St. Petersburg, Russia’s second largest city been selected to host the World Chess Rapid and Blitz 2018 Championships after Saudi Arabia was banned to host the tournament for refusing to allow Israeli Players to compete. This was confirmed by the press service of the World Chess Federation (FIDE).
According to the FIDE official website, “the World Rapid and Blitz 2018 Championship is to take place between December 25 and December 31, with the prize giving ceremony on December 30 early evening.”
“I would like to thank our partners for helping us in a difficult moment and assisting us with the prompt organization of the championship with a decent prize-money fund in one of the most beautiful cities of the world,” FIDE President Arkady Dvorkovich said.
Earlier, Saudi Arabia was stripped of the right to host an international chess tournament after Israeli players threatened legal action over being barred from the event. With just weeks to go before the start of the World Blitz and Rapid Championship in Riyadh, organizers confirmed Monday they were switching the venue to Russia instead.