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72nd Corus Wijk aan Zee 2010 (Preview)

Another great lineup for 2010

The fields have been finalised for the A and B Groups of the Corus tournament in Wijk aan Zee 2010. World Champion Viswanathan Anand, soon to be world number 2 Magnus Carlsen and former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik are at the head of the field.

The field for the 2010 Corus tournament in Wijk aan Zee has been announced.

The A-Group is category XIX and once again is a pretty exciting field.

World Champion Viswanathan Anand plays in the event in which he has competed many times since his debut in 1989. Anand won or shared first in 1989, 1998, 2003, 2004 and 2006. He didn't play last year.

Magnus Carlsen has a history in the tournament going back to 2004. The organisers made a special effort to invite him but even they can't have expected him to run away with the C-Group with 10.5/13. In 2007 he played in the A-Group for the first time, finishing last, but without disgracing himself. It seems to have been an important learning experience as shortly after he finished in second place in the Linares tournament. He tied for 4th place last year but could easily start as the favourite for the tournament.

Former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik has had a quiet time of it recently but will play in London in December and now Wijk aan Zee in January. Kramnik shared first in 1998 but since then even though he has been a pretty regular visitor he hasn't repeated the success.

Peter Leko the champion from 2005 has also been a regular visitor to the tournament over the years.

Vassily Ivanchuk is another regular visitor to the event, although he's never been in the peak form required to win the tournament.

"Why does Nakamura never get invited to the top tournaments?" was a question I was asked a few times in recent years. Now he gets invited to everything and he naturally plays this year in Wijk. Will always produce excitement and has had a good run of results recently to back the invites up.

Alexei Shirov can best be described as mercurial. He generally hasn't been at his best at Wijk but one of these years will be, and maybe this will be the year.

Sergey Karjakin was born the same year as Magnus Carlsen but has been slightly left in his wake. But at 19 he hasn't done a lot wrong in his career so far and it will be interesting to see his response. But let's not forget that he is also the defending champion after winning the event last year.

Cuba has a great history for chess with a world champion in Capablanca and a great memorial tournament. Leinier Dominguez Perez is 22 in the world and is due an invitation such as this.

Nigel Short seemed to lose his way for a while and inexorably on his way down. However in the last couple of years he has found new energy and a new way of working which has taken him back to being England's number one. His secret seems to be to play a lot more than he did in the past and it is working. Short has a very recognisable style of play at his best and that has clearly returned with some tremendously entertaining stuff in recent times. Should be a great addition to the field.

Fabiano Caruana won the B-Group last year from Nigel Short, but only after the latter completely blew up at the end of their game in the final round. They both made it to the A-Group so no real damage was done. The youngest player in the field.

The Dutch contingent is headed by Sergei Tiviakov who will no doubt be incredibly difficult to beat. Loek van Wely has regularly flown the flag for Dutch chess, he's had his ups and downs but is always really well prepared for Wijk. Jan Smeets made his debut in the A-Group last year and will be no doubt hoping to at least match his middle ranking finish of last year.

Corus A Wijk aan Zee (NED), 15-31 i 2010 cat. XIX (2720)
TiPlayerNATElo SeptWRkDoB
GMViswanathan AnandIND278821969
GMMagnus CarlsenNOR277241990
GMVladimir KramnikRUS277251975
GMPeter LekoHUN276261979
GMVassily IvanchukUKR275681969
GMHikaru NakamuraUSA2735161987
GMAlexei ShirovESP2730181972
GMSergey KarjakinRUS2722201990
GMLeinier Dominguez PerezCUB2719221983
GMNigel ShortENG2706291965
GMSergey TiviakovNED2670571973
GMFabiano CaruanaITA2662711992
GMLoek van WelyNED2650861972
GMJan SmeetsNED26421011985

The B-Group is a not too shabby category 16 and once again they have a mixed field of youth and experience that should provide some real entertainment.

Corus B Wijk aan Zee (NED), 15-31 i 2010 cat. XVI (2627)
TiPlayerNATElo SeptDoB
GMNi HuaCHN26921983
GMArkadij NaiditschGER26851985
GMEmil SutovskyISR26761977
GMPentala HarikrishnaIND26731986
GMLiviu-Dieter NisipeanuROM26641976
GMWesley SoPHI26441993
GMVaruzhan AkobianUSA26371983
GMDavid HowellENG26241990
GMParimarjan NegiIND26151993
GMTomi NybackFIN26151985
GMErwin l'AmiNED26061985
GMDimitri ReindermanNED25721972
GMAnish GiriNED25521994
WGMAnna MuzychukSLO25331990

There will also be a C-Group, the field will be announced later.

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