Levon Aronian : biography
Levon Aronian ( born 6 October 1982) is an Armenian chess Grandmaster. On the May 2012 FIDE list, he had an Elo rating of 2825, making him number two in the world and third highest of all time.
Aronian won the Chess World Cup 2005. He led the Armenian national team to the Gold medals in the 2006 (Turin), 2008 (Dresden) and 2012 (Istanbul) Chess Olympics and at the World Team Chess Championship in Ningbo 2011. He won the FIDE Grand Prix 2008–2010, qualifying him for the Candidates tournament for the World Chess Championship 2012, where he was knocked out in the first round. He was also World Chess960 Champion in 2006 and 2007, World Rapid Chess Champion in 2009, and World Blitz Chess Champion in 2010.
Aronian was declared the best sportsman of Armenia in 2005 and was awarded the title of "Honoured Master of Sport of the Republic of Armenia" in 2009.
In 2001 Aronian scored seven out of nine in the Cappelle-la-Grande Open, half a point behind the joint winners Einar Gausel and Vladimir Chuchelov. A few months later, he won the Young Masters tournament at Lausanne.
In 2002 he won the Armenian Chess Championship. In the same year he became World Junior Champion, scoring 10/13 and finishing ahead of Surya Ganguly, Artyom Timofeev, Luke McShane, Bu Xiangzhi, Pendyala Harikrishna, and others.
In 2004 he progressed to the third round of the 2004 FIDE World Championship before being knocked out by Pavel Smirnov.
Levon Aronian became part of the international elite in 2005, shooting up to fifth place in the world. In 2005 he was part of a five-way tie for first place at the Gibtele.com Masters in Gibraltar with Zahar Efimenko, Kiril Georgiev, Alexei Shirov, and Emil Sutovsky. He was the sole winner of the Karabakh 2005 International "A" Tournament. In the Russian Team Championship, he scored with an Elo performance rating of around 2850. In December he beat Ruslan Ponomariov of Ukraine in the final round to win the World Cup in Khanty Mansiysk, Russia. After a draw in two regular games, Aronian won both Rapid games to win the event and emerge undefeated in seven rounds.
In March 2006 he took sole first place at the annual Linares chess tournament, half a point ahead of Teimour Radjabov and FIDE World Champion Veselin Topalov. In 2006 he also tied for first in the Tal Memorial. The April–July 2006 FIDE rating list ranked Aronian the number three player in the world.
In January 2007 Aronian shared first place at the category 19 Corus chess tournament in Wijk aan Zee along with Veselin Topalov and Radjabov. In May 2007 he defeated World Champion Vladimir Kramnik 4–2 in a Rapid chess match., Chessbase, 7 May 2007
His 2005 World Cup victory qualified him for the Candidates Tournament of the World Chess Championship 2007, scheduled for May–June 2007. In this tournament he played GM Magnus Carlsen, and they tied 3–3 in the initial six games, then 2–2 in Rapid chess, and finally Aronian won 2–0 at Blitz chess. In the finals, he defeated Shirov 3½–2½. This qualified him for the final stage of the championship, which was played in Mexico. There, he scored only six points out of 14, finishing seventh out of eight players.
In January 2008 he won the prestigious Corus chess tournament jointly with Magnus Carlsen, scoring 8/13., Chessbase, 27 January 2008 In March 2008 he won the Melody Amber Blindfold/Rapid tournament held in Nice, France, 2½ points ahead of the nearest competitors., Chessbase, 27 March 2008 Apart from his first place win in the overall tournament, he also took sole first place in the Rapid section of the tournament (winning by a margin of 1½ points) and shared first place in the Blindfold section with three other chess grandmasters: Kramnik, Morozevich, and Topalov. In June 2008, Aronian won the Karen Asrian Memorial Rapid chess tournament in Yerevan. He finished 8½/14 ahead of Peter Leko.
In March 2009 he won the 18th Melody Amber Blindfold/Rapid tournament held in Nice, France for the second time, scoring a combined 14 points in 22 games. In the same year he took clear first place with four wins, one draw, and one loss in the second Bilbao Masters. On 2 August 2009 Aronian won the World Rapid Chess Championship. In November 2009 he competed in the Mikhail Tal Memorial, at the time the strongest tournament in history (in terms of average Elo, 2763). He finished fourth with 5/9, and in the final round memorably demolished World Champion Viswanathan Anand with the black pieces in just 25 moves. In December 2009, he was awarded the title of "Honoured Master of Sport of the Republic of Armenia".