Norway's Magnus Carlsen, currently the top ranked chess player in the world makes a move as he plays against India's former World Champion Vishwanathan Anand at the FIDE World Chess Championship Match in Sochi, Russia on Nov. 9, 2014.
Artur Lebedev—AP
November 9, 2014 11:20 AM EST

Nine months after the Winter Olympic Games, a different but equally fierce competition is going down in Sochi, Russia: the World Chess Championship.

On Saturday the current champion, 23-year-old Norwegian Magnus Carlsen, will begin to defend his title against Viswanathan “Vishy” Anand, a 44-year-old, four-time world champion whom Carlsen beat last year, the Wall Street Journal reports. (The championship’s opening ceremony took place Friday.)

Their face-off will be the first back-to-back rematch for the top title since 1990, when Garry Kasparov beat Anatoly Karpov in a best-of-24 showdown.

Carlsen is the first Western-born world chess champion since Bobby Fischer took the title in 1972 after beating Boris Spassky of Russia.


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