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Deadline for Krakow is in three weeks

For more information about chess for over-50s, please see our Seniors calendar and our Seniors introduction page.

Entries must be completed in under a month for the World Senior Team Championships in Krakow. The deadline for registration and payment of advance fees is the 10th of May.

Play in that event starts on 2 July. The official tournament website is live but as yet there is no chess-results page to show who has already entered for these championships.

The USA are defending champions in the 50+ category and we expect them to come in force again to Poland. England were last year's 65+ winners and runners-up in the 50+. Ireland has entered three 65+ teams for Krakow and one for the 50+. We also expect that there will be at least one team from Wales; we don't know about Scotland.

The long wait goes on for FIDE to announce the venue and dates for the 2024 World Senior individual championships. Since only one bid has been received by the Events Commission, what is the delay? Perhaps there will be a FIDE Council decision before the Candidates tournament ends?

The proposed, but as yet unconfirmed, venue is the Hotel MH Atlântico in Peniche, on the Atlantic coast not far from Lisbon. The suggested dates are 24 November (arrival) to 7 December (departure) which seems to mean 11-round tournaments with a rest day as usual. Book no flights until FIDE confirms the arrangements.

Entries for the European Senior Team Championships, next month at Terme Catez in Slovenia, are probably almost finalised now. The 50+ tournament will now have a more healthy field of 21 teams, including at last one from the host nation, and there are 30 entries for the 65+ championship. It would be good to have another team in the 50+ to avoid a bye.

Italy have entered a strong team for the 50+, headed by GM Alberto David with two other grandmasters and two IMs, going by the lists on chess-results. There are now three English male teams as well as the England women's team. Scotland have also entered.

The players named for the all-GM England-1 are John Emms, Glenn Flear, Keith Arkell, Nigel Davies and Stuart Conquest. Depending on whether individual players' ratings change on the May FIDE list, Italy may stay as top seed or England might leap-frog them. Iceland and Montenegro also look capable of contending for the top medals.

In the 65+ section, there are three teams from England and one from Scotland. England-1 are favourites for this, with GMs John Nunn and Tony Kosten along with IMs Peter Large, Chris Baker and Nigel Povah who is the main senior organiser for England nowadays. Slovakia are second seeds while the competition for bronze looks wide open.

The organiser of the European individual senior championships (near Venice in October) is the same as last year's World Senior individual championships. See our calendar page for details.

The English Senior Championships will be held at Kenilworth in late May as shown on our calendar. These tournaments are only for ENG-registered players (or England-qualified players who do not yet have a FIDE registration.)

According to the entry list just updated on 18 April, there are 24 entries for the 50+ and 38 for the 65+. Favourites for the younger category are GMs Keith Arkell and Mark Hebden (last year's co-champions) and Nigel Davies. IMs Paul Littlewood, FM Terry Chapman and defending champion IM Chris Baker head the list for the 65+. Susan Selley (a sister of Norman and Paul Hutchinson) is defending her women's title but WGM Sheila Jackson will be strong favourite. There are no female entries as yet for the 50+ which was won last year by WIM Natasha Regan.

The English Chess Federation also organises the various 2024 British Championship tournaments which will be played in Hull from 24 July to 4 August. These are open to a much wider group of players. Scottish, Welsh and Irish players and long-term UK residents with other FIDE national registrations can enter championship events while anyone can play the Major Open.

According to the provisional schedule, the 7-round senior championships (50+ and 65+) will begin on Monday 29 July. As last year, the first six rounds will be played in the afternoon with a morning start for the final round. There is no PDF to download but full details can be found on the ECF website. Online entries are now open but no entry list is shown yet.

Many senior players enjoyed an uplift to their FIDE ratings on the 1 March list. This was part of a measure advocated by mathematicians designed to counter deflationary tendencies in the system. Everyone below 2000 received a boost proportionate to their previous number, but higher-rated players are unaffected.

After some indifferent results in recent events we were happy to be above 1900 again. Trying to get back to 2000, despite our advancing years, no longer feels impossible. After finishing joint first in the Dublin Seniors over Easter, we expect to reach 1945 on the May list so we just need more opponents to co-operate, please!

Austrian reader CM Michael Ernst last month played the annual Senior event at the Bad Wörishofen congress; he scored a creditable 6/9. He writes: "it was a lovely tournament (perfect organisation, perfect location and landscape)."

There were 145 entries for the tournament which ended in a tie on 7/9 between IM Dieter Pierrot, Alexander Okrajek and our old friend Dr Matthias Kierzek. Well done to them. GM Li Di of China won the Open A with 7.5/9 and there was also an Open B for lower rated (and younger) players. Next year's dates can be seen in our calendar. 

The Bavarian spa has had a long association with chess players. In 1896 Steinitz went there to take the Kneipp water cure in preparation for his return match against Lasker, although of course that did not turn out well.

Recently we also received good reports about the tournament held a few weeks ago in Aarhus, Denmark. This certainly sounds like one to consider for next year, if they can avoid a clash of dates with the 2025 World Senior Team Championships which are likely to form part of the Prague festival next February (see below).

Michael Ernst recently told us about a Swiss organisation for senior chess players (60+) that was founded back in 1966. You have to become member (40 Swiss Francs per year) and then you can play up to 10 senior tournaments per year in Switzerland, although some are unrated. We suspect most readers would find multiple stays in Switzerland too expensive so we are not including their events in our calendar. You can find details (in German and French) on their website.

 

The website of the FIDE Events Commission shows they have received one offer to host each of the two 2025 World Seniors championships. Bidding closed on 1 February.

The bid for the team event comes from Jan Mazuch's well-established company that runs the Czech Tour events annually. They propose to hold these tournaments at the Olympik Hotel in Prague from 16-27 February. This is earlier in the year than usual but should be popular, especially with the continental teams that can easily go to Prague by road or rail.

The bid to host the 2025 individual championships is from Arcoworldchess, who propose to host the congress at Gallipoli in Apulia, southern Italy, from 20 October-2 November 2025. These are not our favourite organisers but at least it is a new venue.

 

 

We have now removed most older items from this page to clear the way for 2024 news.

 

Last March FIDE issued new regulations concerning the World Senior Championships. These can be found in section D/04/03 of the FIDE Handbook. One detail we noted is that the championship could be reduced from 11 rounds to 9 rounds although that has not happened yet so far, fortunately. Other changes concern offering choices of hotels and meal plans, evidently in response to criticisms of the 2022 arrangements in Assisi.

The new regulations also state that "the organizer of the competition should ensure representation of all continents and at least 20 players in each of the categories." There was criticism in 2022 of FIDE's late decision not to hold separate tournaments for female players, which was apparently because not all continents would have been represented. So in 2023 instead they combined the 50+ and 65+ women's championships in one tournament.

 

If you have Seniors chess news you would like posted here, or announcements of future events, please email Tim Harding.

 

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