I am very hopeful Carlsen will finally play the Candidates Matches
Interview with ECU President Silvio Danailov

Q: Mr. Danailov, how are the things going with ECU and your new team? Did you start to work already?

A: Everything is fine, thank you. First of all, we are moving the ECU office from Berlin to Belgrade, where the Mayor of the City provided a fantastic office in downtown. Our first Board meeting will be there January 12-14th. Our team is full of energy and fresh ideas and ready to work hard for the future of chess in Europe.

Q: Can you share some specific projects on which ECU has already started working?

A: We start the Club of the chess Journalist soon, which is an important body and will advice ECU regularly. Every week we are publishing detailed press release with all the news in European chess on the official ECU website. We are working very seriously on finding sponsorship and will start very soon to sign contracts with ECU Commercial Officers.

Q: You are ECU President, but also member of the FIDE Presidential Board. Still, you are manager of Veselin Topalov, who will be playing the Candidates Matches in 2011. His participation is confirmed?

A: Of course he wants to play, but he is still waiting for the official contract from FIDE. Before the contract no comments make sense. It’s very important where and when this tournament will take place. Topalov’s position regarding this matter is well known.

Q: What is your comment about Carlsen’s withdraw from the WCC cycle? FIDE already announced that Grischuk will replace him.

A: It’s a pity of course, personally I was very surprised by this announcement. However, according to my knowledge, nobody can replace Magnus by regulations. Article 3. 3. 3 says that “Any player who withdraws after the 15th of May 2010 shall not be replaced and his opponent in the first round is declared as winner.” This means that according to the regulations Radjabov has to move directly to the second round. But maybe I am missing something, FIDE should know better.

Of course, there are always possibilities to find a solution. The WCC cycle needs Carlsen and vice versa, this is clear to everybody. Right now I am preparing a proposal to the next FIDE Presidential Board, which in my opinion is the perfect solution to the problem. So, I am very hopeful that Magnus will play finally and everybody will be happy.

Q: Can you tell us details about this proposal?

A: It’s too early, be patient. You will find out everything during the next FIDE PB.

Q: Back to Veselin Topalov. He has not been in his top form lately, his last results in Olympiad and Nanjing was lower than expected. He refused to play Bilbao this year and he is not in Tata Steel Chess 2011.

A: As you know Veselin got married two months ago and now is enjoying of life a little bit. He is not motivated to play tournaments right now , but he will be back for the WCC Candidates Matches. His goal is to win the Candidates and to play WC match once again. So, you will see the real Topalov very soon again.

Chess Daily News from Susan Polgar
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