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History of World Junior and Girls U-20 Championships

The idea was the brainchild of William Ritson-Morry and he organized the 1951 inaugural event to take place in England. Borislav Ivkov was the first champion. Since then it has been held every two years until 1973, when an annual schedule was adopted. The first tournament was 11-round Swiss, but in subsequent years preliminary tournament have been played with players divided into sections of approximately equal strength. From these preliminaries sections, players qualified for the top, middle and lowest sections i.e. A, B, C and D finals. In the period 1951-1973 finals were held as Round-Robin tournaments. Since then preliminaries were cancelled and a 13-round Swiss event was adopted.

In 1982, a separate tournament for girls U-20 was organized. The first winner was Agnieszka Brustman of Poland. The first event was also called the World Cup. Since then the World Girls U-20 Championships have been held every year except the 1984 year.

There are many top junior players of all continents are taking part in Championships. Champions under 20: Boris Spassky, Anatoly Karpov, Garry Kasparov and Viswanathan Anand became World Champions. The World Girls U-20 Champion Zhu Chen became the World Women Champion. In the 2008 year in Turkey 109 juniors and 67 girls from 50 countries took part. In the 2009 year in Argentina 80 juniors and 45 girls from 61 countries took part.

Indian players have been regularly participating in World Junior Chess Championships. The current World Champion and World No.1 GM Viswanathan Anand made India proud by becoming the First World Junior Champion in 1987. Since then, GM Pentala Harikrishna (2004), and GM Abhijeet Gupta (2008), had won World Junior Championship. The current World Women’s Champion contender GM Koneru Humpy became the First Indian Girl to win the World Junior Girls Championship in 2002. After her Dronavalli Harika (2008), and Soumya Swaminathan (2010) emerged as Champions in World Junior Girls Championship.

The rise of Viswanathan Anand and koneru Humpy in the world arena has inspired many Indian Juniors to take up chess more professionally. We expect a large contingent of Indian players to take part this time as this prestigious event is to be organized in the historical city Chennai, Tamilnadu, India.

Eligibility of Indian Players

The Central Council of the All India Chess Federation has approved the following Criteria for donor participants from India.

Criteria for donor participants from India in the World Junior Chess Championship 2011, who alone will be considered for participation.

  1. FIDE Title Holders GMs / WGMs / IMs / WIMs / FMs / WFMs
  2. Asian / World Youth Medallist (GOLD, SILVER & BRONZE)
  3. Boys ELO Rating 2000 and above
  4. Girls ELO Rating 1800 and above

The decision was taken in view of maintaining high standards based on merit while permitting participation of the players by the AICF. However, the AICF will have the right to accept or reject any entry.

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