Texas Tech Head Coach Competes in Chess World Cup

The tournament is an elimination playoff among the top 128 players in the world.

Alexander Onischuk

Alexander Onischuk

The head coach of the Texas Tech University Chess Program and chess grandmaster Alexander Onischuk is one of nine U.S. representatives who qualified to play in the 2013 Chess World Cup in Tromso, Norway.

He won his first two-game match, played on Sunday (Aug. 11) and Monday (Aug. 12) and starts his second match today.

The tournament, held Aug. 10 – Sept. 3, is an elimination playoff among the top 128 players in the world. The top two finishers will qualify for an eight-player Candidates’ Tournament that will determine the challenger for the world chess championship to be held in 2014.

“The World Cup is a series of short elimination matches among the world’s best, and it’s an incredible honor to qualify, which Alex has done repeatedly,” said Al Lawrence, Texas Tech Chess Program director. “Alex has the reputation of being one of the most difficult players to beat in the world. He won his first game on Sunday in great form, never losing control of the position.”

A former U.S. chess champion, Onischuk came to Texas Tech last fall, leading the Texas Tech Knight Raiders to two national division championships and best college team in the World Amateur Championship.

Onischuk finished third in the 2013 U.S. Chess Championship, represented the U.S. on its four-player Olympiad Team, and led the U.S. team to a gold-medal finish in the Pan-American Continental Championships held in Sao Paulo.

The Texas Tech University Chess Program—part of the Division of Institutional Diversity, Equity & Community Engagement—offers outreach programs to more than a dozen area schools and can provide teaching materials and other assistance on request.

Texas Tech Chess Program

Texas Tech Chess Program

Through the Texas Tech Chess Program, the university has focused its resources on providing scholarships for players, conducting research, championing scholastic, college and women's chess and reaching out to chess enthusiasts of all ages.

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