Chess Players

Players of the board game of chess are known as chess players. The game of chess is played by two players on a checkered board known as chessboard with 64 squares. Each player begins the game with 16 pieces of six types that are moved across the board according to certain rules with the aim to checkmate the opponent’s king. Chess is a very popular game played by millions around the world. Chess is believed to have its origins in 6th century Eastern India from where it gradually evolved to its modern form. The first modern chess tournament was held in the mid 19th century and from then on the popularity of the game has been on a rise. The official rules of the game are defined by the World Chess Federation. Several major championships are held every year which includes the World Chess Championship, Women’s World Championship, Junior World Championship, and the World Computer Chess Championship. Since chess is a strategic game that tests one’s mental ability, a chess player’s strength derives from his chess talent, mental agility, and character. This section provides you information about the life and works of various famous chess players from all over the world.

More From Chess Players

This ranking is based on an algorithm that combines various factors, including the votes of our users and search trends on the internet.

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 1 Bobby Fischer

Bobby Fischer.
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Famous As: Chess Grandmaster
Birthdate: March 9, 1943
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Chicago, Illinois, United States
Died: January 17, 2008

Bobby Fischer began as a chess prodigy in his teens and went on to become the youngest "grandmaster," at 15. His participation in a politically controversial match in Yugoslavia led to the revocation of his U.S. passport and his arrest. He spent the final years of his life in Iceland.

 2 Magnus Carlsen

Magnus Carlsen.
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Famous As: World Chess Champion
Birthdate: November 30, 1990
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Tønsberg

At 13, chess prodigy Magnus Carlsen became the youngest grandmaster. His rating of 2,872 was the highest ever in history. He also recorded the longest unbeaten run in chess. Named one of Cosmopolitan’s “sexiest men of 2013,”he  has also modeled for G-Star Raw, owns a chess-app company, and loves football.

 3 Garry Kasparov

Garry Kasparov.
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Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: April 13, 1963
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Baku

Garry Kasparov is a Russian chess player. A grandmaster, Kasparov is a former World Chess Champion who was ranked No. 1 for 255 months during his career that spanned 21 years. After his retirement, Garry Kasparov focused on writing and politics; he founded a social movement called the United Civil Front, which is part of an opposition coalition in Moscow.

 4 Alexandra Botez

Alexandra Botez.
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: September 24, 1995
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Dallas, Texas, United States

 5 Hikaru Nakamura

Hikaru Nakamura.
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: December 9, 1987
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Hirakata

 6 Viswanathan Anand

Viswanathan Anand.
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Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: December 11, 1969
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Mayiladuthurai, Tamil Nadu, India

Viswanathan Anand is an Indian chess player and former world champion. The first grandmaster from India, Anand is also one of the few chess players to have gone past an Elo rating of 2800, only the fourth player in history to do so. Renowned for his quick moves, Anand is widely regarded as the greatest rapid player of our time.

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 7 Judit Polgár

Judit Polgár
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: July 23, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Budapest, Hungary
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 8 Fabiano Caruana

Fabiano Caruana
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: July 30, 1992
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Miami
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 9 Joshua Waitzkin

Joshua Waitzkin
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: December 4, 1976
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: New York City

 10 Anatoly Karpov

Anatoly Karpov.
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Famous As: Former World Chess Champion
Birthdate: May 23, 1951
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Zlatoust, Russia

Russian chess grandmaster, Anatoly Karpov, was the official world champion from 1975 to 1985, before finally being defeated by Garry Kasparov. With over 160 first-place finishes, Karpov is widely considered one of the greatest players in history. Since his retirement, he has involved himself in several humanitarian causes. He has an extensive stamp collection.

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 11 Boris Spassky

Boris Spassky
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Famous As: Chess Grandmaster
Birthdate: January 30, 1937
Sun Sign: Aquarius
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg, Russia

 12 Paul Morphy

Paul Morphy
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: June 22, 1837
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: New Orleans, Louisiana, United States
Died: July 10, 1884
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 13 Sergey Karjakin

Sergey Karjakin
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Famous As: Chess Grandmaster
Birthdate: January 12, 1990
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Simferopol

 14 Mikhail Tal

Mikhail Tal.
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Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: November 9, 1936
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Riga
Died: June 28, 1992

Mikhail Tal was a Soviet Latvian chess player. Widely regarded as one of the best attacking players and a creative genius, Tal was renowned for his unpredictability and improvisation. He was also known as the magician from Riga for his daring, combinatorial playing style. Since 2006, the Mikhail Tal Memorial has been annually held in Moscow to honor Tal's memory.

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 15 Phiona Mutesi

Phiona Mutesi.
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Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: 1996 AD
Birthplace: Kampala, Uganda

Hailed as the Chess Queen of Africa, Phiona Mutesi rose from the Kampala slums to represent Uganda at the Women's Chess Olympiads. Her rags-to-riches story inspired a book and the 2016 Disney movie Queen of Katwe. A school drop-out, she was introduced to chess by a Christian sports mission.

 16 José Raúl Capablanca

José Raúl Capablanca
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Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: November 19, 1888
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Havana
Died: March 8, 1942
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 17 Wesley So

Wesley So
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: October 9, 1993
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Manila

 18 Vladimir Kramnik

Vladimir Kramnik
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Famous As: Chess player, Writer
Birthdate: June 25, 1975
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Tuapse
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 19 Demis Hassabis

Demis Hassabis
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Famous As: Engineer, Chess player
Birthdate: July 27, 1976
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: London

 20 Hou Yifan

Hou Yifan
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: February 27, 1994
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Xinghua, China
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 21 Samuel Reshevsky

Samuel Reshevsky.
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Famous As: Chess Player
Birthdate: November 26, 1911
Sun Sign: Sagittarius
Birthplace: Ozorków, Poland
Died: April 4, 1992

 22 Levon Aronian

Levon Aronian
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: October 6, 1982
Sun Sign: Libra
Birthplace: Yerevan

 23 Alexander Alekhine

Alexander Alekhine.
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Famous As: French chess player
Birthdate: October 31, 1892
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moscow
Died: March 24, 1946

Alexander Alekhine was a French and Russian chess player renowned for his imaginative and fierce attacking style. He also possessed great positional and endgame skill, which he used effectively to reign as the World Chess Champion from 1927 to 1935 and then from 1937 to 1946. Also a theoretician, Alexander Alekhine innovated several opening variations, including the Alekhine's Defence.

 24 Emanuel Lasker

Emanuel Lasker
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: December 24, 1868
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Barlinek, Poland
Died: January 11, 1941
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 25 Maurice Ashley

Maurice Ashley
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Famous As: Author
Birthdate: March 6, 1966
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Saint Andrew, Jamaica

 26 Viktor Korchnoi

Viktor Korchnoi
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Famous As: Chess player, Writer
Birthdate: March 23, 1931
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg
Died: June 6, 2016
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 27 Anna Rudolf

Anna Rudolf
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: November 12, 1987
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Miskolc, Hungary

 28 Tigran Petrosian

Tigran Petrosian
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Famous As: Chess player, Writer, Journalist
Birthdate: June 17, 1929
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Tbilisi
Died: August 13, 1984
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 29 Mikhail Botvinnik

Mikhail Botvinnik
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: August 17, 1911
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Repino, Russia
Died: May 5, 1995

 30 Ding Liren

Ding Liren
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: October 24, 1992
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Wenzhou, China

 31 Ian Nepomniachtchi

Ian Nepomniachtchi
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: July 14, 1990
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bryansk

 32 Veselin Topalov

Veselin Topalov
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: March 15, 1975
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Rousse
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 33 Wilhelm Steinitz

Wilhelm Steinitz
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Famous As: Chess Master
Birthdate: May 17, 1836
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Prague
Died: August 12, 1900

 34 Richard Farleigh

Richard Farleigh
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Famous As: Chess player, Investor, Businessperson
Birthdate: November 9, 1960
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Kyabram
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 35 Alexander Grischuk

Alexander Grischuk
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: October 31, 1983
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Moscow

 36 Lyudmila Rudenko

Lyudmila Rudenko
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: July 27, 1904
Sun Sign: Leo
Birthplace: Lubny, Ukraine
Died: February 28, 1986
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 37 Yasser Seirawan

Yasser Seirawan
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Famous As: Chess player, Non-fiction writer
Birthdate: March 24, 1960
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Damascus

 38 Teimour Radjabov

Teimour Radjabov
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: March 12, 1987
Sun Sign: Pisces
Birthplace: Baku

 39 Sopiko Guramishvili

Sopiko Guramishvili
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: January 1, 1991
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Tbilisi, Georgian SSR, Soviet Union

 40 Qiyu Zhou

Qiyu Zhou
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: January 6, 2000
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Jingzhou, China

 41 Peter Svidler

Peter Svidler
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: June 17, 1976
Sun Sign: Gemini
Birthplace: Saint Petersburg

 42 Jennifer Shahade

Jennifer Shahade
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: December 31, 1980
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

 43 Vasily Smyslov

Vasily Smyslov
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Famous As: Chess grandmaster
Birthdate: March 24, 1921
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Moscow, Soviet Union
Died: March 27, 2010

 44 Samuel Sevian

Samuel Sevian
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: December 26, 2000
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Corning (city), New York

 45 Nazi Paikidze

Nazi Paikidze
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: October 27, 1993
Sun Sign: Scorpio
Birthplace: Irkutsk, Russia

 46 Dorsa Derakhshani

Dorsa Derakhshani
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: April 15, 1998
Sun Sign: Aries
Birthplace: Tehran, Iran

 47 Arianne Caoili

Arianne Caoili
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: December 22, 1986
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Manila, Philippines
Died: March 30, 2020

 48 Thomas Bowdler

Thomas Bowdler
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Famous As: Physician, Chess player
Birthdate: July 11, 1754
Sun Sign: Cancer
Birthplace: Bath
Died: February 24, 1825

 49 Miyoko Watai

Miyoko Watai
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Famous As: Chess player, Pharmacist
Birthdate: January 8, 1945
Sun Sign: Capricorn
Birthplace: Saitama Prefecture

 50 Nona Gaprindashvili

Nona Gaprindashvili
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Famous As: Chess player
Birthdate: May 3, 1941
Sun Sign: Taurus
Birthplace: Zugdidi, Georgia
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