Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Abu Dhabi Chess Festival from August 12
Khaleej Times, 15 July 2009

ABU DHABI — Emiratis International Grand Master Salim Abdul Rahman, Abdullah Al Hassan, Ibrahim Ismail Muhairi and Abdullah Marzouki will be seen in action in the 18th Abu Dhabi International Chess Festival which starts on August 12.

The event is being held under the patronage of Shaikh Hazza bin Zayed Al Nahyan, National Security Advisor and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Sports Council (ADSC). The festival is being organised by the Abu Dhabi Chess and Culture Club (ADCCC) and Dh 200,000 will be awarded in prizes.

“The tournament will run from August 12 to 21 and this year’s festival will feature an open tournament, junior tournament, blitz competition and simultaneous competition,” Ibrahim Mohammed Al Marzouqi, Head of Business Developing and Marketing Committee of ADCCC said.

The Festival director Hussain A Khouri, who is also the finance director of ADCCC, said that chess prodigy Britain’s Nigel Short will play against 50 players at a time in the simultaneous competition.

“The annual event is expected to attract 300 players from different parts of the world and preparations for the event are on in full swing,” Hussain Khouri said.

The tournament will be held under the Swiss system of nine rounds and Arab and international players are also expected to be in the fray in the 10-day festival.

The event used to be held at the Abu Dhabi Cultural Foundation but this year, the Festival will be held at the Jazira Club.

Also present at the press briefing were Aref Ismail Al Khouri, executive manager, ADCCC, Salah Abdul Al Marzouqi, sports events co-ordinator ADSC, and Aref Ismail, technical director of the Festival.

Saif Nasser Al Suwaidi is the chairman of the Organising Committee which also has Aref Ismail Al Khouri, Hussain A Khouri, Mohammed Ibrahim Marzouki, Ismail Ibrahim Yousef, Hassan Ahmed Zuhair and Tareq Mohammed Abdullah.

“We have made some changes in the tournament and instead of the Masters tournament it will be an open event,” said Khouri.

Egyptian Basssem Sameer won the Masters title last year.

“It will be a good event for the local players to gain experience and compete with some of the best-known chess players in the world,” Aref Ismail Khouri said.

“We are happy to partner in such a big chess festival and we are determined to support the sporting activities of Abu Dhabi,” Salah Abdull Al Marzouqi said.

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