Wesley So’s defense of his Grand Chess Tour (GCT) Champion title is looking good as the Philippine-born grandmaster is currently ranked No. 1 in the overall standings after three legs of the tournament, with two more events coming up.
The reigning three-time United States Chess Champion won a historic second championship title at the 2021 Grand Chess Tour (GCT) after ranking No. 1 overall with the most points, including from winning the GCT Paris Rapid & Blitz.
So’s second GCT title follows his victory in 2016. The World No. 6 FIDE player holds the distinction of being only one of the two double-title holders in the Grand Chess Tour history, along with World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen of Norway.
This 2022, Wesley So is playing to win an unprecedented third GCT title for a solo spot in the history of the tournament inspired and founded by legendary Grandmaster Garry Kasparov, one of the world’s greatest ambassadors for chess.
Kasparov witnessed the Filipino-American’s victory last year and said that “Wesley won because he is the most stable and most reliable player. Wesley in this calm environment – he proved to be the most resilient among the challengers.”
The 28-year-old Super Grandmaster, who started his chess career in the Philippines before moving to America to continue playing in international tournaments, is currently top-ranked among the grandmasters playing the GCT.
Wesley So carries a total of 22.5 GCT points from the following events:
- 10 pts from placing 2nd at the Superbet Chess Classic Romania from May 3-15
- 6 pts from 5th place finish at the Superbet Rapid & Blitz Poland from May 17-24
- 6.5 pts from 4th place finish at the SuperUnited Rapid & Blitz Croatia from July 18-25
The last two events of the Grand Chess Tour are:
- Saint Louis Rapid & Blitz from August 24 – August 31, 2022, Saint Louis, Missouri USA
- Sinquefield Cup from August 31 – September 13, 2022, Saint Louis, Missouri USA
So’s closest competitors are Levon Aronian (Armenian-American) and Maxime Vachier-Lagrave of France, with 19 points each.
The Grand Chess Tour live stream can be viewed on the St. Louis Chess Club YouTube channel.
SEND CONGRATULATIONS & WELL WISHES in the comments below to Wesley So as he plays for a historic 3rd win at the 2022 Grand Chess Tour!
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