14-year-old Jeffery Xiong Shocks Field At Chicago Open

14-year-old Jeffery Xiong Shocks Field At Chicago Open

| 28 | Chess Event Coverage

14-year-old IM Jeffery Xiong (photo courtesy U.S. Chess Champs) shocked the field at the Chicago Open, finishing clear first with 7.0/9, ahead of several strong grandmasters.

The 24th Chicago Open was held over Memorial Day Weekend, May 21-25, in Wheeling, Illinois. More than 600 participants gathered at the Westin Chicago North Shore Hotel, including no fewer than 24 grandmasters and 18 masters.

The top seeds were GMs Lazaro Bruzon (Cuba), Gata Kamsky (USA), Ilya Nyzhnyk (Ukraine) and Daniel Naroditsky (USA). Well-known grandmasters Boris Avrukh (Israel) and Bartek Macieja (Poland) also played, and the world's youngest GM too: Sam Sevian (USA).

However, it was somebody else who went home with the $10,000 first prize: 14-year-old IM Jeffery Xiong! The talented Texan defeated Avrukh and Bruzon in the final two rounds and became the only player to reach seven points.

Unfortunately only two games from Xiong can be found in the PGN file on the tournament website. Luckily one of those was his last-round win against Bruzon, who erred in a rook ending:



Along the way Xiong scored his third GM norm and he'll pass 2500, making him America's next grandmaster. Being born October 30, 2000 he would be ahead of e.g. GM Ray Robson, but behind GM Sam Sevian as the youngest GM in the world.

According to The Chess Drum Xiong is currently coached by GM Yaroslav Zherebukh. The USCF website mentions that Xiong is a member of the Young Stars program, where young talents meet with Garry Kasparov every now and then. Xiong has been coached for many years by GM Babakuli Annakov, who congratulated his pupil as follows:


Congratulations to my student Jeffery Xiong for winning clear 1st place at Chicago open 2015 and for his final Grandmaster norm!!! Well done Jeffery!!!

Posted by Babakuli Annakov on Monday, May 25, 2015

Xiong has played in the last three U.S. Junior Championships and will compete again this year, July 6-16 at the Chess Club and Scholastic Center of Saint Louis.

Ashwin Jayaram scored a GM norm as well in Chicago. Eric Rosen, Atulya Shetty, Sean Vibbert, Gauri Shankar, Kyron Griffith and Qibiao Wang all scored IM norms.

2015 Chicago Open | Final Standings (Top 20)

# Name Rtng St Tot Prize Amount
1 IM Jeffery Xiong 2497 TX 7.0 1st/Bonus $10300.00
2 GM Gata Kamsky 2673 NY 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
3 GM Illia I Nyzhnyk 2622 UKR 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
4 GM Daniel A Naroditsky 2622 CA 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
5 GM Sergei Azarov 2619 BLR 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
6 GM Samuel Sevian 2565 MA 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
7 GM Vladimir Georgiev 2550 MKD 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
8 GM Vladimir Dobrov 2490 RUS 6.5 2nd-8th $1671.43
9 FM Eric S Rosen 2372 IL 6.5 1st U2400 $2000.00
10 GM Lazaro Bruzon Batista 2684 CUB 6.0 9th-10th $160.00
11 GM Boris Avrukh 2609 ISR 6.0 9th-10th $160.00
12 GM Ioan Chirila 2542 ROU 6.0 9th-10th $160.00
13 GM Joshua E Friedel 2505 WI 6.0 9th-10th $160.00
14 IM Ashwin Jayaram 2466 IND 6.0 9th-10th $160.00
15 FM Atulya Shetty 2331 MI 6.0 2nd U2400 $1000.00
16 GM Bartlomiej Macieja 2605 ZIM 5.5    
17 GM Isan Ortiz Suarez 2581 CUB 5.5    
18 GM Kayden W Troff 2556 UT 5.5    
19 GM Holden Hernandez Carmenate 2544 TX 5.5    
20 GM Conrad Holt 2533 KS 5.5    

Full final standings here.

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