“I just want to say a very, very warm welcome to Gibraltar. Thank you for coming so far to play in this magnificent tournament. Chess and Gibraltar go hand in hand: not quite as much, perhaps, as chess and Russia, chess and Azerbaijan, chess in Bulgaria, but quite close - we’re catching up. And you have come to Gibraltar at a time when Gibraltar is opening up after the pandemic and you have come, some of you a very long way, to be here.
And I just want to say thank you for the support you’re providing, not only to chess and the magnificent way you are playing, but also for the support you are providing for Gibraltar as we emerge from the pandemic and open our doors to the rest of the world. I don’t want to say much more because I know there are some really important games to play, but my heart goes out to you, I’m enormously grateful to you for coming and playing in this tournament, this unique championship here in Gibraltar this year in 2021.
And I hope it won’t be long before you’re back here again, playing in other competitions. So, from me and from the whole of Gibraltar, and on behalf of the government of Gibraltar, thank you very much indeed, and I wish you all the success in the games that lie ahead. Thank you very much indeed.”
His Excellency Vice Admiral Sir David Steel, KBE, DL, governor to Gibraltar