Wesley begins campaign in Netherlands tournament

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Filipino Grandmaster (GM) Wesley So is ranked No. 5 in the official list of the 2015 Tata Steel Chess Tournament which will unfold today (January 9) in Wijk aan Zee, Netherlands.

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So, who will be representing the United States Chess Federation, aims to improve his sixth-place finish in the 2014 edition. He was actually in a four-way tie for the fourth spot with three other GMs with six points but dropped to sixth due to inferior tiebreak points.

Last year’s winner GM Levon Aronian of Armenia is back to defend his crown along with runner-up GM Anish Giri of the Netherlands and this year’s No. 1 player GMs Magnus Carlsen of Norway.

The other invited participants are GMs Fabiano Caruana of Italy, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave of France, Radoslaw Wojtaszek of Poland, Teimour Radjabov of Azerbaijan, Ding Liren of China, Baadur Jobava of Georgia, Vasil Ivanchuk of Ukraine, Hou Yifan of China, Loek Van Wely of the Netherlands and Ivan Saric of Croatia.

The 17-day tournament employs a round-robin format. Besides the main venue in Wijk aan Zee, it will also visit Rotterdam and The Hague.

The first round will begin on Saturday.

The 21-year-old So is fresh from winning the North American Open held in Las Vegas, Nevada. He also ruled the prestigious Millionaire Chess Open also in Las Vegas where he won a whopping $100,000 cash purse.

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