General Nov 13, 2020 | 4:23 PMby Colin McGourty

Jan-Krzysztof Duda plays the Skilling Open... and Banter Blitz

Polish no. 1 Jan-Krzysztof Duda is one of 16 chess stars to play the Skilling Open, the opening event of the $1.5 million Champions Chess Tour that starts on November 22nd. Duda began to play aged 5 and went on to win the 2008 World Under 10 Championship. Since then he's made steady progress, with 2020 memorable for his beating Magnus Carlsen first in rapid and then in classical chess - the first person to manage that in over 2 years and 126 games. Now's your chance to take on Jan-Krzysztof as he plays chess24 Premium members in a Banter Blitz session starting on Saturday November 14th at 22:00 CET.

"It’s always interesting to watch his games because he always goes for it, he never plays for a draw," said World Champion Magnus Carlsen while watching his young Polish rival play the 2018 Olympiad. 

Duda first played for Poland in the Olympiad in Tromsø, Norway in 2014, when he scored 8.5/10 as a 16-year-old. Later that same year he won the European Rapid Championship. By 2017 he'd broken into the 2700 club, while in 2018 he won the Polish Championship, overtook his rival and mentor Radek Wojtaszek as Polish no. 1, and scored perhaps his best result yet in the World Blitz Championship. 

Duda almost caught Magnus on the final day of the 2018 World Blitz Championship | photo: Lennart Ootes, official website

Duda won 11 of his last 13 games to take silver, finishing just half a point behind Magnus Carlsen and a full 2 points ahead of Hikaru Nakamura. 

Duda has been ranked as high as world no. 12 and is close to forcing his way into the elite club. His ambitions are high, even if he admitted in an interview with Polish mainstream news site Onet that his outlook has changed.

When I was a child it seemed to me that winning the World Championship title was a question of time. Now I think a little differently. First I need to get into the Top 10, and then we’ll see. It would certainly be the crowning achievement of my whole career.  

Duda had mixed results in 2020, but wins over the current World Champion provided some of the highlights. When he beat Magnus in the online Lindores Abbey Rapid Challenge the people to congratulate him included his namesake, Polish President Andrzej Duda. 

Last month, in Altibox Norway Chess, Duda went down in history as the man to end Magnus Carlsen's incredible 125-game unbeaten streak in classical chess.

Jan-Krzysztof Duda is sure to be an exciting and ambitious addition to the Champions Chess Tour. The players so far confirmed for the 16-player Skilling Open, starting November 22nd, are as follows:

  1. Ding Liren
  2. Levon Aronian
  3. Teimour Radjabov
  4. David Anton
  5. Sergey Karjakin         
  6. Liem Quang Le
  7. Wesley So
  8. Anish Giri
  9. Jan-Krzysztof Duda

Banter Blitz with Jan-Krzysztof Duda

Before that, however, it’s your chance to take on the Polish no. 1 as he plays blitz against chess24 Premium members while talking about his moves. The session starts at 22:00 CET on Saturday and you can challenge by clicking the link below, hovering over Jan-Krzysztof’s chess24 username Hussarius under the video and selecting “Challenge me!” (that button will be active when he’s online):

If you’re not yet Premium you can save 40% now if you Go Premium using the voucher code DUDA40. Alternatively, check out the Early Bird offers for our Tour Pass.

We’ll be announcing a new participant for the Skilling Open each day and you can follow all the announcements on the Champions Chess Tour website or chess24’s Twitter, Facebook and Instagram accounts.

See also:

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