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Viswanathan Anand Veselin Topalov

Veselin Topalov

Veselin Topalov born 15 March 1975 is a Bulgarian Grandmaster and 19th World Champion. In the January 2009 FIDE rating list, he is ranked first with an ELO 2780.His current trainer and manager is International Master Silvio Danailov.

Topalov became the World Champion by winning the FIDE World Chess Championship 2005. He was awarded the 2005 Chess Oscar. In October 2006, Topalov had the second highest Elo rating of all time (2813).

Career

Topalov was born in Rousse, Bulgaria. His father taught him to play chess at the age of eight. In 1989 he won the World Under 14 Championship in Aguadilla, Puerto Rico, and in 1990 won the silver medal at the World Under 16 Championship in Singapore. He became a Grandmaster in 1992.

Topalov has been the leader of the Bulgarian national team since 1994. At the 1994 Chess Olympiad in Moscow he led the Bulgarians to a fourth-place finish.

Over the next ten years he won a number of tournaments, and ascended the world chess rankings. As early as 1996, he was being invited to "supergrandmaster" events for the world's élite. In the knockout tournaments for the World Chess Championship, he reached the last 16 in 1999, the quarter-finals in 2000, the final 16 in 2001, and the semi-finals in the 2004.

Topalov scored his first "super-tournament" success at Linares 2005, tying for the first place with Garry Kasparov (though losing on tiebreak rules), and defeating Kasparov in the last round, in what was to be Kasparov's last tournament game before his retirement. He followed this up with a one point victory (+4 =5 −1) at the M-Tel Masters 2005, ahead of Viswanathan Anand, Vladimir Kramnik, Ruslan Ponomariov, Michael Adams, and Judit Polgar. The average rating of the participants was 2744, making this super-GM, double round-robin tournament the strongest in 2005.

On the strength of his rating, Topalov was invited to the eight-player, double round-robin World Chess Championship in San Luis, Argentina, in September-October 2005. Scoring 6.5/7 in the first cycle, Topalov had virtually clinched the tournament at the halfway mark, before drawing every game in the second cycle to win by 1.5 points and become World Champion. The average rating of the field in the championship was 2739, and Topalov's performance rating was 2890!

In May 2006, Topalov defended his M-Tel Masters title in the 2006 edition of the tournament, coming first with 6.5, a half point ahead of Gata Kamsky (whom he beat 2-0).

In September –October 2006 Topalov played Vladimir Kramnik in a twelve-game title unification match. The match was drawn at 6-6, but Topalov lost the tie-break 2.5-1.5.

In January 2007, Topalov finished in joint first place (ahead of Kramnik, who finished 4th) at the Category 19 Corus Tournament along with Levon Aronian and Teimour Radjabov.

During the same year the Grand Slam was founded. The top level tournaments were united by the idea to give opportunity to world's strongest players to determine who is the best. The winners took place in the final event - the Grand Slam Masters in Bilbao (Spain) in September 2008. Vesko convincingly won the trophy! In November he was the leader of the Bulgarian team at the Ches Olympics in Dresden, his performance - 6.5 out of 8 - being excellent. Those high scores got him the top ranking in FIDE's January Rating List.

In December China organized its 1st top level chess tournament - an event of the extra strong 21st category took place in Nanjing. Once again Vesko was more than convincing - he finished first with 1.5 points lead.

It was obvious that he was entering top form. All experts foresaw he would be the winner in the forthcoming semifinal match for World Chess Championship. His opponent was Gata Kamsky and the match was held between 16th and 28th of February 2009 in Sofia, Bulgaia.

Vesko's victory was more than convincing - 4,5 : 2,5!

Now his is facing his main objective - making the final step for the world crown. The match begins April 21st in Sofia and the two most powerful chess players on the planet.

Vishvanatan Anand and Vesselin Topalov will stand against each other in the most expected chess event of the year. 
 

Best Results

Place
Category
Score
Rank
Terrassa ITA 1992              
10
6,5/9
1
Budapest HUN zt-B 1993
9
7,5/11
1
Madrid ESP 1993
14
6,5/9
2
Las Palmas ESP 1994
17
5,5/9
3
Polanica Zdroj POL 1995
14
7,5/11
1
Elenite BUL 1995
15
6/9
1
Belgrade SCG 1995
17
6/11
4
Amsterdam NED 1996
18
6,5/9
1
Dos Hermanas ESP 1996
19
6/9
3
Madrid ESP 1996
17
6,5/9
1
Leon ESP 1996
17
3,5/6
1
Madrid ESP 1997
17
6,5/9
1
Dortmund GER 1997
18
5,5/9
3
Sarajevo BIH 2001
16
6/9
2
Dortmund GER 2001
21
6,5/10
2
Cannes FRA 2002
18
6/9
1
Leon ESP 2003
19
4/8
2
Benidorm ESP 2003
16
7/10
1
FIDE-Wch k.o. 2004
19
11,5/16
3
Linares ESP 2005
20
8/12
1
Sofia BUL 2005
20
6,5/10
1
San Luis ARG 2005 Wch
20
10/14
1
Wijk an Zee NED 2006
19
9/13
1-2
Sofia BUL 2006
20
6,5/10
1
Wijk an Zee NED 2007
19
8,5/13
1-3
Sofia BUL 2007
20
5,5/10
1
Vitoria Gasteiz ESP 2007
19
7/10
1
Sofia BUL 2008
20
6,5/10
2
Bilbao ESP 2008
21
6,5/10
1
Nanjing CHN 2008
21
7/9
1
Sofia BUL 2009
Match
4,5 : 2,5
 

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