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Tata Steel Chess Tournament

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Playing hall of the 80th Tata Steel Tournament, 2018

The Tata Steel Chess Tournament is an annual chess tournament held in January in Wijk aan Zee, the Netherlands. It was called the Hoogovens Tournament from its creation in 1938 until the sponsor Koninklijke Hoogovens merged with British Steel to form the Corus Group in 1999, after which the tournament was called the Corus Chess Tournament. Corus Group became Tata Steel Europe in 2007. Despite the name changes, the series is numbered sequentially from its Hoogovens beginnings; for example, the 2011 event was referred to as the 73rd Tata Steel Chess Tournament.[1][2]

Top grandmasters compete in the tournament, but regular club players are welcome to play as well. The Masters group pits fourteen of the world's best against each other in a round-robin tournament, and has sometimes been described as the "Wimbledon of Chess".[3][4] Since 1938, there has been a long list of famous winners, including Max Euwe, Bent Larsen, Tigran Petrosian, Paul Keres, Lajos Portisch, Boris Spassky, Mikhail Botvinnik, Mikhail Tal, Viktor Korchnoi, Jan Timman, Anatoly Karpov, Vasyl Ivanchuk, Vladimir Kramnik, Garry Kasparov, Viswanathan Anand, Veselin Topalov, Levon Aronian, Sergey Karjakin, and Magnus Carlsen. Of the ten World Chess Champions since the first tournament in 1938, only four – Alexander Alekhine, Vasily Smyslov, Bobby Fischer, and Ding Liren – have not won it. In 2001, nine of the top ten players in the world participated.

Magnus Carlsen holds the record for most wins at the tournament, with eight titles to his name. Anand is the only other player to have won the event five or more times. Anand also holds the record of most consecutive games played at the tournament without a loss (70 – from 1998 to 2004).

Tournament history


Hoogovens Beverwijk


The early tournaments were very small, starting with groups of four in 1938, and entry restricted to Dutch players. The first five tournaments continued this way, with the contest held annually early in January. In 1943 and 1944 the tournament field was doubled in size to eight players. No tournament was held in 1945 due to World War II. The first international tournament was held in 1946. The main tournament field was expanded to ten, with invitations to Alberic O'Kelly de Galway (Belgium) and Gösta Stoltz (Sweden) along with a Dutch contingent of eight.

The tournament field remained at ten until 1953 when it was increased to twelve, and an international women's tournament was also held. In 1954 the tournament field was returned to ten players, but the strength of the competitions increased. The field was greatly enlarged to 18 in 1963, and although it reduced to 16 in 1964, the event had become the strongest international chess tournament in the world (Golombek 1977, p. 143).

As the tournament grew in stature, the ancillary women's tournament became a regular feature, as did a 'Masters' event and 'Masters Reserves' events. There also began a tradition to operate a year on year invitation policy that resembled the system used in football 'league tables'; the winner of a lesser category event would receive an invitation to the next higher event the following year.

The 1946 tournament was one of the first European international chess tournaments after World War II. Food shortages were still a problem in Europe, so the post-tournament banquet featured pea soup, inexpensive fare of the common people. In subsequent years pea soup has been served as the first course of the concluding banquet, a tradition continued when the tournament was moved from Beverwijk to Wijk aan Zee (Damsky & Sugden 2005, p. 164).

Tigran Petrosian, Hoogovens 1960
Jan Hein Donner vs. Bruno Parma, Hoogovens 1963

Winners of the top group:[5]

# Year Winner(s)
1 1938  Jilling Van Dijk (Netherlands)
 Philip Bakker (Netherlands)
2 1939  Nicolaas Cortlever (Netherlands)
3 1940  Max Euwe (Netherlands)
4 1941  Arthur Wijnans (Netherlands)
5 1942  Max Euwe (Netherlands)
6 1943  Arnold van den Hoek (Netherlands)
7 1944  Theo van Scheltinga (Netherlands)
1945 No competition (due to World War II)
8 1946  Alberic O'Kelly de Galway (Belgium)
9 1947  Theo van Scheltinga (Netherlands)
10 1948  Lodewijk Prins (Netherlands)
11 1949  Savielly Tartakower (France)
12 1950  Jan Hein Donner (Netherlands)
13 1951  Hermann Pilnik (Argentina)
14 1952  Max Euwe (Netherlands)
15 1953  Nicolas Rossolimo (France)
16 1954  Hans Bouwmeester (Netherlands)
 Vasja Pirc (Yugoslavia)
17 1955  Borislav Milić (Yugoslavia)
18 1956  Gideon Ståhlberg (Sweden)
19 1957  Aleksandar Matanović (Yugoslavia)
20 1958  Max Euwe (Netherlands)
 Jan Hein Donner (Netherlands)
21 1959  Friðrik Ólafsson (Iceland)
22 1960  Bent Larsen (Denmark)
 Tigran Petrosian (Soviet Union)
23 1961  Bent Larsen (Denmark)
 Borislav Ivkov (Yugoslavia)
24 1962  Petar Trifunović (Yugoslavia)
25 1963  Jan Hein Donner (Netherlands)
26 1964  Paul Keres (Soviet Union)
 Iivo Nei (Soviet Union)
27 1965  Lajos Portisch (Hungary)
 Efim Geller (Soviet Union)
28 1966  Lev Polugaevsky (Soviet Union)
29 1967  Boris Spassky (Soviet Union)

Hoogovens Wijk aan Zee

Mark Taimanov, Hoogovens 1970
Mikhail Tal, Hoogovens 1973
Nigel Short, Hoogovens 1986

The tournament was moved to the Dutch seaside town Wijk aan Zee in 1968. In this period, the tournament was popularly called both "Hoogovens" and "Wijk aan Zee". Winners of the Grandmaster A group since 1968 have been:

# Year Winner(s)
30 1968  Viktor Korchnoi (Soviet Union)
31 1969  Mikhail Botvinnik (Soviet Union)
 Efim Geller (Soviet Union)
32 1970  Mark Taimanov (Soviet Union)
33 1971  Viktor Korchnoi (Soviet Union)
34 1972  Lajos Portisch (Hungary)
35 1973  Mikhail Tal (Soviet Union)
36 1974  Walter Browne (United States)
37 1975  Lajos Portisch (Hungary)
38 1976  Ljubomir Ljubojević (Yugoslavia)
 Friðrik Ólafsson (Iceland)
39 1977  Gennadi Sosonko (Netherlands)
 Efim Geller (Soviet Union)
40 1978  Lajos Portisch (Hungary)
41 1979  Lev Polugaevsky (Soviet Union)
42 1980  Walter Browne (United States)
 Yasser Seirawan (United States)
43 1981  Gennadi Sosonko (Netherlands)
 Jan Timman (Netherlands)
44 1982  John Nunn (United Kingdom)
 Yuri Balashov (Soviet Union)
45 1983  Ulf Andersson (Sweden)
46 1984  Alexander Beliavsky (Soviet Union)
 Viktor Korchnoi (Switzerland)
47 1985  Jan Timman (Netherlands)
48 1986  Nigel Short (United Kingdom)
49 1987  Nigel Short (United Kingdom)
 Viktor Korchnoi (Switzerland)
50 1988  Anatoly Karpov (Soviet Union)
51 1989  Viswanathan Anand (India)
 Predrag Nikolić (Yugoslavia)
 Zoltán Ribli (Hungary)
 Gyula Sax (Hungary)
52 1990  John Nunn (United Kingdom)
53 1991  John Nunn (United Kingdom)
54 1992  Valery Salov (Russia)
 Boris Gelfand (Belarus)
55 1993  Anatoly Karpov (Russia)
56 1994  Predrag Nikolić (Bosnia and Herzegovina)
57 1995  Alexey Dreev (Russia)
58 1996  Vasyl Ivanchuk (Ukraine)
59 1997  Valery Salov (Russia)
60 1998  Viswanathan Anand (India)
 Vladimir Kramnik (Russia)
61 1999  Garry Kasparov (Russia)

Corus tournament


From 2000, the popular name for the tournament was more or less equally shared between "Wijk aan Zee" and "Corus".

# Year Winner(s)
62 2000  Garry Kasparov (Russia)
63 2001  Garry Kasparov (Russia)
64 2002  Evgeny Bareev (Russia)
65 2003  Viswanathan Anand (India)
66 2004  Viswanathan Anand (India)
67 2005  Peter Leko (Hungary)
68 2006  Viswanathan Anand (India)
 Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria)
69 2007  Levon Aronian (Armenia)
 Veselin Topalov (Bulgaria)
 Teimour Radjabov (Azerbaijan)
70 2008  Levon Aronian (Armenia)
 Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
71 2009  Sergey Karjakin (Russia)
72 2010  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)

Tata Steel tournament

Magnus Carlsen, Tata Steel 2013

From 2011, the popular name for the tournament was changed from 'Corus' to 'Tata Steel'.

# Year Winner(s)
73 2011  Hikaru Nakamura (United States)
74 2012  Levon Aronian (Armenia)
75 2013  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
76 2014  Levon Aronian (Armenia)
77 2015  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
78 2016  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
79 2017  Wesley So (United States)
80 2018  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
81 2019  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
82 2020  Fabiano Caruana (United States)
83 2021  Jorden van Foreest (Netherlands)
84 2022  Magnus Carlsen (Norway)
85 2023  Anish Giri (Netherlands)
86 2024  Wei Yi (China)

Multiple winners


Until recently, players ending on the same score shared the title.

The first tie-break was held in 2018, with Magnus Carlsen defeating Anish Giri 1½–½. The two players sharing first place after the regular games play two Blitz games and then possibly also an Armageddon game to decide a sole winner.[6]

Player Wins Tournaments Won
Norway Magnus Carlsen 8 (1 shared) 2008, 2010, 2013, 2015, 2016, 2018, 2019, 2022
India Viswanathan Anand 5 (3 shared) 1989, 1998, 2003, 2004, 2006
Netherlands Max Euwe 4 (1 shared) 1940, 1942, 1952, 1958
Armenia Levon Aronian 4 (2 shared) 2007, 2008, 2012, 2014
Soviet UnionSwitzerland Viktor Korchnoi 4 (2 shared) 1968, 1971, 1984, 1987
Hungary Lajos Portisch 4 (1 shared) 1965, 1972, 1975, 1978
Netherlands Jan Hein Donner 3 (1 shared) 1950, 1958, 1963
Soviet Union Efim Geller 3 (3 shared) 1965, 1969, 1977
Russia Garry Kasparov 3 1999, 2000, 2001
United Kingdom John Nunn 3 (1 shared) 1982, 1990, 1991
United States Walter Browne 2 (1 shared) 1974, 1980
Soviet UnionRussia Anatoly Karpov 2 1988, 1993
Denmark Bent Larsen 2 (2 shared) 1960, 1961
Socialist Federal Republic of YugoslaviaBosnia and Herzegovina Predrag Nikolić 2 (1 shared) 1989, 1994
Iceland Friðrik Ólafsson 2 (1 shared) 1959, 1976
Soviet Union Lev Polugaevsky 2 1966, 1979
Russia Valery Salov 2 (1 shared) 1992, 1997
Netherlands Gennadi Sosonko 2 (2 shared) 1977, 1981
United Kingdom Nigel Short 2 (1 shared) 1986, 1987
Netherlands Jan Timman 2 (1 shared) 1981, 1985
Bulgaria Veselin Topalov 2 (2 shared) 2006, 2007
Netherlands Theo van Scheltinga 2 1944, 1947

Summary by year






Magnus Carlsen finished first with a score of 8½/13, winning his second title.



Hikaru Nakamura finished first with a score of 9/13, winning his first title and his first super-tournament.



Levon Aronian finished first with a score of 9/13, winning the title for a third time.



Magnus Carlsen finished first with a score of 10/13, winning the title for a third time and matching Garry Kasparov's record score for the event, set in 1999.



Levon Aronian finished first with a score of 8/13, winning the title for a fourth time.



Magnus Carlsen finished first with a score of 9/13, winning the title for a fourth time.



Magnus Carlsen finished first with a score of 9/13, winning the title for a record-equalling fifth time.



Wesley So defeated defending champion Magnus Carlsen by one point, with a score of 9/13.



Magnus Carlsen won for a record sixth time, defeating Anish Giri on tiebreak after both finished with a score of 9/13.



Magnus Carlsen was the winner of this tournament, with a score of 9/13.





Fabiano Caruana was the winner of this tournament, with a score of 10/13.



Jorden van Foreest was the winner of this tournament, with a score of 8½/13. He defeated Anish Giri in an Armageddon playoff.



Magnus Carlsen was the winner of this tournament, with a score of 9½/13.



Anish Giri won the 85th edition Tata Steel Chess 2023 finishing the tournament with 8½ out of 13 points. He defeated the world's top two ranked players (Magnus Carlsen and Ding Liren) in the process.



Wei Yi was the winner of this tournament, with a score of 8½/13. He was tied with Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Gukesh D, and Anish Giri, but won against Abdusattorov and then Gukesh (who had defeated Giri) in the blitz single-elimination tiebreak.

See also





  1. ^ "Anand leads at Tata Steel Chess". IndiaVoice. 25 January 2011. Archived from the original on 8 June 2017. Retrieved 25 January 2011.
  2. ^ "Participants Tata Tournament announced". ChessVibes. 21 October 2010. Archived from the original on 24 October 2010.
  3. ^ Barden, Leonard (12 January 2018). "Magnus Carlsen aims for strong showing at 'Wimbledon of chess' event". The Guardian.
  4. ^ "Magnus Carlsen wins Tata Steel Chess Tournament 2018". FIDE. 29 January 2018. Archived from the original on 28 January 2019. Retrieved 18 March 2018. the Tata Steel Chess, often called as "Wimbledon of Chess", celebrated its 80th anniversary
  5. ^ "All-time Tournaments – Tata Steel Chess".
  6. ^ "Tournament – Tata Steel Chess Tournament".


  • Kings, Queens & Rookies. The Tata Steel Chess Tournament. A Celebration of 85 Years.. Ed.: Peter Boel & Dirk Jan ten Geuzendam. Alkmaar, New in Ches, 2023. ISBN 9789493257771