The 6th Mikhail Tal Memorial takes place from 16th to 25th November at the Pashkov House, Vozdvizhenka 3/5 in Moscow, Russia. Boris Gelfand, Peter Svidler and Vladimir Kramnik spoke about the tournament for RIA Novosti.
Boris Gelfand: Mikhail Tal Memorial fits perfectly into my training program
Boris Gelfand, winner of the Candidates Matches in Kazan, is currently playing in the Mikhail Tal Memorial in Moscow. The same city will host next year the World Championship match between Gelfand and Viswanathan Anand, another participant of the Tal Memorial.
“Mikhail Tal Memorial fits perfectly into my training program for the championship match against Anand – Gelfand said. – This is the strongest tournament composition in the world. Therefore, this will be a good test of my capabilities.”
Gelfand added that he is not inclined to disclose his opening preparation for the match – “But at the some time I intend to experiment a bit.”
Peter Svidler: This can be a nice conclusion of a very successful year
Peter Svidler, who in 2011 won the World Cup and his sixth title of the Russian Chess Champion, said that Tal Memorial is his chance to finish the season on a positive note.
“If I perform well in this tournament it will be a nice conclusion of a very successful year. And then with a clear conscience I can take a rest and start preparing for next season, which will be very difficult.”
Svidler is not inclined to dramatize the fact that experts do not include him among the favorites to win the tournament, saying, “That is absolutely no shame.”
Vladimir Kramnik: You can not win these tournaments with rational and boring chess
Vladimir Kramnik is entering the competition with great ambition: “My spirit is always the same – to fight for the victory and try to use all my chances. But the distinguishing feature of this tournament is that includes almost all of the best chess players of the world. And the tournament will be very difficult for everyone.”
“I will play from game to game, and by mid-tournament it typically becomes clear who will be in contention to win. It is very difficult to predict before the start of the competition, because at least the half of the field has a real chance to win first place,” – Kramnik said.
Kramnik believes that the field is too strong and the tournament can’t be won with practical, safe and dry play.
“To win the Tal Memorial, one should present a very strong and creative play. I know from my own experience that you can not win these tournaments with rational and boring chess. We must play our best chess and I am confident that the tournament will see some wonderful games.”