The first-ever Chess Olympiad for the Disabled is a historic event for FIDE and the chess world. More than 100 players from 33 countries will gather in Belgrade, Serbia to mark a landmark moment for the chess world as the Chess Olympiad for Disabled becomes part of the Chess Olympiad family.
From January 29th to February 5th, the Serbian capital will host the first Chess Olympiad for people with disabilities. This is a watershed moment for the chess world as it launches the largest chess event dedicated to people with disabilities.
33 countries and 3 international teams have registered to participate in this team competition. It is led by Poland, winner of the 2020 Disabled Online Olympiad, and Hungary, his two highest-rated teams.
At the end of 2020, FIDE hosted the world’s first online Olympics for people with disabilities. In November 2021, the 4th FIDE World Disabled Championships was held online with 249 of his athletes from 44 countries. Moving from online to board format is one of the International Chess Federation’s priorities.
Following the success of the first Online Olympiad and World Championships for people with disabilities, FIDE focused on its ambition to host the Games live.
empowerment of people with disabilities
While IPCA, IBCA and ICCD teams have traditionally been invited to participate in the Chess Olympiad, FIDE aims to help more people with disabilities meet and connect by hosting its own dedicated international tournament. , you can compete and enjoy chess events. true Olympic spirit.
“Chess is a unique sport that allows people with disabilities to reach a high level of professionalism and excel both as players and as individuals. We are dedicated to making it accessible to everyone, especially those who face daily challenges different from most of us and whose inspiration to rise deserves to be noticed, respected and celebrated. We want to shine the spotlight on
Dvorkovic said that despite difficult times, FIDE has managed to live up to its commitment to organizing this Olympic Games. He added that this is one of the most important events for his FIDE this year and one of his key priorities in the long term. he added:
This Olympiad won’t be on the scale of a traditional Chess Olympiad, but it is a very important step and we will do our best to make it a success. We hope that the players, their team members, their assistants and the spectators will really enjoy the event in Belgrade over the next few days.
This is a unique opportunity to better understand how we can work together to make chess truly inclusive, and to do our best to overcome all life’s obstacles. between us.
From online to over-the-board Olympics
The first Online Chess Olympiad for the disabled was held from November 20th to December 3rd, 2020. It was held in conjunction with the United Nations International Day of Persons with Disabilities. 61 teams from 45 countries participated in the Online Olympiad, with a total of nearly 400 players. Poland won the gold medal after defeating Russia in the final.
The event was hailed as a great success by both players and organizers. The real challenge was putting on a live, in-person event that brought people together.
This was not possible at the height of the Covid pandemic, but as restrictions and the impact of the virus eased, FIDE made hosting this Chess Olympiad a priority.
Unlike other chess tournaments, events for people with disabilities and disabilities require a slightly different set-up: from dedicated boards and chess clocks, to special scoresheets and audio/visual equipment, From face-to-face help, ease of access, to more support. staff and medical support.
FIDE has developed comprehensive guidelines to facilitate the participation of persons with disabilities in all official chess competitions. These guidelines are documented in the FIDE Handbook.
Serbia — a country with a strong chess tradition and experience in hosting sporting events (including two chess Olympiads) — has been chosen to host its first Olympic event. With the support of the Serbian government and local businesses, and under the auspices of the Serbian Chess Federation, FIDE feels they have established a strong partnership that will enable them to successfully host such an important event. It is hoped that this Olympiad will serve as a starting point for improving the progress of chess and the condition of players with disabilities by providing opportunities to express their opinions and show their talents both on and off the board. .
Expectations and Expectations for the Paralympics
Grandmaster Thomas Luther is in charge of the FIDE Commission for Players with Disabilities. He played a key role in ensuring that the first Olympic Games for people with disabilities were organized to the standards and specific needs of the participants.
Photo: Karsten Wieland
“This is a special competition that puts the spotlight on people with disabilities. We want chess to be part of the Paralympic Games, and that’s one of FIDE’s ideas, and we don’t want to give it up,” says Thomas.
He has high hopes for the future of the event. When the first chess Olympiad was organized, he had only 16 nations participate. Over 180 nations participated in the last Chess Olympiad in Chennai. In the first disabled Olympics he had 23 teams and that number will surely grow over the years!”
“Chess helped me find my place in life and society.”
Despite his physical disability, Thomas Luther distinguished himself in a highly competitive field. He was his three-time German champion (1993, 2002, 2006) and reached the top 100 in the world rankings with a peak Elo of 2604. year 2000.
Thomas started playing chess at the age of four and joined a chess club at the age of nine.
“Children with disabilities have a negative outlook on life. Many struggle to find their place. Participating in society through chess is the key.Even when I started playing chess in the 1970s, chess clubs were more inclusive than schools.”
In his view, the social aspect is key to this event.
“More than anything else, this is a social event. Played chess, it’s just amazing.
Unique to this tournament is that all players have some form of disability. The number and type of assistance needed can be enormous, from special boards and lighting to mobility and accessibility facilities. “We are ready. We are ready for this tournament and will address any issues that may arise,” said Thomas.
Main regulations and information
The Chess Olympiad for the Disabled will be held at the Crowne Plaza (4*) Hotel in Belgrade.
The tournament is Swiss-style and consists of 6 rounds.
Time control is 90 minutes for the first 40 moves, then 30 minutes for the rest of the game, adding 30 seconds for each move after the first move. The default time is 15 minutes.
The opening ceremony will take place on Sunday 29 January at the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia. Rounds will run daily from 3pm CET on Monday 30th January. The sixth and final round will start on Saturday 4th February at 11am CET.
For more information on Chess for the Disabled, please visit the Disability Commission’s official website (dis.fide.com/).
For more information, please visit the official website: dis-olympiad.fide.com/
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