A FIDE delegation headed by its President Arkady Dvorkovich has paid a three-day visit to India. The purpose of the trip was to inspect the proposed venue for the 44th Chess Olympiad, discuss the road map for the event, and sign the contract with the All India Chess Federation (AICF). The FIDE President also held a round of meetings with all the relevant authorities whose support has made this event possible.
AICF President Sanjay Kapoor and Tournament Director and AICF Secretary Bharat Chauhan, along with District Collector, AR Rahul Nadh, escorted the FIDE delegation to the venue for the upcoming Olympiad in Chennai on March 31. All the operational aspects of the Olympiad were discussed in detail between the FIDE representatives and the local organizing committee. Later that day, Dvorkovich met with Siva. V. Meyyanathan, Minister for Youth Welfare and Sports Development Government of Tamil Nadu, and Dr R Anandakumar IAS, Member Secretary Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu.
Today, April 1, during a public act hosted in Delhi, the FIDE President officially signed the contract for India to organize the FIDE Chess Olympiad 2022. The President of All India Chess Federation (AICF) and the Organizing Committee Dr. Sanjay Kapoor, Tournament Director Mr. Bharat Singh Chauhan, Principal Secretary Youth Welfare & Sports Development Department Government of Tamil Nadu, IAS Ms. Apoorva, Five-time World Chess Champion Grandmaster Viswanathan Anand, Chairman of Gujarat State Co-operative Banks Mr. Ajay Patel and Member Secretary, Sports Development Authority of Tamil Nadu, IAS Dr. R Anandakumar were in attendance to receive the official hosting rights on behalf of India.
The Government of Tamil Nadu and Honourable Chief Minister Thiru M.K. Stalin along with the team at AICF carried out tremendous efforts to bring the FIDE 44th World Chess Olympiad 2022 to India. The prestigious competition, which has been organized since 1927, will be held in India for the first time and in Asia after 30 years.
Speaking at the occasion, FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich said, "It's an honour and privilege to be here and this is a historic moment as India will host the FIDE World Chess Olympiad for the first time. The place which produces more Grandmasters than any other country truly deserves to host the FIDE World Chess Olympiad. I can see a clear interest to host the best-ever FIDE World Chess Olympiad in Chennai."
Indian chess grandmaster and five-time World Chess Champion Viswanathan Anand, who was also present at the event in New Delhi, said, "I am delighted that the 44th FIDE Chess Olympiad will take place in Chennai. I would like to thank the Tamil Nadu Government and especially Chief Minister Thiru M.K. Stalin and everyone else who has played a part in bringing the competition to India. I would also like to thank FIDE and FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich. And also credit must be given to All India Chess Federation (AICF) for moving very fast and I am confident that the competition will be a great success."
The President of All India Chess Federation Dr. Sanjay Kapoor said, "Today I am overjoyed and as the President of AICF, I would like to share this joy with the people of India. The FIDE World Chess Olympiad has never been hosted in India, but in 2022, the long wait is finally over. It's a matter of pride for the entire country to host this event. Going by the number of countries participating in the tournament, it will be the biggest sporting competition ever hosted in India."
The Tournament Director Bharat Singh Chauhan added, "This is a historic moment for the All India Chess Federation (AICF) and all of us. This is going to be the biggest sporting event hosted by India. We are expecting participants from 160-190 countries to take part in the competition. We are going to host this event with the support of all chess players."
After the public act, the AICF representatives and the FIDE President were invited to a private reception with the Honourable Chief Minister of the Tamil Nadu Government Thiru M.K. Stalin. Mr Stalin, who was the mayor of Chennai in the period from 2009 to 2011, and had previously been 1st Deputy Chief Minister from 2009 to 2011, has backed the project from the very beginning. Without his decisive support, bringing the Olympiad to Chennai wouldn't have been possible.
The 44th FIDE Chess Olympiad will take place from 28 July 2022 to 10 August 2022 in Chennai. This is the complete schedule:
Day 1, July 28, 2022 - Technical meeting, Opening ceremony
Day 2, July 29, 2022 - Round 1
Day 3, July 30, 2022 - Round 2
Day 4, July 31, 2022 - Round 3
Day 5, August 1, 2022 - Round 4
Day 6, August 2, 2022 - Round 5
Day 7, August 3, 2022 - Round 6
Day 8, August 4, 2022 - Free day
Day 9, August 5, 2022 - Round 7
Day 10, August 6, 2022 - Round 8
Day 11, August 7, 2022 - Round 9
Day 12, August 8, 2022 - Round 10
Day 13, August 9, 2022 - Round 11, closing ceremony
Day 14, August 10, 2022 - Departures
Chennai will also host the FIDE Congress 2022. According to the FIDE Charter, the elections of the FIDE leadership should take place there.
July 31, 2022 – Arrivals
August 1, 2022 - FIDE Management Board meeting & FIDE Commissions’ meetings
August 2, 2022 – FIDE Commissions’ meetings
August 3, 2022 – FIDE Zonal Council meeting & FIDE Commissions’ meetings
August 4, 2022 – Elections of Zonal Presidents & FIDE Commissions’ meetings
August 5, 2022 – FIDE Council meeting & Elected Zonal Council meeting
August 6, 2022 – Continental elections
August 7, 2022 – FIDE General Assembly & Elections
August 8, 2022 – FIDE General Assembly
August 9, 2022 - Departures
During the press conference that followed the signature of the contract, Arkady Dvorkovich announced his decision to run for a second term. He also announced that five-time World Champion Viswanathan Anand will join his team. You can read a separate announcement here.