A Chess Festival “Liepajas Rokade” was held in Liepaja, Latvia for the 20th time. It included Open, Youth, Team competition and a super-tournament. 12 well-known Grandmasters and 4 players qualified from the Open section were taking part in the super-tournament.
Among the invited GMs were ex-World Champion Alexander Khalifman, ex-Europe Champion Zurab Azmaiparashvili, Latvian Champion Igor Kovalenko, President of the Georgian Chess Federation Giorgi Giorgadze, famous Baltic players – Alexander Shabalov, Jaan Ehlvest, Eduardas Rozentalis, Kaido Kulaots, Normunds Miezis and others. Zone 1.7 President, Aris Ozolins is the main organiser and soul of the festival all these years. The prize fund 15 000 Euro was provided this year by the FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.
The next day FIDE President took part in the opening ceremony of the 3rd Chess Tournament of Riga Technical University. 300 chess players with 30 GMs are playing in Sections A and B. It was mentioned at the opening ceremony that this tournament is the strongest one at the Baltic coast by the list of participants. A welcome speech was delivered by the FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov, Zone 1.7 President Aris Ozolins, President of the Latvian Chess Federation Peteris Smidre, Rector of the RTU and Prof. Leonids Ribickis.