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World Senior Teams: two more entries

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

 

The World Senior Team Championships (50+ and 65+) will be played in Krakow, Poland, in the first half of July. This is an updated preview page.

As usual for these events, teams consist of four players with an optional reserve. As with the recent European Senior Team Championships, teams may represent countries, regions, clubs or just be informal groupings but all players on a team must be members of the same federation.

The official arrival date is 1 July, although some players will doubtless come a day or two early. There will be nine rounds starting on the afternoon of 2 July and finishing on Thursday 11 July. There will be a rest/excursion day on Monday 8th and departure date is 12 July.

The official tournament website is live and there are separate chess-results pages.

65+ Championship teams

and

50+ Championship teams

These pages were updated on 8 June with entries from Kazahstan added in each section. Now we have even numbers of entries, there is a good chance we can avoid the byes which marred the recent European Team Championships for many lower-ranked squads.

As it stands now, hirty-four teams have entered 50+, including seven all-female teams who will compete for the women's medals. The number of entries for the 65+ has now increased to 32, but the only women's teams are from Latvia and the USA.

Both the current individual senior world champions will be going to Krakow. GM Michael Adams will lead England's 50+ team and GM John Nunn the 65+ team. The English Chess Federation are sending nine teams and at least 42 players to these championships, their largest contingent ever and Ireland (with three 65+ teams and one in the 50+) are also sending their largest squad.

Nothng is certain, though, until the final team declarations happen at the captains' meeting on the morning of 2 July. (At the 2022 European teams in Dresden, one team failed to arrive, presumably because of illness.)

When final team lists and board orders are declared, the July FIDE rating list will be applied before seedings will be definitive.

 

Team news in the 50+

The USA are defending champions in the 50+ category and they are going in force again to Poland. Their teams have now sensibly been renamed so that the top seeds for the tournament are now designated plain "USA", the nominated grandmasters are Akopian, Ehlvest, Novikov, Shabalov and Khachiyan, for a team average rating of 2523.

Their other strong team (with three IMs and a rating average of 2304) is now named "USA TOO"; they are fifth seeds. The USA are sending a women's team for the first time; they are 11th seeds with an average of 2122.

The USA are also sending the Five Brothers team, averaging 2044. The Jhunjhnuwala brothers, who were formerly Hong Kong internationals but are now U.S. citizens, will return to Europe 50 years after they first played together in the World Student Chess Team Championship in Teeside, England. One brother, Rajendra, no longer plays but always accompanies his siblings to these annual events.

England were 50+ champions in 2022 and runners-up in 2023. As expected they are second seeds at 2470 (Adams, Emms, Flear, Arkell and Davies). Adams replaces GM Stuart Conquest who won a board prize in the recent European senior teams. England-2 (led by IM Graeme Buckley), England Women (led by IM Susan Lalic) and England-3 (led by Robert Noyce) all average over 2000. England-4 average 1896.

Third seeds are the all-GM team from Iceland (average 2437) and Italy are fourth seeds. Slovakia and Israel also have quite strong teams but Germany have not sent a powerhouse team; instead they have three quite strong club teams and a women's team.

There will also be one team each from Ireland, Scotland, Wales and Guernsey (Channel Islands) in the 50+. Teams from Algeria, Brazil, Canada and South Africa help to give the 50+ a real intercontinental flavour.

 

Team news in the 65+

England were last year's 65+ winners and are current European champions. With a rating average of 2427 they are clearly top seeds again, led by Nunn and GM Kosten, but the other three players are different from those who played in Terme Catez recently. GM Jonathan Mestel (who mostly plays bridge these days, we thought) makes a welcome return on board 3. IM Paul Littlewood is on board 4 and FM Terry Chapman is the reserve.

England-2, led by IM John Pigott, are sixth seeds; two of that squad played in Terme Catez. England-3 average 2069 and England-4 average 1935.

Second seeds in the 65+ are a French team from Strasbourg with four IMs and GM Legky. Israel are just behind and then come Italy and Slovakia, all titled players. In this tournament also the German strength is split between teams and they have no GMs.

Scotland and Wales are each sending one team, which will be in the bottom half of the seedings but, somewhat to our surprise, it seems that Ireland-1 may be 16th seeds (out of 32). Ireland-2 and Ireland-3 will probably have to play each other at some stage.

Brazil, New Zealand and USA Women contribute to a truly global flavour but there is no male team from America. Russia remains banned from FIDE team tournaments. In the pre-Covid days they used to send a women's team only to the 50+ while Russia and St. Petersburg regularly challenged for top honours in the 65+, though that was before England sent all-master teams.

 

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