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Carlsen 
Photo courtesy of Magnus Carlsen's Official Facebook Page.  
Magnus Carlsen
Number of games in database: 1,845
Years covered: 2000 to 2016
Last FIDE rating: 2851 (2878 rapid, 2890 blitz)
Highest rating achieved in database: 2882
Overall record: +469 -187 =516 (62.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games
      Based on games in the database; may be incomplete.
      673 exhibition games, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

MOST PLAYED OPENINGS
With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (182) 
    B90 B30 B40 B51 B48
 Ruy Lopez (122) 
    C78 C65 C67 C84 C95
 Slav (60) 
    D15 D17 D10 D12 D11
 Nimzo Indian (51) 
    E32 E20 E21 E36 E54
 Queen's Gambit Declined (41) 
    D37 D38 D31 D35 D30
 French Defense (39) 
    C11 C00 C02 C10 C03
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (169) 
    B33 B30 B22 B90 B77
 Ruy Lopez (138) 
    C67 C95 C65 C78 C69
 Queen's Indian (73) 
    E15 E12 E17
 Nimzo Indian (46) 
    E34 E21 E32 E20 E55
 Queen's Gambit Declined (44) 
    D37 D38 D30 D31 D36
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (43) 
    C95 C91 C88 C96 C84
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Carlsen vs S Ernst, 2004 1-0
   Carlsen vs H Harestad, 2003 1-0
   J L Hammer vs Carlsen, 2003 0-1
   Kramnik vs Carlsen, 2008 0-1
   Anand vs Carlsen, 2013 0-1
   Carlsen vs A Groenn, 2005 1-0
   Nakamura vs Carlsen, 2014 0-1
   Carlsen vs Anand, 2012 1-0
   Carlsen vs Gelfand, 2013 1-0
   Carlsen vs G Tallaksen Ostmoe, 2005 1-0

WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: [what is this?]
   FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (2004)
   Anand - Carlsen World Championship (2013)
   Carlsen - Anand World Championship (2014)

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Corus Group C (2004)
   Pearl Spring Chess Tournament (2009)
   Tata Steel (2013)
   Tata Steel (2015)
   Norwegian Championship (2004)
   Corus Group B (2006)
   Norwegian Championship (2005)
   Norwegian Championship (2006)
   Morelia-Linares (2008)
   Midnight Sun Chess Challenge (2006)
   Amber Tournament (Blindfold) (2010)
   FIDE World Cup (2005)
   World Chess Cup (2007)
   XXII Reykjavik Open (2006)
   6th European Individual Championship (2005)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Fighting Chess with Magnus Carlsen by jakaiden
   HiperKing Magnus by Gottschalk
   MAGNUS CARLSEN'S BEST GAMES by notyetagm
   The Carlsen Chronicles by MoonlitKnight
   Wonderboy - Magnus Carlsen, 2000-2004 by Resignation Trap
   Match Carlsen! by amadeus
   Magnus Carlsen by akatombo
   Move by Move - Carlsen (Lakdawala) by Qindarka
   Power Chess - Carlsen by Anatoly21
   Chess Network Videos: Part 2 by Penguincw
   magnus carlsen .. by sk.sen
   Mozart of chess by zarg
   Carlsen's winning miniatures by alexmagnus
   Aronian / Carlsen by fredthebear

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Magnus Carlsen
Search Google for Magnus Carlsen
FIDE player card for Magnus Carlsen


MAGNUS CARLSEN
(born Nov-30-1990, 25 years old) Norway

[what is this?]

Magnus Carlsen is the 16th undisputed World Champion. He won the crown from Viswanathan Anand in November 2013 and successfully defended it in a return contest with the former title holder a year later in November 2014.

Landmarks

FM (2002); IM (2003); GM (2004); vice-World U12 World Champion (2002); Norwegian Champion (2006); Candidate (2007 & 2013); World Champion (2013 & 2014); World Rapid Champion (2014 & 2015) and World Blitz Champion (2009 & 2014), winner of the Grand Chess Tour (2015), five-time winner at Wijk aan Zee (2008 (jointly with Levon Aronian), 2010, 2013, 2015 & 2016).

Carlsen has been the world's top ranked player since January 2010, apart from six months between November 2010 and June 2011 when he was #2, and possesses the highest standard FIDE rating ever posted, as well as the highest ever live rating. In January 2016, he became the first person to be the world #1 in standard, rapid and blitz chess.

Master Norms

<IM norms> Carlsen earned his first IM norm in January 2003 at the Gausdal Troll Masters when he scored 7/10. His second IM norm came in June 2003 at the Salongernas IM-tournament in Stockholm where he scored 6/9 and his third IM norm came in the following month at the 2003 Politiken Cup in Copenhagen where he scored 8/11.

<GM norms> In early 2004, Carlsen made a major international impact when he won Corus C with 10.5/13, easily winning his first grandmaster norm and earning his entry to the Corus B in 2005. Carlsen obtained his second grandmaster norm in the 3rd Aeroflot Festival (2004) in February and his third grandmaster norm at the sixth 6th Dubai Open (2004), held between 18th and 28th April.

Background:

He was born in Tønsberg, Vestfold. His parents are Sigrun Øen and Henrik Carlsen, both of whom are engineers. His father taught him chess at the age of eight after which he soon played his first tournament, a junior (Miniputt) Norwegian championship. He was coached by seven-time Norwegian Champion Simen Agdestein and by Torbjorn Ringdal Hansen. He won the title of International Master in 2003 at the age of 12 years 7 months and 25 days. In 2004, after having gained over 300 rating points in little over a year, he became the second-youngest grandmaster in chess history at the time, behind only Sergey Karjakin, at the age of 13 years 4 months and 27 days. Parimarjan Negi later pipped his record by five days to become the second youngest grandmaster ever.

Championships:

<Age>: Carlsen won the Norwegian U11 Championship in 2000 and the U10 Nordic Championship in 2001. In 2002, he placed =1st in the Open Norwegian Junior Championship with 5.5/7, but easily won the same event the following year with 6/6. Carlsen started with 4/4 at the 2002 U12 European Championship but faded to finish sixth. In the 2002 U12 World Championship a few weeks later, Carlsen was sole leader coming into the last round, but was held to a draw by David Howell, enabling Ian Nepomniachtchi to equal his score and to win on tiebreak. He placed =3rd at the 2003 U14 European Championship, half a point behind Sergei Zhigalko and Tornike Sanikidze, a short time later placing =9th with 7.5/11 at the World U14 Championship in Halkidiki.

<National and Continental>: A couple of weeks after being eliminated from the FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (2004) (see below), he placed =1st in the 2004 Norwegian Championship. However, after a two-game play-off match with co-leader and until then, six-time Norwegian champion, Berge Ostenstad was drawn, Østenstad was declared winner on tiebreak. In the 2005 Norwegian Chess Championship, Carlsen again finished in a shared first place, this time with his mentor Simen Agdestein. A rapid game playoff between them resulted in Agdestein’s victory by 3.5-2.5 (+2 -1 =3). Carlsen finally won the Norwegian Championship in 2006, after defeating Simen Agdestein in a tie-break match.

Carlsen’s first and and so far only participation in the continental championship provided a solid 22-point boost to his rating when he scored 8/13 in the 6th European Individual Championship (2005).

<World>: Carlsen qualified for the FIDE World Championship Knockout Tournament (2004), but was eliminated in the first round tiebreaker by Levon Aronian. His hopes to become a contender for the World Championship in the future took a big step forward by placing tenth at the FIDE World Cup (2005), becoming the youngest player ever to qualify for the Candidates. In his first Candidates match in Elista in May, he drew 3-3 in the six slow games of the Candidates Match: Aronian - Carlsen (2007) before losing in rapid-play tie-breaks. He reached the final four in the World Chess Cup (2007) before being defeated in the semi-finals by the eventual winner, Gata Kamsky. Carlsen's final placing in the 2007 World Cup qualified him for participation in the FIDE Grand Prix for 2008-09. Soon afterwards he tied for first place in the Baku Grand Prix (2008), the first round of FIDE's inaugural Grand Prix series. Carlsen later withdrew from the Grand Prix cycle despite his excellent result in Baku, complaining about "dramatic changes to ... regulations." and that “…changing the rules dramatically in the middle of a cycle is simply unacceptable.”

On the basis of his rating, Carlsen qualified for the Candidates Tournament that would determine the challenger to World Champion Viswanathan Anand in 2012. In November 2010, however, Carlsen announced he was withdrawing from the Candidates tournament. Carlsen described the 2008–12 cycle as not "...sufficiently modern and fair", and added that "Reigning champion privileges, the long (five year) span of the cycle, changes made during the cycle resulting in a new format (Candidates) that no World Champion has had to go through since Kasparov, puzzling ranking criteria as well as the shallow ceaseless match-after-match concept are all less than satisfactory in my opinion." Carlsen qualified for the World Championship Candidates (2013) that was played in London, again on the basis of his rating. He placed =1st with Vladimir Kramnik on 8.5/14 after both players lost their last round games, but as the first tiebreaker (score against each other in the tournament which was 1-1) failed to break the tie, he won on the second tiebreak which stipulated that the player with the greater number of wins takes first place; he had scored five wins to Kramnik's four. During the tournament, Carlsen set a new live rating record of 2878.9 after he defeated Gelfand in round 10.

In November 2013, Carlsen won the Anand - Carlsen World Championship (2013) that was staged in Chennai. The first four games were drawn before Carlsen won the fifth and sixth games. The seventh and eighth games were drawn, with Carlsen then winning the ninth game and drawing the tenth and last game to win by 6.5-3.5 (+3 =7).

World Championship Defence 2014

Carlsen defended his World Championship title against Anand - who won the right to challenge for the title by winning the World Chess Championship Candidates (2014) that was held in March 2014 - in Sochi in Russia in November 2014.

The first game of the Carlsen - Anand World Championship (2014) was a fighting draw with Carlsen playing Black and successfully defending a Grunfeld. He drew first blood in game two playing the White side of a quiet Ruy Lopez, breaking down Black's defences before the first time control. After the first rest day, Anand struck back strongly playing the White side of a Queen's Gambit Declined (D37), and overcame Carlsen before the first time control. In game 4, Anand played the Sicilian but Carlsen steered the opening into a quiet positional struggle that ended in a draw. Game 5 featured a Queen's Indian Defence by Carlsen which also ended in a draw. Game 6 may have been the turning point in the match. Anand missed a simple tactical stroke as Black that would have given him a very strong, if not winning position and the lead in the match. After missing this continuation, Anand's game weakened and Carlsen brought home the point to take the lead in the match for the second time.

Game 7 was another Berlin Defence by Anand who encountered difficulties and surrendered a piece for two pawns. However, his defence kept Carlsen at bay for 122 moves before the game was finally drawn due to insufficient mating material on the board. Game 8 in the match was another QGD, with Carlsen playing Black introducing an innovation from his home preparation that guaranteed him a relatively easy draw. After another rest day, play resumed with Carlsen playing the White side of a Ruy Lopez that turned into a Berlin Defence by Anand. The game quickly came to an end through a draw by repetition, with Carlsen content to maintain his one-point lead. In Game 10, Carlsen again defended a Grunfeld, albeit not as convincingly as in Game 1. However, he defended a long initiative by Anand to secure a drew to continue to maintain his one point lead. Game 11 was another Berlin Defence by Anand which turned into a complex and hard fought middle game following an innovation by Anand on the queenside, which was followed by an exchange sacrifice. Carlsen successfully defended to bring home the final point needed to secure his title for another two years.

Match result: Carlsen won by 6.5-4.5 (+3 -1 =7).

Next World Championship defence

Carlsen's next defence of his classical world title will be in 2016, date and venue to be decided.

Classical Tournaments:

<2004-2007> Carlsen placed 3rd at the 12th Sigeman & Co Chess Tournament (2004) followed later that month with a solid =3rd place at the Politiken Cup 2004, a half point behind the leaders Darmen Sadvakasov and compatriot Leif Erlend Johannessen. In October 2005, he won the Gausdal Bygger'n Masters in Norway with 8/9 ahead of 9 other grandmasters. He continued to improve in 2006, tying Alexander Motylev for first place in Corus Group B (2006). After several more strong performances during the year, including 6.5/9 at the XXII Reykjavik Open (2006), =2nd at Bosna Sarajevo Tournament (2006), =2nd behind Sergei Shipov at the Midnight Sun Challenge at Breivika videregaende skole in Norway, =2nd at Biel Int'l Festival (2006) (after beating the winner Alexander Morozevich twice), first at the Gausdal Classics GM-A and a joint second-place finish at Linares - Morelia (2007), he crossed the 2700-mark, the youngest player ever to do so. A relatively poor result at Dortmund (2007) (3/7) was followed by a win at Biel Chess Festival (2007) (His score was equaled by Alexander Onischuk and so they played a tie-breaker match to determine the winner. After drawing two rapid and two blitz games, Carlsen won the Armageddon game) and a par for rating =2nd at the Arctic Chess Challenge (2007) where he scored 7/9, a half point behind the leader Alexander Moiseenko, and 3rd at the Tal Memorial (2007) in November 2007.

<2008-2009> In 2008 Carlsen was the joint winner of Corus (2008) A-Group together with Levon Aronian, and placed second in Morelia-Linares (2008) behind Anand. He won clear first place at Aerosvit (2008) with a dominant 8/11 score. His "disappointing" third placement at 41st Biel International Chess Festival (2008) with 6/10, a half point behind joint winners Leinier Dominguez Perez and Evgeny Alekseev, was nevertheless still a 2740 performance, whilst his equal second in the Bilbao Grand Slam Chess Final (2008) with 5.0/10 was a 2768 performance. His relatively meagre 7/13 at Corus (2009) was followed by equal second placement behind Kramnik at Dortmund (2009) with a 2773 performance and 2nd with 5/9 at the M-Tel Masters (2009). The arrival of Garry Kasparov in 2009 as his coach enabled Carlsen's finest tournament performance to date, and one of the best tournament results in the history of chess. Carlsen eclipsed a stellar field consisting of Topalov, Peter Leko, Dmitry Jakovenko, Teimour Radjabov and Wang Yue to win clear first prize with 8/10 at the category XXI Pearl Spring Chess Tournament (2009). Carlsen's performance rating for the tournament was a record 3002 and lifted his FIDE rating in the November 2009 list to 2801, which made him only the fifth player to surpass 2800, and easily the youngest. After a slow start, Carlsen placed equal second with Vassily Ivanchuk behind Vladimir Kramnik in the Category XXI Tal Memorial (2009), which fielded ten of the world's top thirteen rated players. He saw out 2009 with a win at the London Chess Classic (2009), a point ahead of Kramnik, a result which pushed him to the top of the world ratings in January 2010.

<2010-2012> In 2010, Carlsen's success continued, winning Corus (2010) outright with 8.5/13, half a point ahead of joint second place finishers Kramnik and Alexey Shirov. In June, he won the category XXI King's Tournament (2010) in Bazna in Romania by a clear two points with 7.5/10 and a 2918 performance. Following mediocre performances at the 2010 Olympiad and the category XXII Bilbao Masters (2010), Carlsen returned to form by winning the category XXI Nanjing Pearl Spring Tournament (2010) outright with 7/10 (+4 -0 =6) and a 2901 rating performance, a full point ahead of World Champion Anand who took outright second with 6/10, and finishing the year by winning the London Chess Classic (2010) for the second time in succession. After a slow start in the Tata Steel (2011) super tournament, Carlsen finished =3rd with Levon Aronian behind Hikaru Nakamura and Anand with 8/13 and a performance rating of 2821. He followed up in June by winning the Bazna King's Tournament (2011) on tiebreak ahead of Karjakin, both finishing with 6.5/10, and by winning Biel Chess Festival (2011) in July with a round to spare and with a final score of 7/10 (TPR 2835). After another characteristically slow start, Carlsen placed =1st with Ivanchuk at the 4th Bilbao Masters (2011) with 15 points under the Bilbao scoring system (+3 -1 =6) and a 2842 performance rating, ultimately winning the tournament in a blitz tiebreaker. Then in November 2011, Carlsen won the Tal Memorial (2011) on tiebreak with 5.5/9 (+2 =7 -0 and a TPR of 2850) over Aronian. Carlsen finished 2011 with 3rd place at the category 20 London Chess Classic (2011) behind Kramnik and Nakamura, scoring +3 =5 (TPR of 2879). 2012 started with =2nd (+4 -1 =8; TPR 2830) behind Aronian and alongside Radjabov and Fabiano Caruana at the Category 21 Tata Steel (2012). He won the category 22 Tal Memorial (2012) outright with 5.5/9 (+2 =7) and a TPR of 2849. The month after his strong results in the World Blitz he finished outright second behind Wang Hao in the Grandmaster Tournament of the Biel Chess Festival (2012). In October 2012, Carlsen repeated his 2011 feat at Bilbao by winning the Bilbao Masters (2012) in a tiebreaker, this time against Caruana. He finished up 2012 by winning the London Chess Classic (2012), the third time he has done so, with a score of 6.5/8 (+5 =3 -0) and a TPR of 2994 (only fractionally below his record effort at Pearl Springs in 2009). London 2012 was also made historic for the fact that Carlsen's result lifted his January 2013 rating to a new record, exceeding Kasparov's record 2851 by 10 points.

<2013> Building on his achievements of 2012, Carlsen won the category 20 Tata Steel (2013) tournament with a round to spare, his final score being 10/13. He also set a new live rating record of 2874 after his round 12 win over Nakamura, although this was superseded at the Candidates in March. In May 2013 he played in the category 21 Norway Chess Tournament (2013) held in the Stavanger Region of Norway and came 2nd with 5.5/9, half a point behind the winner Sergey Karjakin; in the preliminary Norway Chess Tournament (Blitz) (2013) held to determine the draw, he came 2nd with 6/9 behind Karjakin, thereby earning 5 games as White out of the 9 to be played. In June he again came outright 2nd, this time at the category 22 Tal Memorial (2013), half a point behind the winner Boris Gelfand. His last hit out before the World Championship match against Anand in November 2013 was the category 22 double round robin Sinquefield Cup (2013), which he won outright with 4.5/6 (+3 =3; TPR of 2966).

<2014> Carlsen's first tournament as World Champion was the Zurich Chess Challenge (2014), the first ever category 23 tournament (average rating 2801). He came from behind to take equal first with Aronian in the Zurich Chess Challenge (Blitz) (2014), which determined the colors in the main event (Carlsen has 4 whites and 1 black). By round 4 of the standard time event, he extended his live rating to 2882.6, breaking the record he established in round 3. His round 5 draw with Anand enabled him to finish the standard time event in first place, 2 scoring points ahead of Aronian. He needed 3.5/5 in the Zurich Chess Challenge (Rapid) (2014) played on the final day to guarantee his win in the event, however his 2/5 result was sufficient to win the combined event by one point under the scoring system used. His next event was the category 22 Gashimov Memorial (2014), a new event in honor of the late Azeri GM Vugar Gashimov, which he won outright with a score of 6.5/10, defeating Fabiano Caruana, his rival for first prize, in the last round. Although he was the only undefeated player at the Norway Chess Tournament (2014), he won insufficient games to win the event, which was successfully defended by last year's winner, Sergei Karjakin. In August 2014, he played in the category 23 (only the second such strength event) Sinquefield Cup (2014) and came outright second with 5.5/10, 3 points behind Caruana, the runaway leader of the tournament.

<2015> Following his successful defence of his title against Anand in November 2014, Carlsen won the Tata Steel (2015) outright with a score of 9/13 (+6 -1 =6), his six wins scored in succession after starting the event poorly with two draws and a loss. In April 2015, Carlsen won the category 21 Gashimov Memorial (2015) outright for the second year in succession with a powerful score of 7/9 (+5 =4), a full point clear of a resurgent Viswanathan Anand, who was outright runner up with 6/9. This high was followed by a low at the category 22 Norway Chess (2015) in Stavanger in June 2015, when he crashed and burned to his worst tournament result in almost a decade. After losing his first round game on time to Topalov in a won position, Carlsen never recovered and registered a 3.5/9 (+2-4=3) result that slashed 23 points from his rating. A slow start in the category 22 Sinquefield Cup (2015) following an early loss to Topalov, was followed by three successive wins which enabled Carlsen to draw level with the leader by round 5, before the rest day. However, a crucial loss to Grischuk from an advantageous position and missed opportunities to win against Nakamura relegated him to equal second in the event, a point behind the outright winner Levon Aronian. This result also caused him to shed a few ratings points.

Still struggling with his form, Carlsen began his campaign at the category 23 London Chess Classic (2015) with his characteristic slow start, but was able to finish equal first in the ninth and final round with a win over Alexander Grischuk, scoring 5.5/9 alongside Anish Giri and a surging Maxime Vachier-Lagrave. A three way rapid game tiebreak resulted in Carlsen winning the tournament as well as the Grand Chess Tour of 2015. He finished 2015 with a flourish when he won the powerful Qatar Masters (2015) by sharing first with an undefeated 7/9, then winning 2-0 in the blitz playoff against Yu Yangyi. His tiebreak wins against Yu Yangyi also elevated him back to world #1 in blitz.

<2016> The year started in the best possible way for Carlsen when he scored 9/13 to win outright at the category 20 Tata Steel (2016) event, a point ahead of Caruana and Ding Liren. This was his fifth win at Wijk aan Zee, tying with Anand for the record number of wins at this event, which has been running since 1938. In April, he won the Norway Chess (2016) event for the first time, scoring 6/9 to finish outright first, a half point ahead of outright second placed Aronian.

Rapid:

Carlsen won the Glitnir Blitz Tournament in 2006 in Iceland. In September 2006 Carlsen placed 8th out of 16 participants at the World Blitz Championship (2006) in Rishon LeZion, Israel. In the blitz tournament associated with the Tal Memorial 2006, namely the Tal Blitz Cup, Carlsen scored 17½/34 points and placed 9th in a group of 18 participants. In March 2007, Carlsen played for the first time in the Melody Amber blind and rapid chess tournament in Monte Carlo. In the 11 rounds of the 16th Amber Tournament (Blindfold) (2007), he achieved eight draws and three losses (placing =9th) then scored three wins, seven draws and one loss in the 16th Amber Tournament (Rapid) (2007) (=2nd), for an overall 8th place in the combined tournament. In March 2008, Carlsen played for the second time in the Melody Amber blind and rapid chess tournament, which was held in Nice for the first time. Carlsen achieved four wins, four draws and two losses in the Amber Tournament (Blindfold) (2008), and three wins, two losses, and six draws in the Amber Tournament (Blindfold) (2008), resulting in a shared second place in the overall tournament.

In the Chess Classic Mainz (2008), Carlsen finished in second place after losing the final to defending champion Anand 3:1 (two losses, two draws). 2009 saw Carlsen score equal first in the Amber Tournament (Blindfold) (2009) with 7/11 alongside Kramnik and Aronian, and equal second with Veselin Topalov at M-Tel Masters (2009) behind Shirov with a 2822 performance. He also won the XXII Magistral Ciudad de Leon (2009), a rapid knockout tournament, ahead of Morozevich, Ivanchuk, and Wang Yue. Just a few days after his 2nd placement at the Tal Memorial (2009), he won the World Blitz Championship (2009) with 31/42, a full three points ahead of runner-up Anand. He shared first place at the 2010 Amber Rapid and Blindfold Tournament with Ivanchuk; scoring 6½ points in the blindfold and 8 points in the rapid, Carlsen accumulated 14½ from a possible 22 points. After a slow start in the Arctic Securities Chess Stars (2010) rapid tournament, he continued his success by defeating Anand in the two-game playoff for gold. In the World Blitz Championship (2010), held in Moscow on 16–18 November, Carlsen attempted to defend his 2009 title. With a score of 23½/38, he finished in third place behind Radjabov and the winner Aronian. After the tournament, Carlsen played a private 40-game blitz match against Hikaru Nakamura, winning with a score of 23½–16½. A phenomenal 9.5/11, 2.5 points clear of the field, in 20th Amber Tournament (Rapid) (2011) was insufficient for him to win the overall contest, as his results in the 20th Amber Tournament (Blindfold) (2011) were poor, resulting in a 2nd overall to 2008 and 2009 overall winner Aronian. In July 2012 he came clear 2nd in the World Rapid Championship (2012) behind Karjakin with 10.5/15, and clear 2nd in the World Blitz Championship (2012) with 19.5/30, half a point behind Alexander Grischuk.

In June 2014, he realized his ambition to be the triple champion (of standard, rapid and blitz chess) when he won the FIDE World Rapid Championship (2014) with 11/15, half a point ahead of runner-up Caruana, and the FIDE World Blitz Championship (2014) with 17/21, one point clear of Nepomniachtchi and Nakamura. In October 2015, he successfully backed up to defend his title at the World Rapid Championship (2015), scoring 11.5/15, a point clear of runners-up Leinier Dominguez Perez, Teimour Radjabov and Ian Nepomniachtchi.

Matches:

The DSB Bank match between Loek van Wely and Magnus Carlsen took place 28th April - 1st May 2006. The four game classical time limit match was tied 2-2. Carlsen won the blitz portion of the match 3.5-0.5. He won a rapid match against Peter Leko held in Miskolc, Hungary, scoring 5:3 (+2 =6). Carlsen played in a curtain raiser to the Norwegian Championship, winning the Carlsen - Predojevic Rapid Match (2013) by 2.5-1.5 (+1 =3); the match was organized by the "Nansen Center for Peace and Dialogue" to celebrate the long-standing relationship between Lillehammer and Sarajevo. (1)

Team:

<Olympiad>: Carlsen represented Norway on board 1 in the 36th Olympiad (2004), the 37th Chess Olympiad (2006), the Olympiad (2008), the Chess Olympiad (2010) and in the Chess Olympiad (2014). His best result was in the 2006 Olympiad, where he scored 6 points from 8 games and came 5th for board 1.

<National> He played board 1 for Norway at the European Team Chess Championships (2007) and won an individual silver medal. He again played board 1 for Norway at the European Team Championship (2015), but returned a very poor result with 3.5/7, losing another 16 rating points to bring him down to his lowest rating (2834) since January 2012.

<Club> Carlsen played four seasons in the European Club Cup. In 2001 and 2003 he played for Asker Norway on board 6 and board 1 (after he had gained his FM title) respectively, while his father Henrik was reserve on both occasions. In 2007 he played board 3 for OS Baden Baden, and in 2008 he played top board for MIKA Yerevan. His total game result from these 4 seasons was 15.5/27 (+11 -7 =9). He also played in the Norwegian Team Championship in 2002, 2003, 2005 and 2006, in the Bundesliga in the 2004-05, 2006-07, 2007/08, 2008-09 seasons, and in the Dutch Team Championship 2007.

<Other Team> In August 2006, he played in the NH Hotels event featuring the older Experience Team vs Youth team (easily won by the Youth team 28–22), and was equal top scorer with Alexander Beliavsky with 6.5/10.

Rating:

The highest official rating achieved by Carlsen to date was 2882 in May 2014. His highest live rating was 2889.2 on 21 April 2014. Both are the highest ratings ever achieved.

Carlsen's 1 April 2016 FIDE ratings are:

<Standard>: 2851, making him the world #1 ranked player. By the end of the April 2016 rating period, he will have been world number one for a total of 69 months. He holds the record for the longest period as the world's top ranked Junior (U20) - 36 months - from 1 January 2008 until 31 December 2010. He was also both world number one junior and world number one player for the first 10 months of 2010. Furthermore, he holds the record for the highest rating acquired by any player aged 13, and 17 through to 24 inclusive.

<Rapid>: 2878 (world #1); and

<Blitz>: 2890 (world #1).

Other:

Carlsen won the Chess Oscars for 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013 and he was also awarded Norway's annual Peer Gynt Prize for 2011 for being "a person or institution that has achieved distinction in society". (2) After he won the World Championship he was awarded Norway's "Name of the Year" award for 2013. (3) He has two sisters, Ellen Oen Carlsen and Ingrid Oen Carlsen. Carlsen helped Anand prepare for the World Chess Championships in 2007 and 2008 and 2010. Carlsen has modeled for G-Star Raw, starting with its Autumn/Winter 2010 advertising campaign.

At the Sohn Conference held in New York in May 2015, Carlsen demonstrated his skill by playing three players in a blindfold clock simul. Carlsen and each of the three players were given nine minutes. Carlsen won 3-0. A video of the event can be seen at the link in footnote (4).

General Sources:

Carlsen's FIDE player card; Wikipedia article: Magnus Carlsen; live rating: http://www.2700chess.com/; official website: http://www.magnuscarlsen.com/; blogs: http://www.arcticsec.no/index.php?b... (English language); http://simonsenlaw.no/ (Norwegian language); World Championship Index: http://www.mark-weeks.com/chess/wcc...; and Olimpbase, the Encyclopedia of Team Chess: http://www.olimpbase.org/

Footnotes

(1) http://www.peace.no/index.php?optio...; (2) http://www.newsinenglish.no/2011/03...; (3) http://www.nrk.no/sport/videoklipp/...; (4) http://en.chessbase.com/post/carlse...

Latest updated 30 April 2016


 page 1 of 74; games 1-25 of 1,845  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves Year Event/LocaleOpening
1. Carlsen vs T Nielsen 0-145 2000 Det åpne NMA10 English
2. Carlsen vs T Solstad ½-½21 2000 Det åpne NME04 Catalan, Open, 5.Nf3
3. K Ovesen vs Carlsen 1-038 2000 Det åpne NMA46 Queen's Pawn Game
4. Toan Thanh Pham vs Carlsen 1-032 2000 Det åpne NMB70 Sicilian, Dragon Variation
5. Carlsen vs H Sannes 1-060 2000 Det åpne NMA27 English, Three Knights System
6. Carlsen vs J Svindahl 0-142 2000 Det åpne NMA36 English
7. H Bartels vs Carlsen ½-½48 2000 Bayern-chI Bank Hofmann 4thC59 Two Knights
8. A Flaata vs Carlsen 1-024 2000 Stjernen Grand PrixA07 King's Indian Attack
9. M Svendsen vs Carlsen 1-039 2000 Det åpne NMC02 French, Advance
10. G Kaiser vs Carlsen 0-136 2000 Bayern-chI Bank Hofmann 4thB08 Pirc, Classical
11. Carlsen vs P Brantzeg 0-152 2000 ASKOs Pinseturnering, Gruppe BC18 French, Winawer
12. Carlsen vs L Olzem ½-½36 2000 Bayern-chI Bank Hofmann 4thD00 Queen's Pawn Game
13. Carlsen vs I Cordts 0-130 2000 Bayern-chI Bank Hofmann 4thA31 English, Symmetrical, Benoni Formation
14. T Christenson vs Carlsen 0-146 2000 Det åpne NMB70 Sicilian, Dragon Variation
15. J Banas vs Carlsen  1-070 2001 ECCA35 English, Symmetrical
16. Carlsen vs S Sollid 0-126 2001 Open NOR-chC63 Ruy Lopez, Schliemann Defense
17. Carlsen vs A Flaata 1-038 2001 Bergen Chess InternationalB00 Uncommon King's Pawn Opening
18. Carlsen vs O Hole 0-136 2001 Classics IMAB12 Caro-Kann Defense
19. P Skovgaard vs Carlsen 0-137 2001 Nordic Youth Ch Group EA56 Benoni Defense
20. Carlsen vs Y Miellet-Bensan 0-151 2001 Bergen Chess InternationalB33 Sicilian
21. Carlsen vs A Moen 0-129 2001 Troll MastersC42 Petrov Defense
22. M Kouvatsou vs Carlsen  ½-½37 2001 ECCC55 Two Knights Defense
23. Carlsen vs A F Brameld 0-135 2001 Troll MastersB05 Alekhine's Defense, Modern
24. Carlsen vs S Rukovci ½-½6 2001 Open NOR-chA21 English
25. Carlsen vs Neil Benn 1-038 2001 NTG GPB28 Sicilian, O'Kelly Variation
 page 1 of 74; games 1-25 of 1,845  PGN Download
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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 3116 OF 3116 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Apr-21-16  thegoodanarchist: Viswanathan Anand and Garry Kasparov are the only players to win 3 consecutive WC matches in the FIDE era (ironically, I do not count FIDE championship matches as WC matches during the PCA era).

Anatoly Karpov and Tigran Vartanovich Petrosian won two consecutive WC matches. And of course, MC is the third to do so.

Mikhail Botvinnik came close, but had a couple of drawn matches to keep him from having a streak.

Of course, there is more to legacy than just WC match performance. MC may be the only male WC to model, so he has increased the appeal of chess outside of its normal bounds, something that Fischer did better than anyone else. Fischer also professionalized chess, as well as revolutionizing playing conditions and prize purses for the better of the players. The fact that he single-handedly defeated the Soviet chess machine at the height of the Cold War, and had probably the largest performance gap ever established by a top player (with possible exception of MC) cements Fischer as greatest player of all time, legacy wise.

Karpov's wins were always tainted - certainly having Doctor Zukhar in the audience to harass Korchnoi detracts from Karpov's legacy, as does the cancelled '84 match.

For these reasons and many others that I will omit for the sake of brevity, my top 5 consists of Fischer, Kasparov, Carlsen, Lasker and either Anand or Capablanca, depending on whose very impressive bio I've reviewed most recently

Apr-22-16  The Boomerang: " Fischer as greatest player of all time, legacy wise"

Hardly a legacy without playing a single game as champion....he did well up until that point, but way off the mark as greatest ever. Nothing great about leaving the game after winning the championship, evrything else, the streaks, the whitewashes, the famous games....sure all great.

Apr-22-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Absentee: <The Boomerang: " Fischer as greatest player of all time, legacy wise"

Hardly a legacy without playing a single game as champion....>

So the ones who left a legacy are those who played at least one game as world champion, yes?

Apr-22-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: Fischer was a weird combination of strong chess skills, strong ego, and a weak, almost non-existent, mental strength. All those quirks on his way to the WC match, the behaviour during the match itself, leaving chess after winning the match - let alone completely losing his mind later - somehow leaves me puzzled. How could someone with so weak nerves become so strong?
Apr-22-16  thegoodanarchist: <The Boomerang: " Fischer as greatest player of all time, legacy wise"

Hardly a legacy without playing a single game as champion....he did well up until that point, but way off the mark as greatest ever.>

I read this argument from time to time on cg.com, and have personally had posters even ridicule me for my claim.

To me, this attitude that Fischer wasn't great, didn't have a great legacy, because he didn't play after becoming champion, is a very selfish viewpoint.

Look at what Fishcer did for <the game of chess itself>, not for your desire to see a great championship reign.

Except for special circumstances there will always be a reigning champion, so what? How does it improve chess any differently, for example, to have Kasparov be champ for 16 years instead of Karpov being champ for 16 years?

Does it bring more players to the game? Does it improve the standing of chess in the eyes of the non-chess world? Does it improve prize money or playing conditions? NONE of those things! But Fischer did them all! Not by staying on as champion, but by being a shooting star of genius and using the sensational amount of fame and interest that is generated by that, to leverage improvements in the game for players and focus on the game in the media and the public.

Fischer also raised the level of play by professionalizing chess, and this was noted by the great players who came after (I think both Karpov and Kasparov pointed this out). This is HUGE. The quality of play you see today is a direct consequence of Fischer raising the bar for winning (because he was working on chess full time), forcing those who came after to respond in kind in order to compete for a title.

When you see the elite players of today with incredibly accurate play, and then scoff at the notion that a Spassky or Smyslov could hang with them without the same level of professional effort that a Wesley So or Fabio Caruana puts in, then you are crediting the Fischer legacy without realizing it.

But no, instead we have short-sighted "small thinking" people who complain that Fischer quit, or whatever. They don't look at all the ways Fischer revolutionized the game. Fischer had a patent on the time delay clock - did you know that? All first-world tournaments use that now. Who else had an invention like that?

Put aside the selfish attitude that "I" want to see Fischer - Karpov 1975 games. Or "I" want to see how long Fischer could hold the title against the Soviets. It isn't about you, it is about what he has done for the <game>.

Apr-22-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <Does it bring more players to the game? Does it improve the standing of chess in the eyes of the non-chess world? Does it improve prize money or playing conditions? NONE of those things! But Fischer did them all! Not by staying on as champion, but by being a shooting star of genius and using the sensational amount of fame and interest that is generated by that, to leverage improvements in the game for players and focus on the game in the media and the public.>

It was less an achievement of Fischer than the consequence of the political situation back then though. I think, <any> dominant player from the West would generate similar interest back then. If Carlsen were born in the 1940s, surely he'd be much more known than he is now, barely known to non-chess public outside of Norway. Same if Karpov or Kasparov were born in the West and Fischer didn't exist at all.

Apr-22-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: As for the "standing of chess" - how did he improve it? By demanding higher prizes? Hardly. It's an American thing that money is the <only> measure of prestige. Even in Europe, despite all the capitalism, you wouldn't call something prestigious <just> because it brings some money.

By the way higher prizes. By doing that he made chess more professional - maybe. Maybe not at all, after all, the best players came from the Soviet Union, and they saw nothing of those prizes, much of which went to the state.

Apr-23-16  thegoodanarchist: < I think, <any> dominant player from the West would generate similar interest back then. If Carlsen were born in the 1940s, surely he'd be much more known than he is now>

But there was no other "dominant player from the West" like Fischer. Which is why you resort to strange hypothetical scenarios in which Carlsen is born in another era, when his parents were children or even not yet born themselves. (which means he isn't Magnus Carlsen at all)

And all of this is really tacit admission that I am right about the Fischer legacy. Saying someone else <could have> done it in a hypothetical scenario (because no other person alive in the time period could do it) is about the same as saying "You're right, Fischer has a great legacy." Which is my point.

Apr-23-16  thegoodanarchist: <alexmagnus: As for the "standing of chess" - how did he improve it? By demanding higher prizes? Hardly. It's an American thing that money is the <only> measure of prestige. >

The only thing you got right in this post is that I am American.

Where did I write that increasing prize funds was the <only> thing needed to increase the prestige of chess?

Try and find it - I'll wait.

Apr-23-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: I didnt't say you said it, I asked you <how> he increased the standing of chess, and made a possible assumption on your line of thoughts (because I've seen this line many times, primarily in Americans)

As for your first post - we can hardly attribute being born in the right era in the right time to a person. Each era has its dominant player. Fischer happened to be a dominant player at the first peak of the Cold War. And he happened to be a <Western> player in a Soviet-dominated sport. Fischer's achievement is his dominance, but it would bring much less if he were not "lucky" enough to be born in the right place in the right time (I put "lucky" quotes because this very luck was what finally got him, what drove him insane.)

Apr-23-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: < Olavi: <Jambow: In so saying it isn't a huge leap to conclude (Carlsen) is simply the best player ever. Practical translates to over the board results and he certainly has that as his legacy.>

I find this very hard to accept when one remembers Kasparov's tournament results between Tilburg 1981 and Linares 1994 (failing to win only in Linares 1991, second to Ivanchuk, and scoring the absolute best results at Olympiads) and his 10 consecutive super tournament wins at the turn of the century. And perhaps Karpov 1973-1986 too.>

So do I.

Formidable as Carlsen has been, we had best wait a while longer before coming to any sort of clearcut verdict that he is at the top of the heap.

Apr-23-16  thegoodanarchist: <alexmagnus: I didnt't say you said it, I asked you <how> he increased the standing of chess,>

But then you answered your own question with one word - <Hardly.> When you answer your own question it indicates that the question was a rhetorical device, not an actual question to the other person.

<and made a possible assumption on your line of thoughts (because I've seen this line many times, primarily in Americans)>

But I think you should be able to see, from the entirety of my post, that your "possible assumption" is wrong. I listed several ways that Fischer increased the standing of chess, and I definitely did not emphasize or dwell on prize money.

It is but one pillar of the many that Fischer added to chess. What about the clock? Who else added anything like that to chess, ever? No one.

Same for the Cold War battle - yes Fischer happened to be born in that era, but it was his talent and hard work that helped him triumph over the Soviet Chess machine, and no one else alive could have done that, not even a Soviet player could have!

If Bent Larsen had become the challenger, do you think a chess match would have made nightly news in the USA? No, and I didn't even mention that in the first post - I just alluded to it. And Spassky would have dispatched Larsen in 21 games, IMO.

Apr-25-16  The Boomerang: "And Spassky would have dispatched Larsen in 21 games, IMO."

Of Course Spassky would have dispatched Larsen in 21 games. Larsen wouldnt have caused the circus Bobby did, with ridiculous requests and not showing up for games, undoubtedly that affected Spassky, I mean who wouldnt that sort of behaviour affect?

That's not to say Fischer wouldn't beat Spassky anyway...but his antics really adds to that air of doubt, I mean even a few percent decline in Spassky due to all that translates to a big difference in play over the board.

Fischer never beat Spassky up until that point.

And the point regarding the clock is great, but If I go out there now and revolutionize the clock technology and applicaiton in Chess is anyone going to remember me?

What if I defend the championship 5 times?

Your way of judging a great legacy is just as selfish as mine, so don't give me that crap.

He didn't play not a single game as champion, to me personally that lowers his legacy certainly as a great champion big time.

He became champion but wasn't a champion the way we are use to?

Did he influence the game big time in the states and across the world? Sure.

But are we really going to judge players on whether they came up with a new clock invention?

Or how well they performed with regards to their peers?

Imagine if you judged Roger Federer not on his achievement but whether he came up with a new type of racquet?

That's why I don't like all these greatest of all time arguments, was Fischer an innovator and did he change the game? Yes, greatest there.

Was he a great chess player? Yes....especially 70-72, he wasn't that great 60-70 compared to say Kasparov.

I read somewhere Fischer only had 2 tournament performances over 2820. Jeff Sonas's greatest ever series.

Kasparov had 17, I mean wow.

Was Fischer a great champion? No. Didn't play a single game.

Innovator? Famous? Took on the whole Soviet chess Machine? yes.

Apr-27-16  DeepTrouble: <Olavi: One of many possible answers. There are many instances in history when the dominant player obviously wasn't the one with the deepest understanding, e.g. Tal in 1958-60. It was his other qualities that did it. ...>

I'm not talking about Tal or other players in chess history, though, I'm talking about a specific player, Carlsen.

And my view is based on his deep positional understanding and intuition, his defensive capabilities, as well as his ability to deal with more complex, tactical/offensive positions. He's the nearest thing to a "complete" chess player I've seen in terms of overall chess understanding, versatility and skill.

BTW, Carlsen totally outplayed Kramnik today in Norway Chess. He got an advantage early in the opening, and after that it went downhill for Kramnik. Usually games between those two have been decided in the mid/endgame. Kramnik has not beaten Carlsen since 2010.

Apr-27-16  DeepTrouble: BTW, I also want to make it clear that I'm NOT saying that Carlsen is the greatest player in history. Being the greatest player and being the strongest player isn't necessarily the same thing.

Only time will show (probably when he retires) if Carlsen can be considered the greatest player (or one of them) in history. Right now, I'd say Kasparov is the greatest player from a historical perspective.

Apr-27-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  Absentee: <DeepTrouble: Being the greatest player and being the strongest player isn't necessarily the same thing.>

Nobody's been able to define what that "greatest player" thing means yet, so I guess it might well not be the same thing as something else.

Apr-29-16  KnightVBishop: Does anyone know Magnus next tournament

if i remember right he declined the 2 classica events for the Grand Chess Tour but will still do the rapid/bitz

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Grand...

so does anyone know his next classica tournament?

Apr-29-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  rogge: Bilbao in July, I believe.
Apr-29-16  frogbert: So, that's four in a row. Not too shabby.
Apr-30-16  Rolfo: <frogbert: So, that's four in a row. Not too shabby.>

Very well done! Finally he got his 'homework' right. Congratulations. And now wheeling back home in his Tesla together with his father I think. Next is rapids and blitz in Paris and Bruxelles in the middle of June (GCT). Btw, How is Kinghunt doing with his supertournament count?

Apr-30-16  Olavi: <thegoodanarchist:>

Thank you for your posts of Apr-21-16. For me, putting Carlsen ahead of e.g. Steinitz, Alekhine, Botvinnik and Karpov already in April 2016 is incomprehensible. But perhaps my perspective is too narrow: I wouldn't have thought of Carlsen's modeling.

Apr-30-16  Rolfo: <For me, putting Carlsen ahead of e.g. Steinitz, Alekhine, Botvinnik and Karpov already in April 2016 is incomprehensible. But perhaps my perspective is too narrow: I wouldn't have thought of Carlsen's modeling.>

I thought you were about to say it is too close/ narrow in time to review Carlsen 😏 I would then be in agreement with you, but for now I tend to be fairly positive in all on Carlsen's achivements which I think already stand out in the chess history. But of course all is more clear after his retirement when it comes, and hopefully he deserves to be mentioned among the best

May-01-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  RookFile: He's already successfully defended his title, which is more than a lot of champions can say.
May-01-16
Premium Chessgames Member
  amadeus: According to Kinghunt's criteria, Fischer won only 6 supertournaments. As for Carlsen, I think he is already in the top 10 of all time.

Best rating, #1 in Classic, Rapid and Blitz -- and previously World Champion on all those categories. Current World Champion, one successful defense. 26 supertournaments -- only Karpov and Kasparov beat him on that. 71 months as #1 in classical chess (more than Kramnik, Anand and Topalov together). And so on.

May-01-16  KnightVBishop: <amadeus>

Did Magnus already surpass Anand in supertournament victories

so he is only behind Karpov and Kaspy in that regard?

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