Members · Prefs · Laboratory · Collections · Openings · Endgames · Sacrifices · History · Search Kibitzing · Kibitzer's Café · Chessforums · Tournament Index · Players · Kibitzing

Chao Li
C Li 
Photograph courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.  

Number of games in database: 845
Years covered: 2005 to 2023
Last FIDE rating: 2683 (2645 rapid, 2693 blitz)
Highest rating achieved in database: 2757
Overall record: +255 -100 =259 (62.6%)*
   * Overall winning percentage = (wins+draws/2) / total games in the database. 231 exhibition games, blitz/rapid, odds games, etc. are excluded from this statistic.

With the White pieces:
 Sicilian (72) 
    B42 B90 B93 B40 B30
 Slav (34) 
    D10 D17 D14 D15 D16
 King's Indian (26) 
    E92 E71 E94 E60 E67
 Sicilian Najdorf (25) 
    B90 B93 B92 B96 B94
 Catalan (25) 
    E06 E01 E04 E02 E08
 Queen's Pawn Game (25) 
    E00 A50 A41 E10 D02
With the Black pieces:
 Sicilian (111) 
    B67 B56 B90 B52 B31
 Grunfeld (83) 
    D85 D70 D76 D72 D80
 Petrov (49) 
    C42 C43
 English (36) 
    A15 A16 A10 A17
 Slav (31) 
    D10 D11 D15 D17 D16
 Sicilian Najdorf (19) 
    B90 B96 B92 B91
Repertoire Explorer

NOTABLE GAMES: [what is this?]
   Y Hou vs C Li, 2011 0-1
   C Li vs H Wang, 2006 1-0
   G Sargissian vs C Li, 2009 0-1
   C Li vs H Wang, 2016 1-0
   S Azarov vs C Li, 2007 0-1
   C Li vs L Lenic, 2016 1-0
   C Li vs J C Sadorra, 2007 1-0
   Polgar vs C Li, 2011 0-1
   C Li vs Jakovenko, 2017 1/2-1/2
   M Dzhumaev vs C Li, 2008 0-1

NOTABLE TOURNAMENTS: [what is this?]
   Scandinavian Chess Tournament (2007)
   Malaysian Open (2008)
   Corus Group C (2010)
   PGMA Cup International Open (2007)
   Reykjavik Open (2014)
   19th Neckar Open (2015)
   Chinese League (2011)
   Queenstown Chess Classic (2012)
   2nd Indonesia Open Chess Championship (2012)
   PRO Chess League KO Stage (2019)
   Gibraltar Masters (2014)
   World Cup (2009)
   Bundesliga 2014/15 (2014)
   World Junior Championship (2008)
   Pro Chess League (2018)

GAME COLLECTIONS: [what is this?]
   Grünfeld by Karaokcu

   🏆 The Chinese League
   C Li vs X Xu (Jun-17-23) 1/2-1/2
   J Zhao vs C Li (Jun-16-23) 1/2-1/2
   C Li vs Y Wen (Jun-15-23) 1/2-1/2
   X Nie vs C Li (Jun-13-23) 1/2-1/2
   J Xu vs C Li (Jun-12-23) 1/2-1/2

Search Sacrifice Explorer for Chao Li
Search Google for Chao Li
FIDE player card for Chao Li

(born Apr-21-1989, 34 years old) China
[what is this?]

Grandmaster (2007); Asian Champion (2013).

Grandmaster Norms

Li Chao scored his first GM norm at the World Junior Championship in 2005 (see below), his second at the Aeroflot Open in 2007 and his third at Lake Sevan in 2007 on 14 July 2007, becoming China's 23rd grandmaster at the age of 18 years 2 months and 23 days. He won his GM title without having to win the IM title first.


<Junior> He was equal fourth in the World Junior Championship (Boys) (2005) with 8.5/13, two points behind the winner Shakhriyar Mamedyarov, and scoring his first grandmaster norm; this was also his best result at this event in four attempts. He also played in the World Junior Championship (2006), the World Junior Championship (2008) and the 48th World Junior Championship (2009) without appearing on the leader board.

<National> Li Chao first competed in the Chinese Championship in 2005, where he scored 3.5/9. In July and August 2007, he competed in the Chinese Championship B Group, finishing equal second with 7/10 alongside Chong Liang and Ding Liren, half a point behind the winner Xu Jun. He then competed in the main event a few months later, and scored 4/11 in the Chinese Championship 2007. A year later in 2008, he finished mid-field at the Chinese Championship with 5.5/11. He fared marginally better in the Chinese Championship (2009) where he placed =5th with 6/11. He was outright sixth at the Chinese Championship (2010) with 5.5/11. His 5/11 at the Chinese Championship (2011) was a relatively poor results, but it is possible he was fatigued by almost continuous chess in the weeks beforehand, contesting the 14 round selection trials in Beijing for the World Team Championship followed immediately by his participation in the Zonal 3.5; he was at the top of the results table in both events. He was equal second at the Chinese Championships (2013).

<Continental> He first participated in a continental championship at the 2007 Asian Continental, where he scored 6.5/11, 1.5 points from the lead. His next appearance at this event was the 9th Asian Continental Men's Chess Championship, where he was equal sixth on 6/9. He won the Asian Continental Championship 2013 outright with 7/9, and accordingly he again qualified for the next stage of the World Championship cycle, namely the World Cup (2013).

<World> He qualified for the World Cup (2009) via the Zonal 3.5 championship played in April 2009, defeating Gabriel Sargissian and Yannick Pelletier in the early rounds before bowing out of the event to Vugar Gashimov in the third round. He again qualified through Zonal 3.5 to play in the World Cup (2011), but lost in the first round to Vietnamese GM Ngoc Truongson Nguyen. At the World Cup in 2013, he defeated Evgeny Postny in the first round, but lost to Dutch #1 and World Junior #1 GM Anish Giri in the second round.

Standard Tournaments

<2006-2007> Li Chao's first major tournament was at the Aeroflot Open A2 in 2006, where he scored an above-rating outcome of 5.5/9. He finished 2006 with a strong equal fourth scoring 6.5/9 at the 3rd Singapore Masters International Open Tournament 2006. 2007 started with 4.5/9 at the 6th Aeroflot Festival (2007), gaining his second grandmaster norm. In July 2007, he was equal first with 5.5/9 alongside Geetha Narayanan Gopal and Yuri Vovk at the category 12 Lake Sevan round robin tournament in Armenia, gaining his third grandmaster norm. In August 2007, he won the Peoples Chess Festival in Täby, Stockholm with 8½/9. In August, he won the 4th IGB Dato' Arthur Tan Malaysian Open Chess Championship with 9/11, half a point clear of runner-up Wan Yunguo. In late November 2007, he won the President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo Cup in Manila with 7/9 on tiebreak ahead of compatriots Zhou Weiqi and Ni Hua. He finished 2007 with 7/9 and outright third placement at the Pamplona Open.

<2008-2009> He was equal first at the Dubai Open (2008) with 7/9 alongside Ehsan Ghaem Maghami, Merab Gagunashvili and Wesley So. He also won first place on tiebreak at the second Philippine International Open staged in Subic Bay Freeport Zone in 2008 ahead of Julio Catalino Sadorra, Zhou Weiqi, Buenaventura Bong Villamayor and Le Quang Liem. He subsequently also won the fifth IGB Dato' Arthur Tan Malaysia Open in Kuala Lumpur in 2008 with the imposing score of 9/11. Soon afterwards, he was equal first (second on tiebreak) at the 3rd President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo Tournament with 7/9 alongside Zhong Zhang and Eugenio Torre. In 2009, he was equal second at the 6th Dato' Arthur Tan Malaysia Open with 6.5/9, half a point behind the winner Parimarjan Negi.

<2010-2011> Li Chao won the Corus Group C (2010) with a decisive score of 10/13 (+8 -1 =4), 1.5 points ahead of outright runner-up Abhijeet Gupta. This result earned him an invitation to the Tata Steel Group B (2011), where he scored a close to par for rating 6/13. In February and March 2010, he was second behind Bu Xiangzhi at the 2010 Olympic Tournament Chinese Team Selection Double Round Robin. In April 2010, he won the 48th Doeberl Cup in Canberra, Australia and three months later he was equal first at the category 15 1st Danzhou Tournament (2010), placing second on tiebreak to Bu Xiangzhi. In March 2011, he easily won selection to represent his country at the World Team Championship 2011 (see below) when he placed equal first at the 2011 World Chess Team Tournament Chinese Players Selection Double Round Robin that was staged in Beijing, scoring 9/14 alongside Yu Yangyi and Zhou Weiqi. A modest 4/9 result at the 2nd Danzhou Tournament (2011) was followed by a runaway 8.5/9 winning result at the 26th Summer Universiade Individual Men played in Beijing in August 2011, two points clear of Wang Yue, Wang Hao, Aleksandr Rakhmanov, Zaven Andriasian, Vasily Papin and Martyn Kravtsiv. In October 2011, he won the Indonesia Open 2011 on tiebreak ahead of Surya Shekhar Ganguly with 7/9.

<2012-2013> In January, he placed equal first (second on tiebreak) at the Queenstown Chess Classic (2012) with 7.5/9 (+6 =3). The following month he won the 5th Colombo International Championships in Sri Lanka with 9/9. In October 2012 he came =1st at the 2nd Indonesia Open Chess Championship (2012). In December 2012 and January 2013, he toured the USA and came third in the 22nd Annual North American Open, and won the combined rapid/classical 2013 Boston Chess Congress and the 2013 Golden State Open, the last mentioned having been played in Concord, California. In March 2013, he returned to Canberra to win the 51st Doeberl Cup with 7.5/9 and soon afterwards placed 2nd behind Loek van Wely at the 2013 Sydney International Open. In July 2013, he was equal first with eight other players at the 27th World Summer Universiade staged in Kazan in Russia.

<2014-2015> In January 2014 he won the 17th Guben New Year Open 2014 with 9/9 and the 16th NordWest Cup in Bad Zwischenahm with 6/7. He then won at Reykjavik Open (2014) with 8.5/10 followed by equal fourth at Tradewise Gibraltar (2014), half a point from the shared lead with 7.5/10, and then equal second with 6.5/9 at the Casino Open held in Graz in February in Austria. In October 2014, he won the 9th Deizisauer International Fall Open with the perfect score of 7/7. In November 2014, he was =1st at the Caen Open and later that month he won the Heusenstammer Schloss Open 6/7. In December 2014, he was equal first at the Barcelona Masters. 2015 started with equal first at the Cappelle-la-Grande in France with 7.5/9, followed by equal third at the 5th HD Bank Cup International open held in Vietnam. There followed a strong win at the 19th Neckar International Open, taking outright first with 8.5/9, a point ahead of runner-up IM Andreas Heimann and 1.5 points ahead of equal 3rd place getters Arkadij Naiditsch and Etienne Bacrot. He scored a rating-neutral 5.5/9 at the powerful Qatar Masters (2015).

Team Events

<Olympiads and other National Representation> Li Chao represented his country at the U16 Olympiads in 2002 and 2004, winning team gold in both and individual gold for board four in the latter. He played as a reserve for China at the Olympiad (2008), the Chess Olympiad (2010), and at the Chess Olympiad (2012) in Istanbul. At the last mentioned, he scored 6/7 with a TPR of 2794, missing an individual medal as he was one game short of qualifying for consideration. In other events in which he represented China, he competed in the World Chess Team Championship (2011) and the FIDE World Team Championship (2013), scoring team silver on both occasions and individual bronze for board three in 2011. Playing board 3 for China at the 17th Asian Team Championship held in Zaozhuang, China in May 2012, he won team gold and individual bronze. He also played for China in the Russia - China Match (2008) friendly and in the 'Aigo Cup' China-Sweden Summit in 2006, helping his team to victory on both occasions. He scored 7/9 at the World Team Chess Championship (2017).

<Continental> In 2008, Li played reserve for the Al-Ain Chess Club "A" in the Asian Team Championship, winning team and individual gold. Playing board two for Shijiazhuang city at the 17th Asian Cities Chess Championship in Jakarta in 2011, he scored team and individual gold. Li also played fourth board for the Siberia Novosibirsk side in European Club Cup (2015), finishing with the fourth-highest score on his board as his team won the gold medal.

<National> He played for Beijing in the Chinese League from 2005 until 2013 inclusive, during this time winning 3 team golds, 5 team silvers and 1 team bronze. In 2014, Li Chao started playing in the Oberliga Wuerttemberg in Germany, the French League and in the Bundesliga, playing board 3 in the last mentioned for the SK Schwäbisch Hall team. He is again playing for SK Schwäbisch Hall in the 2015-16 season.


He played and won the Leko - Li Chao (2015) match by 4-2, although the final game was not rated due to him clinching the match with a game to spare.

Rapid and Blitz

Li Chao does not seem to favor the quicker versions of the game; however, he did rack up an outright win at the City of Sydney Blitz 2013 with 7.5/9 ahead of Rajaram R Laxman and Attila Czebe. He is currently inactive in both the rapid and blitz forms of the game.

Ratings and Rankings

Li Chao's highest standard rating and ranking to date was 2756 in May 2015 when he was ranked world #14.

He first entered the world's top 100 in April 2009 whilst still a Junior, and has remained in the top 100 since May 2011.


Wikipedia article: Li Chao (chess player) and <This Week in Chess>.


The main source of information for individual events for this bio was the FIDE database (via his FIDE player card) that supplied details of his results since he first became FIDE rated. Information about team results was extracted from Olimpbase.

Last updated: 2017-07-07 19:57:18

 page 1 of 34; games 1-25 of 845  PGN Download
Game  ResultMoves YearEvent/LocaleOpening
1. S Yu vs C Li  0-1432005Torch Real Estate Cup China Chess LeagueB56 Sicilian
2. I Khairullin vs C Li 0-1202005World Junior ChampionshipB91 Sicilian, Najdorf, Zagreb (Fianchetto) Variation
3. C Li vs E Moradiabadi  ½-½472005World Junior ChampionshipB42 Sicilian, Kan
4. N Mamedov vs C Li 1-0392005World Junior ChampionshipB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
5. C Li vs G Rohit  1-0492005World Junior ChampionshipB42 Sicilian, Kan
6. Y Zinchenko vs C Li  ½-½832005World Junior ChampionshipB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
7. C Li vs K Kuderinov  1-0382005World Junior ChampionshipB58 Sicilian
8. I Kurnosov vs C Li 0-1392005World Junior ChampionshipB96 Sicilian, Najdorf
9. C Li vs Kharitonov  ½-½742005World Junior ChampionshipB10 Caro-Kann
10. Nyback vs C Li 1-0682005World Junior ChampionshipA17 English
11. V Laznicka vs C Li  1-0632005World Junior ChampionshipB52 Sicilian, Canal-Sokolsky (Rossolimo) Attack
12. C Li vs V Papin  1-0462005World Junior ChampionshipB42 Sicilian, Kan
13. C Li vs M Paragua  0-12420053rd Pichay Cup Intl OpenB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
14. M Gagunashvili vs C Li  1-0392006Moscow Aeroflot op-BA30 English, Symmetrical
15. A Obukhov vs C Li  ½-½602006Moscow Aeroflot op-BA15 English
16. R Sangma vs C Li  ½-½972006World Junior ChampionshipB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
17. C Li vs E Valeanu  ½-½482006World Junior ChampionshipB93 Sicilian, Najdorf, 6.f4
18. S Alavi vs C Li  0-1502006World Junior ChampionshipB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
19. C Li vs Y Wen  ½-½452006World Junior ChampionshipB31 Sicilian, Rossolimo Variation
20. L Babujian vs C Li  ½-½802006World Junior ChampionshipC69 Ruy Lopez, Exchange, Gligoric Variation
21. C Li vs D Brandenburg 1-0402006World Junior ChampionshipB67 Sicilian, Richter-Rauzer Attack, 7...a6 Defense, 8...Bd7
22. C Li vs H Wang 1-0552006World Junior ChampionshipD42 Queen's Gambit Declined, Semi-Tarrasch, 7.Bd3
23. Stellwagen vs C Li 1-0352006World Junior ChampionshipC95 Ruy Lopez, Closed, Breyer
24. C Li vs Brunello 0-1232006World Junior ChampionshipC91 Ruy Lopez, Closed
25. A Kim vs C Li  1-0572006World Junior ChampionshipB90 Sicilian, Najdorf
 page 1 of 34; games 1-25 of 845  PGN Download
  REFINE SEARCH:   White wins (1-0) | Black wins (0-1) | Draws (1/2-1/2) | Li wins | Li loses  

Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 5 OF 5 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Feb-12-16  sonia91: He is currently playing in the Graz Open, in Austria:
Feb-17-16  waustad: After his win today over Andrei Istratescu he ramains tied for the lead after 7 round at Graz. He shares the lead with Hungarian GM Banusz Tamas, with 6 points. There is a 6 way tie half a point back, including Lei Tingjie, who is on pace for a GM norm. Markus Ragger seems to have misplayed his endgame today and is now a full point behind the leaders.
Feb-19-16  sonia91: Congratulations on winning the Graz Open with an undefeated 8/9!
Feb-20-16  AzingaBonzer: After a dominant performance at Graz (TPR 2872), Li Chao is now #13 in the world, ahead of Karjakin and just behind Anand. (Harikrishna's worth mentioning too; he's right behind Li Chao and Anand--it's possible we'll be seeing a new Indian #1 soon.)
Feb-20-16  sonia91: This bio keeps containing silly mistakes: <He played board 4 for team Siberia Novosibirsk in the European Team Championship (2015)> it was European Club Cup (2015)!! It seems whoever wrote this bio doesn't have a clue about European tournaments, as previously his Rejkjavik victory was mistaken for Gibraltar, Neckar Open for "Nektar" open...and doesn't even bother to click on the links and check

Right after the ECC <2015> the bio talks about a <2011> event: "Playing board two for Shijiazhuang city at the 17th Asian Cities Chess Championship in Jakarta in <2011>, he scored team and individual gold"

Mar-29-16  sonia91: Fabiano Caruana said he studied Li Chao's game before last round of the Candidates 2016:
Apr-08-16  sonia91: Li Chao will play in Norway Chess in place of Karjakin; this should be his first supertournament:
Apr-08-16  AzingaBonzer: Unless I'm much mistaken, Norway Chess will be Li Chao's first ever super-tournament. Considering his rating, it's about time.
Apr-09-16  Imran Iskandar: Yes, it is about time for Li Chao. Just like his compatriot Ding Liren, a glance at his most notable games shows how attractive his playing style is.
Apr-09-16  ragtag: Postponing his marriage for this tournament is probably the best thing that could have happened to him.

Last chance, <Li Chao b>. Refugees are welcome in Norway...

Apr-09-16  whiteshark: He lost today in the German Bundesliga against Kasimdzhanov w/ black in a Petrov.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: Good luck in Norway young man and best wishes on your upcoming marriage.
Apr-09-16  starry2013: Short notice, so little prep for the event might make it tough.
Apr-11-16  diagonal: <Sonja91> first supertournament for Li Chao: good luck!

After playing and winning some of the strongest / largest recent Open Festivals (swiss system), he got now an invitation to a closed supertournament, the dream of professional chess players today.

Li Chao won the prestigious Reykjavik Open 2014 outright. He also won the huge Cappelle-la-Grande Open 2015 as first on tie-break, alongside with Vladimir Onischuk (555 participants!): and took the Graz Open 2016 as clear first.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Keyser Soze: Great talent and a fit name replacing Karjakin. Another youngster who will breakthrough on Elite soon or later. Best of luck.
Apr-21-16  sonia91: Happy 27th birthday!
Apr-21-16  TheFocus: Happy birthday, Li Chao.
Jul-09-16  cro777: A Panda City Man

Li Chao is now living in Changzhou (the 'Panda City') where he runs a chess school with Wang Yue.

Although he is China's number two player by rating, "due to a conflict with the Chinese Chess Association that he prefers not to speak about", he is not eligible for the national team.

In the 2016 Chinese Chess League (Division B) he is playing for the Sichuan Airlines chess team. (Sichuan Airlines is a regional airline headquartered in Chengdu, another panda city).

Changzhou is located in the beautiful Yangtze River golden triangle area, facing the two large cities of Shanghai and Nanjing. It is the home of the China Dinosaur Park (Oriental Jurassic Park), the largest one of its kinds in China. Besides fossil skeletons of dinosaurs, Dinosaur Park is home to a giant panda, one of the most endangered species in the world.

Jul-09-16  cro777: Getting married in China

As already mentioned, Li Chao postponed one of his wedding parties to play in his first elite tournament, the Norway Chess 2016, as a last-minute replacement for Karjakin.

"Last year he got married, but getting married in China is not something you do in one day. Once you have tied the knot, you are expected to arrange several wedding parties. In Li Chao's case one in his native place (Taiyuan), one in his wife's birthplace and one in the place where he is living now (Changzhou).

The first wedding party had been scheduled for the last weekend of the Norway Chess. Both, his father and his wife Hou Bin persuaded him to postpone the party and go to Stavanger." (Dirk Jan ten Geuzendam, New in Chess 2016/4)

Li Chao: "She understands everything. I was so lucky to find her"

(Li Chao wearing a tiger T-shirt and his wife a snake T-shirt, representing the Chinese Zodiac signs).

Chinese weddings are still important ceremonies for Chinese people as marriage is considered one of the three most important events (the others being birth and death) in a person’s life.

Jul-16-16  cro777: The Sichuan Airlines team with Li Chao and the Russian GM Maxim Matlakov on top boards has won the 2016 Chinese Chess League (Division B).

The top 2 teams in Division B (Sichuan Airlines and Hebei Ticai) will be moved to Division A in the 2017 Chinese Chess League.

Jul-16-16  Mr. V: <cro777> Thanks for the updates! Where do you get all your information on Chinese chess players? I have such a hard time finding much about them.
Jul-16-16  cro777: <Mr.V> In order to follow Chinese players you need to compile information from various sources, but my main source are Chinese websites on sports (chess section) such as

Jul-31-16  cro777: The 2016 Chinese chess team championship (men) (14 teams are competing in 11 rounds) is taking place from July 28 to August 4.

Li Chao and Yu Yangyi are playing for Beijing Beiao chess team, a company owing national qualification for outbound and inbound tourism.

Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: Best wishes in Gibraltar young man :)
Jun-28-17  cro777: FIDE World Team Championships 2017.

China retained the world team championship title.

Li Chao, the hero of the team, lifts the trophy:

Jump to page #    (enter # from 1 to 5)
search thread:   
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 5 OF 5 ·  Later Kibitzing>

NOTE: Create an account today to post replies and access other powerful features which are available only to registered users. Becoming a member is free, anonymous, and takes less than 1 minute! If you already have a username, then simply login login under your username now to join the discussion.

Please observe our posting guidelines:

  1. No obscene, racist, sexist, or profane language.
  2. No spamming, advertising, duplicate, or gibberish posts.
  3. No vitriolic or systematic personal attacks against other members.
  4. Nothing in violation of United States law.
  5. No cyberstalking or malicious posting of negative or private information (doxing/doxxing) of members.
  6. No trolling.
  7. The use of "sock puppet" accounts to circumvent disciplinary action taken by moderators, create a false impression of consensus or support, or stage conversations, is prohibited.
  8. Do not degrade Chessgames or any of it's staff/volunteers.

Please try to maintain a semblance of civility at all times.

Blow the Whistle

See something that violates our rules? Blow the whistle and inform a moderator.

NOTE: Please keep all discussion on-topic. This forum is for this specific player only. To discuss chess or this site in general, visit the Kibitzer's Café.

Messages posted by Chessgames members do not necessarily represent the views of, its employees, or sponsors.
All moderator actions taken are ultimately at the sole discretion of the administration.

Spot an error? Please suggest your correction and help us eliminate database mistakes!
Home | About | Login | Logout | F.A.Q. | Profile | Preferences | Premium Membership | Kibitzer's Café | Biographer's Bistro | New Kibitzing | Chessforums | Tournament Index | Player Directory | Notable Games | World Chess Championships | Opening Explorer | Guess the Move | Game Collections | ChessBookie Game | Chessgames Challenge | Store | Privacy Notice | Contact Us

Copyright 2001-2023, Chessgames Services LLC