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The 44th edition of the Chess Olympiad will be held in Chennai later this year, Tamil Nadu Chief Minister M K Stalin tweeted on Tuesday. “Delighted that the Chess Capital of India is set to host the 44th Chess Olympiad! A proud moment for Tamil Nadu! Chennai warmly welcomes all the Kings and Queens from around the world! #ChessOlympiad2022,” he said in the tweet.

“It’s official now….India will host the 44th World Chess Olympiad 2022 at Chennai!” the All-India Chess Federation said on its Twitter handle. The All-India Chess federation (AICF) had earlier submitted its guarantee of USD10 million to FIDE. The Olympiad was moved out of Russia after it invaded neighbouring Ukraine on February 24.

FIDE decided to open the bids after Russia began the military operations against Ukraine. The AICF had earlier said it would bid for the Olympiad and the budget for the event would be USD10 million (about Rs 75 crore). The Chess Olympiad is a biennial team event in which teams from some 190 countries compete for honours over a two-week period.

The Chess Olympiad was supposed to take place in Moscow from July 26 to August 8. FIDE (International Chess Federation) decided to move the Chess Olympiad and all other official competitions planned from Russia in the wake of the country’s invasion of Ukraine.

The other events that have been moved away from Russia are the first Chess Olympiad for People with Disabilities and the 93rd FIDE Congress. It would be the second major world event to be held in the country after the World Championship match in 2013 between Viswanathan Anand and Magnus Carlsen, the current world No.1