Home > Prizes > World Cup Competition

World Cup Competition

Quality Chess will send a box of 20 books to your home, wherever in the world that may be. 10 of them chosen by you, 10 of them chosen by us. All you have to do is to predict some results in the World Cup. We will contact the winner once the World Cup is over and organize the shipment of the prize.

Hurdle Questions: In order for us to quickly reduce the number of emails to check, only participants who get the three initial questions right will proceed to the second round of scoring. The points scored here will count in the second round (unless otherwise stated, a correct answer is worth one point).

A: What will the most common opening move be in round 1 (excluding playoffs): 1.e4 or 1.d4 or neither?

B: Which of these home players will go further: Rauf Mamedov or Eltaj Safarli? (if knocked out at same stage then which one has played more moves is the tiebreak)

C: Which opening will be more common in round 3 (excluding playoffs)? Najdorf or Catalan or tie?

Main Competition Questions:

1. Who will win the World Cup (3 points)?

2. How many top seeds (1-64) will be knocked out in round 1?

3. How many round 2 matches will end in Armageddon Blitz?

4. Predict the four semi-finalists. (2 points per correct answer)

5. How many quarter finalists will be rated over 2730?

6. Which non-GM will go furthest? (total number of moves if all 13 are eliminated at the same stage)

7. Which round will Levon Aronian reach?

8. How many 1-1 draws will Michael Adams have?

9. How many Black wins will there be in round 4 (excluding playoffs)?

10. Predict the score: Radjabov – Sevian

11. Predict the score: Robson – Vovk

12. Predict the score: Fier – Granda Zuniga

13. How many Russians will there be in round 3?

14. Who will be the youngest quarter finalist?

15. How many non-European players will make it to the 4th round?

16. Which female player will go furthest?

17. How many Chinese players will lose in round 2?

18. How many players seeded 110-128 will be whitewashed in round 1 (2-0)?

How to enter: Send an email to WorldCup@qualitychess.co.uk at latest an hour before the start of round 1, on Friday 11th September 2015. The email must have the following information and no more(!):

Name and Rating – in the subject header of the email

Answers written like this:

A. answer

B. answer

C. answer

1. answer

2. answer

And so on. For names only give surnames.

Any attachments or any other diversion from the format leads to automatic exclusion.

Rules clarification: This is a fun, no-fee, friendly competition with the idea of enjoying the World Cup as a chess community. Quality Chess staff will pick the winner based on adherence with the process and with brutal fairness. Any mistake made in the process by a QC member of staff will be unintentional, yet all entry fees will be refunded if a mistake can be pointed out. There is no entry fee, of course…

If we get a feeling that the same person has entered more than once, we will ignore the person. The same goes for if we think someone is a relative of a chess player and not a chess player themselves. One player, one try.

If we work out an easy way to technically do so, we will add entries to the subscriber list for our newsletter. It is easy to unsubscribe, so fear not…

Categories: Prizes Tags:
  1. Phille
    September 8th, 2015 at 13:03 | #1

    Wow, winner takes it all …

    Is it one address, one participant or could my wife participate as well? She’s a chess player, in fact a former team mate of John Shaw, if I remember correctly.

  2. Jacob Aagaard
    September 8th, 2015 at 14:05 | #2

    One participant. When we have a winner, we will see if they are a real chess player, or just disregard them.

  3. David Alexandru
    September 8th, 2015 at 16:18 | #3

    I write here my answers?

  4. guest222
    September 8th, 2015 at 18:18 | #4

    When you ask for a match score prediction, is it classical games only or all the games including tie-breaks ?

  5. Jacob Aagaard
    September 8th, 2015 at 18:46 | #5


  6. Matt
    September 8th, 2015 at 19:44 | #6

    Question 15 may need some clarification. I have (at the moment) assumed the same countries adopted as “european” by UEFA in football.

  7. J.
    September 8th, 2015 at 20:48 | #7

    All players eligable to participate in European Individual Chess Championship

  8. Tobias
    September 8th, 2015 at 21:26 | #8

    Last names of Chinese players – that’s the first name, right? So for Hou Yifan, we’d write Hou?

  9. Michael
    September 9th, 2015 at 01:15 | #9

    “if knocked out at the same stage, the one who has played more moves is the tiebreak”

    does this include moves played in the first match? would it extend to playoffs in round one and two?

  10. Jacob Aagaard
    September 9th, 2015 at 07:03 | #10
  11. Gollum
    September 9th, 2015 at 07:48 | #11

    This seems like a pure gamble to me, but I’ll probably try it, the participation fee is low enough 😉

  12. Panternn
    September 9th, 2015 at 08:33 | #12

    What counts as a Catalan? 1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nf3 b6 4.g3 Bb7 5.Bg2 Be7 6.0-0 0-0 7.Qc2 d5 8.Rd1 c6 – this is a closed Catalan, right?

  13. Jacob Aagaard
    September 9th, 2015 at 08:40 | #13

    Yes, of course

  14. Paul T
    September 9th, 2015 at 08:44 | #14

    Haha, just entered. Not a chance of winning but will make it a bit more fun… Who’d have thought I’d be paying so much attention to the games of Vovk! 🙂

  15. Jacob Aagaard
    September 9th, 2015 at 09:52 | #15

    @Paul T
    Fun is what this is about

  16. Rachit
    September 9th, 2015 at 10:05 | #16

    I am unrated player but play Online on chess.com
    so will i be disqualified for the reason i am unrated

  17. Pierre
    September 9th, 2015 at 11:25 | #17

    Thanks for the idea ! I have just sent my answers. No rating, “unrated” in the mail header.
    Great fun ahead 🙂

  18. John Shaw
    September 9th, 2015 at 13:09 | #18

    David Alexandru :
    I write here my answers?

    No. Please put the answers in an email to WorldCup@qualitychess.co.uk

  19. aspiJ
    September 9th, 2015 at 13:58 | #19

    Does someone have the pairings in an excel sheet and willing to share ?
    Makes life much easier.

    Thanks in advance

  20. September 9th, 2015 at 15:05 | #20

    The pairings are on Wikipedia; I guess you could probably make an excel sheet out of them with some editing.

  21. Lars Ekholm
    September 9th, 2015 at 16:31 | #21

    time to start dreaming which books to get. I already have

    Polgar 1 + 2 + 3
    Yusupov 1 boost
    Yusupov 1 build
    Marin A spanish rep
    Marin Beating the open games
    QC Puzzle book
    Understanding chess tactics
    Learn from the Legends
    The secret life
    Chess structures
    San Luis 2005

    and will choose…..

    Karpov 1 + 2
    Tal 1 + 2
    Mating the castled
    Dragon books 1 + 2
    Positional chess sacrifices

    cant wait 😉

  22. k.r.
    September 9th, 2015 at 19:01 | #22

    @Lars Ekholm, did you study those books :).

    I have aprox 30 QC books, and finished only one completly and two of them are in process of finishing :(.

  23. Jacob Aagaard
    September 9th, 2015 at 19:03 | #23

    Put in your online rating and handle. It is so we can check if you do really play chess and not are someone’s uncle 🙂

  24. boki
    September 9th, 2015 at 19:11 | #24

    tried my luck, but I have nearly all QC books 🙂

  25. boki
    September 9th, 2015 at 19:16 | #25

    is the email address correct? got my mail back 🙁

  26. Ray
    September 9th, 2015 at 19:56 | #26

    Since I have almost all QC books, I won’t participate 🙂

  27. Lars Ekholm
    September 9th, 2015 at 20:09 | #27

    @k.r. A few i studied from start to end like tactics from scratch and the Yusupov books. Some I read from start to end but will keep comming back to actually study, like the Polgar trilogy and Marian Learn from the Legends. Some I browse for pleasure, San Luis, or I browse to find material for teaching (tactimania, Puzzle book, chess structures, secret life – but actually also the Polgar books have so many nice examples to use for teaching).

  28. Aldrin Caraig
    September 10th, 2015 at 01:21 | #28

    Hello, what does “at latest an hour before the start of round 1, on Friday 11th September 2015” means? Does it mean we have to send our answers exactly an hour before the start of round 1?

  29. Rachit
    September 10th, 2015 at 01:21 | #29

    @Jacob Aagaard
    ok i sent another mail with answer ( made no changes ) and my chess.com account game
    u can check this game and then click on rachit1 username
    so now i will not be disqualified

    And by mistake i posted above comment in wrong Post so plz delete that one

  30. Thomas
    September 10th, 2015 at 05:44 | #30

    That’s also my problem. But as I never win, I thought I could risk the entry fee.

  31. Pierre
    September 10th, 2015 at 07:38 | #31

    @Jacob Should I send another e-mail to tell my online handle and online rating ? I have put “unrated” in the mail header. I swear i play chess 😉

  32. Jacob Aagaard
    September 10th, 2015 at 08:55 | #32

    We might inquire further if you win. It will be fine.

  33. Jacob Aagaard
    September 10th, 2015 at 08:55 | #33

    You can always make a lot of new friends if you win 😉

  34. Pierre
    September 10th, 2015 at 09:35 | #34

    @Jacob 🙂 I’m certainly never winning this contest, but it is great fun !

  35. John Shaw
    September 10th, 2015 at 11:29 | #35

    boki :
    is the email address correct? got my mail back

    Yes, the email address is right. Please try sending again, or copy me in, and I’ll get it to the right place.

  36. Amey Sanjay Dandekar
    September 10th, 2015 at 12:38 | #36

    Can Quality Chess books be made available in India? With the price in rupees(INR)? Because converting dollars/euros to rupees makes it a hefty sum. I just keep visiting your site and not buy anything. Rs.500-1000 per book is manageable, but all foreign published books cost a few thousands. 🙁 I am yearning to buy Attacking manuals, Practical Chess Defense and Grandmaster Prep series.

  37. Panternn
    September 10th, 2015 at 13:44 | #37

    Didn’t get any answer on this one, so assume I was correct. Have picked the Catalan 🙂

  38. Jacob Aagaard
    September 10th, 2015 at 15:42 | #38

    @Amey Sanjay Dandekar
    We have been looking at Asian options for years, but so far nothing has come to fruition. We did have a dealer at some point, at reasonable prices, but as the rupee depreciated he became unwilling to raise his prices. And as the cut we got was really small, it went from close to pointless to straight down pointless.

    But we will continue to look at serious options.

  39. Pawn Dillinger
    September 10th, 2015 at 16:02 | #39

    Now if only the players can make it on time for round one, what with the airlines problems.

  40. Kassy
    September 10th, 2015 at 17:11 | #40

    @Amey Sanjay Dandekar

    If you can get it down to 500-1000 Rupees, let the rest of us know as that would be $8-16. Even with shipping it would be cheaper for me to buy it from India and ship it to the US.

  41. SG
    September 10th, 2015 at 20:17 | #41

    I have also entered the competition. Let the World Cup begin!

    And if, in round two, we observe Safarli playing on a few dozen moves despite being a full Queen down, don’t look at me, okay? 😉

  42. Rachit
    September 11th, 2015 at 04:39 | #42

    Jacob Aagaard :
    @Amey Sanjay Dandekar
    We have been looking at Asian options for years, but so far nothing has come to fruition. We did have a dealer at some point, at reasonable prices, but as the rupee depreciated he became unwilling to raise his prices. And as the cut we got was really small, it went from close to pointless to straight down pointless.
    But we will continue to look at serious options.

    here is a bookstore but Alll QC books are out of stock . i would have bough every QC book Except opening if they have Stocks

  43. Fer
    September 11th, 2015 at 06:54 | #43

    Ray :
    Since I have almost all QC books, I won’t participate

    I also have a lot of them, but I’ve planned to donate most of them (if I win), to the public library in my town or to a local chess club. You can do the same 🙂

  44. Tamz29
    September 11th, 2015 at 08:11 | #44

    I entered, fingers crossed.
    Does anyone really think a non-GM can go to round 2?
    The seeding means that they face the tougest opponents right? So I’m guessing which of the top 13 is the most positional player and likely to take the longest to win.

  45. Paul T
    September 11th, 2015 at 11:30 | #45

    I make it:

    28 x e4
    26 x d4
    10 x other

    In the first part of round 1… Could still be e4 or d4..

  46. Phille
    September 11th, 2015 at 11:51 | #46

    Drats! Seems like I underestimated the time shift from Baku. I sent my mail only half an hour before the round … 🙁
    I guess I should start a totally unconnected discussion about the zero tolerance rule …

    But I’ll wait for e4, Safarli and Najdorf before I get really mad at myself.

  47. Jacob Aagaard
    September 11th, 2015 at 13:15 | #47

    The one hour was just to allow time for people to be a bit late… Don’t worry, you are in.

  48. guest222
    September 12th, 2015 at 12:35 | #48

    So is 1.e4 or 1.d4 winning ?

  49. Matt
    September 12th, 2015 at 13:24 | #49

    25 x e4
    24 x d4
    15 x other

    So 1.e4 it is……

  50. tamz29
    September 12th, 2015 at 14:24 | #50

    Yus! First hurdle passed!
    Mamedov already through to round 2 … 🙂
    (Though Safarli can still go through)
    Now let me see those Catalans in round 3!

  51. Pierre
    September 12th, 2015 at 18:35 | #51

    First one passed, but Safarli in a dangerous position 🙂

  52. Canoe
    September 13th, 2015 at 11:02 | #52

    Wow. What an anti-climax to be gone already over choosing 1 d4. Probably how the losers in round one feel!

  53. Pierre
    September 13th, 2015 at 14:37 | #53

    … Safarli… what did you do…

  54. Gollum
    September 13th, 2015 at 15:10 | #54

    Safarli out. So I just need the catalan to do its magic:

    A. 1.e4
    B. Mamedov.
    C. Catalan.

    Sad that Gelfand is out too 🙁

  55. Trispios
    September 13th, 2015 at 23:27 | #55

    Oh my God, I have just seen this funny competition after one week without checking QC blog…. what a pity, although I would have answered 1.d4 and be out anyways

  56. Mark
    September 14th, 2015 at 01:03 | #56

    Hi GMs Shaw and Aagard… I learned a great deal from the Excelling at Chess series.

    Will you guys please publish a GM rep NIMZO-INDIAN book? I will buy it if you do.

    Thanks for considering this…

  57. Jacob Aagaard
    September 14th, 2015 at 08:38 | #57

    Sign up for the newsletter!

  58. Mark
    September 15th, 2015 at 02:21 | #58

    Thanks GM Aagard, I signed up for the newsletter. Are there any plans for a GM rep Nimzo Indian book?

  59. Soviet School
    September 15th, 2015 at 13:57 | #59

    No remember Fischer !, Remember Kasparov !You have a duty to play the Najdorf!!! @tamz29

  60. Gollum
    September 17th, 2015 at 10:43 | #60

    C: Which opening will be more common in round 3 (excluding playoffs)? Najdorf or Catalan or tie?

    So, Catalan by transposition is Catalan? (ie 1. c4 Cf6 2. g3 e6 3. Bg2 d5 4. d4) Najdorf that degenerates into Scheveningen is Najdorf (according to ECO this is a Scheveningen: 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 cxd4 4. Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 e6 6. Be2 a6 7. O-O Qc7 8. f4 Nc6 but you can obviously play it via Najdorf, just transposing e6 and a6 moves).

    The easier for everybody would be to define it as the ECO classification (hence if the variation escapes the Najdorf, bad luck, and if it enters the Catalan via Kramnik move order, then it is a Catalan), but I may be biased as I’ve voted for the Catalan, where is it easier to enter and harder to leave.

  61. Jacob Aagaard
    September 17th, 2015 at 11:13 | #61

    We go by common sense. As stated in the rules.

  62. Gollum
    September 17th, 2015 at 12:07 | #62

    At the moment it seems like 2 Najdorf vs 1 catalan if you stretch it enough, so it seems I’m not going to get C right 🙁

  63. Capodoglio
    September 18th, 2015 at 10:20 | #63

    Najdorf wins?
    Cool we got a Ponziani and a Najdorf poisoned pawn today!

  64. Gollum
    September 18th, 2015 at 11:12 | #64

    Today one Najdorf and one Catalan, so my only chance is that both games yesterday that went for the Najdorf get disqualified as Schevenningens and the Catalan hybrid is counted as Catalan… so yes, I did not make it :'(

  65. Rachit
    September 22nd, 2015 at 09:00 | #65

    I think we have all answers now except Question 1, 4 and 14

    and What is the answer of
    C: Which opening will be more common in round 3 (excluding playoffs)? Najdorf or Catalan or tie?

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