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Round three
By WGM Alina l'Ami

20Things are getting hectic here in Paris. Although the first two rounds had been tense enough, some could have complained about the high drawing rate. The third round had it all: complicated battles and more decisive games than in the previous days taken together, all with the white pieces!

Ever since Capablanca’s sceptical claim that the game of chess is about to be exhausted, chess lovers have been marred by such metaphysical questions: will there be forever room for improvisation, are there other new things under the sun than the well forgotten ones?
Interview with the FIDE President, Kirsan Ilyumzhinov
By WGM Alina l'Ami

Paris - opening ceremony 155It is hardly a secret that the name of Kirsan Ilyumzhinov defines an entire chess era. Since his election as a FIDE President in 1995, the chess World has gone through radical and sometimes even revolutionary changes. Dynamism, democratic character and financial viability are the main traits induced to the World championship cycle over the past 18 years.

The system involving the 2012/2013 Grand Prix edition is the result of many years of refining. Choosing Paris for hosting the final tournament has certain symbolic meaning. You may find more about it in the interview with the man who is in the best position to explain it: Kirsan Ilyumzhinov himself!
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Round two
By WGM Alina l'Ami

12For our limited human powers, chess is practically inexhaustible. If all the players in the World played continuously for all their lives, this would not necessarily mean that they would produce even two identical games. This does not apply to tournament situations though.

From the point of view of the results, the second round in Paris was an identical copy of the first one: five draws and just one decisive game on the last (sixth) board! And once again, this did not at all mean that the day was boring for the spectators. On the contrary, we had some hard fought games and a lot of creative tension.

The pairing system ensures a reasonably fair distribution of colours throughout the tournament. However, things can be a bit chaotic when it comes to games played between the same opponents along the years. The second round offers two suggestive examples of this kind.
First round
By WGM Alina l'Ami

792A1551Even though we are living in a World of numbers and statistics, the first round results should not deceive us! 
True, one decisive game out of six is not much, and some may say we almost did not see any gladiator's blood flowing. In exchange, the spectacle was worth every single penny, all the games were interesting and hard fought. Draws did not come in easily; we have the extreme case of Nakamura who, with less than a minute on his clock, took big risks in a heroic attempt to avoid a peaceful result.

The positive first round spirit is reflected by the attitude of Anish Giri, the only player who had to drink the bitter cup of defeat. Anish declared himself happy with his play despite the final result in a display of true sportsmanship.
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