Emil Sutovsky, Iraklion 2007
|Full name||Emil Sutovsky|
September 19, 1977 |
Baku, Azerbaijan SSR, USSR
|FIDE rating||2652 (March 2014)
(No. 41 in the January 2012 FIDE World Rankings)
|Peak rating||2703 (January 2012)|
Sutovsky learned to play chess at the age of four. He achieved notable successes by winning the World Junior Chess Championship in Medellín in 1996, finishing first at the double-round-robin VAM Hoogeveen Tournament in 1997 (ahead of Judit Polgár, Loek van Wely, and Vasily Smyslov), and winning Hastings 2000 (ahead of Alexey Dreev, Ivan Sokolov and Jonathan Speelman). In 2001 Sutovsky recorded perhaps the greatest individual result by an Israeli player: seeded only 35th among the 204 participants (including 143 Grandmasters) in the second European Chess Championship in Ohrid, Macedonia, he started with an ordinary 3.5−2.5. He then started a series of resounding victories (e.g. ), and finished the tournament with 9.5−3.5, along with future FIDE world champion Ruslan Ponomariov, and ahead of Judit Polgár, Nigel Short, and many other world-class players . He went on to beat Ponomariov 1.5−0.5 in a rapid chess tie-break, and was crowned European Champion.
In 2003 he tied for first with Alexander Beliavsky in the Vidmar Memorial. In 2007, he placed second at the 8th European Chess Championship, held in Dresden, following a play-off with the eventual winner GM Vladislav Tkachiev and GMs Dmitry Jakovenko and Ivan Cheparinov.
He finished tied for first in two major open tournaments in 2005: in Gibraltar he scored 7.5−2.5 (the same score as Levon Aronian, Zahar Efimenko, Kiril Georgiev, and Alexei Shirov), and at the Aeroflot Open in Moscow he scored 6.5−2.5 (the same as Vasily Ivanchuk, Alexander Motylev, Andrei Kharlov, and Vladimir Akopian). His superior tie-break in the latter gave him first place (ahead of top players such as Aronian, Radjabov, Mamedyarov, Ponomariov, Karjakin, et al.) and with it an invitation to the prestigious Dortmund tournament later in the year, in which he beat classical world champion Vladimir Kramnik , scoring 3.5−5.5.
Sutovsky played in three FIDE Knock-out World Championships: in 1997 he was eliminated in the first round by Guildardo Garcia; in 2000 he was eliminated in the first round by Igor Nataf; in 2001 he was eliminated in round three by eventual runner-up Vasily Ivanchuk.
He took part in FIDE World Cup 2005, FIDE World Cup 2007 and FIDE World Cup 2009 with a moderate success. In 2007, Sutovsky, known for his vast theoretical knowledge and analytical skills became a second of US Grandmaster Gata Kamsky, helping him to win the FIDE World Cup 2007.
For the last decade, Sutovsky has retained his position in the FIDE top 100; his peak ranking is No. 17 in the world, which he had on the October 2004 list.
Sutovsky represented Israel in seven Chess Olympiads from 1996 to 2010. In the 2010 Chess Olympiad he took the gold medal for the best individual performance on board two and showed the highest TPR (Tournament Performance Rating) of 2895, among all the participants of the Olympiad. It was also the highest TPR in the history of the Chess Olympiads.
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His uncompromising style means his tournament results can be somewhat inconsistent − Sutovsky, who has won a total of nearly 40 International Grandmaster Tournaments (more than most of the top ten players) is arguably the most volatile player among top Grandmasters.
Sutovsky's uncompromising style has attracted a lot of attention: his sacrificial victory over Ilya Smirin in the 2002 Israeli Championship was voted the best game of issue 86 of Chess Informant , and his victory over Danny Gormally at Gibraltar 2005 earned him the prize for best game . This game was highly praised by FIDE World Champion Viswanathan Anand, who picked this game as the best chess game he had ever seen. Sutovsky is considered to be one of the most creative chess players, since 2006 he has his own column − "Jeu créateur" ("Creative chess") in major French chess magazine Europe Échecs.
Sutovsky virtually always plays 1.e4 with White, occasionally testing unfashionable or old-fashioned openings such as the Two Knights Defence, the King's Gambit, and the Scotch Game. With Black, he usually plays the Grünfeld Defence or King's Indian Defence against 1.d4, and Sicilian Defence or Ruy Lopez against 1.e4.
His romantic chess style might be linked to his hobby – Sutovsky is a profound bass-baritone singer . Sutovsky is also an avid Trivia player, he is a founder and captain of chess team, which participates in What? Where? When? tournaments. Sutovsky speaks five languages, and is widely acclaimed as one of the most intelligent personalities in the chess world.
- Burgess, Graham; Nunn, John; Emms, John (2004). The World's Greatest Chess Games. London: Robinson. p. 615. ISBN 1-84119-905-2.
- "Dr. Milan Vidmar Memorial Tournaments". sah-zveza.si. Retrieved 6 April 2010.
- Crowther, Mark (2005-02-07). "The Week in Chess 535: Gibtele.com Masters International". London Chess Center. Retrieved 26 January 2012.
- "Inventi Chess 2009". Retrieved 2009-10-01.
- Crowther, Mark (2011-08-16). "TWIC: Baku Open 2011". London Chess Centre. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
- Bartelski, Wojciech. "Men's Chess Olympiads: Emil Sutovsky". OlimpBase. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
- "2010 Chess Olympiad Statistical overview". ChessBase. Retrieved 7 October 2010.
- "Just Checking" Questionnaire in: New In Chess Magazine, Issue 3/2005, p.106