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MENAFN - Muscat Daily - 15/04/2014
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(MENAFN - Muscat Daily) Oman seems to have become a favourite destination for world chess champion Magnus Carlsen when it comes to training for major international competitions.

Nearly five months after spending two weeks in Muscat to prepare for the 2013 World Championship - which Carlsen won by beating Viswanathan Anand in Chennai, India - the Norwegian is now back in the Omani capital to prepare for another big event.

The world No 1 arrived in Muscat last week, and according to sources, he is staying at the Al Bustan Palace, a Ritz-Carlton Hotel. The chess superstar's official blog says he is preparing for the Vugar Gashimov Memorial Tournament in Shamkir, Azerbaijan.

The meet will be held from April 19-30. Carlsen will take part in a six-player double round-robin contest with Fabiano Caruana (Italy), Hikaru Nakamura (US), Sergey Karjakin (Russia) and local stars Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Teimour Radjabov.

Carlsen is keeping an extremely low profile, which he had done during his last trip as well, ostensibly to stay away from the media glare and focus on his preparations

However, Carlsen's team posted a video clip on Youtube, titled 'Magnus Carlsen Training for Chess Tournament in Oman', on Monday with a short audio introduction from Carlsen's father, Henrik.

In the two-and-a-half-minute video clip, a visibly relaxed Carlsen is seen playing football on the lawns of the hotel, followed by a rapid chess session with an associate, and some shots of him taking a dip off the Muscat coast with his family.

With the video, Carlsen posted a note, saying, ''I always get a lot of questions about how I train for chess tournaments. Here is a peek at what I am up to in Oman before the Vugar Gashimov Memorial Tournament. A combination of training, fun and relaxation. PS: That's my dad introducing [me in the] the video.''

On his Muscat trip, Carlsen is accompanied by Henrik - also the chairman of the chess player's business unit - and other family members. Before arriving in Muscat, Carlsen played two rapid events in Brazil in March, winning both before travelling to the French Riviera for a round or two of golf with his manager Espen Agdestein.

Last November, the 22 year old Grandmaster had practised for a fortnight in Oman ahead of his clash with Anand. He went on to claim the world title after winning three games and drawing seven to achieve the victory mark of 6.5 points.


Muscat Daily

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