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US Open Chess Takes Center Stage Beginning this Weekend

What’s your move?

Each year a new chess champion is crowned at the US Open, and 2013 will be no different.  In the 113th edition of the US Open chess tournament, the matches will be held in Madison, Wisconsin, where chess has been growing in popularity and standing amongst the locals.  One player in particular has drawn immense interest to the tournament this upcoming week, and that chess player is Awonder Liang, a local 10-year old who has become the youngest ever American to be officially crowned as a chess master.  Making his first appearance at the US Open (which uses no age restriction) means that Liang will have an opportunity to make chess history!

Last year’s US Open tournament included another young player who did extremely well, Manuel Leon Hoyos, a 23-year old Mexican Grandmaster who shared the title with well-known chess veteran, Dmitry Gurevich.

The US Open chess tournament has graced many of the world’s greatest players, including the polarizing figure Bobby Fischer, who won the US Open in 1957 at the tender age of 14.  Fischer was the youngest player to ever claim the title and still remains the youngest victor in the US Open Chess Championship’s history.  Will Liang take a note out of his book and win the title, having now achieved Master status?  The next week will surely tell us, and if Liang makes a strong push for the title, you can believe that the entire world will begin to tune in.

The US Open tournament is an exciting chess event that allows for a wide array of the world’s best chess players to compete in an exhilarating weekend with cash prizes.  $50,000 will be divided out in prizes to the best chess players.  The top prize is $8,000.

Instead of the tournament operating as a playoff style event where players are knocked out when they lose, the US Open has all the players compete in multiple matches, gaining a point for a victory and a half point for a draw.  After the week, the player (or players) with the highest points total is deemed the US Open Champion.  The true monumental achievement for chess players, a victory in this tournament is a step towards becoming a chess legend and a worldwide hero in the game!

In addition to being the home to Awonder Liang, Madison, Wisconsin has also been hot-pocket area for chess in the United States.  Growth has been seen particularly through young players in the local elementary schools.  Although this will be the first US Open Chess Championship in the area since 1963, Madison will surely welcome the tournament with open arms and provide a serene setting dedicated to this incredible game.

So get your brains ready and your minds focused, chess players! The US Open will be crowning its new chess champion on August 4th.  While the players head to Wisconsin and prepare to take part in the tournament, you should be honing in on your own chess skills, so that perhaps you will partake in the next edition of the US Open Chess Championship in 2014!

 

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