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Announcing The 2023 Chess.com Awards Winners

Announcing The 2023 Chess.com Awards Winners

CHESScom
| 127 | Chess.com News

The people have spoken! Over 16,000 voters chose the best games, moves, creators, and all things chess in 2023. Now, it's time for us to reveal the winners of the 2023 Chess.com Awards.

Magnus Carlsen at the Champions Chess Tour Finals 2023
GM Magnus Carlsen at the Champions Chess Tour Finals, one of the last events of 2023. Photo: Thomas Tischio/Chess.com.

2023 was the greatest year for chess yet. We've witnessed the biggest wave of new players picking up the game, received mass media attention, and met our new world champion. But that's not all! 

Chess was at one point the most popular free game on the iOS app store and topped three Amazon bestseller lists with IM Levy Rozman's book. Chess even spilled into the universe of other sports when tennis prodigy Carlos Alcaraz and world-renowned soccer coach Pepe Guardiola recorded videos sharing their love for the game. 

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Player Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Player of the Year

Not everyone can give up the world champion title and still be crowned Player of the Year. But if anyone can do it, it's GM Magnus Carlsen! This is the third time in four years that Carlsen has won this award, and it's easy to understand why. 

The world number-one dominated speed chess by winning the 2023 Champions Chess Tour after coming in first in three CCT events, two Grand Chess Tour events, and the 2023 Speed Chess Championship. More impressively, though, Carlsen has finally won the only title missing from his resume, the 2023 FIDE World Cup, not to mention the FIDE World Rapid and Blitz Championships. 

All nominees:

Woman Player Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Woman Player of the Year

Indian chess fans have a lot of reasons to be proud of their country. Among them, IM Vaishali Rameshbabu is sure one of the highlights! Vaishali had a stellar year, indeed; she earned her third GM norm in the 2023 Qatar Masters, went undefeated to win the FIDE Women's Grand Swiss, and then crossed the 2500 rating mark after winning the IV El Llobregat Open—the last requirement she needed to attain the GM title. 

While Vaishali is surely celebrating her qualification for the Women's Candidates in 2024 she sure has time to commemorate another accolade after winning the Woman Player of the Year award.

All nominees:

Creator Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Creator of the Year

If the third time is a charm, Rozman is definitely looking charming. For the third consecutive year, the man behind YouTube's biggest chess channel has won the Creator of the Year award. Spearheading chess content creation, Rozman has also found the time to write a book, commentate on major events, and make it to Forbes' 30 under 30 list.

All nominees:

Game Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Game of the Year

What does it take to win against the world's number-one player? Two sacrifices, a 95 accuracy score, and the name GM Wesley So. The American player was not intimidated by Carlsen and launched a devastating sacrificial attack seemingly out of nowhere. It didn't matter that the engine didn't really like it. It didn't matter that So was up against the best player in history. When the game was over, So was the only one standing, with his victory elected as the Game of the Year. You can check out the full game below, annotated by GM Rafael Leitao:

All nominees:

Move Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Move of the Year

Another one for Carlsen, this time against none other than GM Hikaru Nakamura. In one of the most thrilling Speed Chess Championship finals ever, Carsen found the brilliant 40.Rxc5+!! in the last game of the event. The first of two rook sacrifices, this move began a mating combination that secured the 2023 SCC title for the world number-one.

All nominees:

Rising Star Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Rising Star of the Year

In September 2023, the young prodigy GM Gukesh Dommaraju reached his peak rating of 2758, becoming the eighth-strongest player in the world. This was the first time in 37 years that a player surpassed GM Viswanathan Anand as the top-rated player in India. Just a few months later, Gukesh won the strongest classical tournament held on Indian soil to make it to the 2024 Candidates Tournament. Gukesh's impressive run gave him a chance to potentially become the youngest world champion ever in 2024 and made him the Rising Star of the Year in 2023!

All nominees:

ChessKid Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners ChessKid of the Year

By now, everyone knows the story of the Nigerian-born kid who became a chess prodigy. This year, FM Tani Adewumi kept pursuing his grandmaster title and also found the time to do so much more! The young ChessKid caught mass media attention yet again, this time by playing chess against tennis legend Roger Federer. All while winning a match against Harvard University students, helping with his Foundation, and playing tournaments!

All nominees:

Photo Of The Year

Very few people will ever experience the feeling of becoming the world chess champion. But in 2023, GM Ding Liren got to know that feeling when he defeated GM Ian Nepomniachtchi to win the FIDE World Chess Championship. Getting there was not easy, with Ding having to win games to tie the score three times in the classical portion of the match before finally winning in the rapid tiebreaks. After 18 tense games, Ding finally won the match, and after the final handshake sat at the table with head in hands, overcome with emotion. And this was the Photo of the Year:

Ding Liren wins the World Chess Championship
Ding after winning the 2023 World Chess Championship. Photo: Maria Emelianova/Chess.com.
All nominees:

Commentator Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Commentator of the Year

Maybe it's the way he understands the mind of chess fans like no other commentator, or perhaps it's just the way he screams, "The rooook!". Whatever it is, people love it, and that's why they chose Levy as the Commentator of the Year in 2023!

All nominees:

Chessable Course Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Chessable Course of the Year

It was a busy year at the GothamChess household. This year, the renowned Youtuber and commentator also became a renowned Chessable course author, topping the charts with his GothamChess 1.e4 Repertoire (Short & Sweet version here, in case you want to take a look at the free sample) and winning the Chessable Course of the Year award.

All nominees:

Book Of The Year

2023 Chess.com Awards Winners Book of the Year

At this point, it's getting harder and harder to come up with new ways to praise Rozman. 2023 was also the year when Levy published his first book, How To Win At Chess. The book was a massive success among learners and voters, who elected his work the Book of the Year. 

  • 1st: How to Win at Chess by Levy Rozman
  • 2nd: Grind Like a Grandmaster by Magnus Carlsen and David Howell
  • 3rd: Play Like a Champion by Jennifer Shahade
All nominees:
  • How To Win At Chess by Levy Rozman
  • Grind Like a Grandmaster by Magnus Carlsen and David Howell
  • Play Like a Champion by Jennifer Shahade
  • Perpetual Chess Improvement by Ben Johnson
  • Conceptual Rook Endgames by Jacob Aagaard
  • Theoretical Rook Endgames by Sam Shankland
  • How I Became A Chess Grandmaster by Vinay Bhat
  • Endgame Labyrinths by Jacob Aagard
  • Re-Engineering the Chess Classics by Matthew Sadler and Steve Giddins

We thank you for once again taking the time to celebrate chess and vote for the 2023 Chess.com Awards. We're excited to be a part of this journey with you, and we can't wait to enjoy another great year of chess in 2024! Happy New Year!

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