Competitions for the FIDE World Chess Cups begin in the capital of Azerbaijan today. In total, 309 players will take part in the tournament. 206 people will participate in the men's section and 103 people will take part in the women's section. All of them will compete for three tickets to the Candidates Tournament.
The open tournament is organized according to the knockout system. It will be held in eight rounds among men, while among women it will be held in seven rounds.
The rating favorites in the men's tournament are Magnus Carlsen (Norway, 2835), Hikaru Nakamura (the USA, 2787), Fabiano Caruana (the USA, 2782), Ian Nepomniachtchi (Russia, 2779), Anish Giri (Netherlands, 2775), Wesley So (the USA, 2769), Teimour Radjabov (Azerbaijan, 2747), D. Gukesh (India, 2744), Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (Azerbaijan, 2742) and other chess stars, the website of the Russian Chess Federation reports.
Among women, there are the world champion Ju Wenjun (China, 2564), Aleksandra Goryachkina (Russia, 2557), Humpy Koneru (India, 2553), Ekaterina Lahno (Russia, 2552), Alexandra Kosteniuk (Switzerland, 2532), Tan Zhongyi ( China, 2523), Mariya Muzychuk (Ukraine, 2511), Nana Dzagnidze (Georgia, 2511), Anna Muzychuk (Ukraine, 2504) and other famous chess players.
156 participants will take part in the first round of the World Cup and 78 participants will be in the Women's World Cup. From the second round, 50 and 25 top-rated chess players, respectively, will join the winners of the opening matches. All mini-matches consist of two games with classic time control and a tie-break with shortened time control if necessary. The total prize fund of the men's tournament is $1,834,000, the women's prize fund is $676,250.
Azerbaijan is represented by a record number of participants - 18. Moreover, Teimour Radjabov, Shahriyar Mammadyarov and Gunay Mammadzade will start their performance from the second stage.
The first games of the first round will be played today, the rounds will start at 14:00 Moscow time.