once did, but even with the absence of some important players -like Alexander Grischuk and Kateryna Largo- the Russian team cannot be ruled out as a possible winner. Ian Nepomniachtchi has proven to be in great shape recently, and he will be defending the first board, along with Vladislav Artemiev, Sergey Karjakin, and Aleksandra Goryachkina. With Dmitry Andreikin and Olga Girya as reserve players, Russian is still a formidable rival, with great team spirit.

 

Captain: Alexander Motylev

Ian Nepomniachtchi

Vladislav Artemiev

Sergey Karjakin

Aleksandra Goryachkina

Dmitry Andreikin

Olga Girya

Clockwise from top left: Ian Nepomniachtchi, Vladislav Artemiev, Sergey Karjakin, Olga Girya, Dmitry Andreikin, Aleksandra Goryachkina

United States of America

The USA, winners of the 2016 Olympiad, brings to the competition all their top guns, starting with the world's number two Fabiano Caruana. With him, Hikaru Nakamura, who is considered one of the biggest specialists in fast time controls, and the Fischer Random World Champion Wesley So. The team is completed by two experienced female players - Irina Krush and Anna Zatonskih, plus the Cuban-born Leinier Dominguez, who represents the US Chess Federation since 2018.  

 

Captain: John Donaldson

Fabiano Caruana

Hikaru Nakamura

Wesley So

Irina Krush

Leinier Dominguez Perez

Anna Zatonskih

Clockwise from top left: Fabiano Caruana, Nakamura, Wesley So, Anna Zatonskih, Lenier Dominguez, Irina Krush

Rest of the World

The "Rest of the World Team" is, as it would be expected, the most colorful one, including players from Azerbaijan, Iran, Egypt, Peru, Ukraine, and Kazakhstan. On top of the list, the winner of the 2019 FIDE World Cup, Teimour Radjabov. With him, one of the main attractions of the event, the 16-year-old prodigy from Iran, Alireza Firouzja. The teenager is developing a rivalry with the World Champion Magnus Carlsen that is becoming more and more serious by the day, and probably all eyes will be on him, as he will be taking on some of the very top players in the world during this event. The team also features the best African player of all times, Bassem Amin, one of the biggest talents from Latin America, Jorge Cori, a former Women's World Champion, Mariya Muzychuk, and the Kazakhstani star Dinara Saduakassova. The FIDE President, Arkady Dvorkovich, will be acting as a captain for this team.

A chess administrator, but at heart a chess lover - FIDE President Arkadij Dvorkovich will be the captain of Rest of the World | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Captain: Arkady Dvorkovich

Teimour Radjabov

Alireza Firouzja

Bassem Amin

Mariya Muzychuk

Jorge Cori

Dinara Saduakassova

Clockwise from top left: Teimour Radjabov, Alireza Firouzja, Amin Basseem, Dinara Saduakassova, Cori Jorge, Mariya Muzychuk

The tournament will be broadcast live across multiple outlets including FIDE's and Chess.com's own channels across Twitch, YouTube, Mixer, Twitter, and other international streaming platforms. With an estimated audience of several million worldwide, commentary by chess experts will be conducted in multiple languages, including English, Spanish, Russian, Mandarin, French, German, Portuguese, Italian, Turkish and Polish.

 

The Online Nations Cup is a team championship showdown, where six teams of four players each will fight under a rapidplay format, for a prize fund of USD 180,000. The first stage, a double round-robin with the six teams, will take place on May 5-9. The top two teams will then play in a Superfinal on Sunday, May 10, to determine the FIDE Chess. com Online Nations Cup champion. The games will be played in a rapid format, where each player begins the game with 25 minutes on their clock, plus 10 seconds of extra time added after each move.

Related:

Introduction to the Online Nations Cup


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