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Illya Nyzhnyk
I Nyzhnyk 
Photo courtesy of Alina l'Ami.  
Number of games in database: 487
Years covered: 2005 to 2018
Last FIDE rating: 2611 (2652 rapid, 2689 blitz)
Highest rating achieved in database: 2639

Overall record: +193 -58 =171 (66.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 65 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 King's Indian (29) 
    E61 E60 E63 E92 E94
 Sicilian (24) 
    B54 B76 B32 B33 B61
 Slav (22) 
    D11 D15 D18 D16 D10
 Grunfeld (19) 
    D76 D85 D73 D78 D79
 Queen's Gambit Declined (17) 
    D37 D39 D30 D31 D38
 Semi-Slav (15) 
    D43 D44 D45 D47 D46
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (74) 
    B90 B30 B32 B94 B23
 King's Indian (38) 
    E62 E92 E97 E90 E80
 Sicilian Najdorf (28) 
    B90 B94 B93 B99 B92
 French Defense (27) 
    C11 C07 C10 C03 C00
 Queen's Gambit Accepted (17) 
    D27 D20 D28 D26 D23
 Queen's Pawn Game (16) 
    A46 D02 A45 E00 D00
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   I Nyzhnyk vs S Siebrecht, 2011 1-0
   I Nyzhnyk vs D Baider, 2006 1-0
   A Pashikian vs I Nyzhnyk, 2009 0-1
   I Nyzhnyk vs D Reinderman, 2009 1/2-1/2
   G Gislason vs I Nyzhnyk, 2010 0-1
   I Nyzhnyk vs A Giri, 2012 1-0
   I Nyzhnyk vs R Pruijssers, 2011 1-0
   A Stukopin vs I Nyzhnyk, 2017 0-1
   J Ulko vs I Nyzhnyk, 2013 0-1
   I Nyzhnyk vs L Bruzon Batista, 2012 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Groningen Chess Festival (2009)
   Reykjavik Open (2011)
   Tata Steel Group C (2011)
   US Open (2015)
   15th Unive Open (2011)
   Tata Steel Group B (2012)
   Moscow Open (2013)
   French Team Championship (2013)
   28th Cappelle-la-Grande (2012)
   World Junior Championship (2010)
   Reykjavik Open (2010)
   13th European Individual Championship (2012)
   10th European Individual Championship (2009)
   Pro Chess League (2018)
   European Individual Championship (2013)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   2005 WYCC (open) U-12 by gauer
   2006 WYCC (open) U-12 by gauer
   2014 Spice Cup open by gauer

   🏆 Pro Chess League
   M Tomb vs I Nyzhnyk (Mar-07-18) 0-1, rapid
   I Saric vs I Nyzhnyk (Mar-07-18) 0-1, rapid
   I Nyzhnyk vs E Hansen (Mar-07-18) 1-0, rapid
   I Nyzhnyk vs A Hambleton (Mar-07-18) 1/2-1/2, rapid
   I Nyzhnyk vs Yermolinsky (Oct-26-17) 1/2-1/2

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Illya Nyzhnyk
Search Google for Illya Nyzhnyk
FIDE player card for Illya Nyzhnyk

(born Sep-27-1996, 21 years old) Ukraine
[what is this?]

FM (2007); IM (2009); Grandmaster (2010).

Early Years

A chess prodigy, Nyzhnyk was born in Vinnytsya and started playing chess at age 4. At the age of ten, the Ukrainian prodigy shot to world wide prominence by winning Group B of the 2007 Moscow Open, scoring 8.5/9 points with a 2633 performance in a field of 324 players, including two International Masters and numerous other titled players.


<Youth – national and continental> He has had a series of excellent results in the Ukrainian youth championships the most notable being first place in the U10 Championships in 2005 and 2006, in the U12 Championship in 2006, and in the U16 Championship in 2008. In September 2007, and still 10 years of age, he scored 8.5/9 to win the U12 European Championship held in Sibenik, Croatia. A year later in September 2008 year, he won the U16 European Championship held in Herceg Novi in Montenegro. In 2010, he came 2nd in the Ukraine U18 Championship.

<Youth – world> In July 2005, at the age of 8, Nyzhnyk competed in the World U12 championship in Belfort, France, scoring 7.0/11, and coming in 17th in a field of 125. He re-entered the same event in 2006 and 2007, scoring 2nd place on each occasion. In October 2006, shortly after his tenth birthday, he was =2nd with Jorge Cori and Nijat Abasov (both now GMs) behind Robert Aghasaryan in the U12 World Championship in Batumi, Georgia. In November 2007, he scored 9.5/11 enabling him to become runner up (on count back) behind US player Daniel Naroditsky in the World U12 Championship held in Antalya, Turkey. In 2010 he came =3rd in the World U16 in Turkey.

<Junior> One of Nyzhnyk’s exceptional early achievements was first place in the Ukrainian U20 Championships in April 2010 when he was still 13 years old. In 2010 also scored 8.5/13 at the World Junior Championship (2010) to come =7th-15th


At the 13th European Individual Championship (2012), Nyzhnyk scored an excellent 7/11 (+4 =6 -1; TPR 2687) to finish 43rd, 68 places above his seeding and breaking through 2600 in the ratings.

Standard Tournaments

Nyzhnyk was a tournament veteran from an early age. Notable results included a 2330 performance (coming 11th in a field of 17) in a category 3 tournament in Lugansk, Ukraine, while still only 9 years old and sixth place in the Independence Cup tournament in Kiev in August 2008 (performance rating of 2471) in a field of 70 players. In April 2008 Nyzhnyk won the 6th Nabokov Memorial in Kiev with 8.5/11, scoring a GM norm. In December 2009, Nyzhnyk scored a sensational first place ahead of Jan Werle and Dimitri Reinderman at the Groningen Chess Festival (2009), scoring 7.5/9, his second GM norm, and a 2741 performance rating for the tourney.

In 2010, he came 3rd in the Staufer Open, =4th in the Nord-West-Cup (half point behind the joint leaders), 3rd in the 8th Vladimir Nabokov Memorial GM Tournament, =2nd (4th on countback) in the HSG Open behind Friso Nijboer, and came 1st on count back with 7/9 at the Podillia tournament in Khmelnitsky in Ukraine. In December 2010, he scored his 3rd GM norm at Groningen A (where he came =1st) with a round to spare, making him the youngest Grandmaster in the world at 14 years 3 months and 2 days. Richard Rapport was previously the youngest GM.

Nyzhnyk started 2011 by coming a solid second behind Daniele Vocaturo at the Tata Steel Group C (2011) (formerly Corus C) tournament, scoring 8.5/13 (+6 -2 =5) with a 2615 performance rating. He followed this up with =1st at the Reykjavik Open (2011) held in March 2011, scoring 7/9 with a TPR of 2688, and with a score of 5.5/9 at the International Tournament in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain, in May 2011 against a field that included 7 GMs (+2 -2 =3). In October 2011, he came =4th, half a point behind the three co-leaders, with 6.5/9 in the 15th Unive Open (2011) and also scored 6.5/9 at the 15th Bavarian International Open. 2012 started with a strong performance at Tata Steel Group B (2012), where he scored 7.5/13, adding a handy 17 points in the bimonthly rating period to 1 March 2012. Nyzhnyk closed out 2012 scoring 7.5/9 to win a share of 1st place in the 16th Bavarian International Open, and to boost him to the top of the U18 division in the New Year (2013) lists.

A subsequent moderate performance (5.5/9) in the Moscow Open (2013) and poor performances in the Ukrainian Championship (2013) and the European Individual Championships (2013) have cost him top spot in the U18 division. He scored 5.5/9 at the 2014 UT Dallas Spring FIDE Open underwritten by Turner Construction and then bounced back to form by coming =1st at the 42nd Annual World Open held in July 2014 in Arlington, Virginia. In October he won the 2014 Spice Cup Open with 7/9. In May 2015, he scored 6.5/9 at the annual Chicago Open to place =2nd, half a point behind the winner Jeffery Xiong. In July 2015, he placed =1st (6th on tiebreak), at the 2015 World Open.

Team Events

Nyzhnyk had his first serious experience in the top league playing for the Vinnytsia region on board 2 behind Sergey Fedorchuk in the 3rd all-Ukrainian Games held in Eupatoria in 2007. He played reserve for the PVK-Kievchess Kyiv club in its gold medal-winning seasons of 2008 and 2009. Since then, his season in the 2012 Turkish League was highly successful, when he scored 10/13, a result which elevated his ranking to top of the U16 age group, while his excellent result in the Romanian Team Championships in September helped him maintain his hold of the top spot in the U16s for the rest of 2012. In the 2013-14 season, he played board 2 behind Jan Timman in the gold medal winning SG Köln Porz team in the Bundesliga West.

Rapid and Blitz

An occasional participant in the faster forms of the game, Nyzhnyk's best results were winning the Ukrainian U18 blitz championship in 2010 and winning the Ukrainian U20 rapid championship in the same year. In April 2014 he won the Anatoliy Olkhovskiy Memorial outright with 20/24.

Ratings and Rankings

One of the world's top Juniors (U20), Nyzhnyk's highest rating to date was 2637 from December 2012 to February 2013, during which time he reached his highest Junior ranking to date, world #6.


Nyzhnyk has enrolled at Webster University and joined Susan Polgar's SPICE program late in 2014. (1)


(1) and Illya Nyzhnyk (kibitz #460)

Wikipedia article: Illya Nyzhnyk; Personal web site:; The following link contains a photo of him at 14 years 3 months:

Last updated: 2016-09-16 04:29:00

 page 1 of 20; games 1-25 of 487  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. I Nyzhnyk vs J Hapuarachchi  1-0282005Wch U12C68 Ruy Lopez, Exchange
2. I Nyzhnyk vs G Popilski  0-1412005Wch U12B23 Sicilian, Closed
3. D Hiti vs I Nyzhnyk  0-1392005EU-ch U10E11 Bogo-Indian Defense
4. I Nyzhnyk vs K Nikologorskiy  0-1272005EU-ch U10B55 Sicilian, Prins Variation, Venice Attack
5. I Nyzhnyk vs M Atabayev  1-0332005Wch U12A16 English
6. G Dilanyan vs I Nyzhnyk  0-1542005Wch U12E11 Bogo-Indian Defense
7. I Nyzhnyk vs K Tomsia  1-0392005EU-ch U10D10 Queen's Gambit Declined Slav
8. I Nyzhnyk vs W So 0-1332005Wch U12A07 King's Indian Attack
9. O Mihok vs I Nyzhnyk  1-0522005Wch U12C45 Scotch Game
10. I Nyzhnyk vs K Meneses Gonzalez  1-0282005EU-ch U10A53 Old Indian
11. K Berbatov vs I Nyzhnyk 1-0222005EU-ch U10B28 Sicilian, O'Kelly Variation
12. I Nyzhnyk vs V A V Rajesh  ½-½522005Wch U12C00 French Defense
13. M Alvarez Navarro vs I Nyzhnyk 0-1342005Wch U12B76 Sicilian, Dragon, Yugoslav Attack
14. I Nyzhnyk vs C Emiroglu 1-0322005EU-ch U10C22 Center Game
15. A Chernyavsky vs I Nyzhnyk 0-1742005EU-ch U10A27 English, Three Knights System
16. I Nyzhnyk vs Yinglun Teng  1-0612005Wch U12A22 English
17. I Nyzhnyk vs S Kovacevic 1-0402005EU-ch U10C62 Ruy Lopez, Old Steinitz Defense
18. G Benidze vs I Nyzhnyk  ½-½432005EU-ch U10B21 Sicilian, 2.f4 and 2.d4
19. Negi vs I Nyzhnyk ½-½402005Belfort YWCC boys under 12C11 French
20. E Kilimnik vs I Nyzhnyk  0-1442005UKR-ch sfE11 Bogo-Indian Defense
21. I Nyzhnyk vs J Baranov  ½-½752005UKR-ch sfB18 Caro-Kann, Classical
22. V Rizsonkov vs I Nyzhnyk  ½-½642005UKR-ch sfC56 Two Knights
23. I Nyzhnyk vs M Vasiliev  0-1642005UKR-ch sfD51 Queen's Gambit Declined
24. A Prihodko vs I Nyzhnyk  1-0382005UKR-ch sfA06 Reti Opening
25. I Nyzhnyk vs N Zhornik  0-1652005UKR-ch sfB55 Sicilian, Prins Variation, Venice Attack
 page 1 of 20; games 1-25 of 487  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Nyzhnyk wins | Nyzhnyk loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 15 OF 19 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Jun-16-11  Antiochus: Battle enter two incredible kids. Experience is winning at this time.

[Event "I Bahia Feliz GM"]
[Site "Bahia Feliz ESP"]
[Date "2011.05.21"]
[Round "9"]
[White "I Nyzhnyk"]
[Black "H Mecking"]
[Result "0-1"]
[ECO "E60"]
[WhiteElo "2583"]
[BlackElo "2577"]
[PlyCount "72"]
[EventDate "2011.05.12"]
[Source "Mark Crowther"]
[SourceDate "2011.05.23"]

1. d4 Nf6 2. c4 g6 3. Nf3 Bg7 4. g3 d5 5. cxd5 Nxd5 6. Bg2 Nb6 7. Nc3 Nc6 8. e3 O-O 9. O-O Re8 10. Re1 a5 11. Qe2 Be6 12. Rd1 Bc4 13. Qc2 Nb4 14. Qb1 e5 15. a3 exd4 16. axb4 dxc3 17. Rxd8 Raxd8 18. Qc2 axb4 19. Nd2 cxd2 20. Bxd2 Ra8 21. Rd1 Ra2 22. Bc1 b3 23. Qd2 Be6 24. Bf1 Na4 25. Qb4 Ra1 26. Be2 c5 27. Qb5 Ra8 28. Kg2 Nxb2 29. Bxb2 Bxb2 30. Rxa1 Bxa1 31. Qxc5 Bg7 32. Bd3 b2 33. Qb5 h5 34. Qxb7 Rd8 35. Be4 Bf5 36. Bxf5 gxf5 0-1

Sep-08-11  Korifej: Future super gm.maybe new world champion
Premium Chessgames Member
  gregory2188: like your games future world champ!
Oct-29-11  ketchuplover: Good luck @Tata Illya :)
Jan-08-12  achieve: <KKDEREK: I predict he will go to Tata group A next year..>

In six days (Saturday 14th) Nyzhnik will play his first round in Group B, along with old nestor, Jan Timman, and twelve other participants.

This is the line-up for Tata Group B:

GM Bruzon, Lazaro CUB 2691
GM Potkin, Vladimir RUS 2684
GM Motylev, Alexander RUS 2677
GM Tiviakov, Sergey NED 2677
GM Harikrishna, Pentala IND 2665
GM Ernst, Sipke NED 2606
GM L'Ami, Erwin NED 2596
GM Reinderman, Dimitri NED 2581
GM Timman, Jan NED 2571
GM Nyzhnik, Illya UKR 2568
GM Lahno, Kateryna UKR 2557
GM Vocaturo, Daniele ITA 2545
GM Harika, Dronavalli IND 2516
GM Cmilyte, Viktorija LTU 2503

Jan-08-12  AuN1: it was very generous of the organizers to invite young nyzhnik despite the fact that vocaturo won the c group last year. i really like the young ukrainian's style, and i look forward to seeing him mature as a player. some time last year he stated that he had no desire to play for the ukranian chess federation; i wonder if he has found another federation that is more accommodating to him.
Jan-08-12  achieve: <AuN1> Actually, the organizers' generosity knows no limits in 2012, as they allowed another Ukranian who ended up 3rd in 2011 C group, to promote to the B group:

Kateryna Lahno

Premium Chessgames Member
  technical draw: The kid is moving up but still there are six 2600+ players playing to win. It will be a tough test for the young GM.

(also TD, <el predicto> , says Harikrishna will win this one.)

Jan-21-12  Kazzak: Awe inspiring win against Vocaturo today, who got totally outplayed by Nyzhnyk in an almost miniature. It was over long before Vocaturo resigned.

Amazing opening prep.

Jan-25-12  ketchuplover: He's not doing too well since :(
Premium Chessgames Member
  Penguincw: < "In Group B, Sokolov awarded the 250-euro daily prize to 15-year-old Ilya Nyzhnyk for his victory in 31 moves with black from a King’s Indian Defense against fellow Ukrainian Kateryna Lahno." >

Jan-29-12  ketchuplover: You can do it Illya :)
Mar-21-12  ketchuplover: Down goes Giri!
Premium Chessgames Member
  whiteshark: <k~lover>, you let the cat out of the bag. :D
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: the man of the hour --- GM Illya Nyzhnyk!

I Nyzhnyk vs A Giri, 2012

i watched the live game and it took around 30 minutes for Anish to play 20.Nd3

Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: <KKDEREK>

As far as I can tell, there are no sites keeping track of Nyzhnyk's live rating unless someone in the Ukraine is doing so.

Best thing to do is start off with a basis of certainty, namely his 2585 in the March list (see the FIDE rating list in his bio), and keep track of Nyzhnyk's tournaments - and hence his live ratings yourself. He added 3.5 points to his March 2012 rating in the 28th Cappelle-la-Grande (2012) (something you can ascertain from his FIDE link), so that as the start of the 13th European Individual Championship (2012) his live rating was 2588.5 (he's doesn't seem to have participated in any team events).

Using the FIDE rating calculator at, you find that he added 1.6 by defeating Lederman, and a whopping 6.8 when he walloped Giri.

So live rating is 2588.5 + 1.6 + 6.8 = 2596.9. might save you the trouble for this tournament as it calculates the cumulative rating change for each player, but don't rely on this as it doesn't do it for every event. The main trick of course is to make sure you don't miss any events in which he is participating.

Gives you an idea of the amount of work frogbert used to do and how much Artiom Tsepotan needs to do to at to keep track of all the tournaments, championships and team events in which all the 2700 players and 2700 wannabes are, and will be, participating.

Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: I don't think he got 3.1 or more points from that draw.
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: KKDEREK - did you use a K factor = 10 when you did the calculation?
Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: When you open the page to the calculator, you'll see at the bottom there are three values of K to choose from. K=30 is used for players who have less than 30 games, K=15 is used for players who are rated under 2400 and K = 10 is used for players who are rated over 2400 and have played over 30 games.

Just follow the legend under the calculator.

Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: Last time someone called me sweet must have been 1965.

Reckon Illya will make the 2700 club by the end of next year. although from the looks of it he may be passing Anish coming the other way...

Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: KKDEREK: Nyzhnyk's draw with Georgiev has finally boosted his live rating to just over 2600.
Premium Chessgames Member
  wordfunph: <KKDEREK> yes, Nyzhnyk should be 3.5 at +2-0=3

Premium Chessgames Member
  twinlark: Yes, he's the Bulgarian number 2 after Topalov and held the world simul record at one stage: Kiril D Georgiev.
Mar-24-12  frogbert: <he's the Bulgarian number 2 after Topalov >

yeah, that's technically true for the time being:

georgiev 2671
cheparinov 2664

on the january list cheparinov was one point ahead of georgiev. :o)

from july 2007 until and including september 2009, cheparinov was consistently rated ahead of georgiev with a max of 2713 from jan 2008. from november 2009 until now, the two have been taking turns having the 2nd/3rd spot in bulgaria, often with only a very few points' difference.

that's kind of fascinating, given that georgiev is 21 years older than cheparinov. :o)

Mar-25-12  voratco: That makes him the youngest GM to breach 2600 elo at age 15 + something months and days.

Kkderek, calculator please.

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