The Chess Olympiad has been moved from Russia to Chennai.© AFP
The 44th Chess Olympiad, which was moved out of Russia after it invaded Ukraine, will be organised in Chennai later this year, making it the second major global event of the sport to be held in India after the World Championship match in 2013. The announcement was made by Tamil Nadu chief minister M K Stalin on his Twitter page on Tuesday night. “Delighted that the Chess Capital of India is set to host the 44th Chess Olympiad! A proud moment for Tamil Nadu! Chennai warmly welcomes all the Kings and Queens from around the world! #ChessOlympiad2022,” he said in the tweet.
“It’s official now….India will host the 44th World Chess Olympiad 2022 at Chennai!” the All-India Chess Federation added on its Twitter handle.
The All-India Chess federation (AICF) had submitted a guarantee of USD10 million (approx Rs 70 crore) to FIDE to host the tournament. The Olympiad was moved out of Russia after it invaded neighbouring Ukraine on February 24.
The Chess Olympiad is a biennial team event in which teams from some 190 countries compete over a two-week period. It was supposed to take place in Moscow from July 26 to August 8.
The other events that have been moved away from Russia are the first Chess Olympiad for People with Disabilities and the 93rd FIDE Congress.
The last chess event of such stature to come to India was the 2013 world championship clash between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen, the current world No.1.
The invasion of Ukraine has led to a slew of sporting cancellations in Russia with the International Olympic Committee urging member countries to ensure that no events are hosted by the country.