Candidates Tournament 2020: List of 8 players set to feature in the chess competition
Candidates Tournament 2020 is the competition that decides who challenges the World Champion Magnus Carlsen for the World Chess Championship and will be contested in a double round-robin format to be played in Russia from 15th March to 5th April 2020.
Eight competitors, chosen across different competitions over the last year will battle to land a spot in the big clash against Carlsen, in a list that does not feature big names such as Indian veteran Vishwanathan Anand, Levon Aronian among other names.
Fabiano Caruana is currently ranked 2nd in the FIDE rankings and is considered to be one of the toughest competitors of Magnus Carlsen. He qualified on the basis of his runner-up finish at the 2018 World Chess Championship.
The second player on the list is Chinese Grandmaster, Ding Liren, who has qualified owing to his runner-up finish from the Chess World Cup 2019 and can be a big name to watch out for, having beaten Carlsen this year.
Azerbaijan's Teymur Radjabov finished as the champion from the Chess World Cup 2019 and as a result, has earned a spot in the upcoming competition.
Chinese grandmaster Wang Hao earned the top honours from the FIDE Grand Swiss Tournament 2019 and earned the fourth spot, which makes it the first time in history that two Chinese Chess grandmasters will feature in the tournament.
Champion from the FIDE Grand Prix 2019, Alexander Grischuk and the runner-up, Ian Nepomniachtchi, incidentally both hailing from Russia will also be looking to make a mark and put their best foot forward.
Anish Giri, who joins the list based on his 'highest average rating' is one name to look out for, given that he has consistently managed to finish in the top three of the highest-ranked players every month over the past year.
Anish finished with a total of 33388 rating points at an average of 2782.33 over the test period of 12 months, placing him above the likes of Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and V Anand.
Capping the list of eight participants is Russia's Kirill Alekseenko, who comes in as a wildcard local player entry on the back of his third-place finish at the FIDE Grand Swiss Tournament 2019, having ended only half a point behind Hao and Caruana.