By Abdul Kerimkhanov
Azerbaijani chess grandmasters Shakhriyar Mammadyarov and Teimour Radjabov are among the top ten in the world rating published by FIDE as of 1 February 2020.
With 2,770 points Mammadyarov is on the eighth place while Radjabov ranks 10th with 2765 points.
Another Azerbaijani chess player Nijat Abasov showed tangible progress. He reached his all-time-highest rating of 2,670 and was ranked as world’s 67th best chess player.
Note that Abasov was awarded the title of International Master in 2009. He gained his third and final norm required for the title of Grandmaster in the Azerbaijani Solidarity Day event in late December 2010, in which he was placed first. FIDE awarded him the title in February 2011.
In November 2015, Abasov won the Cultural Village tournament in Wijk aan Zee to qualify for the 2016 Tata Steel Challengers tournament.
Abasov played on team Azerbaijan 2 in the 42nd Chess Olympiad in Baku. In late December 2016, he won the Zurich Christmas Open on tiebreak from Viktor Láznička, Dennis Wagner, Christian Bauer and Mateusz Bartel.
In 2017, Abasov won both the Azerbaijani Chess Championship and the Baku Open tournament.
As for the women rating, the best Azerbaijani chess player is Gunay Mammadzada, who occupies 28th place with 2,455 points.
In 2009, she won the girls' U-10 World Youth Chess Championship. In 2013 won the girls' U-14 European Youth Chess Championship.
In October 2017, she reached her peak rating as a second best chess player in the world among U-18 female players and 66th among senior female players.
One more grandmaster from Azerbaijan - Gulnar Mammadova - ranked 75th with 2,386 points.
She was Azerbaijan’s champion in 2009 and 2010.
In the 2016 Women's Chess Olympiad, Mammadova won the individual gold medal for the best performance on board 3.
For centuries, chess has been a popular game in Azerbaijan. The country could preserve chess traditions as the chess remains to be a very popular sport in Azerbaijan today as the national chess players constantly achieve successes in top-ranked tournaments.
Abdul Kerimkhanov is AzerNews’ staff journalist, follow him on Twitter: @AbdulKerim94
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