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US Masters Comes to North Carolina Print E-mail
By Gary Newsom   
August 2, 2012
GM Alexander Shabalov, registered for the 2012 US Masters
One of the most ambitious events ever held in the Southeastern US, the 2012 US Masters/North Carolina Open, will be held at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Greensboro from August 30 to September 3.

The tournament, which is presented by High Point University, will have a total unconditionally guaranteed prize fund of $30,000. The two events will be run in conjunction. This combination will give the both the serious master and the weekend wood pusher ample reason to make the trek to North Carolina' Piedmont Triad area.

The US Masters promises a star studded internationally flavored field. There are currently 8 GM's and a slew of other titled players already secured for the field. Other commitments are still forthcoming. The list of GM's shows the field's strength: Gildardo Garcia, Tamaz Gelashvili, Elshan Moradiabadi, Giorgi Margvelashvili, Alexander Shabalov, Mikheil Kekelidze, Yury Romanenko and Larry Kaufman will be playing.  This tournament is open only to players who have ratings over 2200, those who have ever been so rated, all foreign FIDE-rated players, and juniors (under age 21) rated over 2000. This is a 9 round event, Norm-eligible performances should be possible. Fans will be able to follow the event at www.ncchess.org.

The North Carolina Open will run alongside the US Masters on Friday night, August 31 through Sunday, September 2. This is a five round tournament that will be open to all. There will be four sections with $1000 first and place prizes that go 10 deep in each section.

Greensboro, a part of the Piedmont Triad area (which also includes Winston-Salem and High Point) is well positioned for some nice outings if you have the extra time. Greensboro is the home of the International Civil Rights Museum. The beautiful North Carolina mountains are just a short drive. And you will have a chance to sample one of the state's great treasures. North Carolina is a barbeque mecca with fans that include GM Shabalov.

This event in its current form is the brainchild of Chief Organizer Walter High, who along with co-organizer Gary Newsom, are committed to growing chess in the Southeast. Their philosophy is to provide excellent playing conditions in a good hotel, comparatively low entry fees and unconditionally guaranteed prize funds. All this adds up to a great value for chess players.

Look for further updates as the field is rounded out. Also look for a post tournament report by FM Todd Andrews.

High Point university website
US Masters info 
NC Open info

International Civil Rights Museum