Back to back GM Tournaments in Madurai and Chennai
The year 2023 ends with two consecutive GM tournaments in Tamil Nadu. It is the only state to have consecutive GM tournaments in India. Velammal Hospital presents Madurai Chess Thiruvizha (Festival) Athens of the East 3rd GM Open tournament from 23rd to 30th December 2023. The total cash prize fund is ₹40 lacs + trophies, bicycle and bikes are there. Category A has a total prize fund of ₹2000000, the top three prizes being ₹300000, ₹200000 and ₹150000 along with a trophy each. Category B and C have a total prize fund ₹1000000 each. The 14th Chennai GM Open will take place from 31st December to 7th January 2024. It offers a total prize fund ₹2000000. The top three prizes are ₹400000, ₹300000 and ₹175000. Check out the article for all details and register if you haven't yet. Photo: Tournament circular
Unimaginable prizes of 100 bicycles and 8 bikes at stake in Madurai
Tamil Nadu is acclaimed as the chess capital of India; not for a single reason; but in many aspects. Besides the top three Indian players are from Tamil Nadu, the state has contributed about one third of the Indian Grandmasters and International Masters. Why Tamil Nadu stands above the rest? One of the prime reasons is that the number of district, state, national and international tournaments organized in Tamil Nadu is countless. It is the only state where two international GM-norm tournaments are organized every year. The series of IM-norm tournaments in progress has also added a new dimension.
The Velammal Hospital, a part of the Velammal Group of Institutions, which has produced 18 grandmasters including Praggnanandhaa, Gukesh, B Adhiban, S P Sethuraman, M Shyam Sundar, GM-elect R Vaishali and Pranav V, presents the Madurai Chess Thiruvizha (festival) – Athens of the East 3rd International Grandmaster Chess Tournament at Madurai from 23rd to 30th December 2023. The total cash prize is 40 lacs rupees for the three tournaments - A, B and C category events put together, the winner of the GM tournament will receive three lacs rupees and the glittering Chairman Mr. M V Muthuramalingam trophy. The tournament will be held at Velammal College of Engineering & Technology, Viraganoor, six kilometers from the famous Meenakshi temple, Madurai.
Ananthi Chess Academy, under the captaincy of P Pragadesh, Joint Secretary of Tamil Nadu State Chess Association organizes the tournament.
The 14th Chennai Open for the Sakthi Group Dr. N Mahalingam trophy will be held at Hotel Ambassador Pallava, a star hotel in the heart of Chennai from 31st December to 7th January 2024. It offers a cash prize of 20 lacs rupees; the champion will be richer by four lacs rupees.
The Tamil Nadu State Chess Association itself organizes the tournament under the leadership of its General Secretary - P Stephen Balasamy.
Madurai, the Most Attractive GM Tournament of the Year in India
Why should you participate in the Madurai tournament? Because it is the most attractive tournament of the year in India. Besides the main and rating category cash prizes in the three tournaments, B and C category tournaments offer four bikes and 50 bicycles each. In total, there are 100 bicycles and eight bikes as incentives to players.
This is not the complete story. All players will be provided free accommodation and food at the venue.
The B and C categories carry prize money of ten lacs rupees each.
The Traditional Chennai Open
Oragnising such a high level international norm tournament for 14 years is a Herculean task. But it has been made easier by the efficient and effective administration of TNSCA headed by the philanthropist Dr. M Manickam. He has also been instrumental in initiating the ongoing mega project of 50 international norm tournaments.
Apart from the 45 main prizes in the tournament, the winners of the first three places in each of the five rating categories also get decent cash prizes.
The entry fee is very reasonable and if a player needs accommodation, nominal charges will be collected.
Already players from 18 countries have confirmed their entries, including 9 GMs and 19 IMs.
|8||GM||Vishnu, Prasanna. V||5030692||IND||2413|
|12||IM||Tologon Tegin, Semetei||13800574||KGZ||2376|
Confirmed Players of Madurai Tournament
9 GMs and 15 IMs so far have confirmed the entries for the Madurai tournament.
What to see in Madurai and Chennai
Madurai is a major city and also the cultural capital of the Tamil Nadu state, having a history of more than 2500 years.
The Meenakshi Amman temple built about a thousand years back on the bank of Vaigai river. It attracts millions of tourists every year from all over the world. Thirumalai Nayak palace built in 1636 was considered as one of the wonders of the south. The interior is richly decorated, whilst the exterior is treated in a more austere style. It is also famous for the jasmine flower and 24-hours eateries.
Chennai, on the Bay of Bengal in south India, is the capital of the state of Tamil Nadu. The city is home to Fort St. George, built in 1644 and now a museum showcasing the city’s roots as a British military garrison and East India Company trading outpost, when it was called Madras. Religious sites include Kapaleeshwarar Temple, adorned with carved and painted gods, and St. Mary’s, a 17th-century Anglican church.
The Philanthropists who have evinced keen interest in the Chennai and Madurai tournaments
Dr. N Mahalingam has supported the tournament since its inception. After him, his son Dr. M Manickam continues the legacy.
Mr. M V Muthuramalingam's contribution to chess is immense. Most of the recent grandmasters not only of Tamil Nadu but from other states hail from his group of schools.
Mr. P Stephen Balasamy, the Tournament Director as well as the Organizing Secretary, is the General Secretary of Tamil Nadu State Chess Association. After his advent, he has lifted the status of the Chennai open by organizing in posh star hotels. Under his dynamic leadership, Tamil Nadu has reached its pinnacle in producing world-class players.
The proprietor of Ananthi Chess Academy, Madurai – P Pragadesh has been into the limelight in the chess activities of Tamil Nadu recently. With vibrant energy, he has conducted many tournaments, including the GM tournament, national and state championships and rating tournaments beyond comparison.
About the Author
Prof. Rathinam Anantharam is an A-grade international arbiter. Member of FIDE Arbiters’ Commission, Chairman of Titles Commission in All India Chess Federation, Vice President of Tamil Nadu State Chess Association, Chief Arbiter for six world championships, many Asian, International and National Championships.
The report was edited by Shahid Ahmed