Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, the fifth highest ranked player in the world, heads up a strong field for the forthcoming Moscow Grand Prix to be held between 12-21 May.
Hikaru Nakamura, the 6th strongest player in the FIDE rankings and five other top 20 players will also contest for the first prize of 20,000 euros in a field of 18 competitors.
The Grand Prix returns to the Telegraph Building in central Moscow, which previously hosted the 2016 Candidates Tournament won by Sergey Karjakin of Russia.
The tournament, a nine round Swiss contest, also features Hou Yifan, the world’s leading female player. It is the second of four Grand Prix in 2017 and follow’s the Sharjah Grand Prix in February which was won by Alexander Grischuk, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in a three way tie.
The Moscow Grand Prix is sponsored by Kaspersky Lab, PhosAgro and EG Capital Partners.
Ilya Merenzon, Chief Executive of World Chess, said: “I am delighted that we will be making a return to Moscow’s world famous Telegraph Building. The second Grand Prix of 2017 promises to be a closely fought contest and eagerly followed in Russia and internationally.
Georgious Makropoulos, Acting President of FIDE, said: “With so many top players in the line-up, the Moscow Grand Prix will undoubtedly feature some classic match-ups for chess fans around the world.”
Eugene Kaspersky, Chairman and CEO of Kaspersky Lab, commented: "We’re very happy to be supporting the World Chess Championship, it goes without saying. The world’s ultimate game of strategy, chess is a beautiful, intelligent – and very computerized sport. Most watch competitions online, and it’s extremely important that no cyberattacks affect the championship and disturb players or spectators; while the grandmasters use various programs for game analysis and strategy planning to learn different techniques and prepare for tournaments. Clearly, data protection is a top priority for them, too."
As an official cybersecurity partner, Kaspersky Lab will protect the IT infrastructure of FIDE, World Chess, and national chess federations. The first deployment of Kaspersky Lab technologies will be implemented during the Moscow Grand Prix, with a focus on protecting the Worldchess.com website and the online broadcast of the tournament from DDoS attacks. In future, additional Kaspersky Lab solutions and services will also be integrated. In addition, the company will be conducting cybersecurity training for the chess players taking part in the championship cycle, and providing them with Kaspersky Total Security for their devices.
The live broadcast of every game at the Moscow Grand Prix is available exclusively at www.worldchess.com
The full list of players is as follows:
1. Maxime Vachier-Lagrave
2. Hikaru Nakamura
3. Anish Giri
4. Ian Nepomniachtchi
5. Harikrishna Pentala
6. Shakhriyar Mamedyarov
7. Ding Liren
8. Michael Adams
9. Peter Svidler
10. Alexander Grischuk
11. Ernesto Inarkiev
12. Boris Gelfand
13. Evgeny Tomashevsky
14. Teimour Radjabov
15. Francisco Vallejo Pons
16. Hou Yifan
17. Jon Ludvig Hammer
18. Salem Saleh