The International Chess Federation (FIDE) and Tech Mahindra, a leading provider of digital transformation, consulting and business re-engineering services and solutions, today announced the launch dates and format of Global Chess League (GCL). The 12-day Global Chess League (GCL) will begin on June 21, 2023, and end on July 2, 2023. GCL will be played in ten round-robin matches, with six teams competing (six players in each team), followed by a final match between the top two teams.
GCL is the world's first and largest official franchise league of its kind, with chess players competing in a unique joint team format. GCL will feature male and female chess champions competing on the same team. The league's joint male-female teams will have the rare distinction of being the only joint team in a professional sports league.
Jagdish Mitra, Chief Strategy Officer & Head – Growth, Tech Mahindra, said, "As a key constituent of Global Chess League (GCL), it is a matter of great pride for us to announce the dates of the first broadcast sports experience through GCL. We are proud to partner with FIDE and have a mentor and coach like Viswanathan Anand, former five-time world chess champion. GCL is a unique opportunity to promote this remarkable game of strategy, intellect, and rigor which we feel is strongly intertwined with business. GCL, fueled by technology and opportunities, will bring together the best players from around the world in order to popularize the game and provide players with a formidable platform to hone their skills. Tech Mahindra will leverage its expertise in technology to provide chess fans with a unique experience. We are keen to make this the largest and the most exhilarating experience for players, fans, and viewers – truly where global talent comes together and is recognized and rewarded."
FIDE and Tech Mahindra will explore innovative ways to promote the game through interactive technology-enabled platforms by leveraging next-generation technologies such as 5G, artificial intelligence, and virtual reality, among others.
The FIDE President, Arkady Dvorkovich, said, “We are very excited to announce the dates and format of this one-of-a-kind GCL with Tech Mahindra. As a partner, Tech Mahindra brings in its tech expertise to help scale and take the game to millions of fans. The league will help increase Chess's popularity while expanding commercial opportunities. As a part of FIDE’s commitment to growing women’s chess, this league will also witness the joint male and female team format, a first-of-its-kind in a professional sport. We invite team owners and sponsors to join in the effort to bring chess closer to its fans around the world. We are looking forward to meeting the teams and new talent in June 2023."
GCL will aim to bring sports fans together to witness chess in a never-seen-before avatar. The winning team will get crowned with the title of World Champion Franchise Team.
Viswanathan Anand, five-time world chess champion and Indian chess legend, said,“Chess is a game that millions of people all over the world enjoy playing. We've seen a surge in new fan engagements since the pandemic, increasing the fan base. It is indeed a momentous occasion for the world of chess to stage a Global Chess League with players participating worldwide. I am confident that the league will bring a new perspective to chess and chess viewership. Looking forward to collaborating with FIDE and Tech Mahindra to make the 12-day GCL a huge success.”
The long-standing partnership between Tech Mahindra and FIDE will promote playing of chess in new and innovative formats, create opportunities for youth, and foster many champions globally.
Source: Press Release