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Group photo of the ACO World Amateur Chess Championship Kos

Group photo of the ACO World Amateur Chess Championship Kos


Superstars visiting: Judit Polgar & Alexei Shirov

At the ACO World Amateur Chess Championship 2018 guest of honour and best female chess player of all times, Judit Polgar, presented the winners with their trophies. In the 8th round at the best lunchtime, many chess players were already at the table, the participants in the tournament hall temporarily did not believe their eyes and some even suspected a „Hungarian mirage“ when surprisingly the best female chess player of all times appeared in the playing hall.

For an exclusive group of chess enthusiasts the former Vice World Champion, Grandmaster Alexei Shirov offered a preparatory seminar in a private setting before the World Amateur Championship 2018. Picture below: GM Alexei Shirov (center) with the organizers team (from left to right): FM Jens Hirneise, IM Tobias Hirneise, GM Falko Bindrich and ACO president Lothar Hirneise



What participants say about previous ACO World Championships

“The participants are all very relaxed. Nothing is missing. A beautiful holiday tournament in a world-class atmosphere, with a great priceperformance ratio.“
Peter Trzaska, Germany, Group B (2001 - 2200)
“A big thank you to the ACO team for the organization of the ACO World Amateur Chess Championship. The tournament, its realization, the complete supporting program as well as the entire hotel (team) had to show an enormously high quality, which absolutely lived up to the claim of a world championship. I‘m looking forward to participating in this great tournament next year, to enjoying the Greek sun and the food and meeting the nice people I met again“
Marco Siebarth, Germany, Group C (1801 - 2000)
“I was there for the first time. And I am thrilled. So many opportunities to play and experience chess as a simple amateur, with free water, coffee and tea on the board, to talk to so many people from other countries, in such a beautiful place, with a great tour on a day off, with the best and more than abundant cuisine, and all this in a pleasant atmosphere that you spread. Thank you very, very much! Best regards from Switzerland“
Ruth Huber, Switzerland, Group E (1401 - 1600)
“I was lucky to have the chance to take part in the ACO Amateur Chess World Championship and I can simply say that it was the best organised event I have ever taken part in! The organizers took care of every detail and made all the players feel special. The venue was great, with lots of space and good lighting. I also liked the side events ( blitz tournament etc.) provided free of charge by the organizers. The schedule of the championship was well thought out and there was enough time for family and friends and to explore the island. All in all a great event and great initiative of the organizers! Bravo! I really hope that I can make the tournament an integral part of my family’s calendar and I hope that more and more people will support ACO and participate in future
championships!“
Constantine Ananiadis, USA, Group C (1801 - 2000)
“It was my first holiday in Greece and my first participation in a World Amateur Championship and I was looking forward to it for months. My expectations of a great time were exceeded in all areas. The fantastic hotel complex with the best conditions for such an event left nothing to be desired; the good service of the staff, the excellent kitchen as well as the hotel’s own sandy beach made it perfect and you could really enjoy your stay in a wonderful climate.

At this point I would like to praise the organizers, who had the preparation, management and execution of the tournament (including the side tournaments) up to the pairings and the festive award ceremony completely under control and ensured a perfect and smooth process, this was also confirmed by the other participants! Many thanks to GM Falko Bindrich and family Hirneise!

As a subscriber to Rochade Europa, I have been following the tournament for years and have now decided to participate. I can highly recommend it to any chess lover who wants to play a tournament in a relaxed atmosphere (Chess and Beach) in combination with a holiday feeling. Even my personally worst tournament result (there’s such a thing as that) will not cloud my memory of this beautiful time. Professionally and family-wise it fits with me with a participation at the earliest again in two years, but I can look forward to it already now.“
Andreas Borchert, Germany, Group C (1801 - 2000)
“A big compliment to the ACO team for their ideas, hard work, friendliness and professionalism. The whole organisation was simply perfect. There were no incidents, the sportiness was of a high level and there was a lot of contact between the organizers and the players. These contacts continued after the tournament.“
Harry Wubs, Netherlands, Group C (1801 - 2000)
“Dear chess friends. I am very happy about the nine days at the ACO World Amateur Championship! A great chess atmosphere, great chess players, great people and great friends. Thank you for organizing this perfect event and also for the blitz tournaments! I really liked them! Thanks again for so much chess, chess and even more chess on Greek islands!“
Antonio Maset, Argentina, Group E (1401 - 1600)


“Hats off and a big round of applause for the whole ACO team for another brilliant achievement! The friendly atmosphere at the tournament reached a level I have never experienced before at a chess tournament. Ever. The fact that the organisers recognised me directly from last year may not have been so surprising, but the fact that they all seemed to know the players by name after just a few days was really impressive and contributed greatly to everyone feeling they were part of the ACO family.“
Mikael Svensson, Sweden, Group B (2001 - 2200)
“The participants thanked the organizers for an extraordinary, outstanding organizational achievement at the closing event with long lasting applause, which already has cult status after only a few years. Analogous to the Olympic motto, here too, it is more important to be part of it than to win. With this in mind I would like to thank the organizers for a top organization that is unique in this form.“
Uwe Ritter, Germany, Group C (1801 - 2000)
“It’s not usually my way of praising everything - but it’s true that I’ve never seen anything like this tournament before. The ACO team left nothing to be desired, they were always responsive. The big playing hall, lots of space during the games, free cold drinks and coffee, and not to forget the seminars and the blitz tournaments, it was great. The ACO World Amateur Championship was therefore the best tournament for me in my amateur chess career. The hotel was clean and the players were warmly welcomed at the hotel reception. Players and accompanying persons had the same advantages. I don’t have the words to express our satisfaction. All in all, it was absolutely incredible, and even better!! Will we be there next year? Yes! Of course!“
Arezki Bouchelaghem, Switzerland, Group D (1601 - 1800)
“The ACO World Amateur Chess Championship was organized at the highest level and leaves me with many very good memories. I am very happy about the tournament, especially with my result. There was a lot of chess, a lot of fun and new friendships were made. First of all I would like to thank GM Falko Bindrich and the Hirneise family for organizing this really perfect tournament. Thanks to you everyone gets the chance to play with different opponents from all over the world, in addition even the chance to become world champion like me. I would also like to thank all my opponents and participants for the friendly atmosphere during the whole tournament. Finally, I would like to wish all past and future participants in ACO tournaments every success on the chessboard and in life.“
Nikolay Gutsulyak, Russia, Group G (0 - 1200)
“Great atmosphere with ideal playing conditions, many interesting chess tournaments such as single blitz, team blitz, seminars, simultaneous exhibitions and excursions.“
Vladimir Paleologu, Switzerland, Group B (2001 - 2200)
“What a great idea to combine a beach vacation with chess. Two things you love. As always, chess was fun. But we are also on holiday and had a great time. It was a great chance to make new friends. Language is not a barrier. For a few minutes I analyzed our game together with my Russian opponent, he in Russian and I in English, both with hand and foot. And we both understood it! One of the many little extras was to have a brilliant grandmaster at hand to help you with game analysis. A real blessing for all participants. We were treated like kings and queens.“
David Gilbert, England, Group E (1401 - 1600)