Player Bios

Sam Shankland

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2674
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
25
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Sam Shankland is the second highest rated homegrown American player after Hikaru Nakamura. He has won 2 Olympiad Gold Medals, one individual and one with the US Team, and has been rated in the high 2600s for the last couple years.

Jeffery Xiong

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2667
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
16
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Jeffery Xiong of Coppell, Texas, is the reigning World Junior Chess Champion, and the youngest in the world's Top 100 players. He has shown tenacity well beyond his years. At age 16, he already has had an impressive list of results: 2013 MVP of the United States Chess League for his perfect record in regular season for the Dallas Destiny, 2015 Chicago Open Championship, 6th place finish in the strongest U.S. Championship in history (2016), Champion in the 2016 Capablanca Memorial-Group B, 3rd place in the 2017 Wilk aan Zee Challenger Group,  and was recently awarded the prestigious Samford Chess Fellowship. However, it is his creativity on the board and his maturity in defeat that has caught the eye of some of the most renowned chess grandmasters.

From a very young age, Xiong has seen his losses, though painful, as an opportunity to improve. While some of Xiong's older competitors have been known to display their frustration with difficult losses, he remains collected—analyzing where his play could have been stronger. This maturity has helped enlist legendary Grandmaster Garry Kasparov as a mentor in the Young Stars program, and it has led to numerous impressive victories and awards since.

Jeffery ranks No.4 in USA currently, qualifying as the youngest member of Team USA, representing the country in the upcoming World Team Championship.

Alexander Ipatov

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2660
Residence: 
Turkey
Age: 
23
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Alexander Ipatov is the 2012 World Junior Chess Champion and a two-time Turkish Chess Champion. In 2015, he won the national championship scoring 12.5 out of 13. Alexander is currently the highest rated player in Turkey. He represented Turkey at three Chess Olympiads (2012, 2014, 2016), two European Team Championships (2013, 2015) and the World Team Championship (2013). At the Baku World Chess Olympiad in September 2016, Alexander Ipatov helped Turkish team to finish on their historically highest, the 6th place, by defeating the Georgian Grandmaster Mikhail Mchedlishvili in the last round when the score in the match was 1.5-1.5. Thanks to this victory, Turkey also qualified to the 2017 World Team Chess Championship, for the first time as a non-organizing country.

Vladimir Fedoseev

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2658
Residence: 
Russia
Age: 
21
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Vladimir was born in St. Petersburg 16.02.1995 and at 7 years old started to play chess at the club (Peters Rook). He won the title of Russian Champion in his age category in 2006, in rapid chess.  Vladimir was also the winner of a number of Junior tournaments including the Absolute Champion of Russia in 2011 (all categories) and Absolute Champion of Europe 2013(5 gold medals). In both tournaments, he was under 18.

Vladimir was the Bronze Medalist of the European Championship in 2014 and Bronze medalist of the World Championship under 20 (2014). He was also the winner of the Nutcracker 2014 in the overall standings, and several other international tournaments. Even more, Vladimir tied first place in Grenke Chess Open 2016.

David Howell

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2655
Residence: 
England
Age: 
26
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

David Howell is an English chess Grandmaster and British champion in 2009, 2013 and 2014. At just nine years old in 1999, he broke the world record for the youngest player to beat a Grandmaster in an official blitz game at the Mind Sports Olympiad against John Nunn. He is the youngest chess Grandmaster in the United Kingdom, a title he earned when he came in second during the 35th Rilton Cup in Stockholm on January 5, 2007 when he was 16.

Emilio Cordova

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2655
Residence: 
Peru
Age: 
25
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Emilio Córdova Daza is a Grand Master of Peruvian chess, a title that he earned in 2008. He started playing chess at age 8 with his father.  At age 9 he won the Pan American Chess Championship in 2001. In 2005, he became the youngest International Master of Peru and South America until Jorge Cori Tello broke the record. By 2008, both Emilio Cordova Daza and Julio Granda were considered the maximum exponents of the science of the sport in Peru.

Dariusz Swiercz

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2647
Residence: 
Poland
Age: 
22
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Dariusz Swiercz is 22-year old Grandmaster from Poland. He became GM at the age of 14 years. In 2011 he became World Champion U20 and in 2012 World Champion U18. He represented Poland on Olympiads in Istanbul (2012) and Baku (2016). In 2016, he won 3rd Millionaire Chess. Now, he resides in Saint Louis and attends Saint Louis University, majoring in Economics.

Yaro Zherebukh

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2617
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
23
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Zherebukh became a Grand Master at 15. His biggest success so far is the advancement to the 4th round (1/8 of the final) at the World Cup 2011 in Russia. He won or shared 1st place in numerous U.S. and European tournaments, the most memorable being Cappelle la Grande in France, 2010 (650+ players, over 80 GMs) and US Masters 2015 in Greensboro,NC. He has been mostly focused on pursuing academic degrees in the past 4 years, but now he has rediscovered passion for working on and playing chess.

Samuel Sevian

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2603
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
16
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

Samuel is now 16. Some of the major milestones he reached in the past several years include becoming the youngest GM in US History at age 13 years 10 months 26 days. He also shared the joint 5-6 th place in 2015 US Championship when he was 14, when he managed to win Wesley So  to draw Nakamura and the defending Champion Kamsky. Thanks to that performance Sam had qualified to play in the World Cup. In 2016, he shared 1-st place in two strong Open's last year , SPICE Cup and the Dallas Open.

Ruifeng Li

Title: 
Grandmaster
Rating: 
2564
Residence: 
United States of America
Age: 
15
Status: 
Accepted
Bio: 

GM-electer Ruifeng Li embarked on his chess journey at around age five, but his first truly major accomplishment was at the 2011 World Youth Chess Championships, when he became the silver medalist in the U10 section. Ruifeng has come to a head in recent times by obtaining first in, among others, four large international opens: the Philadelphia Open, National Open, Washington Chess Congress, and North American Open. His strong performance in 2016 also enabled him to clinch the GM title, as well as the top spot in the Trophies Plus Grand Prix.

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