[12:39 pm] 07 January, 2008

The 68th Armenian men's chess championship kicks off at the Chess House
after Tigran Petrossian on January 8, 2008. Armenian Grand Masters
Smbat Lputian, Karen Asrian, Tigran Petrossian, Artashes Minassian,
Ashot Anastassian, Zaven Andreassian, Tigran Nalbandian, Ara Minassian,
Levon Babujian and Samvel Ter-Sahakian will compete at the first tour.

The winner of the championship will get monetary award and be involved
in the Armenian national team.

Armenian chess players will partake at a number of international
tournaments in the nearest future, Secretary General of the Armenian
Chess Federation Gagik Hovhannissian informed A1+.

The acting champion of the Armenian men's team Karen Asrian gained
7.5 points at a January tournament in 2007. Karen Asrian is also the
champion of 1999.

Smbat Lputian has held a champion's title for four times. He became
a champion in 1978 for the first time. Lputian last held the title
in 2001.

Armenian GMs Ashot Anastassian and Artashes Minassian have won a
champion's title for six times.