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Abdusattorov becomes second youngest GM in the history of chess beating Negi's record

by Frederic Friedel - 30/10/2017

Nodirbek Abdusattorov has GM norms from last year's Chigorin Memorial and from Abu Dhabi 2017. And now he's added a third in the Chigorin Memorial in St. Petersburg this weekend. Combined with a rating over 2500 he has met the qualifications for the GM title several months ahead of the previous record held by Parimarjan Negi. The boy is a huge talent and a lot can be expected of him from future. As for now Karjakin's record of 12 years 7 months remains intact and Praggnanandhaa has five months to break it! | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Nodirbek Abdusattorov becomes the second youngest GM in the history of the game eclipsing the record of Parimarjan Negi | Photo: Lennart Ootes

The Chigorin Memorial is clearly going to be a tournament Nordirbek Abdusattorov remembers fondly, having now scored two of his three GM-norms at the annual St. Petersburg event. Two draws in the final two rounds was enough to secure the requisite 2600+ performance rating.

137215Ismagilov Damir20582023RUSСанкт-Петербург5,0w 1
230134Tugarin Anton22512246RUSМосковская область4,5s 1
31993WGMBelenkaya Dina23462343RUSСанкт-Петербург5,0w 1
424GMSethuraman S.P.26320IND7,5s 1
5319GMVorobiov Evgeny E.25552557RUSМосква6,5s ½
6623GMLevin Evgeny A.25452535RUSСанкт-Петербург6,5w 1
737GMGordievsky Dmitry26052608RUSМосква7,0s 0
81221GMTimofeev Artyom25492556RUSРеспублика Татарстан7,0w ½
975GMAlekseev Evgeny26222622RUSСанкт-Петербург6,5s ½

The Guardian's correspondent Leonard Barden predicted this happening in January this year, and sent us his updated thoughts on Abdusattorov's achievement:

"Nodiebek Abdusattorov already looked exceptional when he beat two GMs at Tashkent 2014 when only nine years old. In the 2016 Chigorin Memorial the 11-year-old scored the youngest 2650 GM norm in chess history with impressive strategic play including a Karpovian win against Brazil's Alexander Fier.

Abdusattorov at the World Youth Championship in 2015 | Photo: Reint Dykema

Again this week his ultra-patient style brought a key point in his sixth round win over GM Evgeny Levin.

My impression is that he could have achieved his second and third norms still earlier, thus breaking Karjakin's world age record, if he had been given the right opportunities and backing. I already pointed this out in my Guardian article in January this year, which noted that time was running out for the world record and that he needed to play in more GM tournaments in the West. In the event he has had far fewer opportunities than his Indian rival Praggnanandhaa, and his only 2017 event in the West has been the Millenials junior match at Saint Louis where no norms were possible.


One must point the finger at Uzbek chess and sports officials who missed a strong possibility for a landmark achievement which would have given their country favourable publicity in global media. Now, surely, Abdusattorov must be given the chance to show his skills in a major Western event. Tata Steel Wijk Challengers officials, it's over to you.

Praggnanandhaa has the rating of 2500 but no GM norms. He has time until March 2018 to break Karjakin's record | Photo: Lennart Ootes

What of Praggnanandhaa, who has also played in the Chigorin Memorial this week? The Indian prodigy, who has until March 2018 to break Karjakin's record, has a 2500 rating but no GM norms yet. He had serious opportunities in recent months at both Vlissingen and the Isle of Man to make a 2600 GM norm, but faded in the crucial closing rounds. At St. Petersburg this week he has had a form crisis, a below 2300 performance after seven rounds which was worse than his sister, WIM R. Vaishali, who defeated a 2500 IM and reached 5/7 for her career best performance. Praggnanandhaa probably still has a better than even chance of breaking Karjakin's record, but his margin for error has narrowed, and Abdusattorov's breakthrough increases the pressure. The prodigy race is truly on, and should be fascinating to follow in the next few years."

Nodirbek on the football ground at the Qatar Masters 2015 | Photo: Amruta Mokal

The young boy's sole aim was to snatch the ball from Magnus Carlsen! | Photo: Amruta Mokal

On that day he wasn't successful, but perhaps Football is not the right game for him to try and beat Magnus! | Photo: Amruta Mokal

Youngest grandmasters in the history of the game

1.Sergey Karjakin Ukraine12 years, 7 months, 0 days
2.Nodirbek AbdusattorovUzbekistan13 years, 1 month, 11 days
3.Parimarjan Negi India13 years, 4 months, 22 days
4.Magnus Carlsen Norway13 years, 4 months, 27 days
5.Wei Yi China13 years, 8 months, 23 days
6.Bu Xiangzhi China13 years, 10 months, 13 days
7.Samuel Sevian USA13 years, 10 months, 27 days
8.Richárd Rapport Hungary13 years, 11 months, 6 days
9.Teimour Radjabov Azerbaijan14 years, 0 months, 14 days
10.Ruslan Ponomariov Ukraine14 years, 0 months, 17 days
11.Awonder Liang USA14 years, 1 month
12.Wesley So Philippines14 years, 1 month, 28 days
13.Étienne Bacrot France14 years, 2 months, 0 days
14.Illya Nyzhnyk Ukraine14 years, 3 months, 2 days
15.Maxime Vachier-Lagrave France14 years, 4 months
16.Péter Lékó Hungary14 years, 4 months, 22 days
17.Jorge Cori Peru14 years, 5 months, 15 days
18.Hou Yifan China14 years, 6 months, 16 days
19.Jeffery Xiong USA14 years, 6 months, 25 days
20.Anish Giri Russia14 years, 7 months, 2 days
21.Yuriy Kuzubov Ukraine14 years, 7 months, 12 days
22.Bogdan Daniel Deac Romania14 years, 7 months, 27 days
23.Dariusz Swiercz Poland14 years, 7 months, 29 days
24.Aryan Chopra India14 years, 9 months, 3 days
25.Nguyen Ngoc Truong Son Vietnam14 years, 10 months
26.Daniil Dubov Russia14 years, 11 months, 14 days
27.Ray Robson USA14 years, 11 months, 16 days
28.Fabiano Caruana Italy14 years, 11 months, 20 days
29.Yu Yangyi China14 years, 11 months, 23 days


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