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Vugar Gashimov
V Gashimov 
Photo copyright © 2008 Farid Khayrulin.  

Number of games in database: 744
Years covered: 1995 to 2012
Last FIDE rating: 2737
Highest rating achieved in database: 2761
Overall record: +186 -77 =280 (60.0%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 201 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (111) 
    B25 B43 B97 B96 B30
 Ruy Lopez (107) 
    C65 C84 C67 C92 C77
 Ruy Lopez, Closed (42) 
    C84 C92 C99 C95 C91
 French Defense (35) 
    C11 C10 C12 C18 C05
 Caro-Kann (27) 
    B12 B18 B14 B10 B13
 French (23) 
    C11 C10 C12
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (85) 
    B90 B76 B27 B84 B70
 Modern Benoni (67) 
    A70 A60 A62 A77 A61
 Nimzo Indian (33) 
    E34 E20 E21 E46 E48
 Petrov (29) 
    C42 C43
 Queen's Pawn Game (27) 
    A46 A45 E10 E00 A40
 English, 1 c4 c5 (22) 
    A30 A35 A33 A31 A37
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   V Gashimov vs Grischuk, 2008 1-0
   V Gashimov vs B Lalic, 2007 1-0
   V Gashimov vs Gelfand, 2009 1-0
   Giri vs V Gashimov, 2012 0-1
   V Gashimov vs Smeets, 2010 1-0
   V Gashimov vs R Kempinski, 2011 1-0
   V Gashimov vs M Roiz, 2009 1-0
   V Gashimov vs Tiviakov, 2008 1-0
   V Gashimov vs Ivanchuk, 2010 1-0
   V Gashimov vs H Stevic, 2006 1-0

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Cappelle-la-Grande Open (2006)
   Cappelle la Grande (2007)
   European Club Cup (2005)
   European Junior Championship (2002)
   Gibraltar Masters (2009)
   Arctic Chess Challenge (2007)
   World Junior Championship (2005)
   World Junior Championship (2003)
   European Championship (2002)
   World Cup (2009)
   Ordix Open (2009)
   World Cup (2011)
   European Championship (2004)
   Bled Olympiad (2002)
   Turin Olympiad (2006)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   GM Vugar Gashimov plays the Modern Benoni by verizondsl
   Vugar Gashimov`s Selected Games by Jafar219
   Vugar Gashimov by C.Martin
   sorokahdeen's Intriguing Games by sorokahdeen
   C84 Spanish: Closed [White] by Chibauk
   C84 Spanish: Closed [White] by chess.master
   Azerbaijanians smashing armenians (Unfinished) by Jafar219

   🏆 Bundesliga 2011/12
   V Gashimov vs Vachier-Lagrave (Feb-05-12) 1/2-1/2
   Negi vs V Gashimov (Feb-04-12) 0-1
   V Gashimov vs Nakamura (Jan-29-12) 1/2-1/2
   Karjakin vs V Gashimov (Jan-28-12) 1/2-1/2
   V Gashimov vs Radjabov (Jan-27-12) 0-1

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Vugar Gashimov
Search Google for Vugar Gashimov

(born Jul-24-1986, died Jan-10-2014, 27 years old) Azerbaijan

[what is this?]

IM (1998 – aged 12 years and 5 months); GM (2002 – aged 15 years 11 months).


Vugar Gashimov (Vüqar Həşimov) was born in Baku and learned the game from his father, a retired Army colonel and a candidate master, at the age of 6. He was one of several highly talented young grandmasters from Azerbaijan who have risen to prominence in world chess in recent years. His highest world rank was No. 6 on the November 2009 rating list with a rating of 2758. Ill health, including seizures, brain tumors and high blood pressure, dogged him from 2000 onwards, forcing him out of competitive chess after February 2012. He died on 10 January 2014, aged only 27.


<Age>: Gashimov was runner-up to Pentala Harikrishna at the World U10 championship in 1996 and runner-up at the European U18 Championship 2001 with 7.5/11, a point behind Zviad Izoria. Two years later, he placed =3rd with 8.5/13 at the World Junior Championship (2003) behind Shakhriyar Mamedyarov and Sergei Azarov and two years after that, he was outright 3rd behind Mamedyarov and Ferenc Berkes at the World Junior Championship (Boys) (2005).

<National>: FIDE reported that Gashimov won the Azerbaijan national championships of 1995, 1996 and 1998, (1) but these are likely to have been youth championships given his age at the time of these events. In 2001, he was =2nd behind Mamedyarov.

<Continental>: Gashimov’s inaugural participation in the European Individual Chess Championship (EICC) was auspicious, and as it turns out, his best effort in that event. The 15 year-old IM placed =6th at the EICC in 2002 with a stunning 8.5/13, including victories against Baadur Jobava and Levon Aronian. He also played in the 2003 EICC, scoring 7/13, and then went on with a solid 8/13 in the European Championship (2004), a modest 5/10 at the European Championship (2006) and a reasonably strong 7/11 at the European Championship (2007), which was the last time he played in this continental tournament.

<World>: As a nominee of one of the host cities, Baku, Gashimov participated in the inaugural FIDE Grand Prix cycle. In the Baku Grand Prix (2008), Gashimov finished undefeated with 8/13 and tied with Magnus Carlsen and Wang Yue for first place, winning nominal first place on tiebreak. His second effort at the FIDE Grand Prix (2008) in Sochi was not as successful, scoring 6.5/13 and placing =8th alongside Vassily Ivanchuk. His third GP participation in the series - Elista Grand Prix (2008) - was more successful, scoring 7.5/13 to place outright 4th. His final event in the 2008-10 Grand Prix series was FIDE Grand Prix (2010), where his 6.5/13 was sufficient for =7th. Overall, he scored 333.3 GP points for his best three results (Baku, Sochi and Astrakhan), placing 6th overall in the Grand Prix series which was insufficient for Gashimov to qualify for the next stage as only the first two places qualified for the World Championship Candidates (2011).

The World Cup (2009) was held during the Grand Prix series. He overcame Walaa Sarwat, Zhou Jianchao, Li Chao and Fabiano Caruana but lost in the tiebreaker of the quarter final to eventual finalist Ruslan Ponomariov. By reason of his rating, Gashimov qualified for the World Cup (2011), where he defeated Canadian IM Eric Hansen, Sergei Azarov, Evgeny Tomashevsky and Peter Heine Nielsen in the early rounds, but again lost in the quarter final to eventual finalist Ruslan Ponomariov.

He qualified to play in the 2012-13 Grand Prix series, but withdrew from competitive chess due to ill health. Gata Kamsky replaced him in the Grand Prix.

Classical Tournaments:

Gashimov’s first significant tournament success was to win the U16 Kasparov Cup in 1999, which he did with a round to spare. In 2002, the 15-year old IM earned his first GM norm when he won the category 7 Alushtinskaja Spring International held in Alushta, Ukraine, with 9.5/12, 2.5 points clear of the joint runners up, Russian GM Viktor Varavin and former Russian Champion, GM Veniamen Shtyrenkov. A few months later, in March 2002, he earned his 2nd GM norm when he won the category 9 Puchko Memorial, also held in Alushta, with 11/13, a full point ahead of fellow up-and-coming 15year-old Alexander Areshchenko. He won his 3rd GM norm at the 2002 EICC (see above).

The 19 year-old GM took clear first place at Acropolis 2005 with 6.5/9. In 2006, he was =2nd with 7/9, half a point behind Alexander Moiseenko, at the Cappelle op 22nd (2006), and went one better in terms of placements in the following two editions of that event when he scored joint first places at the Cappelle la Grande (2007) and the Cappelle la Grande of 2008, both years with 7/9. He also won the 16th Abu Dhabi International Chess Festival in August 2006.

More good results followed over the next five years. He came =2nd with Leinier Dominguez Perez at the category 15 Capablanca Memorial (2007) on 5.5/9, 2 points behind Ivanchuk, 1st at the International Open at Pontevedra in Spain 2007 with 7/9, =2nd with Carlsen and Kjetil A Lie with 7/9, half a point behind Moiseenko at the Arctic Chess Challenge (2007) in Tromso, Norway in August 2007; =3rd with 5.5/9 at the Casino de Barcelona (2007) in October behind Hikaru Nakamura and Dominguez, =2nd at the category 16 Reggio Emilio (2007) with 5.5/9, half a point behind Zoltan Almasi. =1st at the category 18 Karpov International (2008) with 5.5/9, =3rd at the Gibraltar Masters in 2009 with 7.5/10, half a point behind the co-leaders Vadim Milov and Peter Svidler, 2nd at the category 18 Karpov Poikovsky (2009) with 6/9, a point behind Alexander Motylev. He was somewhat less successful at Linares (2010) (4/10) and Nanjing Pearl Spring Tournament (2010) (4.5/10 (-1 =9)).

Gashimov won the category 18 Reggio Emilia (2010) with 6/9 on count back from Francisco Vallejo Pons. 2012 saw him play his last tournament, which was the Tata Steel Group A (2012).


Gashimov was a renowned rapid and blitz player. His rating at the ICC as a blitz player peaked at 3639 in February 2008 (userid: Diadematus) and he was at one stage the 2nd highest rated player in blitz behind Radjabov, and ahead of Nakamura. In Playchess, he was number 1 in bullet chess.


<Olympiads>: Gashimov competed in the Bled Olympiad (2002), the Calvia Olympiad (2004), the Turin Olympiad (2006) and the Dresden Olympiad (2008), scoring an individual silver medal for board three at the last-mentioned. He didn’t compete in the Khanty-Mansiysk Olympiad (2010) due to being dropped from the national team because of a dispute involving the team coach, Zurab Azmaiparashvili. (2), (2a) He also didn’t compete in the Istanbul Olympiad (2012) due to poor health (see below).

<World Team Championship>: Played board 1 for Azerbaijan at the World Team Championship (2010) and board 2 in the 2011 edition of the event.

<European Team Championship>: Gashimov represented Azerbaijan at the European Team Championships of 2001, and at the European Team Championship (2005), the European Team Championship (2007), the European Team Championship (2009) and the European Team Championship (2011), playing board 2 in 2001, 2009 and 2011, and board 3 in 2005 and 2007. He won team bronze in 2007, team gold and individual silver in 2009, and team silver and individual bronze in 2011.

<European Club Cup>: Gashimov's first taste of the continental club competition was in the European Club Cup (2005), when he played for the Marmaisspor Club, winning individual silver for the top board. His next participation in this event was for the Ashdod City Club during 2008 and in the European Club Cup (2009), winning the gold medal for board 2 in 2009.

<National Club and Team Championships>: Gashimov was a prolific team player in national club championships throughout Europe during the latter half of the first decade, scoring a stunning 11/11 in the 2005 Turkish Super League and following up with 10/11 in the 2006 Turkish Super League. He also played in the French Top 16 competition in 2006, 2008 & 2010, the Aragon team championship of 2006; the Iranian Super League in 2006 and 2007, the Spanish League (CECLUB) from 2007 until 2010 inclusive, the Russian Team Championship in 2008, the Israel National League in 2010, the Croatian Team Championship in 2010, and in the German Bundesliga in 2009, 2010 and 2011.

Rating and Ranking:

Gashimov's final standard rating was 2737 and at the time of his death, was rated number 20 in the world. He was unrated in rapid and blitz chess as he withdrew from competitive chess before the recent reintroduction by FIDE of ratings for the rapid forms of the game. His highest rating was achieved in January 2012 when he reached 2761 and was ranked number 10, while his peak rank was number 6 in the world in November 2009 when he was rated 2758.

Health problems:

Gashimov started experiencing significant health problems in early 2000 when he underwent several brain operations in Turkey aimed at preventing seizures. He was absent from chess since Tata Steel 2012, and he never resumed playing although he had planned to recommence in 2014. (5) He reported on Twitter in June 2012 that: “I already stopped believing that, once I will return to play chess again...” (3)

The following was reported from an Azeri Minister on News.Az in November 2012: “Youth and Sports Minister Azad Rahimov has talked about the chess player of the Azerbaijani team, Vugar Gashimov, who is undergoing medical treatment. "Vugar is assisted by the state. Until recently, he was treated in Switzerland. At the initial treatment he was allocated EUR 35,000. Now he is in Hamburg, Germany. I think that in the future, Vugar will not be left without government support," the minister said.” (4)

Gashimov was being treated in a clinic in Heidelberg in Germany when he unexpectedly passed away on 10 January 2014. (5)


Gashimov's elder brother and manager was Sarkhan Gashimov.

Testimonial, Eulogy and memorial

" of the most talented & original players I've met. Always friendly with everyone." - extract from the eulogy by Magnus Carlsen (6)

Eulogy by Gashimov's girlfriend:

Soon after Gashimov's death, the Azeri Chess Federation organised the Gashimov Memorial Tournament that was held in Shamkir in Azerbaijan in April 2014. It was organized as a two tier competition which featured most of Azerbaijan's top ten players and a similar number of elite players from other countries. The inaugural Gashimov Memorial (2014) was a category 22 double round robin event. It was won outright by the World Champion, Magnus Carlsen with Fabiano Caruana being the runner up. Other participants included the two top Azeri players, Teimour Radjabov (who led the event at one stage after defeating Carlsen) and Shakhriyar Mamedyarov as well as Sergey Karjakin and Hikaru Nakamura.

The second tier was the Gashimov Memorial (Group B) (2014), a category 17 round robin event with ten players, including five Azeris and five others. The Azeris were Nijat Abasov, Vasif Durarbayli, Gadir Guseinov, Rauf Mamedov and Eltaj Safarli. The others were Pavel Eljanov, Alexander Motylev, Wang Hao, Etienne Bacrot and Radoslaw Wojtaszek. It was won by Eljanov, the runner-up being Motylev.

Sources and footnotes:

Wikipedia article: Vugar Gashimov; Live ratings:; FIDE top list record of Gashimov:; (1):; (2):; (2a); (3 ):; (4):; (5); (6)

Last updated: 2021-04-29 03:39:49

 page 1 of 30; games 1-25 of 744  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. A Fier vs V Gashimov  0-1371995Wch U10B01 Scandinavian
2. B Vermeulen vs V Gashimov  ½-½281995Wch U10C35 King's Gambit Accepted, Cunningham
3. V Gashimov vs Radjabov  ½-½271996Wch U10B40 Sicilian
4. Radjabov vs V Gashimov  ½-½211996EU-ch U10C45 Scotch Game
5. I Cheparinov vs V Gashimov  0-1511997Wch U12B84 Sicilian, Scheveningen
6. V Gashimov vs Navara  1-0601997Wch U12B53 Sicilian
7. V Gashimov vs Radjabov  ½-½261997Kasparov CupA15 English
8. G Sargissian vs V Gashimov  ½-½441997Kasparov CupB84 Sicilian, Scheveningen
9. V Gashimov vs A Volokitin  0-1441998Wch U12B84 Sicilian, Scheveningen
10. S Megaranto vs V Gashimov  ½-½621998Wch U12B22 Sicilian, Alapin
11. Radjabov vs V Gashimov  ½-½701998EU-ch U12A04 Reti Opening
12. V Gashimov vs Radjabov  0-1511998AZE-ch qualC11 French
13. P Enders vs V Gashimov 1-0221998Ubeda op 3rdB99 Sicilian, Najdorf, 7...Be7 Main line
14. Radjabov vs V Gashimov  1-0401998Wch U12A04 Reti Opening
15. S Guliev vs V Gashimov  ½-½231999AZE-chE39 Nimzo-Indian, Classical, Pirc Variation
16. F Abbasov vs V Gashimov  ½-½581999AZE-chA30 English, Symmetrical
17. V Malaniuk vs V Gashimov  1-0291999Swidnica opA46 Queen's Pawn Game
18. Filippov vs V Gashimov  1-0341999Bydgoszcz Bank Pocztowy opA14 English
19. V Gashimov vs J M Bennett  1-0242000Dubai OpenB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
20. P Kotsur vs V Gashimov  1-0372000Dubai OpenB54 Sicilian
21. V Gashimov vs I Chahrani  0-1372000Dubai OpenB58 Sicilian
22. R Graf vs V Gashimov  0-1422000Dubai OpenE41 Nimzo-Indian
23. V Gashimov vs S Tayeb  1-0472000Dubai OpenB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
24. V Gashimov vs Filippov  0-1262000Dubai OpenB45 Sicilian, Taimanov
25. V Gashimov vs A Shariyazdanov 0-1682000Dubai OpenA25 English
 page 1 of 30; games 1-25 of 744  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Gashimov wins | Gashimov loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 13 OF 13 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: the Gashimov-Anand score by the way was equal too - three draws.
Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Look at Vishy's score against bonafide top-10ers like Carlsen, Nakamura or Aronian (to choose but three names at random).
Jul-25-14  dx9293: Pillsbury was a great player, and <probably> deserves a higher place in chess history than Gashimov, but NOT because of his results against one player, even Lasker. It would be because of his Hastings 1895 victory and being the strongest American player between Morphy and Marshall.

Also, I didn't even compare Gashimov to Pillsbury directly! I mused that the early passing of a player of Gashimov's level may only be comparable to Pillsbury's early demise.

Even to compare Gashimov and Pillsbury is <not> hyperbole. Get over yourself.

But as <perfidious> says, I shouldn't be surprised...

Jul-25-14  dx9293: <MS> Vishy's score against Nakamura and Aronian is terrible, and his score against Carlsen is getting worse by the year.

Matchups matter. Thanks for proving my point that Pillsbury's score against Lasker is not the main "feather in his cap."

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: There's no probably about it. Pillsbury will still be remembered another century from now, Gashimov won't.
Premium Chessgames Member
  plang: Is it possible that that is because of the Pillsbury Doughboy?
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: <Pillsbury will still be remembered another century from now, Gashimov won't.>

Not so sure Gashimov won't. He had some prominent results, his games were spectacular. And his early death only added to the chances of him being remembered long. Also, he is one of the strongest Azeri players ever - and in Azerbaijan chess is the sport number one.

Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: <Congratulations to Azerbaijan government&CF to honor Vugar Gashimov with this beautiful monument on his birthday.RIP>

Jan-11-15  NBAFan: It is difficult for me to believe that Vugar passed away just a year ago. I feel that I've missed his brilliant play for centuries now.
Apr-21-15  fisayo123: His games in the black side of the Benoni are truly instructive. Arguably the greatest disciple in chess history of that famous opening. He played it on a regular basis and with great vigor, even against the best in the world.
May-31-15  onur87: Allah rahmet eylesin benim kardeþim.
Jan-10-16  TheFocus: Rest in peace, Vugar Gashimov.
Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: It's a great shame that owing to his early death we only have 700 of his games available, which is roughly the same amount as Bobby Fischer.
Premium Chessgames Member
  alexmagnus: Talking about early death, his bio on the subject is a bit wrong:

< Ill health, including epilepsy, brain tumors and high blood pressure, dogged him from 2000 onwards...>

He never had epilepsy. He had seizures which looked like epilepsy (and were mistaken for epilepsy by doctors) but which turned out to be caused by the brain tumor (the tumor remained undiscovered for years).

Jun-04-16  blackdranzer: Just went through these posts....and I think miss Scarlett has a douche
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: Hope he's enjoying watching today's gladiators battle in his honor :)
May-04-17  Billy Vaughan: <He never had epilepsy. He had seizures which looked like epilepsy (and were mistaken for epilepsy by doctors) but which turned out to be caused by the brain tumor (the tumor remained undiscovered for years).>

Noted. I changed the word "epilepsy" to "seizures" in his bio

Jul-24-17  twinlark:

Let's raise our glasses to commemorate the 31st anniversary of the birth of the late great Grandmaster Vugar Gashimov:

To Gashimov and to his legacy: his great games. He was also a really nice guy.

Jul-24-17  WorstPlayerEver: Cheers. Time flies. Happy birthday.
Premium Chessgames Member
  perfidious: In the hearts of chess lovers everywhere, Gashimov will never die; he bequeathed us numerous interesting games and a fine personal reputation.
Jul-24-18  twinlark: This sad commemoration arrives again. The anniversary of the departure from this world of one of chess's most pleasant personalities and one of its best and most interesting practitioners.

Let's once again raise a toast to the enduring memory and the immortal legacy of the late great Vugar Gashimov.

Jul-28-18  twinlark: My mistake. It was the anniversary of his birth. It's also worth commemorating the birth of a truly great player cut down in his prime.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Messiah: Those who play the Benoni under classical time controls, have no fear in their hearts. I really miss you, GM Gashimov.
Dec-18-21  Albertan: The Gashimov Memorial returns with Anand, Caruana, and Karjakin.This year’s event will be in a rapid and blitz format.For more information about this year’s event click ,including a list of the other participants,click on the following link:

Dec-18-21  Albertan: The first rounds of the Gashimov Memorial Chess Tournament are being played today.

You can play through the first round games by clicking on the following link:

I am not sure whether the blitz tournament or the active. Chess tournament is being played first.

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