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    Most simultaneous chess games played-world record set by Kiril Georgiev
 SOFIA, Bulgaria -- Kiril Georgiev, a chess grandmaster from Bulgaria, played a total of 360 games simultaneously (winning 284, drawing 70 and losing six) during a marathon that lasted 14 hours and 8 minutes-setting the world record for the Most simultaneous chess games played.
   Photo: Bulgarian chess grandmaster Kiril Georgiev(C) plays a move while trying to break the world record for the largest number of simultaneous chess games vs 360 players in Sofia. photo AFP/Boryana Katsarova (enlarge photo)

The record number of games and the winning percentage of 88 per cent allowed Kiril Georgiev to apply formally for entry into the Book of World Records.

   His percentage total is reached by having each win count as a point and each draw as a half point. That means Georgiev scored 319 points out of a possible 360.

   Kiril Georgiev is a three time Bulgarian national champion for men and a former world champion for under 18. Until recently ha has been a participating coach for the national men's team.
   His coefficient by July 2006 was 2680, ranking second in Bulgaria, after former champion Veselin Topalov, and 36th in the world rank list.

   ...Somewhere around the middle of January, Kiril Georgiev started intensively his preparation for the world record. The ex-president of the Bulgarian Chess Federation Dr. Mikhail Iliev had personally created the programme for the famous GM.
   Dr. Iliev is also the official medical face of the Bulgarian national football team, national chess master, and sponsor of one of the strongest female teams in Bulgaria.

   As Kiril later revealed in an interview, the programme included a lot of walking (at least five to six hours per day), which is his favourable physical exercise in general, and couple of saunas every week. Two other GMs Atanas Kolev and Valentin Lukov had to help him in order to break the record.

   A unique chess labyrinth was built in Inter Expo Center especially for the simultaneous exhibition. Its length was approximately 500 meters.

   A month before the start of the event the organizers took a decision that every participant receives as a present for his participation the Staunton set with which he or she was playing, the special chess board, as well as their personal badge and certificate for participation in the world record event.

   For every move the Bulgarian grandmaster had to walk for about half a kilometer. It was no big wonder, that after six hours of play he had made only eight (!) moves.

   Kiril Georgiev is famous for his strong character. After 14 hours of play it was already obvious that he was breaking the record. However still 14 players kept on fighting. Kirilís helpers GMs Lukov and Kolev advised him to offer draws. But the GM considered his positions won, and proved it in a mere fourteen minutes!

    After 14 hours and 8 minutes (according to some sources 14 minutes) Georgiev won his last game, thus achieving 284 victories, 70 draws and only 6 losses. His scoring percentage was about 88%. The record was broken!

   The previous world record for the Most simultaneous chess games played was set in 2005 by Susan Polgar, the Hungarian-American four-time women's world champion. Polgar played 326 games, winning 309, drawing 14 and losing only three.   

   With input from the Report of GM Dejan Bojkov
Wednesday, February 25, 2009

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