16th Blitz Death Match Player Announcement

16th Blitz Death Match Player Announcement

| 25 | Chess Event Coverage

Chess fans have already set their calendars for this Sunday's Death Match 15 (noon Eastern, 9 a.m. Pacific), featuring our highest-rated participant ever, world number four GM Fabiano Caruana. He'll face off against the bullet maestro GM Valeriy Aveskulov. Go ahead and click your July button as well:

GM Robert Hungaski and GM Krikor Sevag Mekhitarian are confirmed to play in's Death Match 16 on Saturday, July 20 at 1:00 pm. Eastern, 10 a.m. Pacific.

The two GMs will face off in three hours of intense blitz and bullet chess until a clear winner is determined! The victor will get the fame, the glory, and a large chunk of the $1000 cash prize!

GM Robert Hungaski -- FIDE 2471, is one of the United States' newest grandmasters, having just been awarded the title in January of this year. A former gold medal winner at the Pan-American Junior Championships, he spent much of his childhood in South America and learned three languages (English, Spanish, Portuguese).

Now in the U.S., he was a frequent player in the U.S. Chess League, where he has the second-most all-time MVP points for the New England Nor'easters. He also led the team to the 2010 title with a 2780 performance rating. In 2011, he dominated the New York International, beating the field by a full 1.5 points (second place was former world top-five GM Jaan Ehlvest). He has also represented the U.S. in the 2012 World Cities Team Championship, playing third board for Chicago (where he would be Ehlvest's teammate!). He earned his final GM norm back in South America.


GM Robert Hungaski (R) playing GM Hikaru Nakamura at the World Open

Here is Hungaski's cute final tactic to help his team win in the 2010 U.S. Chess League Finals.

GM Krikor Sevag Mekhitarian -- FIDE 2544, did not start competing until he was 10 years old, but he has made up for any lost time by winning several Brazilian youth championships, including twice being the Under-20 Champion. He is of Armenian descent but is now the sixth highest-rated player in Brazil. Mekhitarian also played in this year's esteemed Tata Steel Tournament, where he finished a respectable fourth place in the "C" group. In March, he had his biggest victory ever, winning his country's national championship. He said his next goal is to make 2600.


GM Krikor Sevag Mekhitarian

Several years ago, he cited this as one of his best games:

So it will be a little South American Saturday special on July 20th when these two polyglots meet for three hours of fast-paced chess action. Pre-match interviews start at 1 p.m. Eastern, 10 a.m. Pacific. The action will be covered live on ChessTV, open to all members and hosted by IM Danny Rensch with special guests!

FM Mike Klein

Company Contact and News Accreditation: 

  • Email:
  • Phone: 1 (800) 318-2827
  • Address: PO Box 60400 Palo Alto, CA 94306

Mike Klein began playing chess at the age of four in Charlotte, NC. In 1986, he lost to Josh Waitzkin at the National Championship featured in the movie "Searching for Bobby Fischer." A year later, Mike became the youngest member of the very first All-America Chess Team, and was on the team a total of eight times. In 1988, he won the K-3 National Championship, and eventually became North Carolina's youngest-ever master. In 1996, he won clear first for under-2250 players in the top section of the World Open. Mike has taught chess full-time for a dozen years in New York City and Charlotte, with his students and teams winning many national championships. He now works at as a Senior Journalist and at as the Chief Chess Officer. In 2012, 2015, and 2018, he was awarded Chess Journalist of the Year by the Chess Journalists of America. He has also previously won other awards from the CJA such as Best Tournament Report, and also several writing awards for mainstream newspapers. His chess writing and personal travels have now brought him to more than 85 countries.

More from FM MikeKlein
Ian Nepomniachtchi On The World Chess Championship

Ian Nepomniachtchi On The World Chess Championship

New ChessKid Adventure App Released

New ChessKid Adventure App Released