The FIDE Candidates Tournament is an eight-player chess double round-robin tournament to decide the challenger for the World Chess Championship 2021. The winner will earn the right to challenge the current World Champion Magnus Carlsen.
The first half of the tournament was played in Yekaterinburg, Russia, from 17 March to 25 March 2020. It was suspended at the halfway point due to the COVID-19 pandemic when the Russian government announced the closure of air traffic with other countries, amid a rapidly escalating coronavirus pandemic.
After the first half, the French Maxime Vachier-Lagrave and the Russian Ian Nepomniachtchi are in the lead, with 4½ points after seven games. Fabiano Caruana (USA)
, Anish Giri (Netherlands)
, Wang Hao (China)
and Alexander Grischuk (Russia)
are in the chasing pack, all with 3½ points.
The second half of the tournament will be played between April 19 and 28, 2021 in Yekaterinburg.
Eight top grandmasters will arrive in the capital of Urals, including 2018 World Championship runner-up Fabiano Caruana (USA)
, World Cup finalist Ding Liren (China)
, a winner of the FIDE Grand Swiss Isle of Man Wang Hao (China)
, the top two finishers in the FIDE Grand Prix 2019 Alexander Grischuk
and Ian Nepomniachtchi (both Russia)
, the best in terms of the average ELO rating Anish Giri (Netherlands)
, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave (France)
, who replaced FIDE World Cup winner Teimour Radjabov, and a nominee from the host country, a bronze medalist of the FIDE Grand Swiss Isle of Man Kirill Alekseenko (Russia)
As of April 1, 2021, five of the above players are on the top ten rating list.