In the post-Olympiad era, several strong tournaments are in progress, but won’t be reflected on the FIDE list until next month. However there will be significant changes. There were slight changes in the October 2012 list, but Magnus Carlsen (2843) still leads the pack with Levon Aronian (2821, +5) in second. Notwithstanding, the Armenian has closed the gap on the live list. While Vladimir Kramnik (2795, -2) and Teimour Radjabov (2792, +4) are not playing as much as other top tens they are also not losing any ground.
However, Hikaru Nakamura (2786, +3) has moved into the fifth position. His rough-going in the London Grand Prix will result in him losing a handsome cache of ELO points while Fabiano Caruana is projected to replace him (2772 and 2785 on live). Meanwhile, World Champion Viswanathan Anand drops a spot to (2780) to #7. Caruana is currently leading the Bilbao Grand Slam going into the second half in Spain. The winner in the upper echelon appears to be the hot-and-cold Azeri Shahkriyar Mamedyarov (2748, +19) who stands to gain another 20 points after the London Grand Prix. His live rating would make him #8 at 2764.
Another development is the number of 2700-rated players eclipsed 50 for the first time. The 51st player in 2655. This rating would have been good enough for #3 20 years ago. As there is more discussion about rating inflation, 2800 will become the new 2700 and 2700 the new 2600.
With all the talk about World Champion Hou Yifan, Koneru Humpy has had to struggle for attention. Her absence at the Olympiad was conspicuous, despite India’s success. Nevertheless, her win at the Ankara Grand Prix asserted her influence at the top of the women’s list. Photo by Frederic Friedel (ChessBase).
In the women’s category, Judit Polgar (2705) top the list for the 57th time, but Humpy Koneru (2607, +14) has slipped back into second place from her recent win at the the Grand Prix in Ankara. Hou Yifan (2605, +6) is back over 2600 after her gold medal performance at the Olympiad. Slovenia’s Anna Muzychuk (2606, -19) plummeted after her disastrous Olympiad, but gained a few points back at the Grand Prix. Zhao Xue (2565, +16) has surged back to the top five with a medal-winning Olympiad performance and a solid Grand Prix result.
On the juniors list, we will not see a long-standing presence as in Carlsen, Karjakin or Radjabov, but Fabiano Caruana has assumed a comfortable lead with his recent surge. He has just turned 20, so he will hold the title until he turns 21. Anish Giri (2730) didn’t see any change in his rating despite playing at the Olympiad… missing first four rounds. Chinese sensation Ding Liren (2702, +8) continues to climb the ladder. He is now the second highest player in China and has won three of the last four national championships. The Asians round out the top five with Wesley So (2677, +10) of the Philippines and Parimarjan Negi (2658, -1) of India.
Ding Liren’s (right) steady rise bodes well for China. By the next Olympiad, he could very well be the nation’s top player. Photo by Daaim Shabazz.
One can get an idea of what the future holds by examining the girls’ list. There is much more parity as many different nations are represented… with Europeans and Asians having the most. Hou Yifan (2605) holds the tops spot with Mariya Muzychuk (2474 -8) more than 100 points behind. Russia’s Anastasia Bodnaruk (2425, +4), Peru’s Deysi Cori (2411, +4) and Georgia’s Nazi Paikidze (2394).