Football match chess grandmasters at Telstar FC
The international grandmasters of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament played their friendly football match at the Telstar FC stadium this afternoon. World champion Magnus Carlsen and Loek van Wely (grandmaster and currently a Dutch senator) were the team captains. They entered the field accompanied by primary school pupils, who participated in the chess simultaneous for schools at Telstar. The two teams consisted of a combination of grandmasters and Telstar players. Bram van Diepstraten, sports alderman of the Municipality of Velsen, welcomed the players. The grandmasters demonstrated that mind sports and physical sports are a good combination, as they put their strategic insight behind the board in practice in the field. The final score was 8 - 5 for team Carlsen. Both teams have faced off before at Telstar: Team Van Wely won in 2016 and Team Carlsen was victorious in 2017.
World champion Magnus Carlsen and Loek van Wely got to select the teams, as they like to indulge their friendly rivalry by playing on opposite teams. Magnus Carlsen opened the score in the 14th minute. The next minute saw Vladislav Kovalev score 2-0. Frank Korpershoek scored 2-1 in the 16th minute. Goals by Carlsen, Van Wely and Duin resulted in a 3-3 score at half time. In the second half Carlsen scored twice. Goals by Johan-Sebastian Christiansen, Peter Heine Nielsen, Kovalev and Shaquill Sno (twice for team Van Wely) led to a final score of 8-5 for team Carlsen. The chess players had enjoyed the match so much, the rain notwithstanding, that they decided to play another 15 minute game to round off the afternoon.
During half-time the grandmasters visited the chess simultaneous for primary schools in the region, which also took place at the Telstar stadium. Several of the more than 100 young chess players took the opportunity to take a few selfies with world champion Carlsen and the other grandmasters.