May 2009, Holland, Michigan, USA --- Annual tulip festival at Windmill Island Park --- Image by © Richard T. Nowitz/Corbis

The Tata Steel Challengers 2016 tournament will take place in Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands, from January 15 to January 31 2016. The Tata Steel Chess Tournament is divided in two tournaments – Masters and Challengers, each featuring 14 players. The Masters tournament will be taking place alongside the Challengers bracket and will feature GM Magnus Carlsen, who won the previous edition of the tournament.

Tata Steel Challengers will once again be a very strong parallel event to the main section. It features Jorden van Foreest, at 16 years old, who is currently the youngest Dutch Grandmaster and will debut at the Tata Steel Chess Tournament in January 2016. However, Van Foreest is not the youngest ever chess player to participate in Wijk aan Zee, as the 15-year-old Samuel Sevian, who at the age of 14 managed to secure 5th place in the Tata Steel Challengers in January 2015 holds this honor.

Jeroen van den Berg, director of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament: “I am very pleased with the field of partipants of the Tata Steel Challengers. It is a good mix of nationalities and of young and more experienced players. Samuel Sevian from the USA is one of the youngest chess talents, whose rating has almost reached the magical 2600 barrier. Among other opponents, he will face Russian Mikhail Antipov, who is only three years older and already reigning world youth champion. I am also very interested in seeing how the youngest Dutch grandmaster, Jorden van Foreest, will perform at his first tournament in Wijk aan Zee.”

Dutch women champion Anne Haast will participate for the second time. Apart from successfully defending her national title, she has also managed to lay claim to the national rapid chess title this year. There are two other female participants who will make their debut in Wijk aan Zee. The very strong Chinese grandmaster Ju Wenjun has been part of the women’s Top 10 for quite a few years. Nino Batsiashvili (Georgia) is the other female grandmaster participating.

With an average rating of 2570 the second group of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament is considerably stronger than the 2015 field (which had an average rating of 2554). Players from eight different countries will participate.

Participants Tata Steel Chess Tournament 2016, Tata Steel Challengers

Name Country Rating

Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu Germany 2675
Adhiban Baskaran India 2669
Eltaj Safarli Azerbaijan 2653
Alexey Dreev Russia 2644
Erwin l’Ami The Netherlands 2628
Benjamin Bok The Netherlands 2594
Samuel Sevian USA 2578
Mikhail Antipov Russia 2569
Nijat Abasov Azerbaijan 2556
Jorden van Foreest The Netherlands 2547
Ju Wenjun China 2543
Nino Batsiashvili Georgia 2498
Miguoël Admiraal The Netherlands 2438
Anne Haast The Netherlands 2390

Official website:

Tags: ,