ACP should protect Kasparov's right to be seeded in the candidate process of the reunification 

Chess Today issue CT105(1254) - Wednesday April 14, 2004 . ACP : We are prepared to protect all chess players interests. Here are the excerpts from Chesstoday. My comments will follow.

ACP: We are Prepared to

Protect All Chess

Players' Interests

Yuri Vasiliev interviewed ACP President GM Joel Lautier for Russian newspaper Sport Express. We would like to thank our reader Jim Marfia for translating this interview into English especially for Chess Today.

The President of the recently-formed Association of Chess Professionals (ACP), French Grandmaster Joel Lautier, made good contacts with the press one of the main principles in the activities of the new 'chess players union'. So when I called him in Paris, he was happy to share his opinions on Ruslan Ponomariov's open letter  ó Joel, what was your reaction to FIDE Champion Ruslan Ponomariov's open letter?

ó It was obvious that Ponomariov would not agree to participate in the World Championship. After all, it wasn't too long ago that he had the chance to play Kasparov at once, in the Final; here, they were going to make him fight his way through. Clearly, the World Champion was not about to agree to this. The membership of the Association express their solidarity with Ponomariov, who was deprived of a chance to play a match with Kasparov for unconvincing reasons. This situation, where Kasparov is immediately allowed into the Final, while Ponomariov has to fight his way up from Stage One, appears inadequate to us.  



Hangin's take :  I sent this letter to ChessToday.
If ACP is willing to defend all players right, why donít they defend the rights of the current ex champions Garry Kasparov. No one disputed Ponomariovís right to play Kasparov. Ponomariov simply refused to play. He rejected reunification. Can't the ACP defend Ponomariov's rights without infringing on Kasparov's ? ACP should support Kasparovís right to be seeded in the semi final candidate match of the reunification. The Kasparov vs. Ponomariov match was a semi-final match. World Championship history tells us that all true world champions, upon losing their titles, have had either rights to automatic rematch or the right to be seeded in the candidate matches of the next world championship. Kasparov is valuable to the members of the ACP and to chess players in general. ACP should view Kasparov as a stepping-stone, or better put a stepping mountain. Any player who defeats Kasparov in a game, tournament, or match will significantly increase their marketability.  Defeating Kasparov is a resume-building event.  Kasparov adds great value to any tournament or match he plays in. As a chess fan, I always took note of any player who defeated a champion or ex champion in a game.  Kasparov road to his title was a lot tougher than Ponomariovís. ACP should back value.