The head of FIDE Opens the World Cup in Baku

On the evening of 10th of September, the World Chess Cup held by the International Chess Federation (FIDE) and the Ministry of Youth and Sport of Azerbaijan was opened in the International Mugam Centre in Baku.
The ceremony was attended by many dignitaries, public figures, famous players and the representatives of the major media from all over the world. The troupers dressed up as the chess pieces greeted the guests at the door of the Centre.  This spectacle attracted the attention the participants of the Cup as well as the citizens strolling in the boulevard.

As soon as it was announced about the official beginning of the evening event, the President of the Chess Federation of Azerbaijan Elman Rustamov took the floor and particularly noted that Baku was not accidentally chosen to host the 2015World Cup and the 2016 World Chess Olympiad.
Deputy Minister of Youth and Sport of Azerbaijan Republic Intigam Babayev also noted the importance of holding the World Cup in Baku.  Afterwards the floor was taken by the FIDE President Kirsan Ilyumzhinov.
"We are pleased that the holding of the largest chess tournament in Azerbaijan has become traditional.  At present, Baku is known worldwide as an excellent organizer of the major international competitions.  I have participated in the European Cups and saw with my own eyes that everything was organized at the high level.  The same applies to the present World Chess Cup.  I know that chess have a long history in your country where this sport is of high priority, as evidenced by the adoption of the Azerbaijan state programme for chess development.  I would like to state that this World Cup is one of the most important in the history of these tournaments”, said the head of FIDE.
After the end of the vibrant performance art, the draw has been made for the colour of the pieces.  Kirsan Ilyumzhinov was once again invited to the stage on this occasion.  As a result of the draw, the players with even numbers would play the first parties with the white pieces.
Afterwards the FIDE President met with the Chairman of the Organizing Committee of the tournament, the Vice-Premier of the government of AR Yagub Eyyubov; the head of the local Chess Federation Elman Rustamov; the grandmasters from Kalmykia Ernesto Inarkiev and Manan Sugirov and the famous masters of chess Nona Gaprindashvili, Vladimir Kramnik, Hou Yifan and Maria Muzichuk.
The finalists of the Cup will be eligible to play in the contenders tournament for the 2016 World Chess Crown.