The game of chess is witnessing a fascinating trend. New research by shows that grandmasters are now achieving their titles at an earlier age than ever. Will the chess world see 10- or 11-year-olds becoming grandmasters in the next few years?

In the past year, we’ve seen a surge in children scoring extraordinary results. Records that would’ve seemed unbreakable only five to 10 years ago aren’t as shatterproof as we once thought, and it’s just a matter of time until they are broken again. “Child’s play” as some say.

Here are some examples:

The results appear to be a part of a new trend as shown by research that looks at the age of players who secure the grandmaster title.

While the average age for players achieving the most prestigious title in chess was 30 between 1975-1979, it dropped to 22.8 between 2020 and 2024. The highest age for a new GM was 32.8 in 1977. More then four decades later, in 2021, the average age is down to a record low of 20.9.

10 players are currently pending approval for the GM title in 2024. The average age is down to 21.4, the second lowest to date.

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Aug 04, 2021

Carlsen celebrates 10 years as world no. 1

World Chess Champion Magnus Carlsen has now been the world no. 1 on every rating list for the past decade since July 2011, an unbeaten streak that will now eclipse Garry Kasparov’s two decade-long streaks as world no. 1 from 1986 to 1996 and 1996 until he dropped off the list after his retirement in 2005. Although Magnus has suffered scares — for instance any loss to Fabiano Caruana in the 2018 World Championship match would have taken Fabi top — he’s remarkably been unbroken world no. 1 for a decade on the live rating list as well.

When Magnus was recently asked about crossing 10 years as the consecutive world no. 1, he was actually surprised.
From the time Magnus topped the official January 2010 FIDE rating list there were two periods when 15th World Champion Vishy Anand regained the top spot, with the last list with Vishy top coming in May 2011.

At 132 months as world no. 1, Magnus has surpassed Anatoly Karpov’s 102 months as world no. 1, but he still has almost exactly a decade to go to match Garry Kasparov’s 255 months — 21 years and 3 months! Will Magnus spend another decade as no. 1? “Unlikely, but we’ll see”, he says in the video above, but when it comes to unbroken streaks as world no. 1 he can claim already to have surpassed Garry.

Anatoly Karpov spent 8 years as unbroken world no. 1 from 1976-1983, but Garry first at least matched that in a streak stretching from 1986-1993. Officially the streak ended there, but only because FIDE removed Kasparov and Nigel Short from their rating lists in 1994 after they broke away from FIDE to play their 1993 World Championship match. Garry was still effectively the no. 1 until January 1996, a full decade, when the 20-year-old Vladimir Kramnik matched Garry’s 2775 rating but took the number 1 spot on the tiebreak of having played more games.

That meant a new streak began when Garry was no. 1 again on the July 1996 rating list, this time lasting until March 2006 (he only dropped off the rating list a year after his retirement in March 2005) — he no longer featured on the April 2006 rating list. That made it an official streak of 9 years and 9 months.

Magnus, who on the July 2021 rating list has a 2847 rating and leads no. 2 Fabiano Caruana by 41 points, is now stretching his streak beyond a decade, with no immediate end in sight. When asked what now, he responded:

“I don’t have any particular plans, but I’m at least happy that the gap is pretty wide again now after Caruana lost a few points in Romania, so for the moment it’s not a big concern.”

read more on chess24

Chess Rising Stars Summer Camp 2021

Our 18th Chess Rising Stars Camp took place at Marlborough Primary School in Chelsea, London. We improved our chess skills together from Monday 23rd to Thursday 26th August 2021.
It was a delight to return to teaching chess camps in-person. Our children (and staff!) had all missed playing and learning chess together over the board.

Our camps are open to children from ages 6 to 14 and of all chess levels so beginners, intermediate and advanced children were all there with us. We split up into two classes for the activities. This helped us to match children with those of a similar level of chess experience and ensure they all made maximum progress.

Lessons had a mixture of chess tuition, mini-games and sportsmanship advice. We also made sure to find time for a break but some of our students just continued to play chess outside!
Each day we finished with several games under tournament conditions. We awarded trophies, medals, toys and certificates to our fantastic students. Particular congratulations go to Brain L., who scored 8 out of 9, and was the overall chess camp champion and Nicolas T., who scored 4.5 out of 9 and won the second group. Hector M. was our most improved player for his 5 consecutive wins to finish the tournament.

The camp was organised and delivered by WFM Maria Manelidou, CM Thomas Villiers and Chris Russell. We had a great time and our students did too.

Our next Chess Rising Stars Camp will be held in October for half-term and we hope to see you there! Please do contact us if you are interested in finding out more.

View more photos of the event

2022 – 2023 Chess Calendar

The 2022 Chess Calendar begins with Magnus Carlsen and Fabiano Caruana topping the field for the Tata Steel Masters from January 15th onwards, and, if all goes to plan, it’s a year that’s going to feature another Candidates Tournament and the first over-the-board World Chess Olympiad since 2018. Whatever happens with the pandemic, the Meltwater Champions Chess Tour will be back, with nine high stakes events running from February 19th to November 20th.

Below we’ve gathered together all the info about the major chess events already scheduled for 2022, though we’ll be updating it during the year as more events are announced or plans change. Let us know in the comments below if there’s something we’re missing!

Current and future events:

November 2022

November 23 – December 17 | Speed Chess Championship |

This 16-player blitz knockout tournament has a $100,000 prize fund and features World Champion Magnus Carlsen and the winner for the last four seasons, Hikaru Nakamura. Each match features 90 minutes of 5+1 chess, 60 minutes of 3+1 and finally 30 minutes of 1+1.

Links: official website, chess24: Caruana vs. Erigaisi, Ding vs. Grischuk, Nepo vs. MVL, Aronian vs. Andreikin, Carlsen vs. Gukesh, Nihal vs. Giri, So vs. Abdusattorov, Nakamura vs. Paravyan, QFs: Nihal vs. Ding, Nakamura vs. Aronian, Carlsen vs. Caruana, MVL vs. So

December 2022

December 11 – 14 | Julius Baer Challenger Championship | Tel Aviv, Israel

This is a $10,000 match between 2021 Challengers Chess Tour Champion Praggnanandhaa and 2022 Champion Pranav V

Links: official website, chess24

December 12 – 22 | Chessable Sunway Sitges Chess Festival | Sitges, Spain

Yu Yangyi and Vasyl Ivanchuk are among the players confirmed for this already traditional 10-round open tournament in a coastal town near Barcelona.

Links: official website, chess24

December 16 – 18 | European Rapid and Blitz Championships | Katowice, Poland

The European Blitz Championship takes place on December 16th with 11 double rounds at a time control of 3 minutes for all moves plus a 2-second increment per move. The European Rapid Championship is 11 rounds with a 15+10 time control on December 17-18th.

Links: official website

December 18 – 23 | Gashimov Memoiral | Baku, Azerbaijan

Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, Richard Rapport, Gukesh, Nodirbek Abdusattorov, Paco Vallejo, Sam Shankland, Wang Hao, Rauf Mamedov, Aydin Suleymanli and Abdulla Gadimbayli compete in 3 days of rapid chess and 2 days of blitz in honour of Vugar Gashimov, who died tragically young in 2014.

Links: official website

The World Rapid Championship is a 3-day event with a time control of 15 minutes for all moves, plus a 10-second increment from move 1. In the Open section there are 13 rounds and in the Women’s 11.

The World Blitz Championship is held over the final 2 days, with a time control of 3+2. There are 21 rounds in the Open section and 17 in the Women’s.

The total prize fund is $1 million, with a top prize of $60,000 in the Open events and $40,000 in the Women’s.

Links: Official website

December 27 – January 5 | Rilton Cup | Stockholm, Sweden

This turn-of-the-year 9-round Swiss Open is celebrating its 50th edition.

Links: official website