GM Pontus Carlsson has embarked on a project of social responsibility by helping to organise “Näringslivet tillsammans med Förorten”. This initiative is an effort to create more inclusion of people of ethnic minorities in Sweden through chess. Chess benefits millions because of its widespread appeal to all regardless of social background.
GM Pontus Carlsson giving a blindfold simul at a similar community event.
On May the 29th there were celebrities on hand to partake in this important event. Astronaut/space traveler Christer Fuglesang played in an exhibition tournament together with school children from the Swedish suburbs. “It is an international game, I have met people all over the world through chess. From a mountain hut in Norway to Istanbul, even from space, I played,” says Fuglesang, who is also a member of the Swedish Chess Academy.
The tournament paired a business executive with a child from the suburbs in a team where they alternate moves (without discussion). Sixteen teams competed and the format of the tournament is a round robin with four teams and four groups. The group winners qualify for two semifinal matches and finally there it is knockout until one winner is crowned.
“Chess has taught me to see other people’s interests and thoughts and to have a strategic perspective on many decisions in life.”
~Jan Stahlberg, Chairman of the Swedish Chess Academy
The tournament is organized by the efforts of Carlsson and Swedish Chess Academy (www.schackakademien.se) and was open to the public with live transmission of the games, a moderator and live commentary in the famous (Sergel Gallerian) Sergel Mall in central Stockholm.
Some of the players were Jan Stahlberg, Partner of EQT, Soren Mellstig, Chairman of Trelleborg Group, Christer Fuglesang, Sweden’s first astronaut, Carina Björkefors Entercard Swedens VD (The company that sponsored the qualification tournament to Norway Chess with Magnus Carlsen as the Expert) Kare Gillstring and Jockum Wahlberg two well-known angel investors and chess sponsors.
Lennart Johansson and Abdinajib Osman won the competition!
1. Fri Tanke Christer Sturmark/Seyit Ali Ali 9
2. Astronaut Christer Fuglesang/Esmir Musinovic 5
3. Trellborg Sören Mellstig/Ilhan Bashir Elmi 5
4. EQT Jan Ståhlberg/Yones Ben Yazza 5
1. Lexicon Jockum Wahlberg/Affentra Kazantzidou 9
2. Affärsängel Kåre Gillstring/Ajla Kartal 7
3. Entercard Carina Björkefors/Ahmed Afgou 5
4. Swedbank Hans Westerberg/ Aziza Hakimova 3
1. CIMALGO Lennart Johansson/Abdinajib Osman 9
2. Transcom Steffan Pettersson/Khadija Hohamed 7
3. Monyx Mikael Kadri/Guleed Warsame 4
4. Kinnevik Arvid Norman/ Andreas Bchara 4
1. Polygon Jonas Granath/Adonai Amanuel 7
2. Pelaro Anders Wengholm/Zainab Samir Hussein 6
3. HP Susanna Berg/Jasmine Elmi 6
4. Krzymovski Juristbyrå Antonia Krzymowska/Honzoda Narzuleva 5
Fri Tanke – Lexicon 1-0
Polygon – CIMALGO 0-1
Fri Tanke – CIMALGO 0-1
1. CIMALGO Lennart Johansson/Abdinajib Osman
2. Fri Tanke Christer Sturmark/Seyit Ali Ali
3. Polygon/Lexicon Jonas Granath/Adonai Amanuel
4. Jockum Wahlberg/Affentra Kazantzidou
CLICK to see larger images. Hover to get descriptions.
According to the press release…
“In the The Chess Academy we want to show that chess is a great way to (in pleasant circumstances) meet people of different age, culture and background. Chess has taught me to see other people’s interests and thoughts and to have a strategic perspective on many decisions in life,” says Jan Stahlberg, Chairman of the Swedish Chess Academy.
The Swedish Chess Academy aims to show how chess can be a meeting point on equal terms, regardless of background and circumstances. With the game as a motivator chess has the potential to create new relationships and friendships between people who otherwise rarely would meet, or have few points of contact.