Profiles
Veselin Topalov
Bulgaria Veselin Topalov Veselin Aleksandrov Topalov born 15 March 1975. Topalov became the FIDE World Chess Champion by winning the FIDE World Chess Championship 2005. He lost his title in the World Chess Championship 2006 match against Vladimir Kramnik. He won the 2005 Chess Oscar. According to FIDE, which began ranking chess players in 1971, he has been number one a total of 27 months, which when compared to all others who have been so ranked, places Topalov in fifth place after Kasparov, Karpov, Fischer and Carlsen. He was ranked number one in the world from April 2006 to January 2007. He regained the world No. 1 ranking again in October 2008, and officially remained No. 1 until January 2010, when he fell to No. 2 behind Carlsen. Topalov has been the leader of the Bulgarian national team since 1994. At his first chess olympiad, the 1994 Chess Olympiad in Moscow he led the Bulgarians to a fourth-place finish, winning against Garry Kasparov on board one. In the knockout tournaments for the FIDE World Chess Championship, he reached the last 16 in 1999, the quarter-finals in 2000, the final 16 in 2001, and the semifinals in the 2004 tournament. In 2002, he lost the final of the Dortmund Candidates Tournament (for the right to challenge for the rival Classical World Chess Championship) to Péter Lékó. Based on his rating, Topalov was invited to the eight-player, double round-robin FIDE World Chess Championship in San Luis, Argentina, in September–October 2005. Scoring 6½/7 in the first cycle, Topalov had virtually clinched the tournament at the halfway mark, before drawing every game in the second cycle to win by 1½ points to become FIDE World Chess Champion. The average rating of the field in the championship was 2739, and Topalov's performance rating was 2890. In May 2006, Topalov defended his M-Tel Masters title, coming first with 6½/10, a half point ahead of Gata Kamsky (whom he beat 2–0). In January 2007, Topalov finished in joint first place (ahead of Kramnik, who finished fourth) at the Category 19 Corus Chess Tournament along with Levon Aronian and Teimour Radjabov. In May 2007, Topalov won the M-Tel Masters tournament for a third consecutive time with 5½/10. The 2007 Chess World Cup was won by Gata Kamsky. The Challenger Match between Topalov and Kamsky took place in February 2009 in Hall 6 of NDK Sofia. Topalov won that match 4½–2½ and qualified to play against the current world champion Viswanathan Anand for the World Chess Champion title. The World Chess Championship 2010 match was held in Sofia, Bulgaria, which Topalov lost by 6½–5½ . Topalov won the 2010 Linares chess tournament held from February 13 to 24 in Andalusia, Spain, defeating 2009 Chess World Cup champion Boris Gelfand in his final game. As the runner-up in the World Chess Championship 2010, Topalov automatically qualified for the Candidates Tournament for the World Chess Championship 2012, where he was the top seed. However, he lost to newly crowned U.S. champion Gata Kamsky in the quarterfinals. Topalov played in the 41st Chess Olympiad in Tromsø, where he won the gold medal on board one, with the second best overall tournament performance of 2872. Topalov is currently competing in the 2015 Grand Chess Tour, consisting of three tournaments (Norway Chess, Sinquefield Cup, and London Chess Classic). At the Norway Chess 2015 tournament, Topalov won clear first place with 6.5/9, earning him 13 Grand Chess Tour points. He scored +5-1=3 with wins over Magnus Carlsen, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Levon Aronian, Jon Ludvig Hammer and Alexander Grischuk, with a performance rating of 2946. Bulgaria
Hikaru Nakamura
USA Hikaru Nakamura Hikaru Nakamura born December 9, 1987, in Hirakata, Osaka Prefecture, Japan, is an American chess grandmaster, a four-time United States Chess Champion, represented the United States at five Chess Olympiads, winning two team bronze medals. When he was two years of age his family moved to the United States. Nakamura qualified for the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004, contested in Tripoli, Libya, and reached the fourth round, defeating grandmasters Sergey Volkov, Aleksej Aleksandrov, and Alexander Lastin before falling to England's Michael Adams, the tournament's third-seeded participant and eventual runner-up. On June 20, 2005, Nakamura was selected as the 19th Frank Samford Chess Fellow, receiving a grant of $32,000 to further his chess education and competition. Nakamura won the 2005 U.S. Chess Championship (held in November and December 2004), scoring seven points over nine rounds to tie grandmaster Alex Stripunsky for first place. Nakamura defeated Stripunsky in two straight rapid chess playoff games to claim the title and become the youngest national champion since Fischer. Nakamura finished the tournament without a loss and, in the seventh round, defeated grandmaster Gregory Kaidanov, then the nation's top-ranked player. Following that victory, Nakamura played a challenge match dubbed the "Duelo de Jóvenes Prodigios" in Mexico against Ukrainian grandmaster Sergey Karjakin and defeated his fellow prodigy, 4½–1½. In November and December 2005 Nakamura entered the FIDE World Chess Cup in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia, seeded 28th (of 128 players) but failed to advance beyond the first round. He lost each of his two games to Indian grandmaster Surya Ganguly. In 2006, Nakamura helped the U.S. team win the bronze medal in the International Chess Olympiad at Turin, playing third board behind Gata Kamsky and 2006 U.S. Champion Alexander Onischuk. In the same year he won the 16th North American Open in Las Vegas. In January 2007 Nakamura shared second place at the GibTelecom Masters in Gibraltar. In October 2007 Nakamura won the Magistral D'Escacs in Barcelona and the Corsican circuit rapid chess tournament. In November 2008, he won the Cap d'Agde Rapid Tournament in Cap d'Agde, defeating Anatoly Karpov in the semifinals and Vassily Ivanchuk in the finals. Nakamura won the 2009 U.S. Chess Championship, scoring 7/9 In July 2009, Nakamura won the Donostia-San Sebastian Chess Festival. In August 2009, Nakamura became the 960 World Chess Champion, beating GM Levon Aronian 3½–½ in Mainz, Germany. In November 2009, Nakamura participated in the BNbank blitz tournament in Oslo, Norway. He reached the final by winning all 12 of his games. In the championship, he faced the world No. 2 and reigning World Blitz Champion Magnus Carlsen. Nakamura won the match 3–1, further cementing his reputation as one of the best blitz players in the world. Nakamura began 2010 playing first board for the United States at the World Team Chess Championship held in Bursa, Turkey. Nakamura's impressive performance, including a convincing win over world No. 6 and recent Chess World Cup winner Boris Gelfand on the black side of a King's Indian Defense won him the individual gold medal for board one, and led the U.S. to a second place finish behind Russia. Nakamura began training with former world champion Garry Kasparov. The first of several training sessions was held in New York at the beginning of January, but the training ended in December 2011. From January 14 through January 30, Nakamura competed in the Tata Steel Grandmaster A tournament in Wijk aan Zee among a field of world No. 1 and defending champion Magnus Carlsen, world champion and world No. 2 Viswanathan Anand, world No. 3 and reigning World Blitz champion Levon Aronian, world No. 4 and former world champion Vladimir Kramnik, world No. 7 Alexander Grischuk, former FIDE world champion Ruslan Ponomariov, reigning Russian champion Ian Nepomniachtchi, reigning Chinese championWang Hao, Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Alexei Shirov, Anish Giri, Jan Smeets, and Erwin L'Ami. The average rating of the field was 2740, making this thirteen-round event a category 20 tournament. After twelve rounds, Nakamura was in clear first place with 8½ points going into the final round, half a point ahead of Anand and a full point ahead of Carlsen and Aronian. Nakamura clinched sole possession of first place, making him the first American to win the Wijk aan Zee tournament since 1980. At the World Team Chess Championship in Antalya, Turkey, Nakamura led the U.S. team to a fourth place finish. His personal record of 4½/7 (+3−1=3) earned him an individual silver medal on board one. Nakamura won the Gibraltar Chess Masters tournament scoring 8.5/10 (+7-0=3). Grand Prix In the final stage of the 4-stage Grand Prix event, Nakamura finished equal first with Fabiano Caruana and Dmitry Jakovenko with 6.5 out of 11 points at Khanty-Mansiysk. This was enough to finish 2 place in the Grand Prix, behind only Caruana, which automatically qualifies him for the Candidates tournament to determine a challenger for Magnus Carlsen in the next Chess World Championship. Norway Chess - Grand Chess Tour In the first stage of the Grand Chess Tour, Nakamura finished equal 2nd with Viswanathan Anand with 6.0 out of 9 points and a 2900 performance at Norway Chess (June 16th to 25th). This gives Nakamura 8 points in the first leg of the Grand Chess Tour. It also propelled his rating to a career high of 2814, and he is now at number 4 in the world rankings. USA
Fabiano Caruana
USA Fabiano Caruana Fabiano Luigi Caruana (born 30 July 1992) is an American chess grandmaster. On 15 July 2007 Caruana became a grandmaster (GM) at the age of 14 years, 11 months, 20 days - the youngest grandmaster in the history of both Italy and the United States (his US record was beaten in October 2009 by Ray Robson). In October 2014, he achieved an Elo rating of 2844, becoming the third highest rated player in history. In 2007, November–December: Caruana participated in the Italian Championship. The prior year he was the co-champion of Italy by tying with Michele Godena but losing the fifth rapid play-off game. This year he won with a score of +8 (9½/11) to become the youngest ever Italian champion. In 2009, November: Caruana played in the Chess World Cup 2009 at Khanty-Mansiysk in Russia. In the first two rounds he beat the Cuban grandmasters Lázaro Bruzón and Leinier Dominguez (Elo 2719), in the third the Russian Evgeny Alekseev (Elo 2715); in round four he lost, only in the rapid games, to Vugar Gashimov (Elo 2759 and seventh in the world). This performance allowed him to reach 2675 points Elo. In 2012, January: at 74th Tata Steel Chess Tournament A in Wijk aan Zee (previously known as Corus Chess) he finished on place 2 together with Magnus Carlsen and Teimour Radjabov. March: at Reykjavik Open 2012 in Reykjavik, Iceland he finished 1st with 7½/9. In 2013, April: at the third stage of the "FIDE Grand Prix Series 2012-2013" held in Zug, Switzerland, with 6 points out of 11 games Caruana shared third place with Ruslan Ponomariov behind the winner Veselin Topalov and the runner-up Nakamura. May–June: at the fourth stage of the "FIDE Grand Prix Series 2012-2013" held in Thessaloniki, Greece, Caruana shared second place with Gata Kamsky behind the winner Leinier Dominguez Perez. September–October: Caruana shared first place with Boris Gelfand with 5 points out 9 games at "Sixth FIDE Grand Prix" Paris. In the final game vs Dominguez Perez, Caruana had to win with the black pieces to hope to win the tournament solo and qualify for the Candidate's Tournament, but he repeated moves early in the opening finishing with a fast draw. October: Caruana won the "7th edition of Kings Tournament" Bucharest Romania, with 5 points out of 8 games. In 2014, April: at Shamkir Chess 2014, a 6 players double round-robin tournament held in Shamkir, Azerbaijan, in memory of Vugar Gashimov, Caruana finished second with 5½ points out of 10 games behind the winner Magnus Carlsen. August - September: Caruana won with 8½ points out of 10 games the 2014 Sinquefield Cup in Saint Louis, Missouri, one of the strongest tournaments ever held, featuring six of the world's top ten players, including the world champion Magnus Carlsen. With 7 consecutive wins from the start, 3 draws and 0 losses, Caruana achieved a 3080 plus performance rating, possibly the best tournament result in history, beating out Magnus Carlsen in the 2009 Nanjing Pearl Spring tournament and Anatoly Karpov in the1994 Linares chess tournament. October: Caruana won along with Boris Gelfand the FIDE Grand Prix Baku Tournament 2014 In 2015, May: Caruana won along with Hikaru Nakamura and Dmitry Jakovenko the FIDE Grand Prix Khanty-Mansiysk 2015. With this result Caruana won the FIDE Grand Prix 2014–15 and qualified for the 2016 Candidates Tournament. June-July: Caruana won the Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting, an 8 player single-round robin tournament, with 5½ points out of 7 possible points, ending the tournament with a 5 game win-streak. Caruana possesses dual citizenship of both Italy and the United States, so he has the option of FIDE affiliation with either the Italian Chess Federation or the United States Chess Federation. Caruana played for Italy from 2005 to 2015. On May 12, 2015 the USCF announced that he would be changing federations, to play for the USA. USA
Anish Giri
Netherlands Anish Giri Giri was born in St Petersburg on 28 June 1994 to a Nepalese father (Sanjay Giri), and a Russian mother (Olga Giri), achieved the grandmaster title at the age of 14 years and 7 months. In 2002, he moved to Sapporo, Japan with his parents and lived there until 2008. Since February 2008, Giri and his family have been living in Rijswijk, Netherlands. Giri is a three-time Dutch Chess Champion (2009, 2011 and 2012). He has represented the Netherlands at three Chess Olympiads (2010, 2012, 2014). In January 2012, Giri won the 54th annual Reggio Emilia chess tournament. Despite being the lowest rated player in a category 20 tournament (average rating 2744), Giri scored four wins, two losses and four draws for a clear first place (performance rating of 2823). He shared third place in Biel Chess Tournament 2012. He is participating in FIDE Grand Prix Tournament series 2014-15. Netherlands
Liren Ding
China Liren Ding Born October 24, 1992, Chinese chess grandmaster and the Chinese Chess Champion. On 6 June 2009, at the age of 16, he became the youngest ever person to win the title of Chinese Chess Championship. In April 2011 he won the Chinese Chess Championship for the second time, and won the title again the next year at the age of 19. In October 2009, he became China's 30th grandmaster. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but was defeated in the first round by Wesley So. In 2015 Tata Steel Chess Tournament, Ding Liren drew Magnus Carlsen and finished second, half a point behind Carlsen. China
Vladimir Kramnik
Russia Vladimir Kramnik Born 25 June 1975 in Tuapse, Russian chess grandmaster. He was the Classical World Chess Champion from 2000 to 2006, and the undisputed World Chess Champion from 2006 to 2007. He has won three team gold medals and three individual medals at Chess Olympiads, also won team gold medals European( 1992) and World(2013) Team Championships. Kramnik is last winner of World Cup (2013). He is holder Chess Oscar(2000, 2006). His first notable result in a major tournament was his gold medal win as first reserve for the Russian team in the 1992 Chess Olympiad in Manila. His selection for the team caused some controversy in Russia at the time, as he was only sixteen years old and had not yet been awarded the grandmaster title, but his selection was supported by Garry Kasparov. He scored eight wins, one draw, and no losses. In 1995, Kramnik served as a second for Kasparov in the Classical World Chess Championship 1995 match against challenger Viswanathan Anand. Kasparov won the match 10½–7½. In January 1996, Kramnik became the world number-one rated player; although having the same FIDE rating as Kasparov (2775), Kramnik became number one by having played more games during the rating period in question. This was the first time since December 1985 that Kasparov was not world number one, and Kramnik's six month stretch (January through June 1996) as world number one would be the only time from January 1986 through March 2006 where Kasparov was not world number one. By becoming number one, Kramnik became the youngest ever to reach world number one, breaking Kasparov's record; this record would stand for 14 years until being broken by Magnus Carlsen in January 2010. In October 2000, he defeated Garry Kasparov (this was only the second time in history that a World Champion had lost a match without winning a single game) in a match played in London, and became the Classical World Chess Champion. In late 2004, Kramnik successfully defended his title against challenger Péter Lékó in a drawn match played in Brissago, Switzerland. In October 2006, Kramnik, the Classical World Champion, defeated reigning FIDE World Champion Veselin Topalov in a unification match, the World Chess Championship 2006. As a result Kramnik became the first undisputed World Champion, holding both the FIDE and Classical titles, since Kasparov split from FIDE in 1993. In 2007, Kramnik lost the title to Viswanathan Anand, who won the World Chess Championship 2007 tournament ahead of Kramnik. He challenged Anand at the World Chess Championship 2008 to regain his title, but lost. During his reign as world champion, Kramnik never regained the world number-one ranking, doing so only in January 2008 after he had lost the title to Viswanathan Anand; as in 1996, Kramnik had the same FIDE rating as Anand (2799) but became number one due to more games played within the rating period. Kramnik's 12 years between world number-one rankings is the longest since the inception of the FIDE ranking system in 1971. And in year 2013, Kramnik played in the Candidates Tournament, which took place in London, from 15 March to 1 April. He finished with +4−1=9, sharing the first place with Magnus Carlsen, who won due to having better tiebreaks. In the Chess World Cup 2013, held in Norway from 11 August to 2 September, Kramnik finished in first place, defeating Dmitry Andreikin in the four-game final match 2½–1½. Russia
Wesley So
USA Wesley So Born October 9, 1993 in Bacoor, Filipino chess grandmaster representing the United States. In October 2008, he became the youngest player to pass 2600 Elo rating, breaking the record held by Magnus Carlsen. In early 2013, So passed the "elite" 2700 rating and in February 2015 he entered the World top 10 after winning the Millionaire Chess Open and tying for second place at the 2015 Tata Steel Chess Tournament. So won three-time Philippines Chess Champion. In January 2007, So qualified for the Chess World Cup 2007 via the Zonal tournament held in Phu Quoc, Vietnam, scoring 5.5/9. So won a seat in the 2009 Chess World Cup by finishing second at the Zonal Championship held in July 2009 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam. At the age of 16, So became one of the stories of the 2009 Chess World Cup held in Khanty-Mansiysk after progressing to the fourth round before being knocked out by Vladimir Malakhov after rapid tiebreaks. He defeated Gadir Guseinov after rapid tiebreaks then defeated the experienced Vassily Ivanchuk and Gata Kamsky. This was followed by sharing fourth place at the Corus Chess Group B in early 2010 with Erwin l'Ami scoring 7.5/13 and sharing seventh place with 5.5/9 at the Aeroflot Open. Sharing second place with 6.5/9 at the Asian Continental Championships in April earned him a spot in the Chess World Cup 2011 and he secured a second Philippine Chess Championship. In July 2011 he won the Philippine Chess Championship for a third time. So's rating would hover over the coming year with a solid performance at the strong AAI International Tournament in New Delhi among performances typical for his rating. In September 2012, So found success in first place at the Quebec International, scoring 7.5/9, half a point ahead of Lazaro Bruzon. So came second in the Zonal 3.3 Championship in Tagaytay, Philippines earning a place in the Chess World Cup 2013 and shared first place with Pavel Eljanov and Bassem Amin at the Reykjavik Open. In doing so he breached the 2700 Elo mark, considered to be the level of an elite player and placed him 50th in the World. So won also gold at the 2013 Summer Universiade in Kazan, Russia, the first such medal for the Philippines, after a play off match with Zaven Andriasian. After defeating Alexander Ipatov in the first round of the Chess World Cup, he was knocked out by eventual semi-finalist Evgeny Tomashevsky. He also won the 49th Capablanca Memorial tournament, held in Havana, a point clear of Lazaro Bruzon, soon after winning the ACP Golden Classic tournament in Bergamo, Italy with a score of 4.5/6, a point ahead of Baadur Jobava.[24] This string of tournaments propelled So to 12th in the FIDE World Rankings. So's transfer to the United States Chess Federation was confirmed in the November 2014 rating list. He won the Millionaire Chess Tournament held in Las Vegas in October 2014 scoring 8.5/13 and shared second place at the Tata Steel Masters in January 2015. USA
Alexander Grischuk
Russia Alexander Grischuk Born October 31, 1983, Russian chess grandmaster and Russian Champion in 2009. He has won two team gold medals and one individual bronze medal at Chess Olympiads. He was a member of the gold-medal winning Russian team at the World Team Chess Championship in Antalya 2013. He has also won the World Blitz Chess Championships of 2006 and 2012. In the FIDE World Chess Championship 2000, Grischuk made it to the semifinals, losing to Alexei Shirov. In the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004 he made it to the quarter finals, where he lost 3–1 to eventual champion Rustam Kasimdzhanov. In 2009, Grischuk won the Russian Chess Championship. In the same year he became the champion of Linares 2009, winning on tie-break over Vassily Ivanchuk because he had more wins. In 2010, he finished second in Linares to Veselin Topalov. Grischuk finished third in the FIDE Grand Prix 2008-2010, which qualified him as the first alternate for the Candidates Tournament of the World Chess Championship 2012 cycle. Upon the withdrawal of world No. 2 Magnus Carlsen from the candidates tournament, Grischuk was appointed to take his place. In the World Chess Championship 2012 Candidates tournament, Grischuk won Aronian in the first round. After splitting the four regular games 2–2, Grischuk won the rapid playoff 2½–1½. In the semifinals, he faced former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik. Because of his strength as a blitz player, Grischuk employed the strategy of drawing early with white and defending vigorously with black in order to force the match into a blitz playoff. The strategy worked, as both the regular and rapid games were all drawn. Grischuk then won the blitz playoff 1½–0½ to advance to the final. In the final, he faced 2009 Chess World Cup champion Boris Gelfand for the right to play Viswanathan Anand in 2012 for the World Championship. After drawing the first five games, Gelfand won the final game to win the match 3½–2½. Russia
Levon Aronian
Armenia Levon Aronian Born 6 October 1982, Armenian chess Grandmaster. On the March 2014 FIDE rating list, he was ranked number two in the world and had an Elo rating of 2830, making him the fourth highest rated player in history. Aronian won the Chess World Cup 2005. He led the Armenian national team to the Gold medals in the 2006 (Turin), 2008 (Dresden)and 2012 (Istanbul) Chess Olympics and at the World Team Chess Championship in Ningbo 2011. He won the FIDE Grand Prix 2008–2010, qualifying him for the Candidates tournament for the World Chess Championship 2012, where he was knocked out in the first round. He was World Rapid Chess Champion in 2009, and World Blitz Chess Champion in 2010. His 2005 World Cup victory qualified him for the Candidates Tournament of the World Chess Championship 2007, scheduled for May–June 2007. In this tournament he played GM Magnus Carlsen, and they tied 3–3 in the initial six games, then 2–2 in rapid chess, and finally Aronian won 2–0 at blitz chess. In the finals, he defeated Shirov 3½–2½. This qualified him for the final stage of the championship, which was played in Mexico. There, he scored 6/14, finishing seventh out of eight players Aronian played in the FIDE Grand Prix 2008–2010, and won the Grand Prix with one tournament to go, qualifying him for the Candidates tournament for the World Chess Championship 2012. In August 2010, he attempted to defend the World Rapid Chess title, but lost to eventual champion American Gata Kamsky, winning the silver medal on board one, and raising his rating to a career-high 2794. In November 2011 Aronian played in the category 22 Tal Memorial in Moscow in a round robin with ten players. He won two games, against Ivanchuk and Svidler, and drew the rest. He tied for first with Magnus Carlsen, each scoring 5½/9. Aronian played in the 75th Tata Steel Chess Tournament from 11 to 26 January 2014 in Wijkaan Zee. In the 11-round tournament, he scored 8 points (+6−1=4), winning clear first 1½ points ahead of Anish Giri and Sergey Karjakin. Armenia
Sergey Karjakin
Russia Sergey Karjakin Born January 12, 1990, Ukrainian-born Russian chess grandmaster. He was a chess prodigy and holds the record for the world's youngest Grandmaster, at the age of 12 years and 7 months. Karjakin won the Norway Chess Tournament twice (2013, 2014) and Corus Chess once (2009). He also won the 2012 World Rapid Chess Championship. He has competed in six Chess Olympiads, three times for Ukraine and three times for Russia, winning three gold medals, two silver and a bronze. He was a member of the gold-medal winning Russian team at the World Team Chess Championship in Antalya in 2013. During the Chess World Cup 2007, which served as a qualification tournament for the World Chess Championship 2009, Karjakin reached the semi-finals, in which he lost to Alexei Shirov. In February 2009 he won his first elite tournament in the A group of the Corus chess tournament in Wijkaan Zee (category XIX) with a score of 8/13. Later he also won the ACP World Rapid Cup which was conducted from 27 May to 29 May 2010, defeating Dmitry Jakovenko in the final by 4–3. The next year, Karjakin shared first place (second on tiebreak) with Magnus Carlsen at the Bazna Kings Tournament and third place with Vassily Ivanchuk and Ian Nepomniachtchi in the category 22 Tal Memorial in Moscow. In July 2012 Karjakin won the World Rapid Chess Championship a full point ahead of world number one Magnus Carlsen in Astana, Kazakhstan. In Nov-Dec 2012 Karjakin shared first place with Wang Hao and Alexander Morozevich with 6.5/9 in the FIDE Grand Prix event held in Tashkent, Uzbekistan. In March 2014, he finished in second place in the FIDE Candidates Tournament held in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia, behind Viswanathan Anand. On July 25, 2009, Karjakin adopted Russian citizenship. In 2014 FIDE Grand Prix held in Baku, Azerbaijan he won the third place. Russia
Evgeny Tomashevsky
Russia Evgeny Tomashevsky Born 1 July 1987 in Saratov, Russian chess Grandmaster. In 2009 Tomashevsky won the 10th European Individual Chess Championship after tie-breaks. The decisive match against Vladimir Malakhov went into armageddon stadium, where Malakhov blundered a rook in a winning position. In February 2015 Tomashevsky won the FIDE Grand Prix in Tbilisi as a clear first. He scored 8/11, with no losses and wins over Jobava, Grischuk, Mamedyarov, Vachier-Lagrave and Kasimdzhanov. His performance rating in this tournament was 2921. He was a member of the gold-medal-winning Russian team at the World Team Chess Championship 2009 in Bursa. He won last Superfinal of Rusian Championship which held in August 2015 Russia
Dmitry Jakovenko
Russia Dmitry Jakovenko Born 29 June 1983, Russian chess grandmaster (2001). The winner of the European Team Championship as a member of the Russian team (2007), the winner of the World Team championship as a part of the Russian team (2010), European champion (2012), Olympiad Silver medal prize winner as a member of the Russian Team (2012), the owner of the Cup of Russia (2013). Dmitry Jakovenko entered the Moscow State University the faculty of computational mathematics and cybernetics and graduated with distinction in 2004. In 2001 Jakovenko became a World Champion Under 18. In March 2012 Dmitry gained a victory in the European Chess Championship held in Plovdiv with the result 8½ out of 11 and became the Champion of Europe. Russia
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave
France Maxime Vachier-Lagrave Born 21 October 1990, French chess Grandmaster and the 2009 World Junior Chess Champion. He is a three time French Chess Champion (2007, 2011, shared 2012) and reached the semi-finals of the Chess World Cup 2013. Vachier-Lagrave is currently ranked No. 1 in France . Winner of 2009 Biel tournament with 6 points out of 10 ahead of Morozevich and Ivanchuk. France
Michael Adams
England Michael Adams Born 17 November 1971, British chess Grandmaster (1989). His highest ranking is world No. 4, achieved several times from October 2000 to October 2002. His peak Elo rating is 2761. He has achieved good results in World Chess Championship tournaments. Several times a World Championship Candidate, he reached the semifinals in 1997, 1999 and 2000. At the 2004 FIDE Championship, he reached the final, narrowly losing out to Rustam Kasimdzhanov in the tie-break games. Adams' early endeavors were already beginning to pay dividends at the British Championship of 1987, where he gained his final IM norm and took the best junior prize. He proceeded to win the full Championship title in 1989, just seventeen years old. Making only rare appearances, he won again in 1997, jointly with Matthew Sadler. After a lengthy break, he claimed further titles in 2010, at Canterbury and in 2011 at Sheffield. Adams also won the British Rapidplay Championship in 1995, 1996 and 1999. Adams has performed strongly in a number of World Chess Championship tournaments. In 1993 he finished equal first (with Viswanathan Anand) in the Groningen Interzonal tournament to determine challengers for the PCA World Chess Championship 1995. This took him to the Candidates Tournament matches, where he beat Sergei Tiviakov in the quarter finals, but lost to Anand in the semifinals. He also qualified for the Candidates Tournament for the FIDE World Chess Championship 1996, losing to Boris Gelfand in the first round of matches. In 1997, he took part in the 1997-1998 FIDE World Championship, which, for the first time, was a large knockout event, the winner of which would play a match against reigning champion Anatoly Karpov. This tournament included most of the world's top players (Garry Kasparov, Vladimir Kramnik and Gata Kamsky were the only notable absentees), and Adams won short matches against TamazGiorgadze, Sergei Tiviakov, Peter Svidler, Loek van Wely and Nigel Short, before coming up against Anand in the final round. Their four games at normal time controls were all drawn, as were four rapidplay games at quicker time limits, before Anand won the sudden-death game, thereby eliminating Adams from the competition. The 1999 FIDE World Championship resulted in another semifinal finish for Adams, before losing to Vladimir Akopian. Yet again, he reached the semifinals of the 2000 FIDE World Championship before losing to eventual winner Anand. In the 2002 FIDE World Championship he won his first three rounds before being knocked out in the 'round of 16' by Peter Svidler. Adams came closest to claiming a world title at the 2004 FIDE Championship, when he reached the final, winning matches against Hussein Asabri, Karen Asrian, Hichem Hamdouchi, Hikaru Nakamura, Vladimir Akopian and Teimour Radjabov. However, he lost to Rustam Kasimdzhanov in the final (3½–4½ after rapidplay tie-breaks, the match having been tied 3–3 after the six standard games). As runner-up in the 2004 event, Adams was one of eight players invited to the FIDE World Chess Championship 2005. He finished in equal sixth–seventh place, with a score of 5½ out of 14. In May–June 2007, Adams participated in the Candidates Tournament to qualify for the FIDE World Chess Championship 2007. In the first round he drew 3–3 with Alexey Shirov, and was beaten 2½–½ in the rapidplay playoff. At the Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting in July–August 2013 Adams scored possibly the best result of his career, with a rating performance of 2925. He won the tournament with 5 wins and 4 draws (7/9), ahead of a field of 9 other grandmasters whose ratings averaged over 2705, including Fabiano Caruana (2796) and Kramnik (2784). England
Boris Gelfand
Israel Boris Gelfand Born 24 June 1968, Israeli chess Grandmaster. A six-time World Championship Candidate (1991, 1994-95, 2002, 2007, 2011, 2013), he won the Chess World Cup 2009 and the 2011 Candidates Tournament, making him Challenger for the World Chess Championship 2012. Although the match with defending champion Viswanathan Anand finished level at 6–6, Gelfand lost the deciding rapid tie break 3-1. Gelfand has won major tournaments at Wijkaan Zee, Tilburg, Moscow, Linares and Dos Hermanas. He has competed in eleven Chess Olympiads and has held a place within the top 25 players ranked by FIDE rating since January 1990. In the July 1987 FIDE rating list, Gelfand made his first appearance in the top 100 players. In Gelfand's first appearance at the USSR Championship held in Odessa in 1989, he shared second place with Alexander Beliavsky, Dolmatov and Vereslav Eingorn, earning a prize for "greatest amount of material sacrificed in the course of a tournament". He received invitations to major tournaments in 1990, placing second behind Garry Kasparov with 7½/11 in Linares and Dortmund, sharing first with Ivanchuk in the Manila Interzonal and third at Tilburg. At the Candidates Matches in early 1991, Gelfand defeated Predrag Nikolic 5½-4½ but was beaten in the next round by Nigel Short 3-5. Despite the disappointment, Gelfand claimed first place at Belgrade with 7½/11 and shared second place with Kasparov at Reggio Emilia, half a point behind Viswanathan Anand. A solid second place at Munich in 1993 preceded his biggest tournament win to this point, winning the Biel Interzonal with a score of 9/13, earning a spot in the 1994 Candidates Matches. Gelfand went on to defeat Adams 5-3 in the quarter finals and Vladimir Kramnik 4½-3½ in the semi-finals, before losing to Anatoly Karpov in the Candidates Final 6-3 in 1995. Gelfand's best result at the FIDE Knockout World Championships came in 1997, defeating JoëlLautier (4-2), Vladislav Tkachiev (3½-2½) and Dreev (2.5-1.5) before being knocked out in the semi-finals by eventual tournament winner Anand (1½-½). He played in Dortmund, which was the Candidate Tournament for the Classical World Chess Championship 2004, but only managed to finish in third place in the preliminary group, so didn't progress to the knockout stages. He also finished in sixth place at the Chess World Cup 2005, earning a place in the 2007 Candidates Matches. Gelfand won his Candidates matches against Rustam Kasimdzhanov 5½-3½ and Gata Kamsky 3½-1½, to qualify for the Championship tournament, held in Mexico City. Despite being ranked seventh in the World Chess Championship 2007 by FIDE rating, Gelfand caused an upset in finishing joint second (third on tiebreak) with Vladimir Kramnik, a point behind Viswanathan Anand. In the Chess World Cup 2009, Gelfand was the top seed, and defeated Judit Polgár, reigning World Junior Champion Maxime Vachier-Lagrave, Dmitry Jakovenko, and Sergey Karjakin to reach the final. He then faced former FIDE World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov for the championship, and won the match 7–5 in a playoff. By winning the Chess World Cup 2009, Gelfand qualified for the World Chess Championship 2012 Candidates Tournament. In May 2011, Gelfand participated in the Candidates Matches in Kazan, Russia where he was seeded fourth. In the quarterfinals, he won a complex struggle on the black side of the Najdorf Defense in game three to defeat Shakhriyar Mamedyarov 2½–1½ and advance to the semifinals, where he faced American Gata Kamsky. After splitting the first four games 2–2, Kamsky won game three in the rapid playoff to go ahead 2–1, forcing Gelfand to win with black in the final rapid game in order to avoid elimination. Gelfand was up to the task, and then won the blitz playoff 2–0 to advance to the final. In the final, he faced Alexander Grischuk. After drawing the first five games, Gelfand won the sixth and final game on the white side of a Grünfeld Defence to win the match and the tournament 3½–2½.As winner of the Candidates Tournament, Gelfand faced Anand for the 2012 World Championship. His victory in game seven gave him the lead in the match, only to lose the lead in game 8 in a 17-move miniature. The match after its conclusion was level at 6 points each, but Anand won the rapid playoff 2½–1½ to retain the title. Soon after the match, Gelfand shared first place with Veselin Topalov and Mamedyarov at the FIDE Grand Prix event held in London, with a last round win over Kasimdzhanov, scoring 7/11. He played in the 2013 Candidates Tournament, which took place in London, from 15 March to 1 April. He finished fifth, with 6½/14. From June 2013, Gelfand won the Tal Memorial beating Alexander Morozevich, Fabiano Caruana and Hikaru Nakamura, scoring 6/9, half a point ahead of Magnus Carlsen. He gained 18 rating points and achieved his all-time highest Elo rating of 2773. Gelfand bounced back from a fourth-round exit from the World Cup to Maxime Vachier-Lagrave by sharing first with Caruana in the final FIDE Grand Prix in Paris. He gained 11.9 rating points and again achieved a record personal rating of 2777. He finished fourth in the Grand Prix overall standings with 325 points missing out on a Candidates place due to his weak results in the Tashkent and Beijing events. He shared first with Caruana at the next FIDE Grand Prix event held in Baku. Israel
Radosław Wojtaszek
Poland Radosław Wojtaszek Born 13 January 1987, in Elbląg, Poland, Polish chess Grandmaster, currently the highest rated player from that country. In 2004 he won the European Youth Chess Championship (U-18), the World Youth Chess Championships (U-18) He won the Polish Chess Championship in 2005. In 2006 Wojtaszek played for the Polish team at the Chess Olympiad played in Turin scoring 9 points out of 11 games. In December 2008 Wojtaszek became the European rapid chess champion. In 2009 Wojtaszek finished second in the Polish championship, shared second with Michael Roiz at the international tournament in Lublin and won the Najdorf memorial played in Warsaw. In January 2010 Wojtaszek finished again second in Polish championship. Wojtaszek won the 5th International Tournament of Polonia Wrocław played between the end of June and beginning of July 2010. He participated in the San Juan International tournament played in Pamplona during the end of July and beginning of August 2010 and scored 6½ points out of 9 games winning the tournament. At the Chess Olympiad in Khanty Mansiysk, Wojtaszek played on the first board for Poland scoring 6 points in 9 games. In June 2011 he won the 9th Gyorgy Marx Memorial in Paks, Hungary. In December 2013 he took clear first with 6/7 in the 37th Zurich Christmas Open. He has been one of the four seconds to former world chess champion Viswanathan Anand since his successful title defence match against Vladimir Kramnik in 2008, also assisting him in defending his title in 2010 against Veselin Topalov and in 2012 against Boris Gelfand Poland
Teimour Radjabov
Azerbaijan Teimour Radjabov Born 12 March 1987, Azerbaijani chess grandmaster. Radjabov earned the title of Grandmaster in March 2001 at the age of 14, making him the second-youngest grandmaster in history at the time. In Linares 2003, not yet 16 years old, he became the first player in seven years to beat Garry Kasparov with the black pieces in a rated game. He has won two team gold medals (2009, 2013) and bronze medal in 2007 and silver in 2011 at European Team Championships. In 1999, being the youngest of the participants Radjabov won the European Under 18 Championship, with the six years older Evgeny Postny in second place. In 2002, Radjabov is the youngest player ever to make the FIDE Top 100 Players list. With a rating of 2599 in January 2002 he was ranked 93rd in the world while still 14 years old. In 2003 Radjabov defeated Garry Kasparov, Viswanathan Anand, and Ruslan Ponomariov with the black pieces, making him the first player to have beaten three former and reigning FIDE World Chess Champions with black in one year. Hikaru Nakamura repeated the feat in 2011 by beating Ponomariov, Anand and Vladimir Kramnik. In 2004, Radjabov once again participated in Linares and shared fourth place with Veselin Topalov, one point behind winner Vladimir Kramnik, after drawing both his games against Garry Kasparov. He also reached the semifinals (earning a bronze medal) at the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004. In 2005, Radjabov won Dos Hermanas in April, ahead of among others Dreev and Azmaiparashvili. Later in the year he finished second in the European Championship. In 2007, Radjabov shared first place at the Category 19 Corus Chess Tournament in Wijk aan. In 2009, Radjabov led the Azerbaijani team to victory at the European Team Chess Championship in Novi Sad. In 2010, Radjabov shared second place in Astrakhan, securing second place in the FIDE Grand Prix 2008–2010, thereby qualifying for the Candidates tournament for the World Chess Championship 2012. In Bazna the following month Radjabov shared second place with Boris Gelfand after beating him in both their individual games (Carlsen won the tournament). Radjabov finished in second place also in the World Blitz Championship. In 2011, He playing first board for the team SOCAR in the European Chess Cup Championships, with the team coming second overall. In November he reached a new peak rating of 2781. In 2012, Radjabov competed in the Tata Steel Chess Tournament in Wijk aan Zee. The average rating of the field was 2755 and Radjabov scored +3 −0 =10 and tied for second place with Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana. It was his fourth consecutive top three finish in Wijk. In the even stronger Tal Memorial he shared second place again (+2 −1 =6), behind winner Carlsen, and reached a new peak rating and ranking as No. 4 with 2788 on the July list. Radjabov also competed as first board in the 2012 Olympiad in Istanbul Turkey 2012, and as a result pushed his rating from 2788 to his personal all-time high of 2793, and received second highest performance on the first board. Radjabov won two time (2012,2014) in the European Chess Club Cup by playing at Socar Azerbaijan team. Azerbaijan
Pendyala Harikrishna
India Pendyala Harikrishna Pendyala Harikrishna (born May 10, 1986) is a chess player from Guntur, Andhra Pradesh, India. Harikrishna became the youngest grandmaster from India on September 12, 2001. In November 2004, he won the World Junior Chess Championship. In international team competition, Harikrishna has represented the Indian team in six Chess Olympiads since 2000. In May 2011 he won the Asian Chess Championship. In January 2012 he won group B of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament. As a debutant in A group of the Tata Steel Chess Tournament in January 2013 Harikrishna finished in the first half (7th place) and reached an Elo rating of over 2700. In August 2013 he won Biel chess tournament (Masters Open Tournament) with 8½/11 and the Biel Rapid Tournament with 7½/9. In June 2015, he won the 10th Edmonton International Chess Festival with a score of 7.5/9. • World Youth Chess Championship, 2002, Iraklio (Greece), Bronze (under-18). • Asian Team Chess Championship, 2003, Jodhpur India, Team Silver. • Gibraltar Masters Chess Tournament, 2004, Gibraltar, Bronze. • World Junior Champion, 2004, Kochi, Gold. • Spanish Team Chess Championship, 2005, Spain, Team Gold (first board player). • Reykjavík Open, 2006, Shared First. • Asian Games (classical game)team, 2006, Doha, Gold. • Reggio Emilia chess tournament, 2007, shared second place. • Spice Cup Tournament, 2008, USA, Gold. • Nancy closed chess tournament, 2009, Nancy, France, Gold. • Asian Team Chess Championship, 2009, Kolkata, Gold. • World Team Chess Championship, 2009, Turkey, Bronze. • New York Open, 2010, New York,USA, Gold. • Asian Continental Individual Chess Championship, 2011, Iran, Gold. • Won Cappelle-la-Grande Open 2012 • Won Biel chess tournament (Masters Open Tournament) 2013. • Asian Blitz Chess Championship, 2014, Sharjah, UAE, silver • Won 10th Edmonton International Chess Festival, 2015, Edmonton, Canada. India
Shakhriyar Mamedyarov
Azerbaijan Shakhriyar Mamedyarov Shakhriyar Mamedyarov was born on April 12, 1985 in Sumgayit, Azerbaijan. In 2003 he won the World Junior Chess Championship. He repeated his victory in 2005 (thus becoming the only two-time champion), achieving a 2953 performance rating after eight rounds. This gained him an invitation to the Essent Tournament 2006 in Hoogeveen, and by winning this one and the 2007 edition, Mamedyarov achieved world fame. In 2005 Mamedyarov competed at the European Club Cup and had the second highest performance rating (2,913) among all of the participants (Vassily Ivanchuk had the highest). Mamedyarov attained joint first place at the Aeroflot Open in Moscow in February 2006, with a score of 6½/9. In October 2006, he won the closed Essent Chess Tournament in Hoogeveen with 4½/6, beating Judit Polgár on Sonneborn-Berger. At the Chess World Cup 2007 Mamedyarov reached the third round where he was knocked out by Ivan Cheparinov. He was the best player at the World Team Chess Championships 2009. In 2010, he tied for first place with Vladimir Kramnik and Gata Kamsky at the President's Cup in Baku, followed by joint first in the Mikhail Tal Memorial. In May 2011, Mammadyarov was the tournament organisers' nominee, qualifying him for the Candidates tournament for the World Chess Championship 2012, where he lost to Boris Gelfand in the quarterfinal. In June 2013, Mamedyarov won the World Rapid Chess Championship, scoring 11½/15. In November 2014, he won the Mikhail Tal Memorial for the second time in his career. He played for Azerbaijan at the Chess Olympiads of 2000, 2002, 2004, 2008 and 2010. In 2009 and 2013, he won the team gold medal for Azerbaijan at the European Team Chess Championship, having won the bronze medal in 2007 and silver in 2011. Winner in the Socar team at the European Club Cup (2012,2014). Azerbaijan
Yi Wei
China Yi Wei Born 2 June 1999, Chinese chess grandmaster. On 1 March 2013 he won his final GM norm at the Reykjavik Open, becoming, at the age of 13 years, 8 months and 23 days, the youngest grandmaster in the world at that time, and the fourth youngest in history. In August 2013, he made his debut at the Chess World Cup, held that year in Tromsø. He defeated Ian Nepomniachtchi in the first round and Alexei Shirov in the second, but was knocked out by Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in the third round. On the November FIDE rating list, Wei, aged 14 years, four months and 30 days, reached a rating of 2604, thus becoming the youngest player in history to achieve a rating of 2600+. In August 2014, he played on the reserve board for China in the Chess Olympiad in Tromsø. He scored 4/5, helping the Chinese team to win the gold medal. In October he finished second in the World Junior Championship in Pune, India behind Lu Shanglei. In April 2015, Wei took part in the Chess Team World Championship, which was won by the Chinese team. Wei scored +5=4-0, boosting his live rating to 2717.5 points. In May, Wei became the Chinese Chess Champion, scoring ahead of super grandmasters Ding Liren, Wang Hao and Yu Yangyi. China
Leinier Domínguez
Cuba Leinier Domínguez Born September 23, 1983 in Havana, Cuba, Cuban chess Grandmaster. He won the Cuban Chess Championship in 2002, 2003, 2006, and 2012. During the 2004 FIDE World Chess Championship he reached the quarter finals, losing to Teimour Radjabov in the tie-break. His best tournament result was Barcelona 2006, where he scored 8/9 and finished first, ahead of Vassily Ivanchuk, with a performance rating of 2932. In 2008, he won the CPA chess tournament and the 43rd Capablanca in Memoriam tournament. In the same year he tied first with Evgeny Alekseev (but lost to him in tie-break) at Biel (6.5/10). On November 8, 2008 he won the World Blitz Championship 2008, held at Almaty in Kazakhstan, with 11.5 points out of 15. In June 2013 he won the FIDE Grand Prix in Thessaloniki as a clear first in a field of twelve elite players, among them Fabiano Caruana, Veselin Topalov and Alexander Grischuk. Cuba
David Navara
Czech Republic David Navara Born March 27, 1985, chess Grandmaster from the Czech Republic. On the April 2007 FIDE rating list he was ranked number 14 in the world with an Elo rating of 2720, making him the highest-ranked Czech player. As of the May 2015 FIDE rating list Navara achieved a personal high with an Elo rating of 2751 and was ranked number 14 in the world. Navara won the Czech Chess Championship in 2004, 2005, 2010, 2012, 2013 and 2014. In 2005, Navara participated in the World Chess Cup, but was eliminated by Predrag Nikolić in the first round. He was very successful in the 37th Chess Olympiad 2006, getting 8.5 points from 12 games against world-class competition. In 2007 he was invited for the first time into the super tournament in Wijk aan Zee, where he replaced Alexander Morozevich. Navara, nicknamed Navara Express by organizers, gained 6.5 points in 13 games (+3−3=7) and finished 7th place. In November 2007 Navara participated in the World Chess Cup. He beat Ivanov of US in the first round but was defeated in the tie-breaks by Rublevsky in the second round. He played in the Baku Grand Prix Tournament in 2008, scoring 5.5/13 (+2-4=7). Navara also took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but lost to Alexander Grischuk in the quarterfinals of the competition. In the last European Chess Championship he took second place. Czech Republic
Peter Svidler
Russia Peter Svidler Born June 17, 1976, in Leningrad, Russian chess Grandmaster. Svidler has competed in three World Championships (2001, 2005, 2007) and won the Chess World Cup 2011. He is seven-time Russian Champion (1994, 1995, 1997, 2003, 2008, 2011, 2013) and has represented Russia at the Chess Olympiad ten times (1994-2010, 2014) securing five team gold medals, two team silvers and an individual bronze. In 1992, he tied for 1st–3rd with Ragim Gasimov and Vadim Zvjaginsev in the USSR Junior Open Chess Championship. He became Grandmaster in 1994. In 2001, he reached the semifinals of the FIDE World Championship. Svidler placed shared second (together with Viswanathan Anand) in the FIDE World Chess Championship 2005 with 8½ points out of 14 games, finishing 1½ points behind the winner, Veselin Topalov. In the World Chess Championship 2007, he placed 5th among the eight players. In 2006 he went second behind Alexander Grischuk at the World Blitz Championship in Rishon Lezion, Israel, with 10½ points out of 15 games. He also finished tied for first with Vladimir Kramnik at the Dortmund 2006. Svidler won the Chess World Cup 2011 in Khanty–Mansiysk, defeating Alexander Grischuk in the finals 2½–1½. Svidler was selected as the wild card for the 2014 Candidates Tournament, which took place in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia, from 13 March to 31 March. He finished seventh, with +3−4=7. His three wins were against Kramnik, Andreikin, and Topalov. Russia
Vassily Ivanchuk
Ukraine Vassily Ivanchuk Born March 18, 1969, Ukrainian chess grandmaster. Ivanchuk has been a leading player in the world since 1988, ranking as high as No. 2 on the official FIDE Elo rating list (July 1991, July 1992, October 2007. Ivanchuk was the 2007–2008 World Blitz Chess champion, and won the Amber blindfold and rapid chess tournament in 1992 and 2010. In 2011, by the decree of the President of Ukraine, Ivanchuk was awarded the Order of Prince Yaroslav the Wise IV degree. Ivanchuk reached chess world fame at the age of 21 when he won the Linares tournament in 1991. Fourteen players participated, eight of them rated top-ten of the world, including World Chess Champion Garry Kasparov, while the rest were all among the world's top 50 players. Ivanchuk narrowly edged Kasparov by a half-point, defeating Kasparov in their individual game. It was widely believed that Ivanchuk might become World Champion, but this has not yet happened, although he came close in 2002 when he reached the final of the FIDE World Chess Championship 2002. His inability to become World Champion despite his immense talent and longevity among the chess elite has been attributed to his admittedly poor nerves, which have been exposed during the high-tension atmosphere of World Championship match-format tournaments, such as in 2002 where he was heavily favored in the FIDE championship final after having defeated defending champion Viswanathan Anand in the semifinals, only to lose to countryman Ruslan Ponomariov in a significant upset, denying him the World Championship. Subsequent match-play tournaments in World Championship cycles have seen Ivanchuk consistently underperform; in the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004, Chess World Cup 2005, Chess World Cup 2007, and Chess World Cup 2009. Ivanchuk's world championship aspirations were also dampened by the unfortunate title split 1993 to 2006. Due to obligations with FIDE, Ivanchuk and Anand did not participate in the 2002 Dortmund Candidates tournament for the Classical World Chess Championship 2004. He was then narrowly excluded, on the basis of rating, from the rival FIDE World Chess Championship 2005. Although he won one of the events of the FIDE Grand Prix 2008–2010, his overall performance was not good enough to qualify him for the World Chess Championship 2012 candidates tournament. Ivanchuk has often been at his best in international team competitions. He has played in eleven Chess Olympiads, twice for the Soviet Union (1988 and 1990), and nine times for Ukraine, after the Soviet Union split up in 1991. He has won a total of twelve medals, and has been on four gold-medal winning teams (USSR in 1988 and 1990, Ukraine in 2004 and 2010). In 133 games, Ivanchuk has scored (+50 =77 -6), for 66.5 per cent. Ukraine
Nikita Vitiugov
Russia Nikita Vitiugov Born 4 February 1987, Saint Petersburg, Russian chess grandmaster (2006). Vitiugov is 2006 World Junior Chess Vice-Champion and participant of the Russian Chess Championship (2006 and 2007). He was a member of the gold-medal-winning Russian team at the World Team Chess Championship 2009 in Bursa. In 2011, he tied for 1st-3rd with Evgeny Tomashevsky and Lê Quang Liêm in the Aeroflot Open. In January of 2013 Vitiugov won the Gibraltar Chess Festival defeating defending champion Nigel Short in a rapid playoff. He and three others finished the tournament 8/10. In the 2013 Alekhine Memorial tournament, held from 20 April to 1 May, Vitiugov finished fifth, with +1−1=7. Russia
Yangyi Yu
China Yangyi Yu Born 8 June 1994, Chinese chess Grandmaster. In November 2014, he won the first Qatar Masters Open tournament, beating among others Vladimir Kramnik and Anish Giri. September 2013: Overall winner of the 2013 World Junior Chess Championship. He came first with 11/13 (+9=4-0). Due to winning the World Junior Championship, he automatically qualifies for the Chess World Cup 2015 which is a qualification path to the World Chess Championship 2016. March 2014: He competed in the Chinese Chess Championship and finished first on tiebrakes with 7/11 (+3=7-0) over his fellow country man Ding Liren 7/11 (+4=6-1). April 2014: He competed in the Asian Chess Championship and finished overall first 7/9 (+5=4-0) over Ni Hua, Rustam Kasimdzhanov and Adhiban B. June 2015: Yu won the 50th International Chess tournament "Capablanca in Memoriam" in Havana. China
Dmitry Andreikin
Russia Dmitry Andreikin Born 5 February 1990, Russian chessgrandmaster (2007). He won the 2010 World Junior Chess Championship. In 2011, he tied for 2nd–3rd with Emil Sutovsky in the Baku Open. In August 2012, Andreikin won the 65th Russian Chess Championship in Moscow after winning a rapid playoff against five other players. In the Tal Memorial played in June 2013, Andreikin was the lowest rated player, but he went through the tournament undefeated with eight draws and a win against Vladimir Kramnik, which gave him a shared third to fifth place. In the Chess World Cup 2013, held in Norway from 11 August to 2 September, Andreikin finished in second place, losing to Kramnik in the four-game final match 1½–2½. This result qualified him for the 2014 Candidates Tournament. In October-November 2014 he scored a major success in the second leg of the FIDE Grand Prix in Tashkent, winning the tournament ahead of Hikaru Nakamura, Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Fabiano Caruana and eight other elite grandmasters. His score of 7/11 gave him a performance rating of 2852. Russia
Pavel Eljanov
Ukraine Pavel Eljanov Born 1983, Ukrainian chess grandmaster. His father was International Master Vladimir Eljanov. He has won two team gold medals and one individual silver medal at Chess Olympiads. Eljanov won the Corus B 2007 in Wijkaan Zee, the Netherlands with a score of 9/13. This result enabled him to qualify for the category 20 tournament Corus A 2008. In February 2012, he tied for 1st–3rd with Mateusz Bartel and Anton Korobov in the 11thAeroflot Open. Eljanov has made steady progress up the FIDE world rankings, and on the September 2010 FIDE Elo rating list, Eljanov had a rating of 2761, making him number 1 in Ukraine and number 6 in the world. In May 2010, he won the Astrakhan FIDE Grand Prix with a score of 8/13. He was Boris Gelfand’ssecond assistant in the match of World Chess Championship 2012, which was held in Moscow 10- 20 May, 2012. In Ukraine Men’s final in 2014 he won the first place with the score of 7.5-11. Ukraine
Hao Wang
China Hao Wang Wang Hao (born August 4, 1989) is a Chinese chess Grandmaster. In November 2009, Wang Hao became the fourth Chinese player to break through the 2700 Elo rating mark. In the latest FIDE ELO lists he is ranked No. 1 in China; No. 2 in Asia. In 2005, he became China's 20th Grandmaster at the age of 16. As with Garry Kasparov, Vladimir Kramnik and Boris Gelfand, Wang Hao became a grandmaster without first gaining an International Master (IM) title. He achieved his three GM norms at the: • 2005 Aeroflot Open A2 Group in Moscow, Russia (February 14–24); score 6.5/9 • 2005 Dubai Open in Dubai, UAE (April 4–12); score 7.0/9 • 2005 2nd Dato Arthur Tan MAS Open in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia (August 19–26); score 10/11 Wang's first major tournament win was the Dubai Open in April 2005, when he was still untitled and astonishingly finished clear first with 7/9 points (rating performance of 2731), ahead of 53 grandmasters and 30 international masters. In August 2005 Wang won with the brilliant result of 10/11 (two points clear ahead of the rest of the field) in the 2nd IGB Dato' Arthur Tan Malaysia Open in Kuala Lumpur (rating performance of 2843). In October 2005 he came joint-first in the Beijing Zonal 3.3 tournament, and took the second place after a playoff match. In September 2007 he came in second place after Zhang Pengxiang at the Asian Individual Championship in Manila. In January 2008, at the 15th Asian Team Chess Championship in Visakhapatnam, Wang won an individual gold medal for his performance on board three (5/6). The national team had also won gold overall. In March 2008, he won the 23rd Reykjavik Open on tie-break with 7/9 points (2721 rating performance). In September 2008, he competed at the 5th Russia v China Match in Ningbo where he scored the highest in the men's category with 3.5/5 and a performance rating of 2844 for the men's team (with Wang Yue, Bu Xiangzhi, Ni Hua, Li Chao). In November 2009, he reached the third round of the Chess World Cup 2009 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. In May 2010, he came first ahead of Zahar Efimenko and Viktor Bologan in the 40th Bosna International tournament in Sarajevo. From May 24 through June 4, 2010, he participated in the Chinese Chess Championship and finished with 7.5/11, tying him with 2004 champion Bu Xiangzhi and Zhou Jianchao. Wang finished ahead of both on tiebreak, winning his first Chinese Chess Championship. In August 2012, he won the Biel Chess Festival in Bienne, Switzerland, with six wins, one draw, and three losses. The tournament was played with three points for a win, and this result put Hao one point ahead of Magnus Carlsen who had four wins and six draws. At the Norway Chess tournament, Wang Hao finished in seventh place with three wins, three draws, and three losses. Hao was tied for last after five rounds when he lost against the eventual tail-ender Jon Ludvig Hammer. However, he ended the tournament very strongly with two wins over the World Championship finalists Magnus Carlsen and Viswanathan Anand. China
Peter Leko
Hungary Peter Leko Born September 8, 1979 in Subotica, Yugoslavia, Hungarian chess grandmaster. He was the challenger in the Classical World Chess Championship 2004 and tied Vladimir Kramnik 7–7, with Kramnik retaining the title. He has won two team silver medals and an individual gold medal representing Hungary at eight Chess Olympiads. He made his first entry into World Championship tournaments at the FIDE World Chess Championship 1999 held in Las Vegas, defeating Christian Bauer 1.5-0.5 but losing to eventual quarter-finalist Sergei Movsesian after rapid tiebreaks 2.5-1.5. Leko followed up his victory by sharing second place (8/13) with Kramnik and Anand at Corus behind a dominant Garry Kasparov. At the FIDE World Chess Championship 2000 held in New Delhi (rounds 1-6) and Tehran (final), Leko was knocked out in the third round by Khalifman (4.5-3.5) after "sudden death" tiebreaks. Under the terms of the Prague Agreement signed in May 2002, "The Dortmund winner will play the Classical World Chess Champion Vladimir Kramnik and the present FIDE World Champion Ruslan Ponomariov will play Garry Kasparov, the current World's number one rated player". The Dortmund Chess Meeting was held in June 2002 with the format a two-stage event, with two-four player groups played as double round robins, with the two top players from each group progressing to a knockout stage determining the winner. Leko qualified comfortably from the B Group in second place to Evgeny Bareev and faced Alexei Shirov in a four-game match. This ended early with the score 2.5-0.5 in Leko's favour. In the final of the Tournament Leko met Veselin Topalov, who had been in good form in the run up to the tournament but had a draining match which had gone to tiebreaks against Bareev in the semi-finals. The match was won by Leko 2.5-1.5, ensuring he became the official challenger to Vladimir Kramnik for the Classical World Chess Championship 2004. His Candidates triumph was followed up by leading the Hungarian team on board one to team silver in the 35th Chess Olympiad with an unbeaten run, along with sharing first (7/12) at Linares in early 2003 with Kramnik, half a point ahead of Anand and Kasparov, notably ending a ten super-tournament winning streak by Kasparov. This was shortly followed up by second place at the 12th Amber Melody tournament (Blind 6/11, Rapid 7.5/11) a point behind Anand, and a solid result (5/9) in Budapest. At Dortmund, Leko disappointed with 4/10, considered to be due to the difficulties regarding the organising of the match with Kramnik. 2004 started brightly for Leko with shared second place (8/13) with Adams in Corus, half a point behind Anand and sharing second place (6.5/12) with Kasparov in Linares, half a point behind Kramnik. finished in fourth place in Dortmund (held in the same format as the Candidates Tournament in 2002 but with play-offs for final positions). Classical World Chess Championship 2004 held from September 25 to October 18, 2004, in Brissago, Switzerland. Kramnik wins the final game to tie the match and retain his title, score 7:7. In 2008, securing individual gold on board 1 at the 38th Chess Olympiad held in Dresden. In August 2013, Leko was knocked out of the FIDE World Cup 2013 in the second round 0.5-1.5 by Julio Granda. In April 2014, Leko played in the Russian Team Championships for Malachite scoring 5/7, in July tied for second with 4/7 at Dortmund with Georg Meier and contributed to a team silver medal at the 41st Chess Olympiad with 5/10. Hungary
Ian Nepomniachtchi
Russia Ian Nepomniachtchi Born July 14, 1990, Russian chess Grandmaster and the 2010 Russian Chess Champion. He was a member of the gold-medal winning Russian team at the World Team Chess Championship in Antalya 2013. By winning the Aeroflot Open in Moscow in February 2008, he qualified for the 2008 Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting, where he shared second place staying undefeated. In 2010, in Rijeka, he won the European Individual Chess Championship with 9/11. In the same year, in Moscow, he won the Russian Chess Championship, defeating Sergey Karjakin in a playoff. In November 2011 Nepomniachtchi tied for 3rd–5th with Vasily Ivanchuk and Sergey Karjakin in the category 22 Tal Memorial in Moscow. In 2013 he tied for 1st–8th place in the European Individual Chess Championship. In 2014, he became the silver medalist of the World Blitz Championship. He shared first place in the "Aeroflot 2015, group A" tournament but came second after the tiebreak. Russia
Hua Ni
China Hua Ni Born May 31, 1983 in Shanghai, one of China's top chess grandmasters. In 2003, he became China's 15th Grandmaster at the age of 19. On April 2008, Ni Hua and Bu Xiangzhi both became the second and third Chinese players to pass the 2700 Elo rating line, after Wang Yue. In 2000 he played in his first Olympiad in Istanbul, where he scored 5.5/9. In the (August) 2004 FIDE World championship he beat Evgeny Vladimirov in round one but was put out by his fellow countryman Ye Jiangchuan in the next round. In May–June 2008, he became the Chinese National Champion for the third time running with 7.5/11 points in Beijing. In January 2009 he won the 51st Reggio Emilia chess tournament, the first Chinese player to win this important event. In April 2010 he won Asian Chess Championship in Subic Bay. In the Australian Open Championship which was held in Australiain 2015 he won the first place with the score 10.5-11. China
Rustam Kasimdzhanov
Uzbekistan Rustam Kasimdzhanov Born December 5, 1979, Uzbek chess Grandmaster, best known for winning the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004. He was born in Tashkent, in the former Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic. His best results include first in the 1998 Asian Championship, second in the World Junior Chess Championship in 1999, first at Essen 2001, first at Pamplona 2002 (winning a blitz playoff against Victor Bologan after both had finished the main tournament on 3½/6), first with 8/9 at the Vlissingen Open 2003, joint first with Liviu Dieter Nisipeanu with 6/9 at Pune 2005, a bronze-medal winning 9½/12 performance on board one for his country at the 2000 Chess Olympiad and runner-up in the FIDE Chess World Cup in 2002 (losing to Viswanathan Anand in the final). In the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004 in Tripoli, Libya, Kasimdzhanov unexpectedly made his way through to the final, winning mini-matches against Alejandro Ramírez, Ehsan Ghaem Maghami, Vasily Ivanchuk, Zoltán Almási, Alexander Grischuk and Veselin Topalov to meet Michael Adams to play for the title and the right to face world number one Garry Kasparov in a match. In the final six-game match of the Championship, both players won two games, making a tie-break of rapid games necessary. Kasimdzhanov won the first game with black, after having been in a difficult position. By drawing the second game he became the new FIDE champion. Kasimdzhanov's 2004 championship earned him an invitation to the eight player FIDE World Chess Championship 2005, where he tied with Michael Adams for 6–7 place. The 2004 championship also earned him one of sixteen places in the Candidates Tournament for the FIDE World Chess Championship 2007. His first round opponent was Boris Gelfand. In their match, all six regular games were drawn. Then Gelfand won the rapid tie-break 2½–½, eliminating Kasimdzhanov from the tournament. He was a second for ex-World Champion Viswanathan Anand, having worked with Anand in preparation for and during his successful World Chess Championship title defences in October 2008 against Vladimir Kramnik, April–May 2010 against Veselin Topalov and in May 2012 against Boris Gelfand. Kasimdzhanov won gold in the individual men's rapid event at the 2010 Asian Games. Uzbekistan
Laurent Fressinet
France Laurent Fressinet Born November 1, 1981 in Dax, France, French chess Grandmaster. He won the French Chess Championship in 2010. In 2012 he finished second in the European Individual Championship in Plovdiv. Twice runner-up at the European Blitz Championship in 2006 and 2007 and French Rapid Chess Champion in 2009 and 2011, Fressinet won the last leg of the French Rapid Grand-Prix in Villandry and finished second in the Grand-Prix Final in Ajaccio in 2012. France
Anton Korobov
Ukraine Anton Korobov Born 25 June 1985, Ukrainian chess Grandmaster (2003). He won the 2013 European Blitz Chess Championship. Korobov won the 2002 and 2012 Ukrainian Championships and finished second behind Andrei Volokitin in 2004. In 2011, he came first in the Nakhchivan Open. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but was eliminated in the second round by Nikita Vitiugov. In February 2012, he tied for 1st–3rd with Mateusz Bartel and Pavel Eljanov in the 11th Aeroflot Open. Korobov was outright 3rd in the Ukrainian Championship (2013) behind Yuriy Kryvoruchko and Ruslan Ponomariov respectively. In the World Cup 2013 in Norway he eliminated Vasif Durarbayli, Baadur Jobava, Daniil Dubov and Hikaru Nakamura, but in the fifth round he was knocked out by former World Chess Champion Vladimir Kramnik, after losing the first game and drawing the second. Ukraine
Igor Kovalenko
Latvia Igor Kovalenko Igor Kovalenko ( born December 29, 1988, Novomoskovsk,Ukraine) is a Ukrainian chess grandmaster now playing for Latvia. Kovalenko is a chess International Master (2008) and Grandmaster (2011). He won the Latvian Chess Championship in 2013 and 2014, and also won the Riga Technical University Open 2013, a tournament with 27 other grandmasters. Igor Kovalenko played for Latvia in Chess Olympiads in 2014, at second board in the 41st Chess Olympiad in Tromsø with result (+5 −2 =4). Latvia
Quang Liem Le
Vietnam Quang Liem Le Born 13 March 1991, Vietnamese chess grandmaster and the 2013 World Blitz Chess Champion. He competed for Vietnam at the Chess Olympiads in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2014. In particular, his 8/10 score on board 1 at the 2012 Chess Olympiad anchored the Vietnamese men's team to No. 7 in the final standing, the highest ever for Vietnam. In 2010 February, Le participated in the Moscow Open tournament in Moscow, Russia. With +5=4 performance, he tied for 1st-4th with Konstantin Сhernyshov, Evgeny Bareev andErnesto Inarkiev. Immediately after the Moscow open at the same venue, Le won the 9th Aeroflot Open with 7/9 (+5=4), earning him an invitation to the Dortmund Sparkassen Chess Meeting. From July 15 through the 25th, he took part in his first elite invitational tournament in Dortmund, in a field consisting of nine-time Dortmund champion and former World Champion Vladimir Kramnik, world No. 6 Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, former FIDE world champion Ruslan Ponomariov, 2004 World Chess Championship challenger Peter Leko, and one-time Dortmund champion Arkadij Naiditsch. Facing Kramnik with the black pieces in the opening round, Le held the former world champion to a draw, and after defeating the eventual winner Ponomariov in round 4, and Leko in round 5, Le finished with five consecutive draws to secure clear second place (+2=7-1) and a performance rating of 2776. From February 7 to February 18,2011 he once again participated in Aeroflot Open and successfully defended the title. His score was 6 1⁄2/9, a shared first place with GM Nikita Vitiugovand GM Evgeny Tomashevsky. He is the only player to have won Aeroflot Open twice. His win automatically qualifies him for a return invitation to the Dortmund Invitational. From May 16 to May 26, 2013 he participated in the 2013 Asian Continental Chess Championships which was held in Philippines. He finished at 4th in the classical part and won the blitz part. From June 6 to June 8, he took part in the 2013 World Rapid Chess Championship, held in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. He finished 4th, behind Mamedyarov, Nepomniachtchi and Grischuk. After that he participated in World Blitz Chess Championship, which he won. He is the first Vietnamese athlete to achieve the world champion title. Vietnam
Alexander Moiseenko
Ukraine Alexander Moiseenko Born May 17, 1980, Ukrainian chess Grandmaster. He was a member of the gold-medal winning Ukrainian team at the 36th Chess Olympiad in 2004 and won the 2013 European Individual Chess Championship. He tied for first place in the Ukrainian Chess Championship, Alushta 1999. In the Ukrainian Grandmaster event of 1999, he finished clear first with 10/13, earning a Grandmaster norm. Moiseenko has played for Ukraine at the Chess Olympiads three times. He was a member of the gold medal Ukrainian team at Calvià 2004. He also played for Ukraine in the 2003 and 2005 European Team Championships, and in the 2005 World Team Championship. Moiseenko scored 8.5/13 at the EU Championships at Istanbul 2003, for a shared 4-11th place. This qualified him into the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004 at Tripoli. There, in round one, he defeated Sergey Dolmatov by 1.5-0.5, to advance. In round two, he defeated Victor Bologan by 2.5-1.5 in playoffs. He was knocked out in round three by Vladimir Akopian by 0.5-1.5. Ukraine
Gata Kamsky
USA Gata Kamsky Gata Kamsky (born June 2, 1974) is a Soviet-born American chess grandmaster.Kamsky was a prodigy who reached the final of the FIDE World Chess Championship 1996 at the age of 22, and reached a ranking of fourth in the world rankings in 1995. Kamsky was born in Novokuznetsk in Russia, in a Tatar family. In 1989 he moved to the United States with his father Röstäm (also spelled Rustam). In 1990, FIDE awarded Kamsky the grandmaster title. In 1991, he won the U.S. Championship. Kamsky also did well at other prestigious chess tournaments, winning the Las Palmas tournament in 1994. In 1993, the rival organisations FIDE and PCA each held Interzonal tournaments. Kamsky played in both, and in both cases qualified for the respective Candidates Tournaments. The Candidates tournaments were largely dominated by Kamsky and Viswanathan Anand. In the first round of the 1994–95 FIDE Candidates matches, Kamsky's quarter-final match against Anand, held in July and August 1994 in Sanghi Nagar, India, was more dramatic. After draws in the first two games, Anand won the next two games to take an imposing 3–1 lead. Game 5 was drawn. Kamsky then scored 2½–½ in the remaining three games to tie the match 4–4 (+2=4−2), then won the two rapid chess playoff games to win the match. In the semifinal, held in Sanghi Nagar in February 1995, Kamsky routed Valery Salov 5½–1½ (+4=3−0). In the 1994–95 PCA Candidates matches, Kamsky beat Vladimir Kramnik in the quarter-finals in New York in June, 1994. In September, 1994 Kamsky beat Nigel Short in the semifinals in Linares, Spain. In the March 1995 final against Anand in Las Palmas, the FIDE result was reversed, with Kamsky losing (+1=7−3). In 1996, Kamsky played a 20-game match against Anatoly Karpov for the FIDE World Chess Championship 1996 title at Elista in Kalmykia, losing 7½–10½ (+3=9−6). He has since returned to international chess, most notably finishing second behind Veselin Topalov at the M-Tel Masters event. Soon after, Kamsky led the US team to the bronze medal at the 2006 Chess Olympiad in Turin. A number of successes in 2007 marked his return to the playing level he had before his retirement, hinting at the possibility of becoming again a challenger for the very top of the world's chess hierarchy. In November–December 2007, Kamsky participated in the Chess World Cup 2007. Seeded 11th, he won his first three rounds and then defeated Peter Svidler, former FIDE world champion Ruslan Ponomariov and future world number-one Magnus Carlsen to reach the finals. In the final he defeated Alexei Shirov (+1−0=3) to win the title, shocking many in the chess world. Kamsky's victory earned him a match against world number-one Veselin Topalov in 2009 for the right to challenge for the World Chess Championship 2010 against world champion Viswanathan Anand. The match was held in Sofia, Bulgaria, in February 2009. Although Kamsky won game four to level the match 2–2, Topalov scored +2 in the final 3 games (including an exciting last round victory on the White side of the French Defense) to win the match 4½–2½. Kamsky played board one for the United States in the 2008 Chess Olympiad, held in Dresden, Germany in November. The U.S. team captured the bronze medals. He became U.S. Champion on May 25, 2010, after winning a rapid playoff game with second place finisher Yury Shulman. This championship, Kamsky's second, came 19 years after he won his first U.S. championship. In August 2010, Kamsky won clear first at the World Rapid Chess Championship. From August 23 through August 31, Kamsky participated in the Baku Open in Azerbaijan, where he was the top seed. He won his final three games to clinch clear first with 7½/9. From April 13 through April 18, 2011, Kamsky participated in the United States Championship, where he was the top seed. He won the tournament for the second consecutive year, becoming the first player since Lev Alburt in 1985 to win consecutive U.S. Championships; the title was his third career United States Championship. As a finalist of the 2010 world championship cycle, Kamsky was given direct entry to the eight player Candidates Tournament to determine the challenger for the World Chess Championship 2012. The candidates tournament began with best-of-four game match format in May 2011 in Kazan, with Kamsky facing Veselin Topalov in the quarterfinals. With a win on the Black side of the Gruenfeld defense in the second game, Kamsky held on to defeat the top-seeded Topalov 2½–1½ to advance to the semifinals. In the semifinals, he faced the 2009 Chess World Cup champion Boris Gelfand in a rematch of their 2007 Candidates tournament meeting won by Gelfand. After four games, the match was tied at 2–2, with rapid tiebreaks to decide the winner on May 16. In the rapid tiebreaks, Kamsky won game 3 with black to take a 2–1 lead and needed only a draw with white in the final rapid game to advance to the final. However, Gelfand won with black to force a blitz playoff, which he won 2–0 to eliminate Kamsky and reach the Candidates final. In May 2012, Kamsky participated in the 2012 U.S. Championship, where he was seeded second behind defending champion Hikaru Nakamura. He scored 5/7 to qualify for the round-robin stage against Nakamura, 2006 champion Alexander Onischuk, and 2008 champion Yuri Shulman. In the round-robin stage, he drew Nakamura with black and then defeated Onischuk on the White side of the Ruy Lopez. In 2013 and 2014 he won the tournament, and the last title was his fifth career United States Championship. USA
Maxim Matlakov
Russia Maxim Matlakov Born March 5, 1991 in Saint Petersburg, Russian chess grandmaster (2009). He won the Saint Petersburg City Chess Championship in 2009. Matlakov came 2nd–14th (6th on tiebreak) at the 13th European Individual Chess Championship (2012) with 8/11 and qualified for the Chess World Cup (2013). He defeated Dutch GM Jan Smeets in the first round but was eliminated by Azerbaijani GM Shakhriyar Mamedyarov in the 2nd round tiebreaker. Matlakov won the Gipslis Memorial 2009. In 2013 Matlakov tied for 1st–11th place in the Chigorin Memorial in St Petersburg. In 2014, he tied for 1st–4th with Alexander Moiseenko, Michal Krasenkow and Mateusz Bartel in the Moscow Open. Matlakov won individual silver medal playing board 5 for St Petersburg in the 2013 European Club Cup. Russia
Ivan Cheparinov
Bulgaria Ivan Cheparinov Born November 26, 1986 in Asenovgrad, Bulgaria, Bulgarian chess Grandmaster. He is a three time Bulgarian Chess Champion (2004, 2005, 2012). In October 2006 Cheparinov shared first place at the Essent Open in Hoogeveen with 7/9, and in April 2007 he won the Sigeman & Co tournament in Malmö with the same score. He also shared first place—with six others—at the 2007 European Individual Chess Championship in Dresden, but Vladislav Tkachiev won the tie-break. In June 2010, he won the Ruy Lopez Masters tournament with a performance rating of 2904. In 2014 Cheparinov came first in the Gibraltar Chess Festival. Bulgaria
Ray Robson
USA Ray Robson Born October 25, 1994, American chess Grandmaster. Robson's norms were gained at the Arctic Chess Challenge in Norway, at the 23rd North American FIDE Invitational in Chicago, and at the Pan-American Junior Championship in Montevideo, Uruguay. Robson tied the for first place in the 2008 Florida championship. On July 16, 2009, he won the U.S. Junior Chess Championship, becoming one of the youngest champions ever. In August 2009, Robson tied for first at the Arctic Chess Challenge in Tromsø, Norway, garnering his first GM norm in the process. Later that same month, Robson then went on to earn his second GM norm by winning the 23rd North American FIDE Invitational in Skokie, Illinois. He earned his third and final GM norm in October 2009 by winning the Pan-American Junior Championship in Montevideo, Uruguay, making him a GM-elect. He was formally awarded the title in January 2010. Robson played in his first World Cup in November 2009 in Russia. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but was eliminated in the first round by Étienne Bacrot. In 2014, he finished second in Millionaire Chess in Las Vegas, losing to Wesley So in the final round. USA
Gabriel Sargissian
Armenia Gabriel Sargissian Born 3 September 1983, Armenian chess player and International Grandmaster of Chess (2002). He was a member of the gold-medal winning Armenian team at the chess Olympiads in 2006, 2008 and 2012 and at the World Team Chess Championship in 2011. Sargissian won the Armenian Chess Championship in 2000 and 2003. He took part in the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004, but was eliminated in the first round by Sergei Tiviakov. Sargissian was victorious at Reykjavík 2006 and Dubai 2006. In 2007 he won the Ruy Lopez Festival (Zafra, Spain, March 16–25) finishing with 6.5/7, a point-and-a-half above the rest including in particular super players Ponomariov, Sasikiran, I. Sokolov. He qualified for the Chess World Cup 2009 and was knocked out by Li Chao in the first round. In the 2008 Chess Olympiad he won the gold medal for his individual performance on board three (+7 −0 =4 with an Elo performance rating of 2869). Sargissian played for "CA Linex Magic Mérida" (Spain) in the 23rd European Chess Club Cup in Kemer 2007, winning team gold medal. Armenia
Ivan Saric
Croatia Ivan Saric Born 17 August 1990, in Split, Croatian chess Grandmaster. He first became known internationally by winning the 2007 Under-18 division at the European Youth Chess Championship. The following year he earned the grandmaster title and won the 2008 U18 World Youth Chess Championship. He is a two-time Croatian Champion (2010 and 2014), and a member of the Croatian national team since 2009. In 2011 he tied for 2nd-7th with Julio Granda, Aleksander Delchev, Maxim Turov, Pablo Almagro Llamas and Mihail Marin the 31st Villa de Benasque Open. Šarić won the Tata Steel Challengers tournament in 2014, scoring 10/13, a point and half ahead of the second Baadur Jobava. His most notable result to date was defeating World Champion Magnus Carlsen in the 2014 Chess Olympiad, where Šarić finished with 7/11. Croatia
Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu
Germany Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu Born 1 August 1976, Romanian-born German chess grandmaster. His peak FIDE rating was 2707 in October 2005, when he was ranked fifteenth in the world, and the highest ranked Romanian player ever. His highly aggressive style of play has earned him a reputation of a modern-day Mikhail Tal. In 1999, Nisipeanu as a clear outsider made it to the semifinals of the FIDE World Chess Championship by beating Vasily Ivanchuk in round 4 and Alexei Shirov in the quarterfinals only to succumb to the eventual champion Alexander Khalifman. Nisipeanu won the European Individual Chess Championship 2005 in Warsaw with 10 points out of 13 games, half a point ahead of runner-up Teimour Radjabov from Azerbaijan. Since 2014, Nisipeanu has been playing under the German flag. Germany
Viktor Laznicka
Czech Republic Viktor Laznicka Born January 9, 1988, in Pardubice, Czech chess grandmaster. At the European Youth Chess Championship, held in Herceg Novi in 2005, he was a bronze-medallist in the under-18 category. In the early part of Láznička's tournament career, he was a joint winner at Olomouc in 2002 and at Mariánské Lázně in 2003. He was successful in Brno in both 2005 and 2006, the latter when he won the full national Czech Championship. This was also the year that he qualified as a grandmaster and commenced his Olympiad career, scoring the best individual result of the Czech team in Turin. In 2007, he was joint winner of the Czech Open (with Vlastimil Babula), held in his home town. He qualified for the Chess World Cup 2007, but was eliminated in the first round by strong Polish player Bartlomiej Macieja. In December 2009, he tied for 1st-4th with Georg Meier, Julio Granda and Kiril Georgiev in the 19th Magistral Pamplona Tournament As of October 2008, he was the Czech Republic's fourth highest rated player, after David Navara, Zbyněk Hráček and Vlastimil Babula. In July 2010, he took clear first place at the World Open Chess Tournament with 7½/9. Czech Republic
Vladislav Artemiev
Russia Vladislav Artemiev Born March 5, 1998 in Omsk, Russian chess Grandmaster (2014) Artemiev has represented Russia at the U16 Olympiads of 2012 and 2013. At the 2012 event, playing board three, he helped his team to win a gold medal and picked up an individual silver medal. In February, 2014 he won the powerful category 12 Moscow Open - F (student's division in the event) with a 8/9 (+7 =2) for a performance rating of 2869. Russia
Baskaran Adhiban
India Baskaran Adhiban Born 1992, Indian chess Grandmaster. He was Under-16 World champion and 2010 Indian champion. In the 2013 Chess World Cup, Adhiban caused an upset in the first two rounds, beating 2710-rated Russian GM Evgeny Alekseev in the first round, and Alexandr Fier in the second round. Adhiban won the Barcelona open with a score of 8.5 out of 10. This event included 23 GMs and 28 IMs. India
Maxim Rodshtein
Israel Maxim Rodshtein Born 19 January 1989 in Leningrad, Israeli chess Grandmaster (since 2007). As of August 2014, his Elo rating is 2671, making him the #2 player in Israel. He won the World U-16 championship in Greece in 2004. Rodshtein was a member (Board 5) of the Israeli Chess Olympic team in November 2008 scoring 7 out of 9 and contributing to the silver medal. In particular he was responsible for Israel’s win against the Olympic champion, Armenia. Rodshtein shared 1st in the 2008 Israeli championship, but didn’t retain the title due to inferior tie-break. In 2011 he tied for 4th–10th with Rustam Kasimdzhanov, Gata Kamsky, Rauf Mamedov, Ivan Cheparinov, Denis Khismatullin and Yu Yangyi in the Aeroflot Open in Moscow. Israel
Igor Lysyj
Russia Igor Lysyj Born 1 January 1987 in Nizhny Tagil, Russian chess grandmaster (2007). In 2014, he became the Russian Chess Champion. Lysyj won the Russian Junior Rapid Chess Championship in 2004. In 2006 he tied for first with Roman Ovetchkin in the Zudov Memorial. In 2009, tied for 1st–8th with Sergey Volkov, Dmitry Bocharov, Aleksandr Rakhmanov, Valerij Popov, Denis Khismatullin, Dmitry Andreikin and Dmitry Kokarev in the Voronezh open tournament. In 2009/10 he tied for 1st–5th with Eduardas Rozentalis, Pavel Ponkratov, Radosław Wojtaszek and Luke McShane in the 39th Rilton Cup in Stockholm. In 2012 he came first in the Moscow Open. On the January 2015 FIDE Elo rating list, he has a rating of 2700. Russia
Yifan Hou
China Yifan Hou Born 27 February 1994, is a Chinese chess prodigy. She is a former two time Women's World Chess Champion, the youngest ever to win the title, as well as the youngest female player ever to qualify for the title of Grandmaster. At the age of 12, Hou became the youngest player ever to participate in the FIDE Women's World Championship (Yekaterinburg 2006) and the Chess Olympiad (Torino 2006). In June 2007, she became China's youngest National Women's Champion ever. She achieved the titles of Woman Grandmaster in January 2007, and Grandmaster in August 2008. In 2010, she became the youngest Women's World Chess Champion in history by winning the Women's World Championship in Hatay, Turkey at age 16. She lost her title in 2012 but regained it in 2013. In the August 2014 FIDE rating list she became the third woman to ever enter the world top 100 rankings (after Judit Polgár and Maia Chiburdanidze). As of May 2015, she is ranked as the No. 1 female player, and the no. 55 player overall. She forfeited her world title by declining to contest it in early 2015, but having won the FIDE Grand Prix 2014 has qualified to challenge world champion Mariya Muzychuk to a ten-game World Championship match in the third quarter of 2015. Hou reached the third round (the last 16) of the Women's World Chess Championship in March 2006. She defeated IM Nadezhda Kosintseva of Russia 1½–½ in the first round, then the former 2000 European champion WGM Natalia Zhukova of Ukraine 2–0 in the 2nd round. She was beaten 0–2 by IM Nino Khurtsidze of Georgia in the third round. In May–June 2006, China came third winning bronze at the 37th Chess Olympiad in Turin, Italy. Hou Yifan scored 11/13 (+10, =2, −1), all played on the fourth board, at her Olympiad debut. For her winning percentage of 84.6%, she won a silver medal for fourth (reserve) board performance, and her performance rating of 2596 was the third highest overall. At the 1st World Women's Team Chess Championship in Ekaterinburg , Hou was part of the winning China national team that also included Zhao Xue, Ruan Lufei, Shen Yang, and Huang Qian. Hou Yifan played on board two in every round and scored 7½/9 (+7 =1 -1), winning the gold medal for that board. In June 2007, she won her first Chinese Women's Chess Championship in Chongqing. Hou was 13 years old at the time, breaking WGM Qin Kanying's (who was 14 when she won the title in 1988) record as the youngest champion. In August 2008 she competed in the World Junior Chess Championship held at Gazientep, Turkey where she competed in the boy's section for the first time in her career. She was the only girl in the boy's section and was the 16th seed on the entrant's list. Hou finished joint 3rd–7th on 9/13 (+6 =6 -1), achieving a performance rating of 2661 and her second GM norm. Hou Yifan qualified for the grandmaster title in August at the age of 14 years 6 months 2 days, making her one of the youngest grandmasters in history, as well as the youngest female. In August–September 2008, she competed in her second Women's World Chess Championshipat Nalchik, Russia. She lost the final to Alexandra Kosteniuk of Russia, 2½–1½. Nonetheless she became the youngest ever finalist for the Women's World Championship title, earning an automatic International Master (IM) title and a "runner-up 9-game grandmaster norm", her fourth GM norm overall. In August, she took part in the Chess World Cup 2011 in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. In November Hou successfully defended her women's world champion title in the Women's World Chess Championship 2011 in Tirana, Albania against Koneru Humpy. Hou won 3 games and drew 5 in the ten-game match, winning the title with two games to spare. Afterwards, Hou played for China in the Women's World Chess Team Championship in Mardin, Turkey. The 5 person team, arranged according to rating, consisted of herself, WGM Ju Wenjun, GM Zhao Xue, WGM Tan Zhongyi and WGM Zhang Xiaowen. China was the clear winner with 16 match points, having lost but one match to Ukraine in the 8th round and winning the rest, ahead of the runner-up Russia by three match points. Georgia grabbed bronze with 12 match points. Hou scored five points from the seven games she played (Wenjun played the first board for Round 1 and Round 2) (+3 = 4, TPR 2648). Hou started 2012 by taking equal first place at Tradewise alongside Nigel Short at the Gibraltar Chess Festival scoring 8/10 (+7 -1 =2) with a tournament performance of 2872. She came second on tiebreak when she lost the 2 game blitz playoff against Short by 1.5–0.5. She scored 5/7 against the 7 GMs she played rated 2700 or higher. This included 4 wins against Zoltan Almasi (2717), Judit Polgar (2710), Lê Quang Liêm (2714) and Alexei Shirov (2710), 2 draws against Michael Adams (2724) and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov (2747), whilst her only loss came against Krishnan Sasikiran (2700) From July 16 to July 19, Hou played in the 5th leg of the FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2011–2012 held in Jermuk, Armenia. She won the event with a 7/11 score (+4 −1 =6, TPR 2598). This victory added to her victories in Rostov 2011 and Shenzeng 2011 made Hou the winner of the FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2011–2012 and secured for herself the challenger spot for the Women's World Chess Championship 2013. At the 40th Chess Olympiad held in Istanbul, Turkey from 27 August to 10 September 2012, Hou Yifan led the Chinese women's chess team to a second place, silver medal finish. Hou won the gold medal for individual performance on board 1 with a 2645 TPR. From October 8 to October 17, Hou played in the European Chess Club Cup 2012 as a member of team, Cercle d'Echecs de Monte-Carlo. She played board 1 with 4.5/6 score (+4 -1 =1, TPR 2609) and her heavily favored team swept the round robin competition with a 7-0 score. In November 2012 she was knocked out in the second round of the Women's World Chess Championship 2012. As the winner of FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2011–2012 she earned the right to challenge the new champion in the Women's World Chess Championship 2013. As the winner of the FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2011–2012, Hou won the right to challenge Anna Ushenina in a 10-game match for the world title. Scheduled from September 10 to the 27th, the Women's World Chess Championship 2013 was played in Taizhou, Jiangsu, China. She won the match in 7 games with a 5.5-1.5 score (+4 =3, TPR 2730) regaining her championship title. From 19 to 26 October, Hou played in the European Chess Club Cup 2013 as a member of team, Cercle d'Echecs de Monte-Carlo. She played board 1 with 5/6 score (+4 =2, TPR 2736) and for the second year in a row, her team swept the round robin competition with a 7-0 score. Hou is the winner of FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2013–14. From April 8 to April 22, she played in the 4th stage in Khanty-Mansiysk, Russia. She finished in 1st place with an 8.5/11 score (+6 =5, TPR 2695). She returned to the scene of her greatest chess tournament triumph, the Gibraltar Chess Festival 2015 held from January 27th to February 4th. Seeded 13th by rating, she placed joint 3rd-11th, 3rd by performance with a 7.5/10 score (+5 =5, TPR 2772) pushing her FIDE rating to 2686. Her excellent performance in this event resulted in her rating surpassing Judit Polgár's classic rating for the first time in the March 2015 FIDE rating list, ending Polgár's 26 consecutive years reign as the top rated female player in the world. For the first time since Maia Chiburdanidze in January 1989 a single individual was both the top rated woman player and the reigning Women's World Chess Champion. She has qualified for the Women's World Chess Championship 2015 (match) as the winner of the FIDE Women's Grand Prix 2013–14, when she is expected to play Muzychuk, the current champion. China
Julio Granda Zuniga
Peru Julio Granda Zuniga Granda Julio Ernesto Granda Zúñiga (born February 25, 1967 in Camaná, Peru) is a Peruvian chess Grandmaster. He finished 1st with Bent Larsen at Mar del Plata 1993. He is a five-time chess champion of Peru, winning in 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, and 2002. Granda won the 4th American Continental Championship at Cali 2007 on tie-break between the five first place finishers at 8/11. This victory qualified him for the Chess World Cup 2007 where he lost his first round match to Arkadij Naiditsch ½–1½. In December 2009, he tied for 1st–4th with Georg Meier, Viktor Láznička and Kiril Georgiev in the 19th Magistral Pamplona Tournament. In 2010, he won the 5th Torneo Abierto in Guadalajara. In the Chess World Cup 2013 in Norway, Granda had reached round four, after knocking out Hrant Melkumyan, Peter Leko and Anish Giri. He was however defeated by Fabiano Caruana with two losses. Julio Granda qualified once more again for the Chess World Cup to be held in Baku, Azerbaijan in 2015 by coming shared first at the IX American Continental Chess Championship. Even though he was clear first by tiebreak on 8.5/11 (+6=5-0) while tied with 5 other players, he had to play in a rapid play off to decide who played in the World Cup. He came 2nd with 3/5 and qualified to the World Cup. Peru
Sanan Sjugirov
Russia Sanan Sjugirov Born January 31, 1993 in Elista, Russian chess grandmaster (2009). He won the World U10 Chess Championship in 2003 and World U14 Championship in 2007. In 2008 he won the First Saturday GM Tournament in Budapest. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2009 but was knocked out by Laurent Fressinet in the first round. In 2011 he tied for 4th–12th with Vadim Zvjaginsev, Sergey Volkov, Ernesto Inarkiev, Vladimir Fedoseev, Evgeny Tomashevsky, Boris Grachev, Maxim Matlakov and Sergei Rublevsky in the Higher League of the Russian Chess Championship in Taganrog. Russia
Alexander Onischuk
USA Alexander Onischuk Born September 3, 1975, Soviet-born American chess grandmaster. Originally from Ukraine, he immigrated to the United States in 2001. He was the 2006 U.S. Chess Champion. He is currently the fifth-ranked American grandmaster, behind Hikaru Nakamura, Wesley So, Ray Robson, and Gata Kamsky. Onischuk participated in International Chess Festival Biel 2007, where he placed second after Magnus Carlsen. He scored 5.5/9 like Carlsen, but lost in the tie-breaker match held after the regular rounds finished. In the fall of 2012, Onischuk accepted the head coaching job at the 2-time reigning national division I collegiate chess champion Texas Tech. USA
Alexander Areshchenko
Ukraine Alexander Areshchenko Born June 15, 1986 in Luhansk, Soviet Union, Ukrainian chess Grandmaster and former Ukrainian Champion, a title he won in 2005. In 2007 he tied for 2nd–4th with Hikaru Nakamura and Emil Sutovsky in the 5th GibTelecom Chess Festival. In 2009 he tied for 1st–4th with Humpy Koneru, Evgenij Miroshnichenko and Magesh Panchanathan in the Mumbai Mayor Cup, which he won on a tiebreak. In the same year, he tied for first with Boris Avrukh in the Zurich Jubilee Open tournament and again won the event on a tiebreak. In 2010, he tied for 2nd–7th with Alexey Dreev, Ivan Sokolov, Vladimir Fedoseev, Dmitry Andreikin and Konstantin Sakaev at the Chigorin Memorial Tournament. In 2011, Areshchenko tied for 1st–5th with Yuriy Kuzubov, Parimarjan Negi, Markus Ragger and Ni Hua in the 9th Parsvnath Open Tournament. Ukraine
Ivan Popov
Russia Ivan Popov International grandmaster (2007), Champion of Moscow (2012). U20 Russia champion (2007). Peak rating: 2647 (June 2015). Russia
Ernesto Inarkiev
Russia Ernesto Inarkiev Ernesto Inarkiev (born December 9, 1985 in Osh, Kyrgyzstan) is a Russian chess Grandmaster. He was named after Ernesto "Che" Guevara.In 2006 he came third in the 59th Russian Chess Championship Superfinal. In 2010 he tied for 1st–4th with Konstantin Chernyshov, Lê Quang Liêm and Evgeny Bareev in the Moscow Open. In 2013 he took 1st place in the Russian Championship Superfinal. In 2015 he won "Moscow Open 2015" with outstanding 8/9. Russia
Lazaro Bruzon
Cuba Lazaro Bruzon Born 2nd of May 1982, Grandmaster from Cuba. On the June 2013 FIDE list his Elo rating is 2687. Bruzón was the 2000 World Junior Chess Champion. In 2004 he finished first at the XII Torneo "Guillermo Garcia" in Memoriam in Villa Clara. In 2005 he won the American Continental Championship and tied for 2nd–5th with Kamil Mitoń, Zhang Pengxiang and Artyom Timofeev in the Samba Cup in Skanderborg. In 2008 he came first in the 35th open tournament in Manresa. In 2010 he tied for 1st–6th with Kamil Mitoń, Bojan Kurajica, Yuri Gonzalez Vidal, Evgeny Gleizerov and Bartłomiej Heberla in the 4th Torneo Internacional de Ajedrez Ciudad de La Laguna and tied for 1st–2nd with Ivan Salgado Lopez at Barcelona. Cuba
Csaba Balogh
Hungary Csaba Balogh Born in 1987, Csaba Balogh is a Hungarian chess player, earned his International Master title in 2002 and in 2004 he was recognized as a Grandmaster. He won the U-16 section of the 2003 European Youth Chess Championship. Balogh was also a member of the national team that won both the U-16 World Team Championship 2003 and the U-18 European Team Championship in 2003. In 2006 he finished 2nd in the Hungarian Chess Championship. In 2011 he tied for 2nd-5th with Parimarjan Negi, Murtas Kazhgaleyev and Jon Ludvig Hammer in the 13th Dubai Open Chess Championship. Hungary
Vladimir Fedoseyev
Russia Vladimir Fedoseyev Russian chess grandmaster (2011). Absolute European Champion Chess Championship Under-18 Championship (2013) (Blitz, Rapid and Classical). The third prize winner of the European Championship 2014 and World Chess Championship among juniors under 20 years(2014) Russia
Evgeniy Najer
Russia Evgeniy Najer Born 22 June 1977, Russian chess Grandmaster. In 2002 he shared the victory of the U.S. Open Chess Championship with Gennadi Zaichik and in 2003 won the Moscow City Chess Championship. He tied for 1st–6th with Kaido Külaots, Artyom Timofeev, Zoltan Gyimesi, Sergey Grigoriants and Oleg Korneev at the Cappelle-la-Grande Open 2004. In the same year he tied for 1st–3rd with Michael Roiz and Leonid Gofshtein in the Ashdod Chess Festival. In 2007 he tied for 1st–2nd with Vasily Yemelin in the 3rd Moscow Open tournament. In both 2008 and 2009 he won the World Open in Philadelphia. In July 2009, he tied for first with Robert Fontaine in the Paleohora Open Tournament. In 2010, he tied for 2nd–5th with Michael Adams, Victor Mikhalevski and Jiří Štoček the 14th Chicago Open. He was one of the coaches of Gata Kamsky in his 2009 match against Veselin Topalov. Russia
Ivan Bukavshin
Russia Ivan Bukavshin Born May 3, 1995 in Rostov-on-Don, Russian chess Grandmaster (2011). Bukavshin became U12 European Champion in 2006, the U14 European Youth Champion in 2008, and the World U16 Champion in 2010. In 2013, he tied for 1st–11th with Pavel Eljanov, Dmitry Kokarev, Alexander Areshchenko, Denis Khismatullin, Oleg Korneev,Dragan Solak, Vadim Zvjaginsev, Sanan Sjugirov, Maxim Matlakov and Ildar Khairullin in the Chigorin Memorial in St Petersburg. Russia
Rauf Mamedov
Azerbaijan Rauf Mamedov Born April 26, 1988, Azerbaijani chess Grandmaster. In 2004, he became a Grandmaster (GM), following his victory during international tournament in Dubai. He played in the gold medal-winning Azerbaijani team at the European Team Chess Championship in Novi Sad in 2009 and in Warsaw in 2013, alongside Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Teimour Radjabov, Vugar Gashimov and Gadir Guseinov, previously winning bronze medal in 2007.In 2009, he tied for 1st-3rd with Yuriy Kuzubov and Dmitry Andreikin in a category 16 tournament at Lubbock, Texas. Winner of Azerbaijan Chess Championship four times .He played in the Shamkir Chess supertournament in 2015. Peak rating: 2679 (September 2011). Azerbaijan
Eltaj Safarli
Azerbaijan Eltaj Safarli Born 18 May 1992 in Baku, Azerbaijani chess Grandmaster. He played in the gold medal-winning Azerbaijani team at the European Team Chess Championship in 2013. Winner in the Socar team at the European Club Cup. Champion of Azerbaijan 2010, winner of the 2010 Mikhail Chigorin Memorial. Winner of the Nakhchivan Open 2015. Peak rating: 2660 (September 2013). Azerbaijan
 Sergei Zhigalko
Belarus  Sergei Zhigalko Three-time champion of Belarus, two-time European junior champion, two-time winner of the Baku Open tournament, International grandmaster (2007). Belarus
Samuel Shankland
USA Samuel Shankland International grandmaster (2011), he was California State champion in 2008, 2009, and 2011 and US Junior Champion in 2010. Peak rating: 2661 (February 2015). At the 41st Chess Olympiad in Tromso, Norway, Shankland took home gold for his performance as a reserve player. Going undefeated, he scored an incredible 9 points out of 10 games, giving him a performance rating of 2829 for this tournament.In round 8, Shankland defeated legendary GM Judit Polgar in her last ever professional game. Polgar announced her retirement from chess at the end of the event. Shankland shared first place at the American Continental Championship, qualifying him for the 2015 World Cup. Following his gold medal in Tromso, Shankland was promoted to first board of team USA for the World Team Chess Championship, where he played with a performance rating over 2700 and drew against elite players Levon Aronian, Alexander Grischuk, and Boris Gelfand, all of whom were in the top fifteen players worldwide at the time. Shankland took third place in the Tata Steel Challengers group, with a score of 9.0/13 and a performance rating over 2700. USA
Ilia Smirin
Israel Ilia Smirin Born January 21, 1968, in Vitebsk, Belarus, Soviet-Israeli chess Grandmaster. As of January 2012, his Elo rating was 2660, making him the 86th-highest rated player in the world. Smirin's peak rating was 2702 in July 2001, making him one of the elite few grandmasters to achieve a 2700+ rating. Smirin's chess career began in the Soviet Union. He was certified as a chess teacher by the Belorussian State Institute of Physical Culture in Minsk. In 1992 he immigrated to Israel, and has since been one of the leading Israeli players at Chess Olympiads and other international events. Smirin's tournament successes include equal first places at Sverdlovsk 1987, New York 1994, and the 2002 Israeli Championship. He has also won the first league of the USSR Championship (1987, 1989), the Israel Championship (1992, 1994, 1999), and the qualifying tournaments for the 1994 and 1995 PCA World Grand Prix. In 2000 he won the prestigious NY Open and Dos Hermanas 2001. In 2007 he won the Acropolis International at Athens, scoring 7/9 to take first by half a point. Israel
Surya Shekhar Ganguly
India Surya Shekhar Ganguly Surya ShekharGanguly (born February 24, 1983) is an Indian chess Grandmaster from Kolkata. Ganguly became an International Master at 16 and a Grandmaster at 19. He has won a host of national and international tournaments including the Indian National Championship for a record six consecutive times from 2003–2008 and the Asian Championship in 2009. He was awarded the Arjuna Award in 2005 by the Government of India for his outstanding achievement in sports. He also got the "SheraBangali" award in 2009 as the best Sportsperson of Bengal and the "Khel Samman" award in 2013 from the Government of West Bengal. He worked in the team of seconds that assisted Anand in winning the World title matches against Vladimir Kramnik, VeselinTopalov and Gelfand in 2008, 2010 and 2012 respectively. India
Denis Khismatullin
Russia Denis Khismatullin Born 28 December 1984 in Neftekamsk, Russian chess grandmaster. He is the first grandmaster from Bashkiria. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but was eliminated in the first round by Mikhail Kobalia. Among Khismatullin's accomplishments is a second place finish in the World U16 championship in 2000. In 2013 Khismatullin tied for 1st–11th with Pavel Eljanov, Dmitry Kokarev, Alexander Areshchenko, Maxim Matlakov, Oleg Korneev, Dragan Solak, Vadim Zvjaginsev, Sanan Sjugirov, Ivan Bukavshin and Ildar Khairullin in the Chigorin Memorial in St Petersburg. He is the owner of Russian Cup 2005, the winner of “Master-Open 2006” held in Voronej, bronze prizewinner of Russian Championship in 2009, silver prizewinner of Russian Championship in 2010 and bronze prizewinner of superfinal of Russian Championship in 2014. Russia
Santosh Gujrathi Vidit
India Santosh Gujrathi Vidit Vidit Santosh Gujrathi (born 24 October 1994) is an Indian chess player. He was awarded the Grandmaster title in January 2013, aged 18 years and 3 months. He is among the top ten chess players from India. He finished 2nd in the U-16 category of the World Youth Chess Championship in the year 2009, tying at 9 points to the eventual winner S.P. Sethuraman, also from India. In the World Junior Chess Championship in Chennai in 2011, held for U20 players, Vidit finished with 8 points out of 13, thus gaining his first GM norm.In the Nagpur International Open in 2011, Vidit finished with 8 points out of 11, one point behind the eventual winner Ziaur Rahman. He gained his second GM norm in the tournament.Vidit achieved his final GM norm in the eighth round of the Rose Valley Kolkata Open Grandmasters’ chess tournament in 2012, where he finished third. In 2013, Vidit won a bronze medal in the World Junior Chess Championship in Turkey in the Junior (U-20) category. India
Boris Grachev
Russia Boris Grachev Born 27 March 1986, Russian chess Grandmaster (2007). In 1995 he won World Chess U10 Championship in São Lourenço. In 2009 came first in the Masters Open Tournament in Biel, tied for 9th–11th with Mikhail Kobalia and Tomi Nyback in the European Individual Chess Championship and won the first LublinInternational tournament. In 2010 he tied for 3rd–6th with Alexander Motylev, Zhou Jianchao and Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son in theAeroflot Open. In 2011 he tied for 4th–12th with Vadim Zvjaginsev, Sergey Volkov, Ernesto Inarkiev, Sanan Sjugirov, Evgeny Tomashevsky, Vladimir Fedoseev, Maxim Matlakov and Sergei Rublevsky in the Higher League of the Russian Chess Championship in Taganrog. He played in the Chess World Cup 2011 and was eliminated in the second round by Lê Quang Liêm. Russia
Alexander Motylev
Russia Alexander Motylev Born 17 June 1979, chess grandmaster, former European champion and Russian champion. In 2001, he shocked the chess world with a surprise win of the Russian Championship, but in the years that followed, his indifferent form led to both good and bad results. In 2002, he was invited to take part in the prestigious Russia vs Rest of the World match in Moscow and, in the company of the world's elite players, scored only 1/6. In 2004, he swept to a comfortable victory at the Tomsk qualifier and then performed well in the Russian Superfinal. In 2005, he finished second at the 2nd Sanjin Hotel Cup (after Harikrishna, whom he defeated) and in the same year qualified again for the Russian Superfinal, this time by taking 3rd place at Kazan. In 2006, he was the joint winner of the Corus "B" Tournament at Wijkaan Zee with Magnus Carlsen. In June 2009 he won the 10th Poikovsky Karpov tournament (category 18, 2694) in Poikovsky, Russia. In regular team events, he played for Russia in the 2001 World Team Championships and contributed a 2/3 performance, helping the team to a silver medal. He won the 2014 European Individual Chess Championship. Russia
Yuniesky Quesada Pérez
Cuba Yuniesky Quesada Pérez Yuniesky Quesada Pérez (July 31 1984) is a Cuban chess grandmaster. He was the fourth Cuban chess player that surpass the 2600 Elo rating mark on the July 2010 FIDE list. He won the Cuban Chess Championship in 2008 and 2011. He finished 1-2 place with 8.5 points in 11 games in last American championship which held in May, 2015 and with the additional performance was the second. Cuba
S.P. Sethuraman
India S.P. Sethuraman Sethuraman won team Bronze medal with the India team at the 41st Chess Olympiad in Tromso and won the Indian National Championship in 2014. International grandmaster (2011). Peak rating: 2634 (April 2015). India
Andrei Volokitin
Ukraine Andrei Volokitin Andrei Volokitin ( born 18 June 1986 in Lviv) is a Ukrainian chess Grandmaster. He is a former Ukrainian Chess Champion and has competed in four Chess Olympiads, winning team gold in the 36th Chess Olympiad in 2004 along with team bronze in 2012. He achieved the grandmaster title in 2001, when only 15 years old. In 2004 he entered the top 100 of the FIDE world ranking list, won the 73rd Ukrainian Chess Championship and was a member of the gold-medal winning national team at the 36th Chess Olympiad. In 2005 he won the Lausanne young Masters Tournament with a 2984 performance rating. Ukraine
Robert Kempiński
Poland Robert Kempiński Born 11 July 1977 in Gdańsk, Polish chess grandmaster. At the age of 14 he won the Polish junior championship in his age category, and the year after that he won the Polish junior championship for U20. In the following years he represented Poland in international competitions. He won the European Youth Chess Championship three times: 1993 (U16), 1994 (U18) and 1995 (U18). In 1995 he also won the world title in the World Youth Chess Championship in Guarapuava (Brasil), ahead of Emil Sutovsky. The following year he was awarded the grandmaster title and participated in his first Chess Olympiad. He won the Polish Chess Championship in 1997 and 2001. International tournament victories include: Zlín (1994), České Budějovice (1995), Lippstadt (1995), Frýdek-Místek (1997), Biel(2000), Rubinstein Memorial (2006), Bad Zwesten (2004), Neckar-Open (Deizisau, 2005), Porzellan-Cup (Dresden, 2008). He participated in the FIDE World Chess Championship 2004, but was knocked out in the first round against Alexander Lastin. Poland
Bassem Amin
Egypt Bassem Amin Born 9 September 1988, Egyptian chess grandmaster. He is the youngest of Egypt's four grandmasters. He was the African Champion in a championship among young chess players under 20 held in Libya 2004. Bassem Amin was Arab Champion among young chess players under 20 for three times. In 2005 he was the Arab men Champion and in the same year he became African champion among people under 20. In 2006 he became the bronze medalist in World youth Championship under 18 held in Georgia. The same year brought him another success and he became the Arab men Champion (UAE) .In 2008 he took the bronze medal in World Juniors held in Turkey. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2009 and was knocked out by Vladimir Malakhov in the first round. He won the title of African Chess Championin Libya in 2009 and in Tunisin 2013. Bassem Amin became the co-winner of Reykjavik Open in 2013. In 2014 he won the Mediterranean Chess Championship which was held in Greece. He Scored 8.5 points out of 11 on board 1 at the 41st World Chess Olympiad, leading the Egyptian National Chess Team to achieve the best result in Egyptian Chess history and won a Gold Medal in Category B. Egypt
Varuzhan Akobian
USA Varuzhan Akobian Born November 19, 1983 in Yerevan, Armenia, Armenian-born American chess grandmaster. Originally from Armenia, he now resides in Los Angeles. He played on the bronze-medal-winning U.S. team in the 2006 and 2008 Chess Olympiads. In 2001, he moved to the United States. He won the World Open tournament in Philadelphia on three separate occasions; he shared first place in 2002 and won it outright in 2004 and 2007. In 2006 he tied for first in the San Marino tournament with a performance rating of 2796. In 2007 he tied for 1st–8th with Hikaru Nakamura, Alexander Shabalov, Darmen Sadvakasov, Zviad Izoria, Victor Mikhalevski, Magesh Chandran Panchanathan and Justin Sarkar in the Miami Open and came equal first in the American Continental Championship in Cali,Colombia. This qualified him for the Chess World Cup 2007, where he was eliminated in the first round. He also took part in the Chess World Cup 2009 and was knocked out by Ruslan Ponomariov in the second round. In May, 2014, while playing the US Chess Championship in Saint Louis he tied for first with Gata Kamsky and Aleksandr Lenderman, going to a three players playoff to decide who would become champion. In an Armageddon Game he defeated Lenderman and went on to a Rapid Match against Kamsky, that resulted 1,5 for Kamsky to 0,5 to Akobian, granting Kamsky the title, and making Akobian the runner up in 2014 US Chess Championship. USA
Ngoc Truong Son Nguyen
Vietnam Ngoc Truong Son Nguyen Born RachSoi, RachGia, KienGiang Province, Vietnam; February 23, 1990, leading Vietnamese chess player. After learning chess at the age of 3, he won the gold medal at the world under 10 championship in 2000. He is Vietnam's youngest Grandmaster ever, and one of the youngest grandmasters in the history of the game. According to August 2013 FIDE rating list, he is second ranked among Vietnamese players with 2625 Elo rating. From 2 to 15 August, he, Lê Quang Liêm, and other Vietnamese chess players participated in 2014 Chess Olympiad in Tromsø, Norway. With +7=3-0 result, Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son won the gold medal at board 2 with Rp 2843, getting 25 ELO rating points. Vietnam
Gadir Guseinov
Azerbaijan Gadir Guseinov Gadir Guseinov played in the gold medal-winning Azerbaijani team at the European Team Chess Championship in Novi Sad in 2009, alongside Shahriyar Mammadyarov, Teimour Radjabov, Vugar Gashimov and Rauf Mammadov, previously winning bronze medal in 2007 and silver in 2011. In 2013, in Warsaw, Gadir helped the Azerbaijani team to win the title for the second time. In 2008 tied for 1st–8th with Nigel Short, Vadim Milov, Aleksej Aleksandrov, Baadur Jobava, Alexander Lastin, Tamaz Gelashvili and Farid Abbasov in the President's Cup in Baku.Took first place in the Ugra Governor's Chess Blitz Cup 2011. Azerbaijan
E.Iturrizaga Bonelli
Venezuela E.Iturrizaga Bonelli Eduardo Patricio Iturrizaga Bonelli (born 1 November 1989) is a Venezuelan chess player. He achieved the title of grandmasterin 2008, making him the first and only Venezuelan chess grandmaster. He moved to Peru when he was seven, and it was upon his return to Venezuela at age nine he started to take the game seriously. At age thirteen he attained the title of International Master. Iturrizaga won consecutive national championships from 2005 to 2008, and has been playing for Venezuela at the Chess Olympiad since 2004. His best performance came at the 37th Chess Olympiad (2006), when he scored 8.5/11 points playing second board. The result earned him an individual bronze medal. Iturrizaga qualified for the 2007 Chess World Cup after a shared first place performance at the American Continental Championship. He was set to face Peter Svidler in the first round, but forfeited the first game due to getting lost between Russian airports. He lost the second game. In 2008, Iturrizaga won an online qualifier for the C-group in the 2009 Corus Chess Tournament, defeating GM Alexandr Fier 3-1 in the finals. He ended up on a shared eight place out of fourteen in the main tournament, scoring 5.5/13. Iturrizaga finished second in the 2008 Iboamerican Championship inLinares, Spain, losing to Julio Granda in the finals. After sharing first place at the Zonal 2.3 Chess Championships in San Jose, Costa Rica with Lázaro Bruzón, Iturrizaga qualified for the Chess World Cup 2009. He was knocked out by Baadur Jobava in the second round, having defeated Sergei Tiviakov 3.5 - 2.5 in the first round. The same year, Iturrizaga won the 12th Dubai Open Chess Championship with 7 points out of 9, besting a field consisting of 36 GMs and 154 players total. Venezuela
Rafael Duailibe Leitão
Brazil Rafael Duailibe Leitão Born 1979 in São Luís, Maranhão, Brazilian chess grandmaster. He won the World Youth Chess Championship U18 category in 1996. He won the Brazilian Chess Championship in 1996, 1997, 1998, 2004, 2011, 2013, 2014 and 2015. Brazil
Dragan Solak
Turkey Dragan Solak Born 30 March 1980, in Vrbas, Serbian chess grandmaster currently representing the Turkish Chess Federation (as of December 2011). In 2002 he tied for 1st–3rd with Vladimir Tukmakov and Andrei Sokolov in the Hilton Open in Basel. In 2011 he tied for 3rd–7th with Sergey Volkov, Ioannis Nikolaidis, Konstantine Shanava and Fernando Peralta in the 1st Isthmia International Tournament. He played in the Chess Olympiads of 2000, 2004, 2008 and in the European Team Chess Championships of 1999, 2005, 2009 and 2011. Since December 2011, he is playing for the Turkish Chess Federation. Turkey
Romain Edouard
France Romain Edouard International grandmaster since 2009. He won the 2006 European Youth Chess Championship U16 category.In 2012, Édouard became co-champion of his country by winning the French Championship. Peak rating: 2702 (June 2014). France
David Guijarro
Spain David Guijarro Born 23 June 1995, Spanish chess grandmaster. He won the silver medal in the 2014 European Individual Chess Championship, earning him a berth in the World Cup 2015. He won the 2014 Spanish Blitz Championship held in Sabiote. He tied for second place (sixth on tiebreak) in the European Blitz Championships in 2014. Spain
Yuri Vovk
Ukraine Yuri Vovk Born 11 November 1988, Ukrainian chess player. He was trained by Vladimir Grabinsky, coach of the Ukrainian youth team. He became a Grandmaster in 2008, at age 20. His major success has been the victory In February 2009 of the colossal 610-player Cappelle-la-Grande Open in France, above 106 Grandmasters and 76 International Masters, with 7.5 points out of 9. Ukraine
Constantin Lupulescu
Romania Constantin Lupulescu Born 25 March 1984 in Buftea, Romania, Romanian chess Grandmaster (2006). He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011 and Chess World Cup 2013, but was eliminated in the first round by Daniel Fridman and Krishnan Sasikiran, respectively. Lupulescu won the Romanian Chess Championship in 2007, 2010, and 2011. He played for Romania in the Chess Olympiads of 2004 and 2008. He came clear 1st in Bucharest 2003 and Bucharest 2006 tournaments. In 2013 he tied for 1st–8th in the European Individual Chess Championship. In 2014, he repeated his performance by finishing 6th in the European Individual Chess Championship, with 8 points in 11 rounds. He thus qualified for the Chess World Cup 2015 for a third consecutive time. He is currently the #1 Romanian chess player and regularly plays 1st board for Romania in team events. Romania
Alexander Ipatov
Turkey Alexander Ipatov Born July 16, 1993 in Lviv, Ukraine, is an International Chess Grand Master and one of the top chess players in Turkey. In 2008, Ipatov gained 207 points on his ELO rating, became vice-champion twice of Ukraine U16 and U20 and received the titles of National Master and International Master. From January 2009 to February 2012, he represented Spain. In 2011, Ipatov achieved one of the most significant performances in his career: 3rd place in the International Chess Open of Cappelle-la-Grande, where participated with 573 players, of which 85 were Grandmasters. Since February, 2012, Alexander Ipatov has represented the Turkish Chess Federation. In August, 2012, he became the FIDE World Junior Chess Champion which made him eligible to participate in the 2013 World Cup. He was also a participant for the Turkish National Team in World Chess Olympiads (2012,2014). Turkish National Champion 2014. Turkey
Alexandr Fier
Brazil Alexandr Fier Full name: Alexandr Hilário Takeda Sakai dos Santos Fier; born March 11, 1988, in Joinville, is a Brazilian chess Grandmaster. He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but was eliminated in the second round by Alexander Morozevich. Brazil
Mateusz Bartel
Poland Mateusz Bartel Born January 3, 1985 in Warsaw, Polish chess player who holds the title of International Grandmaster (GM). He won the under-18 European championship in 2003. Bartel learned to play the game at age 5-6 when he and his brother were at home ill with chickenpox. Both Mateusz and his brother entered the chess club Polonia Warsaw. Bartel represented his country in the Chess Olympiad. In the Turin 2006 Olympiad he played fourth board, scoring 5/10 (+3 =4 -3). In the Dresden 2008 Olympiad, Bartel scored 4/7 (+3 =2 -2) as the team's third board. In the 2010 Khanty-Mansiysk Olympiad he played on the fifth board scoring 7 points out of 9 games (+6 =2 -1) and got a silver medal for individual result on his board. After Sebastien Feller’s disqualification for cheating, Bartel received a gold medal. In 2007, he tied for 1st–6th with Vitali Golod, Zahar Efimenko, Yuri Yakovich, Michael Roiz and Mikhail Kobalia in the 16th Monarch Assurance Isle of Man International tournament. In 2009 he came first at Prievidza. In February 2012, he tied for 1st–3rd with Anton Korobov and Pavel Eljanov in the 11th Aeroflot Open and won the event on tie-break. He tied 2nd-4th place in last European Individual Chess Championship and came with tiebreak third. He won the Polish Chess Championship in 2006, 2010, 2011 and 2012. Poland
Hrant Melkumyan
Armenia Hrant Melkumyan Born April 30, 1989, Armenian chess Grandmaster and European Blitz Champion in 2011. In 2006, he won the U18 silver medal at the World Youth Chess Championship. In 2009, he tied for 1st–5th with Sergey Volkov, AndreyRychagov, Andrei Deviatkin and Zhou Weiqi in the Chigorin Memorial. In 2010, tied for 1st–8th in the 12th Dubai Open. Armenia
Zhao Jun
China Zhao Jun Born December 12, 1986 in Jinan, Shandong, Chinese chess Grandmaster. In 2004, he became China's 19th Grandmaster at the age of 17. He achieved his first GM norm at the February 2004 Aeroflot Open in Moscow where he scored 5/9 (with a performance rating of 2613). His second norm was achieved at the April 2004 China Men's Team Championship in Jinan where he scored 7/10 (with a performance rating of 2652). His third norm was achieved at the November 2004 World Junior Chess Championship in Cochin where he came third scoring 9½/13 (with a performance rating of 2633). He competed in the Chess World Cup 2007 where he beat Pendyala Harikrishna in the first round and achieved a performance rating of 2668. China
Yang Wen
China Yang Wen International grandmaster (2008). Peak rating: 2631 (March 2013). China
Vasif Durarbeyli
Azerbaijan Vasif Durarbeyli Vasif Durarbayli is an Azerbaijani Grandmaster who was born on February 24, 1992 and won that title at the World Youth Chess Championship for boys under 18. In 2013 he lost to Anton Korobov at the World Cup in the first round. Peak rating: 2632 (August 2015). Azerbaijan
Anton Kovalyov
Canada Anton Kovalyov Ukrainian-Canadian Grandmaster, Kovalyov was born in Kharkiv, Ukraine on March 4, 1992. In 2000 he moved to Argentina, where he learned how to play chess. Soon he became the best player of Argentina and in 2008 he was awarded the Grandmaster title. During the same year he played in Chess Olympiad for Argentina. In 2012 he won Quebec Junior Championship and in 2013 abandoned Argentina and changed his chess federation to Canada. Currently he lives in Montreal, Canada where he became a citizen and since September 2013 he is considered to be Canada's top player. Canada
Milos Perunovic
Serbia Milos Perunovic Born 1984. International grandmaster (2004), champion of Serbia and Montenegro (2005), peak rating: 2633 (February 2015). Serbia
Saleh Salem
UAE Saleh Salem International grandmaster (2009), four times represented UAE at the Chess Olympiads. Peak rating: 2615 (July 2015). UAE
Rinat Jumabayev
Kazakhstan Rinat Jumabayev International grandmaster (2009), participant of three Chess Olympiads. Peak rating: 2600 (July 2015). Kazakhstan
Jianchao Zhou
China Jianchao Zhou Zhou Jianchaois a Chinese chess Grandmaster. In 2006, he became China's 21st Grandmaster at the age of 17. In March 2009, Zhou became for the first time in his career a top 100 player in the world. As of August 2015, he is ranked 230th globally and 15th in China. Zhou Jianchao scored 6.0/9 (+3,=6,-0) at the 2010 Aeroflot Open coming 4th out of 80 players with a 2777 performance. He reached the second round of the Chess World Cup 2009 in Khanty-Mansiysk. Zhou qualified for the Chess World Cup 2007 (held in Khanty-Mansiysk) where he reached Round Three. He eventually lost to Michael Adams after having upset Emil Sutovsky and Andrei Volokitin in the first two rounds. In this tournament he achieved a performance rating of 2687. This was his biggest achievement to date. China
Aleksey Goganov
Russia Aleksey Goganov Born 26 July 1991, Russian chess Grandmaster. His International Master title was confirmed in 2010 after placing fifth with 5/9 at the FINEC GM tournament in January 2009, shared second with 9.5/13 at the St Petersburg Championship three weeks later (this norm also counting as a first GM norm) and scoring 5/9 at the Chigorin Memorial that November. His two other GM norms came via shared first with 7/9 at a GM tournament held in Moscow in 2009 and scoring 6.5/11 at the European Individual Championships in 2013. Goganov won the Polugaevsky Memorial in 2012 on tiebreak, won the Chepukaitis Memorial in August 2013 and qualified for the Russian Chess Championship in 2013, eventually finishing in eighth place. Russia
Samvel Ter-Sahakyan
Armenia Samvel Ter-Sahakyan Various times winner and medalist of World and European junior championships, International Grandmaster (2009), peak rating: 2593 (July 2015). Armenia
Shanglei Lu
China Shanglei Lu Born July 10, 1995, Chinese chess grandmaster, who in 2011 was the highest-rated under-16 chess player in Asia and the fifth highest-rated chess player in that age group in the world. In October 2011 he gained the Grandmaster title by gaining two GM norms. His first GM norm was in May 2011 when he scored 6/9 and finished 7th at the 2011 Asian Individual Championships in Mashhad, Iran, coming ahead of 22 grandmasters and defeating Ehsan Ghaem Maghami, Susanto Megaranto and Baskaran Adhiban. In June 2011 he gained his second norm at the 2nd Chairman Prospero A. Pichay tournament in the Subic Bay Freeport Zone, Philippines with wins against Rogelio Antonio Jr and Eugenio Torre. In August 2011, Lu came 2nd behind GM Li Shilong at the 8th Dato' Arthur Tan Malaysia Open 2011. In October 2014 at the World Junior Chess Championship in Pune, India, he won the championship overall with a half point lead near his closest rivals at 9.5/13. He finished with 10/13 (+7=6-0), beat top seeds players and also qualified for the Chess World Cup to be held in Baku, Azerbaijan. China
Sandro Mareco
Argentina Sandro Mareco International grandmaster (2010), South America U20 Champion (2007). Peak rating: 2628 (January 2011). Argentina
Ante Brkic
Croatia Ante Brkic International Grandmaster (2007), three times represented Croatia at the Chess Olympiads, peak rating: 2607 (June 2015). Croatia
Tamir Nabaty
Israel Tamir Nabaty International Grandmaster (2011), Israeli national champion (2013), peak rating: 2604 (July 2015). Israel
Ahmed Adly
Egypt Ahmed Adly In 2005, he won the African Chess Championship, and in 2007 he won the World Junior Chess Championship. Peak rating: 2640 (January 2011). Egypt
Viorel Iordachescu
Moldova Viorel Iordachescu Viorel Iordăchescu (born 20 April 1977) is a Moldovan chess grandmaster (1999). He took part in the Chess World Cup 2011, but was eliminated in the first round by Sébastien Feller. He tied for 1st–6th with Reiner Odendahl, Erwin l'Ami, Daniël Stellwagen, Susanto Megaranto and Friso Nijboer at Vlissingen 2005. In 2009 he tied for 2nd–4th with Alexey Korotylev and Sergei Tiviakov at Moscow Open. In 2010, tied for 1st–8th with Sergey Volkov, Hrant Melkumyan, Eduardo Iturrizaga, Gadir Guseinov, David Arutinian, Aleksej Aleksandrov and Tornike Sanikidze in the 12th Dubai Open. International grandmaster (1999), participant of 11 chess Olympiads, peak rating: 2651 (January 2012). Moldova
Isan Ortiz
Cuba Isan Ortiz Born 30th of March 1985. He earned the Grandmaster title in 2011, and played on fourth board for the Cuban team in the 2014 Chess Olympiad, ending with a tournament performance of 2766 after five wins, two draws and a loss. Ortiz Suarez won the Cuban national chess championship 2014. Peak rating: 2625 (March 2015). Cuba
Pouya Idani
Iran Pouya Idani International grandmaster (2014), World champion U18 (2013). Peak rating: 2557 (July 2015). Iran
Federico Perez Ponsa
Argentina Federico Perez Ponsa Born in 1993. International grandmaster (2012), peak rating: 2563 (July 2015). First place in 89 Campeonato Argentino Superior 2014. Argentina
Babu M.R. Lalith
India Babu M.R. Lalith M.R.LalithBabu (born 1993) is an Indian chess player, he had achieved the final Grandmaster norm at Hastings London 2012.He competed in 41st Chess Olympiad Tromso, Norway 2014 in which Indian Team won the first ever bronze medal. He won Leiden Championship in Netherlands 2009 , Commonwealth bronze medal in New Delhi 2010. He won Barcelona Championship 2012, Commonwealth2012 at Chennai and Chennai Super Kings championship 2013, first Indian to win this title. As of August 2015 he has a FIDE Elo rating of 2570 and was ranked 378th in the world. India
Samuel Sevian
USA Samuel Sevian Born December 26, 2000, American chess prodigy. He was born in Corning, New York. He holds the record for the youngest ever United States Grandmaster at the age of 13 years, 10 months, and 27 days. In May 2013, Sevian was invited to play in the U.S. Chess Championship in St. Louis as the youngest ever participant. After completing GM Norms at the Foxwoods Open in January, Saint Louis GM Invitational in May and Washington International in August 2014, he completed the requirements for the title by achieving a 2500 FIDE rating during the Saint Louis GM Norm Invitational tournament, which he won with 7.5/9. Sevian shared fifth place in the US Chess Championships, beating Wesley So, a world top ten ranked player, and drawing with Hikaru Nakamura as well as defending champion Gata Kamsky. This performance earned him a spot in the 2015 Chess World Cup. USA
Emre Can
Turkey Emre Can Emre Can was born in İzmir, Turkey on January 21, 1990. He earned FIDE titles as FIDE Master (FM) in 2006, International Master (IM) in 2007 and Grand Master (GM) on July 25, 2010. He began with chess playing at the age of seven. In 1999, Emre Can participated at the chess championship held in Antalya, Turkey becoming second in his age group. In 2000, he took part at the World Youth Chess Championship held in Oropesa del Mar, Spain. At the age of 16, he won the first title in his age category among 102 players from 19 countries at the 13th Youth Chess Olympiad held in Novi Sad, Serbia on July 1–9. In 2011, he became the Turkish chess champion. Peak rating: 2560 (April 2015). Turkey
Mariya Muzychuk
Ukraine Mariya Muzychuk Born 21 September 1992, Ukrainian chess player, and the current Women's World Chess Champion. WIM (2005); WGM (2007); IM (2008). Muzychuk was granted the title of Grandmaster by winning the 2015 Women's World Chess Championship. In November 2010 she was ranked as the fifth-highest girl in the world. She made it to the top-16 of the 2010 Women's World Chess Championship, but lost to Dronavalli Harika in an Armageddon playoffafter a tie in the regular match. She became world champion by winning the Women's World Chess Championship 2015 (knock-out). In the first round, she drew with Yuanling Yuan in the classical games and then defeated her in the tiebreaks. In round 2, she drew with Monika Socko in the classical games and defeated her in the tiebreaks. In round 3, she defeated former Women's World Chess Champion Antoaneta Stefanova in the classical games by a score of 1½–½. In the quarter-final she defeated number one seed Humpy Koneru in the tiebreaks (2½–1½), and then beat Dronavalli Harika in the semi-final by tiebreaks (3½–2½). In the final she beat Natalia Pogonina with a score of 2½–1½. As a result of her victory, she obtained the Grandmaster title as a direct award, and qualified for the 2015 Chess World Cup to be held in Baku, Azerbaijan. She is expected to defend her title against Hou Yifan in the Women's World Chess Championship 2016 Ukraine
Max Illingworth
Australia Max Illingworth Born 5 November 1992, in Sydney, Australia, Australian chess International Master (IM), chess coach and writer. He became a FIDE Trainer in 2014. He has competed in six Oceania Chess Championship events in 2007 (Fiji), 2009 (Gold Coast), 2011 (Rotorua), 2012 (Queenstown), 2013 (Nadi) and 2015 (Sydney). His best result was finishing =1st with a score of 7½/9 in the 2015 event. Internationally, Illingworth is known as a chess theoretician, as a contributor to the New In Chess Yearbook. He also writes surveys for the Chessbase Magazine as well as opening articles for Chess Publishing and the Australian chess magazine 50 Moves. Australia
Cristobal Villagra Henriquez
Chile Cristobal Villagra Henriquez International master (2013). Peak rating: 2511 (July 2015) Chile
Ziaur Rahman
Bangladesh Ziaur Rahman International grandmaster (2002).He holds the highest FIDE rating ever achieved by a Bangladeshi chess player (2570 in October 2005). Bangladesh
Espinosa Veloz
Cuba Espinosa Veloz Born in 1987. International Master (2015), peak rating: 2504 (May 2015). Cuba
Ilia Iljiushenok
Russia Ilia Iljiushenok International master (2015), peak rating: 2491 (July 2015). Russia
Michael Wiedenkeller
Luxembourg Michael Wiedenkeller Born 10 January 1963, Swedish-Luxembourgian International ChessMaster. In 1990, he won the Swedish Chess Championship and in 2008, became Luxembourgian rapid chess champion. In 1999, he tied for second with Vlastimil Jansa in the Donne Haas Memorial in Luxembourg. According to Chessmetrics, at his peak in October 1984 Wiedenkeller's play was equivalent to a rating of 2589. His best single performance was at Eksjö 1983, where he scored 4.5 of 5 possible points (90%) against 2488-rated opposition, for a performance rating of 2626. Luxembourg
Parham Maghsoodloo
Iran Parham Maghsoodloo Born in 2000 in Iran, peak rating 2419 (March 2015). Maghsoodloo won a bronze medal as a part of the Iranian national team at the World Youth U-16 Chess Olympiad 2014. Iran
Tomas Krnan
Canada Tomas Krnan International master (2006), Canada champion 2015. Canada
Yusup Atabayev
Turkmenistan Yusup Atabayev International master (2012). Peak rating: 2435 (July 2015). Turkmenistan
Deysi Cori
Peru Deysi Cori Born July 2, 1993 in Lima, is a Peruvian chess player who holds the Woman Grandmaster title. In August 2011 she won the World Girls U-20 Chess Championship. At the 2009 World Youth Chess Championship, held in Antalya, Turkey, Cori won the U-16 Girls championship, winning nine of her first ten matches, and clinched the title with a round to spare. Peru
Arthur Ssegwanyi
Uganda Arthur Ssegwanyi Born 1988, Uganda. International Master (2015). Peak rating: 2357 (July 2015). In the Zone 4.2 Chess Championship, Ssegwanyi won six games and drew three to snatch a prestigious winners’ trophy in nine rounds. Uganda
Amir Zaibi
Tunisia Amir Zaibi FIDE master (2013). Peak rating: 2373 (June 2015). Tunisia
Richmond Phiri
Zambia Richmond Phiri International master (2015), peak rating: 2305 (July 2015). Zambia
Oladapo Adu
Nigeria Oladapo Adu International master, peak rating: 2300 (October 2003). Nigeria