World Amateur Chess Championship

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The World Amateur Chess Championship is a tournament organised by FIDE. The world governing body intended to promote amateur chess play by holding championship tournaments linked to the Olympic Games, but only two events were held.


The first championship was held the year that FIDE was founded, at the 1924 Summer Olympics in Paris. This is considered the unofficial first Chess Olympiad, and is the only Olympiad that was an individual event. The second championship was held at the 1928 Summer Olympics in The Hague, in conjunction with the 2nd Chess Olympiad.

Chess has never been an official part of the Olympic Games, and since the chess community does not make any essential distinction between amateur and professional[1] the championship was discontinued after 1928. However, in 1995 FIDE has revamped it to celebrate the centenary of the Hastings International Chess Congress[2] and since then has been held annually. The first renewed edition, held concurrently with the 1995/96 Hastings Congress from 28 December 1995 to 5 January 1996, was restricted to not FIDE-rated players.[3] Subsequently, amateur was defined as a player with a FIDE rating below 2000 and not having attained a rating of more than 2000 in the past 2 years. Since 2016, the championship has been split in three rating categories: U-2300, U-2000 and U-1700.

According to the current FIDE regulations, the winner is awarded with the title of FIDE Master (FM), while the runner-up and the bronze medallist receive the Candidate Master (CM) title. Analogously the women's champion receives the title of Woman FIDE Master (WFM), silver and bronze medallists in the women's category are granted the title Woman Candidate Master (WCM).[4]

Since 2012, there is another World Amateur Chess Championship, organised by the Amateur Chess Organisation (ACO),[5] which is not recognised by FIDE.[6]


Year Dates Host Winner(s) Women's champion(s)
1924 4 May – 27 Jul Paris Latvia Hermanis Matisons
1928 17 May – 12 Aug Amsterdam Netherlands Max Euwe
1996 28 Dec – 5 Jan Hastings[7] England Brian Johnson[8]
1997[9] 28 Dec – 5 Jan Hastings Estonia Olev Schults France Catherine Dewitte
1998[10] 29 Dec – 11 Jan Hastings India Viraf Avari England Rosalind Kieran
1999[11] 29 Dec – 10 Jan Hastings Armenia Gaguik Oganessian England Jessie Gilbert
2000[12] 29 Dec – 6 Jan Hastings Germany Sven Mühlenhaus Scotland Elaine Rutherford[2]
2001[13] 27 Dec – 8 Jan Pamplona Colombia Bismarck Nicolás Chaverra Rojas Spain Maria Goni
2001[14] 6–13 Dec Bento Gonçalves Brazil Flávio Olivência Canada Amanda Benggawan
2002[15] 13–19 Dec Bento Gonçalves Brazil Juliano Resende Pereira Brazil Thalita Cincinato
2003[16] 2–13 Jul Tshwane South Africa Shabier Bhawoodien South Africa Daleen Wiid
2004[17] 30 Jun – 10 Jul Cape Town Zimbabwe Farai Mandizha Jenine Ellappen
2005[18] Cancelled
2006[19] 23 Nov – 3 Dec Tripoli Morocco Rachid Hifad Sri Lanka Nirmala Chandrasiri
2007[20] 11–18 Aug Predeal Romania Alexandru Gabriel Duca Romania Eugenia-Daniela Ghita
2008[21] 28 Apr – 6 May Chalkidiki Greece Panagiotis Galopoulos India Mitali Patil
2009[22][23] 27 Apr – 3 May Thessaloniki Romania Stefan Parlog Greece Efstathia Andrikopoulou
2010[24][25] 19–25 Mar Skokie United States Andrew Hubbard United States Yun Fan
2011[26][27] 1–10 Oct Antalya Mongolia Bilgunn Sumiya Mongolia Bayar Anu
2012[28][29] 16–22 Apr Chalkidiki Greece Haralambos Tsakiris Colombia Laura Perez
2013[30][31] 21–30 Apr Iași Romania Lehel Vrencian Mongolia Bayarsaikhan Yanjinlkham
2014[32] 26 Apr – 3 May Singapore Mongolia Gijir Munkhbayar India Chitlange Sakshi
2015[33] 14–21 Apr Chalkidiki Turkey Mire Deniz Doğan Moldova Paula-Alexandra Gitu
2016[34] 18–28 Apr Chalkidiki Kazakhstan Zhuban Bigabylov (U2300)
Mongolia Khulan Enkhsaikhan (U2000)
India Jatin S.N. (U1700)
Greece Georgia Grapsa (U2300)
Mongolia Khulan Enkhsaikhan (U2000)
Russia Diana Zakharova (U1700)
2017[35] 1–9 Apr Spoleto Myanmar Win Tun (U2300)
Poland Maciej Koziej (U2000)
England Hope Mkhumba (U1700)
Mongolia Bayarjargal Bayarmaa (U2300)
Sri Lanka Zainab Saumy (U2000)
Russia Vilena Popova (U1700)
2018[36] 22–29 Apr Cagliari India Arvinder Preet Singh (U2300)
Azerbaijan Kanan Hajiyev (U2000)
Turkey Batuhan Sutbas (U1700)
Mongolia Bayarjargal Bayarmaa (U2300)
Russia Elisaveta Chetina (U2000)
Russia Vilena Popova (U1700)
2019 29 Jun – 7 Jul Colima United States Omya Vidyarthi (U1700)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ A chess amateur is a player who does not earn a living through chess. Chess amateurs are not restricted in any way: they can win prizes, accept appearance fees, and earn any chess title, including World Champion. In 1935 Max Euwe became the last amateur to win the World Championship. (Hooper & Whyld 1992, p. 13)
  2. ^ a b Henderson, John (January 2000). "Elaine Rutherford wins World Title". Chess Scotland. Archived from the original on 2017-01-14. Retrieved 20 April 2016.
  3. ^ Hastings Centenary Congress (PDF). The Hastings International Chess Congress. Retrieved 2016-04-20.
  4. ^ Table for Direct Titles effective from 1 July 2017. FIDE.
  5. ^ Amateur Chess Organization
  7. ^ "Dr Shabier Bhawoodien is World Amateur Champion". FIDE. 2003-07-18.
  8. ^ FIDE Honours. English Chess Federation.
  9. ^ The Week in Chess 113
  10. ^ The Week in Chess 166
  11. ^ The Week in Chess 218
  12. ^ [75th Hastings International Chess Congress Bulletin]
  13. ^ Brasilbase
  14. ^ Brasilbase
  15. ^ Brasilbase
  16. ^ Brasilbase
  17. ^ World Amateur Championship 2004
  18. ^ World Amateur Championship 2005
  19. ^ "Brave schoolgirl is first female world champ". Daily Mirror. 2007-01-02.
  20. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship
  21. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship 2008
  22. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship 2009
  23. ^ World Amateur Championship 2009
  24. ^ World Amateur Chess Championships 2010
  25. ^ Winners of the 2010 World Amateur Chess Championship
  26. ^ 2011 World Amateur Chess Championship
  27. ^ 14-year-old wins World Amateur Chess Championship 2011
  28. ^ World Amateur Championship 2012
  29. ^ FIDE World Amateur Chess Championship 2012 crowns new champions
  30. ^ World Amateur Championships 2013
  31. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship 2013
  32. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship 2014
  33. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship 2015
  34. ^ World Amateur Chess Championships 2016 – Winners. Chessdom.
  35. ^ World Amateur Chess Championship 2017
  36. ^ FIDE World Amateur Chess Championship 2018