Reigning national chess champion Parimarjan Negi will spearhead India’s challenge in the inaugural AAI Grand Masters Chess Tournament to be held here from June 21 to July 2.
Apart from Negi, the other Indian in the fray is Grand Master Krishnan Sasikiran, while World champion Hou Yifan of China, World Junior No 1 GM Fabiano Caruana of Italy, Philippines’ GM Wesely So and Czech Republic’s No 2 GM Viktor Laznicka complete the line-up.
Big time chess returns to India for the first time since the mid-1980s when Delhi hosted a string of Grandmaster tournaments which produced Viswanathan Anand.
The 17-year-old Yifan, who last year became the youngest-ever world champion in either men or women’s section, will become the first women reigning champion to play in India since Maya Chiburdanidze played in the early 1980s.
The trio of Sasikiran (seeded sixth), Parimarjan (ninth) and Wesley (12th) will be up against Yifan in the tournament.