Chess prodigy

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Eleven-year-old Sammy Reshevsky, New York 1922

A chess prodigy is a child prodigy who can beat experienced adult players, and even masters, at chess. Some chess prodigies have gone on to become World Chess Champion.

Early chess prodigies[edit]

Early chess prodigies were Paul Morphy (1837–1884) and José Raúl Capablanca (1888–1942), both of whom won matches against strong adult opponents at the age of 12, and Samuel Reshevsky (1911–1992), who was giving simultaneous exhibitions at the age of six.[1] Morphy went on to be unofficial World Champion (before the official title existed), Capablanca became the third World Champion, and Reshevsky—while never attaining the title—was amongst the top few players in the world for many decades.

Youngest to defeat a Grandmaster[edit]

There is often widespread attention when a young player defeats a Grandmaster, whether in a standard tournament game or less formal conditions. In 1976, a ten-year-old Nigel Short beat Viktor Korchnoi as a participant in a simultaneous exhibition, the only game Korchnoi lost in the event. David Howell defeated John Nunn in a blitz game at the age of eight.[2] In 2009 Hetul Shah beat GM Nurlan Ibrayev at age of nine years and six months at the Parsvnath Open to become the youngest player to defeat a Grandmaster under standard time controls.[3] This record was broken in 2012 by Awonder Liang when he defeated Larry Kaufman at the Washington International at the age of nine years and 111 days.[4]

List of youngest grandmasters[edit]

Since 1950, when the Grandmaster (GM) title was introduced by FIDE, one measure of chess prodigies is the age at which they gain the GM title. Below are players who have held the record for the youngest grandmaster. The record has been held by Sergey Karjakin (Ukraine) since 2002. The age listed is the age at which they qualified for the title. This is not equal to the age at which they officially became Grandmasters, because GM titles can only be awarded at FIDE congresses.

(NOTE: all players are listed by their nationality at the time of gaining the title, not their current or later nationality.)

List of youngest grandmasters since 1950
Year Player Country Age
1950 David Bronstein  Soviet Union 26 years
1952 Tigran Petrosian  Soviet Union 23 years
1955 Boris Spassky  Soviet Union 18 years
1958 Bobby Fischer  United States 15 years, 6 months, 1 day
1991 Judit Polgár  Hungary 15 years, 4 months, 28 days
1994 Péter Lékó  Hungary 14 years, 4 months, 22 days
1997 Étienne Bacrot  France 14 years, 2 months, 0 days
1997 Ruslan Ponomariov  Ukraine 14 years, 0 months, 17 days
1999 Bu Xiangzhi  China 13 years, 10 months, 13 days
2002 Sergey Karjakin  Ukraine 12 years, 7 months, 0 days

This is a list of the players who became Grandmasters before their 15th birthday.

Grandmasters younger than 15 years old
Player Country Age Birth year
Sergey Karjakin  Ukraine 12 years, 7 months, 0 days 1990
Gukesh D  India 12 years, 7 months, 17 days 2006
Javokhir Sindarov  Uzbekistan 12 years, 10 months, 5 days 2005
Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu  India 12 years, 10 months, 13 days 2005
Nodirbek Abdusattorov  Uzbekistan 13 years, 1 month, 11 days 2004
Parimarjan Negi  India 13 years, 4 months, 22 days 1993
Magnus Carlsen  Norway 13 years, 4 months, 27 days 1990
Wei Yi  China 13 years, 8 months, 23 days[5] 1999
Raunak Sadhwani  India 13 years, 9 months, 28 days[6] 2005
Bu Xiangzhi  China 13 years, 10 months, 13 days 1985
Samuel Sevian  United States 13 years, 10 months, 27 days[7] 2000
Richárd Rapport  Hungary 13 years, 11 months, 6 days[8] 1996
Teimour Radjabov  Azerbaijan 14 years, 0 months, 14 days 1987
Ruslan Ponomariov  Ukraine 14 years, 0 months, 17 days 1983
Nihal Sarin  India 14 years, 1 month, 1 day 2004
Awonder Liang  United States 14 years, 1 month, 20 days[9][10] 2003
Wesley So  Philippines 14 years, 1 month, 28 days[11] 1993
Étienne Bacrot  France 14 years, 2 months, 0 days 1983
Illia Nyzhnyk  Ukraine 14 years, 3 months, 2 days[12] 1996
Maxime Vachier-Lagrave  France 14 years, 4 months, 6 days[13] 1990
Péter Lékó  Hungary 14 years, 4 months, 22 days 1979
Jorge Cori  Peru 14 years, 5 months, 15 days[14] 1995
Hou Yifan  China 14 years, 6 months, 16 days[15] 1994
Jeffery Xiong  United States 14 years, 6 months, 25 days[16] 2000
Anish Giri  Russia 14 years, 7 months, 2 days[17] 1994
Yuriy Kuzubov  Ukraine 14 years, 7 months, 12 days[18] 1990
Bogdan-Daniel Deac  Romania 14 years, 7 months, 27 days[19] 2001
Dariusz Świercz  Poland 14 years, 7 months, 29 days 1994
Alireza Firouzja  Iran 14 years, 8 months, 2 days 2003
Aryan Chopra  India 14 years, 9 months, 3 days[20] 2001
Nguyễn Ngọc Trường Sơn  Vietnam 14 years, 9 months, 22 days[21] 1990
Kirill Shevchenko  Ukraine 14 years, 9 months, 23 days 2002
Vincent Keymer  Germany 14 years, 11 months, 4 days[22] 2004
Arjun Erigaisi  India 14 years, 11 months, 13 days 2003
Daniil Dubov  Russia 14 years, 11 months, 14 days[23] 1996
Ray Robson  United States 14 years, 11 months, 16 days[24] 1994
Fabiano Caruana  Italy 14 years, 11 months, 20 days[25] 1992
Yu Yangyi  China 14 years, 11 months, 23 days[26] 1994

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Chess prodigies and mini-grandmasters". 10 January 2006. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  2. ^ "9-year-old Hetul Shah (India) youngest ever to beat a GM". Chess.com. 31 August 2011. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  3. ^ McClain, Dylan Loeb (17 January 2009). "9-Year-Old Defies the Ratings and Defeats a Grandmaster". The New York Times. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  4. ^ "Awonder Liang Now World's Youngest Grandmaster". chess.com. 10 August 2017. Retrieved 15 August 2020.
  5. ^ Wei Yi has become the youngest GM in the world Archived February 28, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "Raunak Sadhwani becomes India's 65th Grandmaster"."Raunak Sadhwani becomes India's 65th Grandmaster".
  7. ^ "Youngest-ever American Chess Grandmaster crowned in St. Louis". 23 November 2014. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  8. ^ "Richard Rapport Becomes Hungary's Youngest Grandmaster - Chessdom". players.chessdom.com. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  9. ^ "Abdusattorov (13) Second Youngest GM In History". 31 October 2017. Retrieved 1 November 2017.
  10. ^ Polgar, Susan (30 May 2017). "Awonder Liang has earned his final GM norm at 14 years and 1 month! Congratulations to Awonder and the Liang family! @USChess @websterupic.twitter.com/hecjYDMbQz". Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  11. ^ 14-year-old Filipino is newest grandmaster Archived January 17, 2008, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ "GM title for Illya Nyzhnyk in Groningen". 1 January 2011. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  13. ^ "British and French championships". 20 August 2005. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  14. ^ Cori achieved his final GM norm in October 2009, but he crossed the 2500 rating mark during a tournament in January 2010
  15. ^ Hou Yifan – the youngest female grandmaster in history (Chessbase, December 8, 2008) gives 14-6-2, but this cannot be correct because that date (August 29) was the first day of the Women's World Chess Championship 2008. Chessbase appears to have used the first day of the championship, instead of the day she qualified for the final and earned her 3rd norm (September 12).
  16. ^ Ramirez, Alejandro (1 June 2015). "Jeffery Xiong rocks Chicago". ChessBase. Retrieved 5 September 2015.
  17. ^ Anish Giri, 14, makes his final GM norm ChessBase January 31, 2009
  18. ^ "Yuriy Kuzubov joins the mini-GM club". 7 September 2004. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  19. ^ "The chess games of Bogdan-Daniel Deac". www.chessgames.com. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  20. ^ Scroll Staff. "Delhi's Aryan, 14, Secures Grandmaster Title". Retrieved 2016-09-17.
  21. ^ Scroll Staff. "The world's second-youngest grandmaster". Retrieved 2018-01-14.
  22. ^ Schormann, Conrad (2019-10-20). ""It should have come earlier": 14 year old Vincent Keymer and the Grandmaster title". perlenvombodensee.de. Retrieved 20 October 2019.
  23. ^ Satrapa, James (2011-08-07). "Daniil Dubov, grandmaster at fourteen". ChessBase.com. Retrieved 8 August 2011.
  24. ^ Ray Robson is the new youngest GM Archived October 16, 2009, at the Wayback Machine
  25. ^ "Who was the future GM? Fabiano Caruana, Italy's top grandmaster!". 18 October 2007. Retrieved 8 August 2017.
  26. ^ "Chess prodigies and mini-grandmasters". 10 January 2006. Retrieved 8 August 2017.

External links[edit]