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N Pogonina 
Photograph courtesy of  
Natalia Pogonina
Number of games in database: 817
Years covered: 1996 to 2015
Last FIDE rating: 2456 (2404 rapid, 2427 blitz)
Highest rating achieved in database: 2508
Overall record: +304 -134 =276 (61.9%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      103 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (176) 
    B92 B33 B42 B32 B58
 French Defense (62) 
    C07 C03 C05 C10 C09
 Ruy Lopez (59) 
    C78 C65 C69 C77 C70
 French Tarrasch (55) 
    C07 C03 C05 C09 C04
 Sicilian Najdorf (44) 
    B92 B90
 Caro-Kann (42) 
    B12 B17 B18 B15 B19
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (104) 
    B76 B78 B52 B50 B70
 Sicilian Dragon (57) 
    B76 B78 B70 B72 B74
 Modern Benoni (45) 
    A57 A58 A59 A56
 Ruy Lopez (43) 
    C78 C69 C65 C92 C85
 Benko Gambit (43) 
    A57 A58 A59
 Nimzo Indian (32) 
    E32 E46 E21 E47 E20
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   N Pogonina vs V Gunina, 2012 1-0
   N Pogonina vs N Dzagnidze, 2009 1-0
   N Pogonina vs The World, 2009 1-0
   The World vs N Pogonina, 2010 1/2-1/2
   Zhu Chen vs N Pogonina, 2007 1/2-1/2
   N Pogonina vs C Roelli, 1998 1-0
   N Pogonina vs Kosteniuk, 2011 1-0
   N Pogonina vs J Majdan-Gajewska, 2013 1-0
   N Pogonina vs K Arakhamia-Grant, 2010 1-0
   N Pogonina vs Ju Wenjun, 2015 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Russian Team Championships (Women) (2010)
   Russian Team Championships (Women) (2013)
   Russian Chess Championships Higher League (Women) (2012)
   North Urals Cup (2007)
   European Club Cup (Women) (2007)
   FIDE Women's World Chess Championship (2015)
   World Junior Championship (Girls) (2005)
   10th European Individual Women's Championship (2009)
   European Individual Women's Championship (2012)
   European Individual Championship (Women) (2008)
   7th European Individual Championship: Women (2006)
   Chess Olympiad (Women) (2012)
   European Team Championship (Women) (2013)
   Women's Olympiad (2008)
   European Individual Women's Championship (2014)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   White Sicilian Wins by Hvalros
   Black Sicilian Wins by Hvalros

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Natalia Pogonina
Search Google for Natalia Pogonina
FIDE player card for Natalia Pogonina

(born Mar-09-1985, 30 years old) Russia
[what is this?]
WFM (2001), WIM (2002) and WGM (2004). WGM Natalija Andreevna Pogonina was born in Vladivostok, Primorsky Krai and learned to play chess at the age of 5 from her grandfather.


Pogoninaís early successes include winning the Russian U14 Girls championship in 1998. She was =1st at the Russian U18 Girls in 2001 and is two-times European girls champion (U16 in 2000, U18 in 2003), bronze winner at the World Championship (U18) (Girls) in 2003, =1st at the Russian Junior Championship (Girls) in 2003 and 2004, and outright winner of that event in 2005, She also won bronze at the 10th European Individual Women's Championship (2009). She contested the 2004 Women's World Championship and the Women's World Chess Championship (2010) but was eliminated in the first round on both occasions. In March 2012, she scored 7.5/11 in the European Individual Women's Championship (2012) (EIWC) to place =5th (10th on tiebreak and with a TPR of 2501), and then followed up in June 2012 by scoring an undefeated 8/11 (TPR 2514) to take outright second place in the Russian Chess Championships Higher League (Women) (2012), signaling a return to her playing strength of a couple of years ago. Her latter result also qualified her to participate in the Russian Women's Superfinals (2012), in which she went one better to win outright with 6.5/9 (+4 =5), and a TPR of 2611. In August 2013, she scored a solid 7.5/11 at the European Individual Women's Championship (2013).

Pogonina qualified for the FIDE Knock-out Women's World Championship (2012) and defeated compatriots, IM Svetlana Matveeva and former Women's World Champion, GM Alexandra Kosteniuk, in the first two rounds before losing to the eventual winner, Ukrainian IM Anna Ushenina, in the third round, thereby bowing out of the title contest. Her result in the 2012 EIWC qualified her to play in the next Women's World Championship Knockout Tournament that will be held late in 2014.

Classical Tournaments

Pogonina won the Líviv Hopes-5 Women in 2002 with 11/13 and the bronze medal at the North Urals Cup (2007). Co-winner of the 2008 Student World Championship, and first at multiple prestigious international tournaments: 2006 Bykova Memorial with 8.5/9, the Rudenko Memorial 2007 with 8/9 and the C section (women's) of the Moscow Open 2009 with 8/9, Pogonina also came equal first (2nd on rapid game tie break behind Alisa Galliamova) in the 60th Russian Women's Superfinal (2010). In 2011, she scored 6/10 in the Tradewise Gibraltar (2011) and in 2014 she scored a respectable 5.5/10 at the Tradewise Gibraltar (2014). In May-June 2014, she competed in the Rashid Nezhmetdinov Cup, and played strongly to score 6/9.

Team Play

<Olympiads> Pogonina represented Russia in the Women's Olympiad (2008) scoring 6/7 (+5 =2 -0) on first reserve, and was top board for Russia 2 in Chess Olympiad (Women) (2010), scoring 5.5/11. She achieved her best result so far when she won team and individual gold (playing on board 5) in the Chess Olympiad (Women) (2012) held in Istanbul, scoring 6.5/8 (+6 =1 -1). She again played board 5 for Russia at the Chess Olympiad (Women) (2014), remaining undefeated to score 5.5/7 and help her team to another gold medal for the event.

<National and Club events> She won team gold as a member of her Russian team for the womenís blitz final and the bronze medal in the women's team rapid final at the 1st International Mind Sports Games in 2008. 2011 was an excellent year for Pogonina in team play. Playing for her club, AVS Krasnoturinsk, she won team gold and individual silver at the European Club Cup (Women) (2011), and playing for Russia, she won team gold and individual gold at the European Team Championship (Women) (2011) and team silver and individual silver medals at the FIDE Women's World Team Championship (2011). The combination of winning in both the European Club and European Team championships in the same year is unique in both the womenís and menís competitions. Playing board 3 for Russian, she won bronze and helped her team to a bronze medal at the Women's World Team Championship (2013). She helped her team Ugra to win gold at the Russian Team Championships (Women) (2013), also taking individual gold for her 4.5/5 points, which represented a 2757 rating performance. Pogonina wound up 2013 playing board 3 for Russia in the European Team Championship (Women) (2013), helping her team to silver and winning individual bronze for her board.

In 2014, she played board 2 for Yugra (Khanty) in the Russian Women's League and helped her team to win the gold medal. She also played board 2 for the Yugra Khanty-Mansiysk region club in the 2014 European Women's Club Cup, scoring individual bronze and helping her team to 4th place in the event.


Pogonina has an MA in law from the Saratov State Academy of Law. Her hobbies include flamenco, music, photography, traveling, sports, literature and poetry. She is married to Peter Zhdanov (User: Peter Zhdanov), and they have a son, Nikolai (born 18 November 2009). She is also a member of as User: Natalia Pogonina, and an occasional commentator and analyst here for live broadcasts of games.


<Standard> As of 1 February 2015, Pogonina's rating was 2456 ranking her the #38 woman in the world;

<Rapid> 2404 (inactive); and

<Blitz> 2427 (inactive).


Live rating: [; Website:; Wikipedia article: Pogonina

Last updated 5 Feb 2015

 page 1 of 33; games 1-25 of 819  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. V Savchuk vs N Pogonina  0-148 1996 Volgograd opC60 Ruy Lopez
2. M Dolgova vs N Pogonina  1-045 1996 Volgograd opB18 Caro-Kann, Classical
3. N Pogonina vs A Kizhikina  1-032 1996 Volgograd opE10 Queen's Pawn Game
4. N Pogonina vs A Sorokina  1-048 1996 Volgograd opC42 Petrov Defense
5. T Baranchikova vs N Pogonina  ½-½31 1996 Volgograd opB24 Sicilian, Closed
6. N Pogonina vs Y Kaschenko 1-038 1996 Volgograd opB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
7. N Zajnullina vs N Pogonina ½-½16 1996 Volgograd opA00 Uncommon Opening
8. N Pogonina vs I Vasilevich  0-128 1996 Volgograd opD16 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
9. N Pogonina vs M Zabiran  1-050 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsC52 Evans Gambit
10. E Meshcheriakova vs N Pogonina  0-138 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsC42 Petrov Defense
11. L Dezhurko vs N Pogonina  0-137 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsB27 Sicilian
12. N Pogonina vs L Kucherova  1-060 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsB33 Sicilian
13. T Eremina vs N Pogonina  0-136 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
14. N Pogonina vs E Hasanova 0-125 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsB00 Uncommon King's Pawn Opening
15. T Kosintseva vs N Pogonina  1-063 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsC42 Petrov Defense
16. N Pogonina vs I Vasilevich  ½-½38 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
17. J Komarishkina vs N Pogonina  ½-½81 1997 RUS-ch U12 GirlsE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
18. N Pogonina vs M Magnucka  ½-½18 1998 Wch U14 GirlsB29 Sicilian, Nimzovich-Rubinstein
19. L Galustova vs N Pogonina  0-166 1998 RUS-ch U16 GirlsB01 Scandinavian
20. N Pogonina vs M De los Santos Honrubia  ½-½72 1998 EU-ch U14 GirlsB22 Sicilian, Alapin
21. N Pogonina vs B Farhat  ½-½45 1998 Wch U14 GirlsB77 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack
22. N Pogonina vs M Komiagina  1-040 1998 RUS-ch U16 GirlsB92 Sicilian, Najdorf, Opocensky Variation
23. N Pogonina vs V Bashkite  ½-½26 1998 Wch U14 GirlsC07 French, Tarrasch
24. O Druzhinina vs N Pogonina  0-161 1998 RUS-ch U16 GirlsD02 Queen's Pawn Game
25. N Pogonina vs N Zajnullina  1-017 1998 RUS-ch U16 GirlsC50 Giuoco Piano
 page 1 of 33; games 1-25 of 819  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Pogonina wins | Pogonina loses  

Grandmaster Pogonina's Website

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  Abdel Irada: *Two* days late now, but happy birthday. :-S

Premium Chessgames Member
  Marmot PFL: For some reason all the women I ever met seem to freak about turning 30. For guys age is no big deal until 40, sometimes 50.
Mar-11-15  schweigzwang: Even turning 40 wasn't a big deal; I survived it many times.
Premium Chessgames Member
  boz: <Marmot PFL: For some reason all the women I ever met seem to freak about turning 30. For guys age is no big deal until 40, sometimes 50.>

Women worry about losing youth and beauty, men worry about death.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Marmot PFL: I guess so, one woman I went out with told me she had just turned 30, and asked me how old I thought she looked. When I said (without thinking) about 30, she just said Oh...we didn't go out too many more times.
Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: <Marmot PFL: I guess so, one woman I went out with told me she had just turned 30, and asked me how old I thought she looked. When I said (without thinking) about 30, she just said Oh...we didn't go out too many more times.>

Ha! There <IS> someone who is more clueless than I am out there. Figures I would find him on this site. :-)

I would have answered 25. If someone aged around 40 asked me to guess her age, I would subtract ten from whatever I thought the answer was.

Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: <keypusher> Maybe more than one.

Aged eighteen, I was out one night with a girl whom I had just met, and she mentioned that she was expecting.

My response: 'expecting what?'

Premium Chessgames Member
  keypusher: < perfidious: <keypusher> Maybe more than one. Aged eighteen, I was out one night with a girl whom I had just met, and she mentioned that she was expecting.

My response: 'expecting what?'>

OK, that's funny. But when I was 18, I hadn't even kissed a girl.

Mar-11-15  zanzibar: A tweet sent out by Pogonina, found on Spraggett:


Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: Congratulations on your must-win game against Ms. Sebag and good luck on your tie break games tomorrow.
Mar-26-15  ex0duz: Yes, congrats on your win against Marie Sebag.. and AFAIK, this has been your best result so far in single clasiical competition for a long time now? I hope you and your family are doing well, and that you can continue your current form and keep playing well. Good luck!
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: Another great performance on a must-win game. And with the Black pieces, no less! You are playing well, specially when it really, really matters. Get a good night's rest and be ready for the tie breaks tomorrow.

If I was Yifan Hou I would be a little worried right now. :-)

Mar-29-15  HeMateMe: quarter finals interview with Natalie, via the official Sochi web site:


the smile of a winner!


Mar-29-15  ex0duz: W00t. Congrats again on your 'clutch win' vs Zhao Xue and also with a nice Benko Gambit.. really nice/entertaining game!

Showing great confidence/form, i hope it keeps increasing with each round and you can take it all.

But yeah. Taking on Hou Yifan(who's rated 230 points higher..) in a match is another story, but good luck if you do make it. The money from the match will be pretty nice either way! Heh ;)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: Way to go, Natalia! :)
Mar-30-15  dx9293: Natalia is amazing!
Premium Chessgames Member
  AylerKupp: Another great win against Cramling and now you are in the finals. Congratulations!
Premium Chessgames Member
  Annie K.: Looks like our Incredible Comeback Natalia may be taking the quick route to the FIDE GM title... ;)

Best of luck!

Mar-31-15  dx9293: Ok Natalia, best of luck in the Final!
Mar-31-15  HeMateMe: Well done, Natalie! Finally, a little slack--a four game match, instead of just two. Do some jogging or long walks to shake out the tension, get the oxygen flowing. Good luck!
Mar-31-15  ketchuplover: You go girl :)
Mar-31-15  ex0duz: Wow, in the finals? I'll hold off on further congratulations till you win the finals this time, since it seems like i've just been spamming your page recently :)

Well nevermind, since i'm already here. Congrats and hope you can take it all!

Premium Chessgames Member
  WannaBe: Oy Vey.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: A protection order has been placed on this page. Henceforth, nothing negative or untoward can be said about the personage of Ms. Pogonina. By order of the management.
Mar-31-15  joeyj: As a finalist in Womenís World Championship Natalia now qualified for an IM title + 1-GM norm.

If she wins the finals she gets the direct GM title (Ref: FIDE Handbook on Direct Titles: )

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