DD Sports to air Commonwealth Chess highlights

MUMBAI: DD Sports will have a 25 minute highlight package of The Commonwealth Chess Championship every night. The event takes place at Hotel Mirador in the suburb of Andheri from 10 - 19 January.

25 grandmasters and 50 International Masters will participate from 15 countries including Vietnam, Ukraine, Russia.

In addition to the pubcaster's coverage, live online coverage will be available at Venus chess Academies website. Along with the Commonwealth Chess Championship, the International Open Chess tournament will also take place. The Gold medallist gets Rs 300,000, the silver medallist Rs 200,000 and the Bronze winner takes home Rs 100,000. The top seed is Britains super Grandmaster Nigel Short. The second seed is Indias K Sasikiran. In the womans section, grandmaster S. Vijaylaxmi will battle it out with Koneru Humpy for the crown.

The event is being staged at a cost of Rs six million. The sponsors include MTNL. Addressing the media last evening Short said, "I last participated in a Commonwealth tournament in 1985. While the draw is a strong one there is nobody that really strikes me with terror. India is not a developing chess nation but a developed one. What youll need to do is hold international tournaments at regular intervals so that the young players get exposed to the Grandmasters and make their way up. India has a good chance of a medal at this years Chess Olympiad."

Short also said that he was not in favour of Chess being a part of the Olympic Games."I am a purist to a certain extent. Chess is the ultimate mind sport. When it becomes a small event in the grand scheme of things it gets lost easily."

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