Alexandra Konstantinovna Kosteniuk(Александра Константиновна Костенюк)
April 23, 1984 |
Perm, Russian SFSR, Soviet Union
|Women's World Champion||2008–10|
|FIDE rating||2520 (August 2015)
(No. 16 ranked woman in the November 2012 FIDE World Rankings)
|Peak rating||2543 (September 2014)|
Kosteniuk learned to play chess at the age of five after being taught by her father. She has a younger sister named Oxana, who is a Woman FIDE Master level chess player.
In 2001, at the age of 17, she reached the final of the World Women's Chess Championship, but was defeated by Zhu Chen. Three years later, she became European women's champion by winning the tournament in Dresden, Germany. She also won the 2005 Russian Women's Championship, held in Samara, Russia, finishing with a score of +7 −0 =4 . In August 2006, she became the first Chess960 women's world champion after beating Germany's top female player Elisabeth Pähtz 5½–2½. She defended that title successfully in 2008 by beating Kateryna Lahno 2½–1½. However, her greatest success so far has been to win the Women's World Chess Championship 2008, beating in the final the young Chinese prodigy Hou Yifan, with a score of 2½–1½.
In November 2004, she was awarded the International Grandmaster title, becoming the tenth woman to receive the highest title of the World Chess Federation, FIDE. Before that, she had also obtained the titles of Woman Grandmaster and International Master. She is 44th on the November 2011 FIDE women's Elo rating list with a rating of 2439.
In 2013 she became the first woman to win the men’s Swiss [Chess] Championship.  That year she also won the women's Swiss Championship, and thus became the first person to win both the women’s and men’s national chess titles in Switzerland. 
Kosteniuk has dual Swiss-Russian citizenship.  She is married to Swiss-born Diego Garces, who is of Colombian descent. On April 22, 2007 Alexandra gave birth to a daughter, Francesca Maria. Francesca was born 2½ months premature, but after an 8-week stay in the hospital has made a full recovery.
Alexandra is today a member of the ‘Champions for Peace’ club, a group of 54 famous elite athletes committed to serving peace in the world through sport, created by Peace and Sport, a Monaco-based international organization.
- The World vs Alexandra Kosteniuk, 2004, Sicilian Defense: Najdorf Variation. English Attack (B90), 0–1
- Alexandra Kosteniuk vs Alexander Onischuk, Corus, Group B 2005, Spanish Game: Classical Variation (C65), 1–0
- Anna Ushenina vs Alexandra Kosteniuk, WWCh. 2008, Nimzo-Indian Defense: Classical, Noa Variation (E34), 0–1
Bibliography by Kosteniuk
- Kosteniuk, Alexandra (2001). How I became a grandmaster at age 14. Moscow. ISBN 5829300435.
- Как стать гроссмейстером в 14 лет. Moscow, 2001. 202,  с.,  л. ил. ISBN 5-89069-053-1.
- Как научить шахматам : дошкольный шахматный учебник / Александра Костенюк, Наталия Костенюк. Moscow : Russian Chess House, 2008. 142 с ISBN 978-5-94693-085-7.
- Kosteniuk, Alexandra (2009). Diary of a Chess Queen. Mongoose Press. ISBN 978-0-9791482-7-9.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Alexandra Kosteniuk.|
- Kosteniuk's website
- Alexandra Kosteniuk player profile and games at Chessgames.com
- Alexandra Kosteniuk's chess blog – Chessqueen
- Alexandra Kosteniuk's chess tips – ChessKillerTips
- Interview with Grandmaster Alexandra Kosteniuk on LatestChess site
- Kosteniuk wins WMSG blitz title
- ChessBase: Alexandra Kosteniuk is Women's World Champion
- The crowning of Kosteniuk as a World Champion
|Women's World Chess Champion